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Old 05-23-2012, 09:26 AM   #11
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I discovered after using brewing software that 5oz is WAY TOO MUCH priming for many types of beer. I'd suggest a priming calc or getting some brew programs--saves so much hassle!

EDIT: the bulk of your fermentation was done long before a month and 1.018 is a respectable FG for the style, so I don't think more time in the fermenter would have helped. In fact, that's a good argument in my mind for using mrmalty.com to calculate your yeast amounts--waaaay too much yeast + too much sugar = boom!

EDIT2: I just checked a similar recipe in my software--2.98oz priming sugar for 5gal.

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Old 05-23-2012, 10:30 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piratwolf View Post
I discovered after using brewing software that 5oz is WAY TOO MUCH priming for many types of beer. I'd suggest a priming calc or getting some brew programs--saves so much hassle!

EDIT: the bulk of your fermentation was done long before a month and 1.018 is a respectable FG for the style, so I don't think more time in the fermenter would have helped. In fact, that's a good argument in my mind for using mrmalty.com to calculate your yeast amounts--waaaay too much yeast + too much sugar = boom!

EDIT2: I just checked a similar recipe in my software--2.98oz priming sugar for 5gal.
How would you know that without knowing the temp that his beer was at?
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Old 05-23-2012, 12:12 PM   #13
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5oz is a lot of priming sugar for a wee heavy. Under mos circumstances 5oz is what you would use for a hefe or other high carbed beer in the 3 volumes range (depending on your temperature)

If you were a little shy on total volume (less than 5 G post secondary) you might have simply added too much priming sugar. If 22's are breaking that means you are going well past 3.0 volumes on your carb. I haven't seen a 22 rated for less than 3 volumes capacity (though I am sure they are out there.)

IMO your ferment time was more than adequate, the issue was when it came to priming. What temp did you prime at?

My first thought was wait another week (for the co2 to absorb), but if bottles are blowing up that rules that theory out.

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Old 05-23-2012, 08:23 PM   #14
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How would you know that without knowing the temp that his beer was at?
I made 3 or 4 points, so I'm not 100% sure what you're asking. Given the temperature part of your question, though, I'm assuming you mean, "How do you know that his fermentation was done?"

If so, that's easy. In the majority of healthy fermentations, the bulk of it is done in 4-5 days. And that's not really temp dependent. Now a major underpitching may drag out fermentation a few more days, but he used AN ENTIRE CAKE... and even with underpitching it's usually over (for good or ill) within ten days. That's definitely not temperature dependent.

Keep in mind that I'm using the word "fermentation" literally. That's different from conditioning (or clean up), but after FG is reached the yeast aren't doing anything that's going to prevent a bottle bomb.

Cheers!
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Old 05-23-2012, 08:26 PM   #15
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[QUOTE=CidahMastah;4109356]IMO your ferment time was more than adequate, the issue was when it came to priming. What temp did you prime at?[QUOTE]

I missed it first time through (hence the multi-edits on my earlier post) but the OP used an entire cake. That much yeast wasn't sated, I'm sure, even by the malt in a Wee Heavy... and when it got 2oz of extra sugar, I expect that explains the 22oz bomb-ers.

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Old 05-23-2012, 08:33 PM   #16
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I missed it first time through (hence the multi-edits on my earlier post) but the OP used an entire cake. That much yeast wasn't sated, I'm sure, even by the malt in a Wee Heavy... and when it got 2oz of extra sugar, I expect that explains the 22oz bomb-ers.

The amount of yeast used in carbing really isn't a factor in creating bottle bombs. You determine your carb by the temp you are carbing at AND the amount of sugar. You can use a carbing calculator like northern brewers, mr. malty etc.

i.e. more yeast doesn't = more fermentation/bottle bombs. It just means potentially a quicker fermentation in the bottle.
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Old 05-23-2012, 10:09 PM   #17
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So I suspect it was the "perfect storm" of mistakes on my part. The FG was appropriate at 1.018, however, like I mentioned in the original post, I racked that wort on to a MASSIVE yeast cake (my first, and last, experiment with re-using yeast). I can't remember exactly, but I think I probably only had about 4.5 gallons (or less) of beer to bottle. And I know I used the full 5 oz of priming sugar. Those bottles sat out at around 60-65 degrees in the garage for the last month or so, priming like crazy. When I popped the tops on the remaining bottles yesterday, it was a virtual "Old Faithful" geyser of beer. I couldn't believe it....every single one literally erupted out of the bottle. I'm truly surprised more bottles didn't break. Anyway, I know have a bunch of half-full, re-capped bottles of Wee Heavy. Going to give them another week, try one for flavor/carbonation...and decide if I need to just dump and start from scratch.
Chalk it all up to lesson learned.

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Old 05-23-2012, 10:11 PM   #18
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Oh, and for the last couple batches I've bottled, I've made an effort to measure exact volume of beer, and add 1 oz priming sugar per gallon.

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Old 05-23-2012, 10:19 PM   #19
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actually one more question for you guys (i'm new to this and still learning). how long does that yeast stay suspended in the secondary? i know carbonation happens from the yeast converting the priming sugar to booze and CO2, and by "capping" the CO2 goes into solution....but say a beer sits in a secondary for two months. is there still enough yeast in suspension to effectively carb the brew? thanks for all the input and advice.

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Old 05-24-2012, 12:59 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piratwolf

I made 3 or 4 points, so I'm not 100% sure what you're asking. Given the temperature part of your question, though, I'm assuming you mean, "How do you know that his fermentation was done?"

If so, that's easy. In the majority of healthy fermentations, the bulk of it is done in 4-5 days. And that's not really temp dependent. Now a major underpitching may drag out fermentation a few more days, but he used AN ENTIRE CAKE... and even with underpitching it's usually over (for good or ill) within ten days. That's definitely not temperature dependent.

Keep in mind that I'm using the word "fermentation" literally. That's different from conditioning (or clean up), but after FG is reached the yeast aren't doing anything that's going to prevent a bottle bomb.

Cheers!
No, I mean how do you know how much sugar he needs? The fermentation temp affects the amount of residual carbon dioxide in the beer, which in turn affects how much sugar he needs to add.
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