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Old 03-03-2006, 04:35 AM   #1
Indiana Red
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Default Is this yeast activity normal?

My first AG batch, mainly experimental, practice and to make a yeast cake for the Expedition clone I am planning next weekend.
Pitched right from the vial (no starter) to a 76F 4.5gal 1.065 Big Brown Ale I guess you would call it. Almost nothing till nearly 12 hours, peak activity at aprox 3 days, and now 1 day later it has dropped off like crazy.
A 5 day cycle from nothing to peak to almost nothing.
I thought it would take a bit longer. It's OK actually cause I was hoping transfer to secondary in a couple days anyway.
Just wondering if this was in the range of posibly normal?
Thanks

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Old 03-03-2006, 05:24 AM   #2
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Did you aerate? How, and how long? What yeast stain?

Could be a possible... Sac'd... err.. thats a word I use for Produced-Too-much-alcohol-and-killed-the-yeast.

1.065 is pretty high... and that leads me to believe that you are going to produce more alcohol than the yeast is tolerant to. Only a gravity reading could give you in-site in the situation.

If it did "sac" then you will need to find a more tolerant strain for bottle conditioning. If it didn't, then you should note your fermentation temps and find measure to prevent sudden fermentation drop-offs.

More likely.. the yeast ran out of food and went dormant.
I.E. Chill and have a homebrew

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Old 03-03-2006, 07:37 AM   #3
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For sure, relax and have a homebrew. The first high gravity beer I did I did without a starter, and it was 1.087 with a yeast that was not rated for high gravity beers. It went a little crazy, blew a little out the blow off tube, but went slowly afterwards for a long time. The yeast handled the eventual 7.5%ABV just fine, and the bottles carbonated nicely. If it went really crazy, it's possible that it spent its load. If it's still going really, really slowly, that's fine too. At 1.06whatever OG, I wouldn't worry. Take a gravity reading if you can't help yourself, but don't be surprised if it's 1.02-3. It's probably still fine. As with any beer over 1.05, I think you can't really over-do the secondary stage.
Anyway, back to the point, I don't think that at 1.065 you're going to out-do your yeast with alcohol. Rock-on, relax, have a homebrew.

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Old 03-03-2006, 09:55 AM   #4
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That's not enough of a OG to kill your yeast. Check your SG and rack if it has finished or at least come close to your FG. It's not uncommon to have a primary ferment out in 5 days.

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Old 03-03-2006, 02:27 PM   #5
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It looks like your yeasties really liked the environment they were dropped into. I've had fermentations like that. But just because there's no airlock activity, don't think there's no activity at all. Take a gravity reading. If the gravity has dropped to the 1.020's, I'd rack to the secondary and let it hang out there for several weeks.

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Old 03-03-2006, 02:53 PM   #6
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Thanks, just checking against conventional wisdom...er...experiance. Cal Ale WL 1001, airated for several minutes with severe sloshing just prior to pitching.
Got almost 20 points just from boiling so I didn't really mean to pitch on such a high OG. But oh well. My first solo.
Thanks again for the feedback.

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