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Old 10-25-2009, 02:02 PM   #1
hbhudy
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Default How long in Fermenter?? CoopersKit

I brew'd a Coopers Bitter and bottled it after 7 days, based on the instructions... I have now read several messages stating that you should (or can) leave the beer in the fermenter for 3 weeks to help improve the flavor.

I was thinking (if this is true and I believe the folks on this board no better then I do as this is my first beer) that I really need to keep the beer in the bottles longer with a 7 day fermentation.

My question is if I keep the beer in the fermenter longer does this decrease the length of time I need to "age" the beer in the bottles?

I am super impatient to test my first batch, but I have given myself a strick 5 week limit before I test my beer... I was hoping you folks could end some guidance for a newbie with the bug (Ordering the Dark Ale now and looking to replace the Coopers Brew Enhancer-2 with 500 Dark Spray {Muntons}, 500 Dextrose).

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Old 10-25-2009, 04:13 PM   #2
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5 weeks is fine if you bottled after one week.

The main benefit of leaving your beer in primary for a few extra weeks is to give the yeast time to clean up any off flavors that may have been produced. You'll get a much smoother, clean beer if you let it sit.

As for waiting longer with your beer....there's really no need. Do yourself a favor though. Set one six-pack of your beer aside and forget about it for at least 6 months. Once you taste that six-pack, you'll understand the effect that aging has on a beer. It will taste MUCH better.

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Old 10-26-2009, 10:58 PM   #3
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The main benefit of leaving your beer in primary for a few extra weeks is to give the yeast time to clean up any off flavors that may have been produced. You'll get a much smoother, clean beer if you let it sit.
.
I found the oppisite.

The longer I let the ferment sit, the more sour apple flavor I got. After about 10 days it was real bad.

I read that the yeast competes with the bacteria to grow so the longer it sits, the more off flavors that can be introduced. I wish I could reference the site I got that info from. They said in a homebrew environment where things are never completely sterile that it can become an issue because every batch of homebrew is infected. It's just a matter of 'how much'.
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Old 10-26-2009, 11:05 PM   #4
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now I am really confused.....
The prior post says the opposite, I think. Does any other cooper kit basic user have another opinion on this??

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Old 10-26-2009, 11:07 PM   #5
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I found the oppisite.

The longer I let the ferment sit, the more sour apple flavor I got. After about 10 days it was real bad.

I read that the yeast competes with the bacteria to grow so the longer it sits, the more off flavors that can be introduced. I wish I could reference the site I got that info from.
I wish you could reference that too, because it is 100% wrong.

Leaving the beer in the fermenter more than 4 months may cause some off flavors, from autolysis.

What happens is the yeast, when it runs out of food, actually starts to digest its own waste products. That's a good thing, and you want that to happen. The yeast actually go and "clean up" before finally going dormant and falling to the bottom of the fermenter. This can take from 2-4 weeks to complete. After that, the suspended solids, proteins and other things that you don't want in your beer will also drop out. After that you can rack off clear beer into the bottling bucket or keg, and have better beer.

There can be a risk of autolysis. That's when after the yeast have digested their own waste products, they are left (and generally at a fairly high temperature) for a long time, perhaps many months. At that point, the yeast can actually start to digest themselves, and actually smell like it's starting to rot. This takes quite a long time, and I'm not sure that anybody I know has actually experienced it. If you leave a empty (but uncleaned) fermenter out in the summer sun a couple of days, you can sort of smell what it may smell like!

If you use sanitary techniques, and pitch the yeast into the fermenter at a good temperature (70 degrees or so), the yeast will outcompete any bacteria or wild yeast that may float by. You have NO risk of contamination simply by leaving the beer in the fermenter. I routinely leave mine in the fermenter for 4 weeks, and many of us do.

You'll get good information from here, and I also suggest howtobrew.com (free online, but a great "real" book, too!) for more information on good brewing methods.
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Old 10-26-2009, 11:08 PM   #6
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now I am really confused.....
The prior post says the opposite, I think. Does any other cooper kit basic user have another opinion on this??
Yes. Please ignore people who have no idea what they are talking about, have never made a drinkable batch of beer, and cannot give you the references for their "facts".
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Old 10-26-2009, 11:14 PM   #7
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now I am really confused.....
The prior post says the opposite, I think. Does any other cooper kit basic user have another opinion on this??

Don't be, mikedavid00 has had problems with his Coopers kit and is not willing to listen to anyone giving him any advice that doesn't already support his position on the matter. Look here for more on that:

Mikedavid00's Coopers Kit Issue

As far as leaving it in the fermenter. There is NOTHING wrong with letting it sit for a few weeks to finish fermenting and clean up after itself.
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Old 10-26-2009, 11:26 PM   #8
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Wow.
Thanks guys. Just a note that with my first batch the air lock was so active that I actually had to add some water to keep it from completely blowing all the water out. This happened for a few days.

Thanks again.

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Old 10-26-2009, 11:44 PM   #9
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Wow.
Thanks guys. Just a note that with my first batch the air lock was so active that I actually had to add some water to keep it from completely blowing all the water out. This happened for a few days.

Thanks again.
The very first five gallon kit I ever made blew the air lock right off the fermenter. I use a blow off tube now and, when I do switch back to the air lock, I fill it with vodka. That way if any of it gets into the beer it won't infect the batch.

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Old 10-26-2009, 11:57 PM   #10
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Wow.
my first batch the air lock was so active that I actually had to add some water to keep it from completely blowing all the water out.
I wish I had that problem.

I can't give updates on my bew because unfortunately I'm banned from posting further to it. I wouldn't expect tight censorship and controlling of speech on a beer brewing forum but oh well. (sorry I really think censorship and controlling speech is one of the big problems in our countries today and it's not something that we should practice if we don't have to).

Anyhow, my beer got kept and bottled after 3 weeks. It had a strong sour apple flavor when I bottled it on Saturday. After 1 week though it did not have those flavors. Those flavors came later on after sitting for about 11 or 12 days.

It's not carbonating at all it seems. I don't know how long I'll have to wait for that to happen. I have this sinking feeling it's never going to carbonate. I can say that right now the beer is simply un drinkable. It tastes nasty.

On the videos people say their wart 'taste like beer'. Mine certainly does not by any stretch of the imagination. It tastes like a sour apple sider that has a fungus.

I read on that website that the yeast and and bacteria both grow at the same time and if the bacteria out does the yeast it will introduce off flavors. They also said that the longer it sits the more time the bacteria has to grow. They claimed this was for a homebrew environment only and the longer you want it to sit, the more sterile the conditions have to be. They also said that all homebrew is infected with bacteria regardless of anything you do, but it's a matter of 'how much'.

That's all I read. Maybe I have a history in my browser somewhere and I can reference the site. I'm certainly not making this up.

However I obviously trust you guys if you guys are claiming that it's good to leave it in for a few weeks.

If that's the case, then my brew should come out amazing becuase it was altra sterile and left in for 21 days. It's now bottled.

Another guy on Youtube was bottling after 4 days and drinking after a week that which was a bit early but said it was amazing and ranted and raved about the beer and how amazing it was. He loved the beer so much that he said he has no reason to try all-grain brewing.

His experience is what I bought the kit for and my experience is very, very different than his.

But I guess I'm doing things the right way. I'm still holding on hope that the beer will turn out to be the best, freshest beer I've tasted.

My fingers are still crossed.
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