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Old 05-15-2006, 10:40 PM   #1
AllHoppedUp
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Default imperial stout explosion . . .

I brewed an imperial stout on Friday and it got a good head of foam on it just from dumping it into the bucket (thick stuff). I pitched the yeast and then sometime in the night on Saturday night the krausen managed to plug up my 3-piece airlock and the pressure built up to the point that it blew. I would have thought that maybe just a small section of the lid would have come loose to relieve the pressure but the lid was 3 or 4 feet away from the bucket and there was beer on the ceiling and walls. I was pretty shocked. Anyway, I spooned out some of the foam from the top in an attempt to remove any contaminants that may have fallen in from the air while the lid was off, put the lid back on, and put in a new airlock. A few hours later that one started filling up with crap too! So I just took it off and inserted a chunk of siphon tubing to use for a blow-off. Anything I might be overlooking that could have caused this? Or is this normal behavior for big beers?

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Old 05-15-2006, 11:03 PM   #2
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That's definitely normal behavior for a big beer, especially if you use a good yeast starter. The top blowing off at that stage ísn't much of a contamination problem. Since your beer is blowing enough carbon dioxide off the surface to pop the top, not much is going to be able to settle in the headspace, let alone into the beer.

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Old 05-15-2006, 11:16 PM   #3
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Not normal at all, but that's what happens when you do everything correctly. A fast start on a big beer is a good thing.

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Old 05-15-2006, 11:25 PM   #4
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Russian Imperial Stouts are notorious for doing that. Sounds like you delt with it fine. Big beers start in the bathtub.

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Old 05-16-2006, 08:01 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by  鯰 
Big beers start in the bathtub.
Fortunately my brew room has a tile floor and concrete walls with an 80's paint job that I don't like anyway - so the mess wasn't much of a concern.

Next time I brew this beer, does anyone think there'd be a problem with topping off short - to 4 gallons instead of 5 for example - to allow extra space for the krausen and then making up the difference when I transfer to secondary?
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Old 05-16-2006, 08:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AllHoppedUp
Next time I brew this beer, does anyone think there'd be a problem with topping off short - to 4 gallons instead of 5 for example - to allow extra space for the krausen and then making up the difference when I transfer to secondary?
I would not recommend this, just prepare a good blowoff tube and you should be OK.
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Old 05-16-2006, 11:59 PM   #7
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Yikes! Glad I prepared a blowoff tube system for my Imperial IPA!

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Old 05-17-2006, 04:23 AM   #8
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I vote 6.5 gallon carboy for primary with a good blow off tube... glass is MUCH better than plastic IMO

later,
mikey

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Old 05-17-2006, 01:12 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AllHoppedUp
Fortunately my brew room has a tile floor and concrete walls with an 80's paint job that I don't like anyway - so the mess wasn't much of a concern.
Mine has a giant (3'x3', 1' up the wall from foam) Imperial Stout stain. I like the sounds of yours more.
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Old 02-12-2013, 05:18 PM   #10
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ahhhh, finally. I have been searching for an answer. Though I didn't have an explosion while brewing (it was def doing a big beer thing in there, though!) I have jsut opened a resealable bottle and the foam just POURED out. I quickly got a glass and poured out some of the beer, but it continued to foam out the top o the bottle and the glass was 3/4 foam. Second glass managed to contian it all. It tastes really good, but took several minutes for the foam to reduce.

What did I do wrong, if anything? I used a kit, Brewers Best, Irish stout, and followed my local shops directions for upping the ante to Imperial status--3# dark malt and an extra pound of Caramel 60l plus I upped the roasted barley and the Black patent as they suggested.

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