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DJCalico 04-18-2008 02:08 PM

No change?
Well... I'm totally be a newb, but that's typical for a first batch I guess.

I'm on day 6 of primary fermentation with a DME light ale. It was used with dry yeast (sorry for the lack of specifics, I'm at work). Kraussen developed pretty quickly, but my airlock was not 'going nuts' like a lot of people discuss. I still see the airlock bobber kick once every ~10 seconds still. There is still about 1.5" of kraussen on top and VERY little sediment on the bottom of the carboy (6.5gal). The temp has been steady at 66-67deg F.

I plan on keeping it in the primary for another weeks (two week total) before I bottle per my LHBS, but as it still seems active (and smells really nice out the top of the airlock) doesn't this seem like it's taking a little long for a light ale?

I'm going to try to get a picture up tonite or tomorrow morning.


Austinhomebrew 04-18-2008 02:15 PM

Sounds like you need to add more oxygen (stir really well before you add the yeast) and a yeast nutrient like Brewvint Yeast Fuel will really improve the health of your fermentation. Your beer will turn out fine but it is good to have the best environment for the yeast to work in.


DJCalico 04-18-2008 02:23 PM

Thanks Forrest... I think as it was my first batch, I was being way to cautious with the wort/fementor during the transfer. I'll go caveman on it next time :).

Since that's what it seems like, would it be advisable to wait 2.5 weeks - 3 weeks before bottling?

Liquidicem 04-18-2008 02:56 PM

Your biggest indicator of whether or not to bottle is going to be hydrometer readings. This is a tool that is very import to have and know how to use.

malkore 04-18-2008 10:40 PM

+1 for the hydrometer. airlock bubbling has too many variables to be a reliable indicator. I've had batches 'stealth ferment' and come out fine.

I advise this rule of thumb for now until you get a couple more batches under your belt:
1 week in primary
2 weeks in secondary (or an extra 2 weeks in primary)
3 weeks in the bottle

That formula is not set in stone and for some beers it's quite off. But for a generic guideline for generic ale recipes, of 1.040 - 1.060 OG...its a reasonable timeframe to follow.

your hydrometer would tell you without doubt whether its time to move to secondary or bottle.

tranceamerica 04-18-2008 11:02 PM

some of my batches are done in 5 days. some take 3 weeks. depends on so much. yeast is a big factor. your temp is not bad, but if it were warmer, it'd probably ferment a bit faster.

RDWHAHB. (or in your case, go to the store and buy some beer while you wait...)

the answer is: "no, it's not too long for an ale. sounds like it's doing fine"

I've got a buddy who is at day 22 on his first ale, it's still fermenting. His yeast dropped, and had to be roused, which created a later ferment. His is fine too.

edit: to answer your question - yes, 3 weeks is fine to wait before bottling. No need to transfer to a secondary either.

DJCalico 04-21-2008 02:01 PM


Now on day 9 in primary fermenter.... NOOOO activity in airlock (my wine thief has not been delivered yet!). The beer is a really nice color, the kraussen is pretty much gone and the trub(?) is getting thicker. I see the lace left by the kraussen and some yeast dropping out.

Looking forward to bottling this batch this weekend!

I'll have you all over for a taste in 3 weeks :tank:

tranceamerica 04-21-2008 02:28 PM

question to all - can you assume that the presense of krausen indicates fermentation activity, even w/o airlock activity?

for me, I wouldn't want to bother w/a hydrometer until the *visible* signs of fermentation go away - correct? (IE: no airlock activity, no krausen, no yeast flying around inside,l no bubbles rising inside the beer, etc...)

Liquidicem 04-21-2008 02:42 PM

Yeah, I don't bother with the hydrometer for at least a week. Longer if its obvious that its still fermenting.

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