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Old 08-27-2012, 06:25 AM   #1
TravNasty
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Default 1st brew issues.

Hey guys. so heres what happened. I ordered a Vanilla porter extract recipe kit from AHS but when my package arrived my white labs yeast vial and ice package were almost hot to the touch. i called AHS and they said it should be fine so i pitched it anyways. With 2 days of no activity i took a gravity reading and there was no change. this was a big problem seeing that im in Yuma, AZ and the closest brew store is 3 hours away. Luckily my sister was coming down from phoenix and brought me some Muntons dry. So when she arrived with the yeast my wort had been sitting for 5 days. when i opened the lid to pitch the yeast it looked foamy. i took a hydrometer reading and saw the the gravity had dropped from 1.07 to 1.06. i then pitched the yeast and sealed it up.

Some kind of infection wouldnt drop my gravity level would it?
possible that my original yeast still had a little bit of life?

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Old 08-27-2012, 06:38 AM   #2
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This is what it looked like...i pitched the yeast on top.

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Old 08-27-2012, 07:21 AM   #3
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time will tell if it wwas wild yeast.

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Old 08-27-2012, 07:29 AM   #4
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Most likely you under pitched, liquid yeasts need starters, they don't tell you that, I guess they expect you to intuit that. The foam you saw is fermentation, pitching the dry yeast will probably kick it to high, watch for foam overs.

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Old 08-27-2012, 10:35 AM   #5
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Yeah, with an OG of 1.070 you needed a starter with a good vial of yeast. You may have had a bunch of yeast die before you pitched and it took the rest a while to grow more yeast to start fermentation.

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Old 08-27-2012, 01:33 PM   #6
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If you practices good sanitation, you'll probably be fine. You pitched some yeast to start. At the temps you described, a lot of them were probably dead and the remaining ones probably weren't all that healthy. It took them a while to get going and multiply to levels that could make some measurable progress on your brew. You pitched some healthy yeast on top of those.

Obviously, these aren't ideal fermentation conditions. Those stressed yeast probably were kicking off a bunch of byproducts as they struggled to get going. Hopefully, the healthy yeast will help clean some of those up.

Of course, if your sanitation was suspect, who knows what you had growing for 5 days?

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Old 08-27-2012, 02:37 PM   #7
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Yup,it does indeed sound like the yeast was stressed enough to need extra time for the reproductive phase. This always comes first when any brew is pitched on. It just depends on how much healthy yeast is pitched on a given OG.
Basically,the more healthy yeast that's pitched will give less lag time between the reproduction phase to the start of visible fermentation.
Not to mention,I hope your sanitation practices were good. How were/are your fermentation temps?
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Old 08-27-2012, 08:13 PM   #8
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Temp has been staying between. 70-74 degrees. For a gravity that high should I even be pitching more yeast?

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Old 08-27-2012, 08:30 PM   #9
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At this point, you should just leave it alone.

For future batches, yes, you should be pitching more yeast for bigger brews. You can either make a starter or buy an extra yeast.

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Old 08-27-2012, 09:23 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TravNasty View Post
Temp has been staying between. 70-74 degrees. For a gravity that high should I even be pitching more yeast?
Yeah, consult MrMalty.com's pitch rate calc, it'll give you a good idea of how much yeast to use for each beer. I agree with Billl, chances are that the yeast just took a really long time to get going. That krausen looks more like a normal fermentation and not some wild yeast or bug. Also, I'd try to keep temps a bit lower for most ales, below 70 for sure.
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