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Old 07-29-2008, 01:14 AM   #1
RMohan13
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Default Beer on the T-Shirt and Tripel Fermentation

So I have a Tripel and a Dubbel fermenting in two buckets in my basement and I'm using the wet t-shirt over the bucket method of cooling it. I noticed a thin, stain on both t-shirts up around the lid that looks an awful lot like beer. I'm not terribly concerned about it, as both seem to be fermenting fine. Has this happened to anyone. Presumably I have leaky tops in both, which would explain why after vigorous initial fermentations there is no bubbling in my airlock, but these were both 3.5 gallon batches in a 6.5 gallon bucket! Could fermentation have been that intense as to reach the top? After a week the Tripel is down to 1.032, with an OG according to BeerSmith of 1.079 (the actual reading seemed a little higher i.e. 1.100 which I'm hoping was due to improper mixing, I don't see how i could mess an extract + sugar recipe that badly), it seems to be slowing down, but there's still a pretty thick brownish green icky krausen on top, which smells absolutely delightful, so I'm hoping it will continue to drop. The hydrometer sample tasted pretty good, about the right amount of fruitiness, it had a little hot alcohol taste, which I'm hoping will subside. I started out fermentation at 64 according to the fermometer and have ramped it up to about 73, so i'm hoping for not too many harsh fusels. My only worry is if that initial reading was accurate, and it will finish too high. I'm using Wyeast 3787 Trappist High Gravity.



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Old 07-29-2008, 01:24 AM   #2
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If you're using 3787, then yes, your three gallons could've krausened up to the top of your 6.5. That strain is a krausen monster. And delicious. The biggest problem with attenuation in that strain is that the viable yeast cells all end up in the krausen. Try swishing it around?

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Old 07-29-2008, 01:25 AM   #3
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I just did a big beer at OG 1.0945. It was 5 gallons in a 6.5 G Carboy and it spewed through the blow off tube. The end of the tube was in a gallon water jug 1/4 full of water, but it finished at 3/4 full and dark brown. That's about 2g of Krausen, so I don't know if 3g is possible. After seeing mine go though, I wouldn't say it's impossible.

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Old 07-29-2008, 01:41 AM   #4
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I had a similiar thing happen on one of my t-shirted buckets (ale pail) I also noticed some dried beer looking stuff on the top "band" or ridge of the pail as well, I'm thinking a not too tight seal on the bucket and a little oozing...no big deal...I just started using darker t-shirts.

Remember is something's coming out of your bucket, then nothing is getting in.

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Old 07-29-2008, 02:01 AM   #5
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swishing around as in like gently moving the bucket in a circle around its bottom (I'm worried about oxidizing it)? I'll probably have a better idea of how it's doing in a few days once I can get another reading to see how much/if it's dropped. But wow, I kinda wish i had a carboy so I could have seen this thing at its peak!

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Old 07-29-2008, 02:10 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RMohan13 View Post
swishing around as in like gently moving the bucket in a circle around its bottom (I'm worried about oxidizing it)? I'll probably have a better idea of how it's doing in a few days once I can get another reading to see how much/if it's dropped. But wow, I kinda wish i had a carboy so I could have seen this thing at its peak!
Someone, either Chris Colby the editor of BYO magazine, or John Palmer, on basic brewing radio, once said that the amount of oxygen that it takes to actually oxidize your beer is really, in parts per million, quote high...higher than what happens in most homebrewery "mistakes"...It's actually tantamount to accidently putting your oxygen stone in your bottling bucket and emptying the bottle...in other words a little swish here or there, or a stuck siphon that you re-start ain't gonna damage your beer...We take our beer way to serious and think it is way to week and prescious....

Most of the time our beer is drank long before oxudation would show up anyway...this isn't to say not to be careful...but you don't have to tip toe around it either.
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Old 07-29-2008, 02:44 AM   #7
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Fair enough, i'll give it a little swirl tomorrow and hope for the best, thanks! I'm really excited about this beer, but not so excited about the long aging period I'll have to endure.



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