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Old 03-26-2012, 12:08 PM   #1
TW1Kell
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Default Darkened lager?

I'm at the point of having a steady SG (1009) for the past 5 days on my 3rd Cooper's Lager package. It's been in primary for 3 weeks as of this past friday. I always get a golden colored beer, much like what you'd see from a bought beer in a can or bottle (Bud, Busch, etc.). This beer has turned a brownish color. Not like a stout, more like a muddy water from the Mississippi Delta color. No reddish tint, just a dull brown. I spent Spring Break away from home with my Grandson, and my Step Dad pulled the Kraussen Collar off for me, with strict instructions to do nothing but lift the lid, pull the collar off, then replace the lid. He says that that is all that he did. The temp has stayed at the same that I always run it (22-24 C), but it has a rather unattractive color to it. Any ideas as to what may have happened here? It smells fine, I sniffed it as I was worried about it. I was planning to bottle it, today. Do y'all think I should be concerned about it? Any suggestions?

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Last edited by TW1Kell; 03-26-2012 at 12:10 PM. Reason: typos
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Old 03-26-2012, 02:24 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by TW1Kell View Post
This beer has turned a brownish color. Not like a stout, more like a muddy water from the Mississippi Delta color. No reddish tint, just a dull brown. I spent Spring Break away from home with my Grandson, and my Step Dad pulled the Kraussen Collar off for me,
Maybe the yeast didn't drop out yet. Cold crash it and see what happens.

What is the "Kraussen Collar"?
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Old 03-26-2012, 04:09 PM   #3
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Liquid extract tends to get a bit darker the longer it sits on the shelf, so you may have just gotten a kit that's been sitting on the shelf a while. This is one of the reasons most people try to steer extract brewers away from the mass-produced kits to the larger online brew shops like Austin Homebrew, Midwest, Northern Brewer, etc. that have high turnover and super fresh liquid extracts.

Your liquid extract can also darken if you scorched it a bit when you dumped it into your bucket from not dissolving it fast enough, which basically turns the heated liquid extract into molassas, i.e., carmelized sugar.

Beer also looks darker in bulk, i.e. in your bucket, then it is going to look in the glass.

What do you mean by:

Quote:
Step Dad pulled the Kraussen Collar off for me
You certainly don't need to clean the krausen ring, and should just leave it there. Trying to do so carries much more risk of introducing oxygen and bacteria. Leave the krausen ring alone!!!
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Old 03-26-2012, 04:51 PM   #4
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I think your beer needs to settle longer...3 weeks is too soon to bottle a lager, it generally takes that long just to get through primary (at 50F). Figure a day or two at room temp for diacetyl rest, then 6-8 weeks at ~35F lagering, THEN bottling.

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Old 03-27-2012, 03:57 PM   #5
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I use a Cooper's kit. The Kraussen Collar is the plastic ring that takes the place of an airlock. It's located between the vat and the cover and allows the excess gases to ease out around it. I remove it on the day recommended by Cooper's. This is my 3rd Lager package from them, and it was golden, as were the other 2. About a week ago, it turned a dirty brownish color.

I usually let it all go longer than Cooper's says, and have had some very good beers from these packages. I am just concerned about the beer turning dark. It's almost as dark as my Irish Stouts, but is a more dirty water color as opposed to the coffee brown of a Stout.

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I plan to slide in sideways, all scarred-up, fall off of my old Shovelhead 74 or Flathead 45 and holler, "Woo-hoo! Thanks for the ride!"

Cooper's Lawnmower Lager: Mixed 4 Feb
Cooper's Irish Stout: Bottled 5 Feb
Coopers' Lawnmower Lager: Bottled 15 Jan (only a few left)

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Old 03-27-2012, 03:58 PM   #6
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Oh, and I couldn't have scorched it. I don't boil it. I boil water and then add everything to the water, as recommended by Cooper's in their instructions.

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I plan to slide in sideways, all scarred-up, fall off of my old Shovelhead 74 or Flathead 45 and holler, "Woo-hoo! Thanks for the ride!"

Cooper's Lawnmower Lager: Mixed 4 Feb
Cooper's Irish Stout: Bottled 5 Feb
Coopers' Lawnmower Lager: Bottled 15 Jan (only a few left)

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Old 04-10-2012, 04:34 PM   #7
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4 1/2 weeks old and this lager now has a slime covering the whole surface of the beer with neat white lightning streaks across it. It tastes like it has vinegar in it, and the "scum" is thickening and growing down into the beer. I think I have failed at making beer, this time.

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I plan to slide in sideways, all scarred-up, fall off of my old Shovelhead 74 or Flathead 45 and holler, "Woo-hoo! Thanks for the ride!"

Cooper's Lawnmower Lager: Mixed 4 Feb
Cooper's Irish Stout: Bottled 5 Feb
Coopers' Lawnmower Lager: Bottled 15 Jan (only a few left)

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Old 04-10-2012, 04:35 PM   #8
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Maybe it was the artesian well water that I used? That is the only difference between this batch and my other 2 of the same package.

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The Fox

I plan to slide in sideways, all scarred-up, fall off of my old Shovelhead 74 or Flathead 45 and holler, "Woo-hoo! Thanks for the ride!"

Cooper's Lawnmower Lager: Mixed 4 Feb
Cooper's Irish Stout: Bottled 5 Feb
Coopers' Lawnmower Lager: Bottled 15 Jan (only a few left)

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Old 04-10-2012, 04:39 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Maybe it was the artesian well water that I used? That is the only difference between this batch and my other 2 of the same package.
No, it sounds like contamination by either lactobacillus or aceterobacter. Definitely a bacterial infection if it's sour and/or vinegary. Sorry to hear about that!

When you remove this "krausen collar", does that expose the beer to oxygen? Maybe that's what happened here- sitting with oxygen in the headspace after fermentation ends can be a recipe for contamination.
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Old 04-10-2012, 05:00 PM   #10
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the krausen collar is part of coopers airlock-less fermentor.
its a ring that the lid sits on and co2 pressure pushes it up and it drops back down. its smaller diameter than the fermentor so it catches and hold a lot of krausen.

its an answer to a question that nobody asked but it works assuming sanitation is good (perfect)

slime is bad, no way around that.

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