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Old 02-23-2007, 04:52 PM   #1
foureyedgeek
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Default First batch - concerned about yeast activity

Howdy folks. I just brewed my first batch Wednesday night, an extract ESB which I pitched with Wyeast's 1968 London ESB.

I'm doing my primary in a plastic bucket and I aerated before pitching and didn't even give a stir once the yeast was in.

The temperature in the house has been constant at around 70, although last night a bit of a cold snap had the wort at 65 when I woke up.

So, 36 hours in and I've still got no bubbling going on. Suggestions?

Can I shake it up a bit now, this far past pitching?
Will a thick blanket help insulate the bucket enough to not get the fluctuations?



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Old 02-23-2007, 05:01 PM   #2
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Did you make a starter? If not, this could be your problem, liquid yeasts have a lower cell count and sometimes can take a little while to get started up, which is why a starter is recomended.

You did smack it first right? If not then it could take a REALLY long time to get started, but you should be OK, just be patient (can't say enough about patience)



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Old 02-23-2007, 05:01 PM   #3
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Oh yea, welcome and congrats on getting started on your first brew.

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Old 02-23-2007, 05:09 PM   #4
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Thanks, so far its been pretty fun and not overly stressful (other than this).

And no, I didn't make a starter, though I probably should have, obviously.

I smacked the pack, 4 hours before I pitched I'm guessing and it was swollen when I opened it.

Would it be ok to aerate (externally of course) this late in the game?

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Old 02-23-2007, 05:39 PM   #5
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I would still wait a little while. Liquid yeasts are notorious for taking a long time to get started. If you must have some reassurance, go down and grab a packet of dried yeast. Wait until at least tomorrow morning, and if still nothing (no foam, no bubbles, nothing) you should be able to re-aerate and pitch the packet as long as it has been sealed up in the fermenter. If you do have some activity, you can save the yeast for next time, but I can't stress enough to be patient, most problems in homebrewing are solved with time.

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Old 02-23-2007, 05:52 PM   #6
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Yeah give it some time. If you direct pitch them it just takes a while. For the most part, they seem to be like a train though once they get rolling. .

A couple of reasons not to worry...as long as you aren't opening it up and closing it the chances are (as long as you sanitized your fermentor, etc properly) you have a wort that is free from major contamination. I currently direct pitch liquid unless it is bigger than a 70 beer. I did a 70 beer direct pitch and it attenuated down to %85, so it was a good ferment. It can take up to 3 days to get going though with direct pitch though. Dry yeast are usually really fast though, but some of the liquid strains can be slower.

The best thing to do, is tonight just take a quick peek and see if a Krausen has formed. If it has you are good to go.

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Old 02-23-2007, 06:34 PM   #7
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Thanks guys. I have the dry yeast that came with the kit, so if things don't pick up by tomorrow evening I'll think about tossing that in.

And I hear you about the waiting. As I just told a friend "Patience is the key, finding it is the issue".

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Old 02-24-2007, 06:40 PM   #8
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I just wanted to let you guys know that last night when I got home from work the airlock was starting to bubble. It was still colder than I liked where it was stored, so this morning I moved the bucket to the top of the fridge (very carefully!!!) and now things have picked up even more, a nice burst of bubbles every ten seconds or so.

Thanks for calming my fears!



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