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Old 09-05-2011, 04:51 PM   #1
Stench
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Default First Kit - BB Octoberfest- to lager or not?

I think I may have screwed up before my first batch! I bought a starter kit from a lbhs and picked up a Brewers Best Octoberfest kit as my first batch. After getting home and doing some research, I realized I'm not setup for lagering. I do have an empty fridge and could let it sit in primary in the high 30's for a few months. This is a full size fridge that I'm not allowed to modify (yet). At this point should I shelf the kit and try another or just make it as an ale?

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Old 09-05-2011, 05:53 PM   #2
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High 30s is too low for lager yeast. I believe that kit says the yeast will work at warmer temps, though you should at least aim for cool room temps. If you don't trust the yeast, then buy a packet of dry ale yeast and use it.

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Old 09-05-2011, 06:25 PM   #3
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Look and see what type of yeast is being used. I think most extract kits use ale yeast (top fermenting) which allows you to ferment at higher temps.

Do a search on the yeast and figure out what kind it is.

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Old 09-05-2011, 06:28 PM   #4
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just from doing a quick search on the forum it looks like this is ale yeast. Also FYI people have said that this was a good beer kit and they feremented any where from 60-70.

Try and maintain a constant temperature if you can.

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Old 09-05-2011, 06:41 PM   #5
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I bought that kit (2 of them) and I have 9 gallons of it fermenting in my basement fridge as we speak. Two 6.5 gallon carboys bubbling away at 55° on day three of fermentation. After primary fermentation is nearly done, I'm planning on doing a diacetyl "rest" (I prefer to call it a diacetyl "purge") and then I'll transfer it to secondary carboys and then begin to lager it down to lower temps, dropping a degree every day until I get to about 35° or so.

No "modifications" need to be done to a fridge to use it as a fermentation chamber. You can buy a single-stage temperature controller that the fridge plugs into. A probe connected to the controller goes into the fridge, and the controller turns on the fridge when it gets too warm inside.

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Old 09-05-2011, 06:46 PM   #6
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I made this kit last winter. I fermented it at 50 degrees and it turned out great. My brother in law fermented his kit at low to mid 60s and its was a lot more fruity. I would recommend replacing that yeast with a hybrid lager yeast or a kolsch yeast. ferment it as cold as you can. around 60 if possible and it should turn out fine

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Old 09-05-2011, 07:14 PM   #7
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When I bought this kit, it came with Saflager s-04 I'm pretty sure.

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Old 09-05-2011, 07:25 PM   #8
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ferment at room temp (or the closet to 60° as you can) then lager in your fridge for a while, it will turn out fine; or skip the lagering if you want and I'm sure you'll still enjoy it.

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Old 09-05-2011, 07:27 PM   #9
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It's a Fermbrew lager yeast. After reading some if the threads on swamp coolers, I may go that route. I read a thread or two on making a hybrid pumpkin ale by changing the yeast and adding pumpkin/spices, but not feeling that confident on my first batch!

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