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Old 03-24-2008, 10:26 PM   #1
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Default Foamy top on fermenting batch....GOOD or BAD

My 1st ever batch has been fermenting nicely since 3/22 mid afternoon. I got anxious and popped the top on my fermenter bucket to see what was going on. There was alot of foamy material on top and I could also see some of the hops I added at the end of the boil. Is this a bad thing? Will this disolve or settle when everything is complete? How do I deal with this when it comes time to bottle? I also did a gravity reading because I didnt have a hydrometer when I finished my boil. My reading was 1.020 and final gravity for my kit is 1.010 - 1.012. I have read alot on here an a hydrometer seems to be the best way to judge when fermentation is complete.

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Old 03-24-2008, 10:29 PM   #2
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Foamy is good. It's Krausen. A natural occurance in a healthy fermentation. You'll also see some ugly crusty junk form as well. It's fine.

Wait at least 7 days total and then begin taking hydrometer readings.

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Old 03-24-2008, 10:30 PM   #3
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That foam is called krausen, and that's a good thing! When the beer is finishing up with fermentation, it'll fall back into the beer. When you rack the beer (siphon) off of the trub (all the gunk on the bottom), you'll hold the racking cane above that stuff, and siphon clear beer off. Then you just leave all that stuff behind in the fermenter. In general, the longer it sits, the clearer it'll be.

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Old 03-24-2008, 10:39 PM   #4
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Thanx Thanx Thanx!!! I think I will just leave it be till Sunday an see what its up to then. I will be upgrading to a glass carboy for the next brew. I would really like to be able to see whats going on in that bucket. My local brewer supply store guy tells me not to stress. Easier said than done when its your first time.....Thanx again

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Old 03-24-2008, 10:45 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pwdiabrewer
Thanx Thanx Thanx!!! ...store guy tells me not to stress. Easier said than done when its your first time.....Thanx again
We've all been there...done that.

Enjoy the process and get another carboy for that next batch.
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Old 03-24-2008, 11:13 PM   #6
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I have my first batch in the carboy. I wish I had known how to do this when I was a kid. Coolest science experiment ever.

I thought the glass carboy made a huge difference. All the things I had read about and didn't quite get were crystal clear (no pun intended). Plus, like you, I would have been very tempted to yank the lid off if I couldn't see it. My wife and little girl have enjoyed it as much as I have and they'll be helping this weekend with batch #2.

If you haven't already bought it, the John Palmer "How to Brew" book is as good as everyone here says it is. Relatively inexpensive and an easy read.

Good luck...definitely go glass next time. The show is worth 25$.

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Old 03-25-2008, 02:02 AM   #7
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Hopefully you sanitized your hydrometer before you dropped it in your beer.

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Old 03-25-2008, 02:33 AM   #8
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i actually sanitized a cup then dipped it in an got a sample out. when i bought my hydrometer i also bought a plastic tube with a base. It was only a few bucks and I guess i wasnt sure if i could put the hydrometer right into the fermenter.

Is it better to take a reading from the fermenter? Another rookie questions for the experts!

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Old 03-25-2008, 12:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pwdiabrewer
Is it better to take a reading from the fermenter? Another rookie questions for the experts!
I use a wine thief for taking hydro readings from my carboy's. With a wife thief, you can to sample the beer as well take a hydro
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Old 03-25-2008, 12:13 PM   #10
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I use a sanitized turkey baster and fill my hydro jar, and then measure it, and then drink the sample. It's interesting to taste the changes from wort, to primary, to secondary, to keg, and then to glass!

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