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Old 09-14-2009, 11:02 PM   #1
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Default I *really* think I ruined my first batch

hey all, first post... Just found this site today, seems great.

I'm brewing my first batch of beer (malt extract) and we're approaching 72 hours and I have not seen a single bubble coming out of the airlock.

Before anyone asks, I sanitized absolutely everything I used when making the wort. I used chlorine bleach and rinsed everything thoroughly. The water was 78 when i pitched the yeast. I havent found a hydrometer yet - i will have to pick one of these up as soon as i find one

So finally today I opened the lid to have a peak inside and it looks exactly the same as it did the day I brewed it, no visible signs of fermentation at all.

Since it was my first batch, I tried to follow the instructions on the can as closely as possible (probably first mistake). Secondly, no store in my area seems to carry corn sugar! So I had to use cane sugar instead (probably second mistake).

Following the instructions on the can, I didn't proof my yeast and instead just sprinkled it on top per the can's instructions (third mistake).

At this point, I'm wondering if I'm better off dumping the batch and starting again or if I should head to the homebrew shop tomorrow and buy some more yeast, proof, and try again.

Can anyone give me any advice?

thanks,
- Brandon

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Old 09-14-2009, 11:05 PM   #2
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What kind of yeast did you use?

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Old 09-14-2009, 11:08 PM   #3
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this thread should help you out.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/ferm...e-signs-43635/

don't dump it. Get yourself a hydrometer - and see what's happening.

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Old 09-14-2009, 11:11 PM   #4
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Are you positive that you didn't forget to pitch the yeast? If you did pitch yeast than it was probably dead or your temperatures cold. What temperature is the carboy? I would get another packet of yeast and sprinkle it on top and make sure your temper is 70 degrees until you see fermentation begin. Sprinkling the yeast on top is sufficient...that's what may of us do.

If you had a hydrometer you could check the gravity to see if it different from the original gravity (this would be somewhere in your recipe). If it was the same then you know it didn't ferment at all. Checking gravity is the best way to determine if something has fermented as it is possible for fermentation to occur without seeing any bubbles in the airlock.

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Old 09-14-2009, 11:14 PM   #5
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Your three mistakes don't sound like red flags at all. If you correct those three "mistakes" next time, you could have better beer, but what you did isn't going to "break" your beer.

Read the thread that AZ_IPA linked to and don't freak out yet. If nothing happens in a few more days, I would pitch some more yeast on it, maybe like a dry packet of nottingham or s-05. I never proof/hydrate my yeast and it always works fine, but I use new yeast from the shop that I keep cold in my fridge. Yeast from a kit can be very old in some cases.

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Old 09-14-2009, 11:21 PM   #6
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I would go to your Local Home Brew Store (LHBS), buy a pack (or2) on Nottingham yeast (a good generic clean-tasting yeast) and pitch again. Just tear it open, and pour it in....

Dave

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Old 09-15-2009, 12:37 AM   #7
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Wow thanks for all the replies. I'll see about finding a hydrometer somewhere - and i'll be sure to pick up some good yeast tomorrow... Thanks again

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Old 09-15-2009, 12:56 AM   #8
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If you don't have a local homebrew shop, check a good saltwater aquarium shop for a hydrometer. It needs to have a range from about 1.000 to 1.120 or something thereabouts.

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Old 09-15-2009, 11:44 AM   #9
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did you areate the wort? yeast need o2 to reproduce and they wont start actively fermenting until their population is up to a certain ratio.

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Old 09-15-2009, 12:34 PM   #10
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Any beer made with 50% cane or corn sugar is gonna taste bad for a good few months. I have one of my first kit brews, made with cane sugar as per instructions on the tin and it's only just drinkable and it was made in January, it's far from a good beer. Only reason it's still around is that I couldn't choke it down.

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