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Old 06-13-2013, 01:22 AM   #1
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Default I've got bottle bombs...

I've been a home brewer for a while both all grain and extract.

I recently bottled 3 different batches of brew.

1. Raspberry Apple cider.
2. Clone of ommegang Abbey ale
3. Clone of Rasputin

I used a scale, and put the correct expected temps into the calculator. I used less than 4oz of sucrose.

One of the batches began bursting, the rasputin. It's been about 13 days and its been hot. At first I thought it was related to the Sam Adams bottles as only they had bust. Turns out when my brew buddy started cracking the lids other bottles began to bust. The expected fg was right where it was supposed to be according to recipe. It was in the primary for 3 weeks and filed from 1.070 to 1.017.

I completely cleaned the bottle bucket after each batch with oxy, siphoned oxy through racking sanitized everything with starsan. I boiled the sugar water and let cool with sanitized aluminum foil on top. The bottles were all soaked in oxy, bottle brushed with oxy, and then jet washed , sanitized with starsan right before filling with vintator. Caps were all soaked in starsan.

Only the one batch seems to have an issue.

Infection?

Or

The og was lower than predicted by 10 pts. . I am thinking perhaps I should have expected a lower fg as well. I would have thought 3 weeks and no activity would have been sufficient. Thoughts?

I'm going to put my half the batch immediately in fridge. According to brew buddy, uncapping resulted in bursting or fountains. He dumped his batch. I'd prefer not to loose 2.5 g of what I know it's an extremely tasty beer.

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Old 06-13-2013, 01:29 AM   #2
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What yeast did you use? That seems like pretty good attenuation to me. I doubt it was under-attenuated, so I am leaning toward infection. Have you actually tasted any of the brews? Does it taste right if you let the fizz die down? Any more info you can think of may be helpful.

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Old 06-13-2013, 01:35 AM   #3
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Your sanitation sounds impeccable, I would think that 3 weeks on primary would ferment as far as its going to go. Did you take hydrometer/ spectrometer readings over the last week to ensure it wasn't still cooking? Sounds like your yeast was still snacking before bottling.

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Old 06-13-2013, 02:20 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tacks
Your sanitation sounds impeccable, I would think that 3 weeks on primary would ferment as far as its going to go. Did you take hydrometer/ spectrometer readings over the last week to ensure it wasn't still cooking? Sounds like your yeast was still snacking before bottling.
Good thoughts here. (Though is a refractometer, not a spectrometer) after fermentation, a hydrometer is the only way to get an accurate gravity reading. The alcohol will throw off a refractometer reading. So, there is a possibility of a stalled fermentation. 1.017 still seems a bit high even with an of of 1.070.

When you say you used sucrose, you mean you used corn sugar for priming? 4 oz should give a five gallon batch 2.4 vols at 72F so that's within normal range. It really sounds like the fermentation was stalled. An infection is unlikely given the intense care of sanitation used, but not out of the realm of possibility.
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Old 06-13-2013, 02:28 AM   #5
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If all the other bottles gush, the ones in the fridge will just be cold when they gush. To me, it sounds like the beer wasn't done fermenting when you bottled. Make sure that the gravity is constant for several days before bottling. 1.017 is on the low side for a big stout, but the expected FG is just a guideline.

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Old 06-13-2013, 03:07 AM   #6
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Maybe the hydrometer was off?

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Old 06-13-2013, 05:34 AM   #7
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1. I use both a hydrometer and a refractomer (mostly because I am still learning to trust the refractomer) They both agreed.
2. By sucrose I mean table sugar. I use it instead of corn sugar because well I'm cheap and its the same stuff as long as you account for the minor difference when you plug it into the formula.
3. I used 2 vials of wlp100. Normally I do use my stir plate and grow a properly sized starter according to mr malty. Technically I under-pitched a bit then I used o2 directly for 1 minute. Fermentation was explosive according to the beer buddy.
4. We actually fermented this a bit on the hot side (budy's house doesn't have a fermentation fridge).
5. I drank one of the bottles after being in the fridge for 24 hours, it was very tasty and was extremely gusharific. It was young and this being a really roasty beer was very roasty...good but it needed more time. I'm not sure what I can do, I''ll have to slap a warning label on the bottles and be careful and open them with a glass nearby. my buddy already tossed his half of the batch.
6. I in the past always worked on the assumption that 3 weeks and meeting your final projected gravity was fine. I always felt that opening the fermentor to take a gravity added huge risk of infection. I may need to adjust my procedure.

Thanks for all the advice guys and gals.

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Old 06-13-2013, 06:39 AM   #8
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Yeah I'm just gonna say sorry for your loss and wtf.

Sure you should do multiple readings towards the end to make sure it was done, but you were three weeks in at .017. Lots of people including myself would have stepped into the same trap.

I guess there's yet another reason to bulk age bigger beers.

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Old 06-13-2013, 07:09 AM   #9
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Next time, after 3 weeks I'll just move it to a secondary its a big beer...Bulk ageing is something I've not done but I bet it would be a great thing.

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Old 06-13-2013, 12:19 PM   #10
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I've gotten 1.060's down to 1.010,so a 1.070 can easilly get down to 1.012. I think that 1.017 was a few points too high. If that was within recipe range,then either they got the FG listed wrong,or you made it more fermentable somehow.

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