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Old 06-28-2006, 03:12 PM   #1
brewmastaMike
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Hi everybody,


This past Saturday I drove to my local homebrew(Austin Homebrew Supply) and purchased my first brew kit. It includes a 5 gallon glass carboy, a 7.5 gal. plastic bucket, and also added on a wort chiller(huge time saver) and also a mini 4 gal bucket for my sanatize solution.

Me and my buddies had a blast brewing our first reciepe on Saturday(called Devils Brew , 8 pounds LME, and 2 pounds Honey) and I had a question about something I may have screwed up. On Saturday night, we had a little celebration, but all I could do was stare at my newborn starting to ferment, and It was love at first sight

Anyway's as I was watching it, the bubbles from the fermentation was starting to come out the Airlock, so I had to move it to my kitchen in order to attach the siphon and directed the bubbles, etc., to a bucket below. Well I tried to be as calm as possible while carrying it, but the beer did move a little on the way to the kitchen counter. Now after a few days, the fermenting has settled down, but there is this brown residue all along the inside top of the fermenter, I assume from the bubbles that were getting clogged up by the Airlock.

Is there anything I should do, like take the airlock off and clean the residue out, or just wait it out? It smells delicious so far, and it looks like the residue isn't touching the beer, so I'm leaning toward waiting it out.

Also just wanted to say this forum looks like everyone has a good time, and loves their craft. I can't wait to try this first batch, and I am really, really tempted to get a few more glass carboy's and have something ferementing all the time. Take it easy everybody



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Old 06-28-2006, 03:36 PM   #2
knewshound
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Relax and have a Homebrew, you are fine.

Always remember, it WANTS to make beer, you just need to help it along and avoid screwing the pooch.

Your beer is now nearly ready.

The brown residue you are seeing is quite normal. The collected muck, dead yeast, trub and other stuff in the carboy simply rose to the top and deposited itself on the edge. Again, quite normal.

Resist the urge to open the airlock until you are ready to rack it to kegs, bottles or your secondary. Whatever you do, do NOT "clean" it off.

Moving the carboy while fermenting will have little to no effect on the product. did you happen to notice how it was churning while it was fermenting? You certainly did far less than that.

Again, relax and have a Homebrew, you are weeks away from quaffing pleasure.

Cheers,

knewshound



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Old 06-28-2006, 04:00 PM   #3
Cap'n Jewbeard
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Also, to make you feel better and add to your general body of knowledge:

The residue contains a lot of compounds that can lead you down the path to Hangover City- as long as they're stuck on the rim of the fermenter, they aren't in your body. Yay.

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Old 06-28-2006, 05:39 PM   #4
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i believe the technical term is krausen (kroy-zen) for the foamy layer that develops on the top of the fermenting wort. if you get a glass primary, you'll be able to watch it. i know i did when i got a glass primary. it's actually pretty interesting watch the yeast work. i now went back to plastic due to living in texas, and making a chest freezer into my fermentation chamber, and the 6.5 G carboy doesn't fit so well... heh.

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Old 06-28-2006, 07:27 PM   #5
brewmastaMike
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Thanks for the replies everybody!

knewshound - I would love a homebrew right now, but they always look at me funny while I'm kickin' back a few at work! Well I am glad to hear that it is normal, we took great care in preparing everything, and I really thing this going to turn out to be a great batch for the first time! Although after poking around the 'net, especially this forum, it seems that this is one of those "simple to learn, hard to master" trades(except this one involves drinking beer at the end )


Pfunky - I tried my best to get kicked out of that city loooong ago, and they always kidnap me in my sleep to bring me back! Good to know that I am doing my best to evade it.

gnef - Yes having a glass fermenter is a sight to behold. I would want nothing more than to leave work and stare at it all day long, but until I can grow everything myself, I still need a paycheck to convert into the sweet nectar. One thing, why do you mention texas when talking about glass, because of the heat?

My plan was to bottle everything this Saturday, but looking around this site has taught me that letting it sit for another week might enhance the flavor. I have read that taking gravity measurments and seeing if they stay the same is the best way to tell if it is ready for botteling, is this the case? I don't know how long I can hold out, the suspense is killing me, and the first week hasn't even passed yet!

Also if anyone is around the North Austin area, just drop me a PM if you want to get together. We always have Good Beer Thursday's after work, and anyone is welcome to come along.

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Old 06-28-2006, 07:35 PM   #6
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haha. i live in cedar park.

the comment about going back to plastic was because my chest freezer that i use for fermentation (with a temperature controller) can't fit the 6.5 g glass carboy on the shelf from the compressor, i plan on using the main area for two 5 g glass carboys for secondary, the plastic pale with blow off tube just barely fit under the lid of the chest freezer. i had to do this because of the temps. i just couldn't consistently keep it low enough for proper fermentation.

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Old 06-28-2006, 09:10 PM   #7
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brewmastaMike:

I know the feeling when you are itching to devour one of your first homebrews. Be patient and don't scratch that itch too early. Taking gravity reading is the best way to determine if your beer is 'done.' If the Final Gravity stays the same for 2-3 days, your beer is probably done. Samples can be removed from you fermenter with a SANITARY beer 'thief.' Ask your local home brew supply store about one. I personally have only tested the Final Gravity once. I use a SANITARY (note capitalization again) turkey baster, which I bought new and have not used on a turkey!!

Are you moving your beer into a Secondary Fermenter? Now THAT would be the time to avoid "splashing" the beer, paying close attention not to airate it again. Same holds true when you are bottling the beer. Consider both to be "quiet" steps...Shhhhhhh.



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