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Old 04-14-2009, 11:20 PM   #1
bmellis
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Default Is this normal gunk on top of the secondary? (w/ pics)

So I racked my first beer, a London Porter kit, after four days of fermentation and reaching the expected final gravity reading. Around day 7 I noticed flat clumps of many pieces of small debris floating on the top of the beer in the secondary (see pics), and they are still there now on day 9. Now I am assuming this may be yeast, but I thought all that was supposed to sink to the bottom once fermentation is complete (I have had the same, expected specific gravity reading for 5 days now). If I agitate the beer, the clumps disperse into a slight film floating on top of the beer and reclump after a while. Despite its youth, the beer tastes great already and I'm sure everything is fine. But for future reference I just want to know what's considered normal and what's not. So does anyone have an explanation for this stuff floating on my beloved beer?

Sorry for the quality of the pics, I don't have a digital camera so I have to use my cellphone:
04-14-09_1805 on Flickr - Photo Sharing!
04-14-09_1804 on Flickr - Photo Sharing!

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Old 04-14-2009, 11:27 PM   #2
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Looks like beer to me. I think you'll be fine.

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Old 04-14-2009, 11:34 PM   #3
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This looks just like a nut brown ale I have fermenting. It looks like some krausen leftover. No worries, your beer will be great!

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Old 04-14-2009, 11:52 PM   #4
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most of the beers I have made look exactly like that and Ive been happy with all of them.

RDWHAHB!

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Old 04-14-2009, 11:59 PM   #5
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agreed - some krausen leftovers.
you did move the beer fairly early to secondary by the way, most people leave it in primary at least a week(lots for 2 or more and go straight to bottles/kegs).
a good read on brewing is here:
www.howtobrew.com
and welcome!

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Old 04-15-2009, 01:22 AM   #6
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Thanks everyone. I'm leaving town for the rest of the week so that will force me to stop thinking about my homebrew all the time.

@rod: I guess the only reason I moved the porter into the secondary is because I brewed two other beers and only have two 5 gallon fermenters. But I did make sure that the FG reading was consistent. I do like howtobrew.com, and have read it several times, but I like Papazian's book even more.

I wish I could RDWHAHB, but I don't have any homebrew yet! The best I can do is Guinness (a great choice IMO), since the delis here in NYC don't have the best beer selection and the nearby liquor stores don't sell beer (I have never been able to figure out why). Speaking of which, I don't think I'm going to be buying commercial beer very often anymore. Delis charge $2 a bottle (for just about all beers, and the only good thing about that is that you can buy beer by the bottle). My ingredients have run me about $35 for 5 gallons, which is a huge cost savings.

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