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Old 12-03-2012, 05:54 PM   #1
kiwicalifornia
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Default Whats this white stuff and sanitation questions

Hi, My gf and I made our first batch of homebrew this weekend and as a result a couple of questions have come up that I hope people can help answer. I apoligise ahaead of time if my terminlogy is wrong but Im just learning this...

Boiled a batch up using the unhopped dry extract (making 5 gallons of amber, using the basic recipe that came in the starter kit), added the hops and boiled for an hour and then cooled the wort prior to adding to the 6.5 gallon carboy, all went without a hitch.

Santized the carboy, airlock, bung, funnel and strainer with the supplied Iodophor and then introduced the wert to the carboy, pitched the yeast (dry) and then put the bung/airlock in place and then within about 4 hours, activity in the airlock, yay!! active yeast......

This is day 2 of ferementing and around the inside neck of the carboy we have noticed this white substance, not sure what is is, residue from the yeast maybe, or is is something nasty?? Ive attached a couple of pics. Whatever it is, is only on the neck, not on the beer itself (as far as I can tell), this leads to my questions..

1. Can anyone tell me what it is, and should I be worried?
2. Depending on what it is, does this mean this beer cannot be saved?

Santitation questions relating to Iodophor
The instructions say 1 tablespoon per 5 gal of water, soak for 3 minutes and then air dry (which is what we did for the carboy and the equipment.

But then in this forum Im reading that people say this stuff only works wet, in other words once the equipment is air dried its no longer sanitised. Some people apparently sanitize and then simply empty the solution out of the carboy and add the wort while the carboy is still wet from the santitising solution, same with the bung and airlock, (and the bottles when the time comes) they put it in place after it comes straight out of the solution. Others talk about rinising the equipment with water after sanitzing.....

This is causing minor confusion as to what is the best recommended practice (if it turns out this white stuff is due to incorrect sanitation, then I want to make sure i do it correctly next time, ie air dry or not, rinse or not etc)

If equipment is sanitised prior to use but then we need to handle it, ie bung/airlock, should we be dipping our hands in a santizing solution as well?

Sanitized airlock... Ive read people saying to use sanitized water or vodka in the airlock, our instructions say 1/2 fill the airlock with water...why sanitized water or vodka, if the water in the airlock doesnt come into contact with the brew?

Last question..to do with taking a sample for the hydrometer... Im assuming the correct way is to siphon the required amount out using santised racking cane and tubing.. but would using a santized long turkey baster be ok?, seems to be slightly less hassle than siphoning.

If anybody has suggestions/help, that would be fantastic...

photo.jpg   photo2.jpg  
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Old 12-03-2012, 05:57 PM   #2
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yeast residue, you're fine. enjoy the first batch and welcome to the obsession! get started on that next one so you stop worrying over this one

and yes, a turkey baster works fine

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Old 12-03-2012, 06:05 PM   #3
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that white stuff appears to be the yeast you pitched. When you added your yeast did it run down the side?

Some sanitizers are no rinse sanitizers that do not require rinsing afterwards. Others require rinsing (ie bleech). I think idophor is a no rinse?

People use sanitizer or vodka in the case of suck back, picking up the carboy or cold crashing will cause the pressure to decrease inside causing some of the liquid to get sucked into the wort.

For hydro samples i use a wine theif, similar to a turkey baster.

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Old 12-03-2012, 06:05 PM   #4
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That gunk is yeast residue. When you poured yeast, a small amount ran down the side of the neck. Happens all the time. No worries.

I do not use Iodophor, but I think it's a "No Rinse" wet sanitizer. Just drip off the excess and then use whatever you are sanitizing after the required time. As a matter of fact, stuff is not killed unless the sanitizer is dry, but that does not automatically mean that your stuff is contaminated if it's dry. There is not likely to be a problem unless you really infect it, like by getting saliva on it or something. Perform your sanitation and be reasonably careful, but no reason to get anal about it, like feeling like you have to rub lotion on your skin to keep skin flakes from floating into your fermenter or something like that.

Relax, don't worry, have a homebrew.

Generally with a hydrometer, you sanitize a thief and pull a sample and pour it into a sampling tube. Some people use their hydrometer in the thief. A turkey baster works the same, although not as handily, IMO. Just be sure to sanitize it before you draw a sample and do not put the sample back in. Maybe drink it and see how the beer is coming along.

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Old 12-03-2012, 06:07 PM   #5
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Oh yeah, I use vodka in my airlock. I'm not thrilled with water getting sucked back in. That water might have bacteria in it after sitting a few days. You could also use starsan sanitizer.

If you use an "S" shaped airlock the liquid inside will not get sucked into the fermenter if the beer cools and you have filled it to the proper level.

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