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Old 01-12-2009, 11:32 PM   #1
Col224
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Default Whoa. Violent Ferment.

I brewed a IPA last night doing a 5 gal extract partial boil(OG 1.062). I'm currently fermenting it in an 6 gallon BB and it is very, very, very active. I created a starter for it and had about an inch of yeast buildup that I poured into the fermenter.

Anyway, in the future I'll probably do a blowoff hose but for now its going ok I just want to make sure I'm alright. Theres not much gunk in the airlock that I have on there, but a LOT of Co2 is coming out. I know I'm probably alright for contamination sake because of the Co2 coming out will keep any air/bacteria from getting in.

I'm just wondering if this is ok, there is a lot of pressure(so much that when I pulled the airlock out to make sure there wasn't much gunk clogging it up, fermenting beer literally shot to the ceiling), I sanitized and put the airlock back on and it now just seems content to rapidly expel Co2 resulting in an almost foam(although this may be starsan) bubbling out of my airlock. Other than the mess, is there anything bad about this?

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Old 01-12-2009, 11:51 PM   #2
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I wish I had that problem right now . I had a really active one for about 24 hours and then it stopped.

If it was me, I'd put in a blow off hose. I had a real active one last year that I thought would be ok and I can home to find brew all over my walls because the airlock got clogged and blew the bung clean off.

I don't think there is anything wrong with a violent ferment. I've had a couple, especially with my Belgian ales and they have always turned out great.

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Old 01-12-2009, 11:53 PM   #3
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No, it's ok. I'd put a blow off tube on ASAP, though. Otherwise, if the airlock gets a little clogged with some hops particles, you'll be repainting your ceiling tomorrow.

The only thing I'd do in your case is to rig the blow off tube now, and double check the temperature of the wort. Fermentation can cause a rapid rise in temperature, and you want to make sure you're in the high 60s or so, and not much higher.

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Old 01-13-2009, 12:09 AM   #4
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Always use a blow-off tube!

Better safe than sorry, I say screw the ceiling damage, worry about the lost brew. ha

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Old 01-13-2009, 03:44 AM   #5
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I had my 3 piece airlock get clogged today and I happen to see it in time.. However I tried to remove it slowly and BOOM.. Foam/yeast all over the ceiling.. I cleaned the airlock in some starsan and put it back on.

Does anyone know how to convert a 3 piece airlock into a blowoff? Is there a way to fit some line over the center pipe? If so what size is it?

I have the 3 piece airlock below
Airlock 3 piece type :: Midwest Supplies Homebrewing and Winemaking Supplies

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Old 01-13-2009, 03:58 AM   #6
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ahh crap. im gettin constant bubblage right now. i think i know what i need to do... the last ferment went mad, i had to swap the airlock twice due to clogage.
SWMBO will not be happy with a new paint scheme on the ceiling.

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Old 01-13-2009, 05:51 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyprus View Post
I had my 3 piece airlock get clogged today and I happen to see it in time.. However I tried to remove it slowly and BOOM.. Foam/yeast all over the ceiling.. I cleaned the airlock in some starsan and put it back on.

Does anyone know how to convert a 3 piece airlock into a blowoff? Is there a way to fit some line over the center pipe? If so what size is it?

I have the 3 piece airlock below
Airlock 3 piece type :: Midwest Supplies Homebrewing and Winemaking Supplies
3 piece airlocks use 1/2 ID hose as a blowoff tube. It fits perfectly.
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Old 01-13-2009, 11:00 AM   #8
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Here is what happened to me last week-
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/boom...rmentor-96256/

...and I rigged a blow-off tube, but the tube was too skinny and fermentation too violent. Nevertheless, a blowoff tube is the way to go. A 5/8ths inch tube will fit comfortably over the center post in your airlock, but you can use a 1/2 inch in a pinch (biggest I could find during my emergency)..the bigger the better if you have lots of foam coming up to clog your airlock. good luck and let it ride, the worst will be over in a day or two ...

Edit: I just saw WBC's post above. He may well be right about the hose diameter. I struggled like hell to get the 1/2 inch over the post, having to warm it up under the faucet first and cut the end at a funny angle in order to get it on....took 15 minutes of messing around...from this experience, I assume a 5/8ths would fit a bit more 'comfortably'.

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Old 01-13-2009, 01:29 PM   #9
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Yes, it seems to have subsided a bit at this point. I will definitely be using a blowoff tube in the future. I think the slightly higher than normal(70 instead of 68) may have made it worse.

Thanks everyone.

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Old 01-13-2009, 06:06 PM   #10
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If using a airlock as part of a blow-off I normally cut off the little X pattern at th bottom of it. I figure thats the first thing that will clog and a clogged bo is the same problem as a clogged airlock.

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