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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > worst noob screw up ever. my beer IS ruined
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Old 02-26-2011, 01:32 PM   #1
jason81
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Default worst noob screw up ever. my beer IS ruined

made a pale ale thursday for my first brew ever. I feel like a huge idiot right now. after i chilled my wort (under 20 min) and pooring into 5gal glas carboy and adding water to make 5gal of wort. Rather than pooring some out or syphoning a sample to take a gravity reading i held the plastic tube in place in the carboy and dropped the hydrometer in to get a reading well i dropped the tube in the carboy so now the tube and the hydrometer where stuck in the carboy with the wort. now that i think of it i should have poored it all back into my kettle to retrieve the hydrometer. But i didnt think of that at the time. didnt want to risk contamination by using something to try to get it out either, i under estimated the power of the fermentation and decited to just leave it and fugued it was fine. 3 hours later and im getting bubbles in my airlock. next morning(yesterday) primary is in full swing so i switched to a blowoff tube before i got a mess. last night it i was getting steady bubling from the blow off within a half hour i looked again and it had stopped completley and kraeusen had settled, so im thinking its either to cold (it was 67f) or i didnt areate enough before pitching the yeast (as per palmers instructions on rehydrating yeast. so i turned up the heat in the house a few degrees and went to bed.

heres the good/ bad part:
woke up not hearing any bubling (its in my bedroom)
quick look revealed fermentation was back! nice)
then i realized the sopper flew out and im missingabout 1/2 gallon of wort, dried up on the floor so i ran and got a new stopper and airlock alreaady sitting in starsan and i was concerned about how long it was exposed to oxygen for.

foung out the hydrometer broke and there was peices of it on the flook and the paper inside the hydromerter was stuck in the blowoff tube causing the stopper to blow.
what a stupid mistake!! what a waste of beer

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Old 02-26-2011, 01:42 PM   #2
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Look at it this way - your next batch is bound to go better. No teacher like experience. Welcome to the obsession.

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Old 02-26-2011, 01:43 PM   #3
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I'm confused. You put the hydrometer in the beer...and it fell to the bottom and broke? Or did fermentation break it?

Not the worst screw up I've heard.

Your beer doesn't need a krausen to indicate fermentation; for example, look at starters. Of all the starters I've made, 1 has had a krausen and yet all were fermented.

Oxygen exposure isn't as big of a problem as you would expect during active fermentation. CO2 is being pushed out and will displace any O2 pretty quickly.

Sounds like you need to relax, etc.

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Old 02-26-2011, 01:44 PM   #4
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Use a sanitized turkey baster or wine thief next time. Sorry about the pale ale but that just means you have to start another batch! You should maybe consider picking up a bucket to ferment in too.

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Old 02-26-2011, 01:47 PM   #5
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Good news comes in threes:

1) You will most likely still have beer (just avoid the glass, okay?).
2) You have a great story to tell about the "hydroplug".
3) You won't be making that mistake again!

No worries!

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Old 02-26-2011, 01:47 PM   #6
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Your beer is not ruined. I would not dump this beer. Some measure might need to be taken that otherwise shouldnt, but I wouldnt give up on it. My only real concern from your post is the glass that could potentially be in the beer. Why not just strain it when transferring to bottling bucket/keg? I have a strainer that is fine enough that no glass would get through. Yes would would be introducing oxygen to the beer, but at least you would HAVE beer! Not a terrible mistake in my opinion. Drink it fast and I doubt you see any ill effects.

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Old 02-26-2011, 01:53 PM   #7
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Or, if you forget to pull a sample for a reading, shrug your shoulders and just add a week onto your fermentation. Truth be told I very rarely take readings. I just make sure it's done and then give it a week before packaging.

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Old 02-26-2011, 01:54 PM   #8
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Jason81, I'm a little confuzzled here. You filled a tube (I'm guessing the one the hydrometer came in) with wort, then held it and the hydro in the carboy, then accidentally dropped it into the carboy? The hydro is still in one piece? If that's the case and you had a minor exposure incident, I don't think you'll have a problem. Wait 3 weeks (+/-), bottle and taste.

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Old 02-26-2011, 02:10 PM   #9
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devil and petey:
yes i tried totake a reading IN the carboy and theft it in, it broke or shatered during fermentation.

chaydaw- i was tinking that as well but i was also concerned about the paper and ink used on it it would probably disolve some in the beer before settling in the trub

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Old 02-26-2011, 02:12 PM   #10
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That paper and ink will be inconsequential in 5 gallons of beer. Strain it out, let it ferment, give it a good crash cool (or not) and you will be fine in my opinion. Just my opinion, I am not responsible for any potential calls to poison control! But seriously, I would drink it.

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