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Old 07-09-2009, 01:14 PM   #1
Jul 2009
Posts: 2

hello all,

I have been a lurker for a while and have enjoyed the wealth of information on this site. I recently brewed my third batch of beer (an IPA) on Sunday. The recipe:

6 lbs. gold light malt extract
3.3 lbs. amber light malt extract
0.5 lb. crystal malt, 60 Lovibond
0.5 lb. toasted malt, 25 Lovibond
2 oz. Cascade hops (7% alpha acid), for 60 min.
1 oz. Willamette hops (4.8% alpha acid), for 5 min.
1 oz. East Kent Goldings hops (5.5% alpha acid), for 5 min.
Wyeast 1098 (British ale)

My LHBS did not have Wyeast so I used WhiteLabs WLP005 British Ale (did not use a starter). I got the wort down to 72 degrees and topped it off with purified water from the fridge and then pitched the yeast. As of this morning, the airlock has been inactive but based on some of the previous posts provided here, I peeked in the fermenter and the batch has a lot of foam so it appears to be fermenting. With that being said, does an inactive airlock signal something is wrong? Do I wait out the fermentation cycle or is the batch in need of some assistance? Thank you for you assistance.

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Old 07-09-2009, 01:26 PM   #2
Apr 2009
Longview, TX
Posts: 529
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts

If you have krausen, the only thing an inactive air lock is telling you is that you didn't get your pail completely sir tight. RDWHAHB, your beer is fine.

Give it 10 days and check the gravity

EDIT: Oh, and welcome!
Primary:A simple Bock, Vienna

Bottled: Centennial Blonde, Mostly Dead Guy Ale, Pale Rye Ale

On Deck: waiting...

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Old 07-09-2009, 01:34 PM   #3
Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
Revvy's Avatar
Dec 2007
"Detroitish" Michigan
Posts: 40,936
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Airlock bubbling, lack of airlock bubbling, stopped airlock bubbling, fast airlock bubbling, slow airlcok bubbling, heavy metal airlcok bubbling, or disco airlock bubbling really is not an indicator of what is happening to your beer. It is NOT a fermentation gauge, it is a valve to release excess pressure, excess CO2...NOT AN ACCURATE INSTRUMENT....

I have 9 different fermenters and have been brewing for a few years, and OVER HALF OF MY BEERS NEVER HAVE ANY BUBBLING IN THE AIRLOCK AND THEY ALL TURN OUT FINE!

Fermentation is not always "dynamic," just because you don't SEE anything happenning, doesn't mean that anything's wrong, and also doesn't mean that the yeast are still not working dilligantly away, doing what they've been doing for over 4,000 years....

If you've oxygentated, and pitched plenty of yeast, then you SHOULD reach your yeast attenuation, and get close to the final gravity.....that is all that is important...NOT whether or not you airlock goes "blip" or "Rattattattatta!!!!"

An airlock is a vent for excess co2, nothing more, it's to keep your beer off the ceiling, and is designed to vent and still keep stuff out of your beer....that's really it...

In fact many no longer use airlocks at all, just cover the hole with a piece of tinfoil, or use a piece of plexiglass instead of a lid.

Read this for why airlock analysing is useless, and what is the only gauge of ferementation... And there is a link to my blog in there as well....

The only way to truly know what is going on in your fermenter is with your hydrometer. Like I said here in my blog, which I encourage you to read, Think evaluation before action you sure as HELL wouldn't want a doctor to start cutting on you unless he used the proper diagnostic instuments like x-rays first, right? You wouldn't want him to just take a look in your eyes briefly and say "I'm cutting into your chest first thing in the morning." You would want them to use the right diagnostic tools before the slice and dice, right? You'd cry malpractice, I would hope, if they didn't say they were sending you for an MRI and other things before going in.....

So ignore your airlock, ok???? It's fun entertainment to watch, but doesn't mean anythings wrong if you don't see it.
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Old 07-09-2009, 02:19 PM   #4
Jul 2009
Posts: 2

Thank you for the quick responses.

Revvy, thank you for the links. very informative.


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