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Old 08-16-2011, 05:54 PM   #1
marx102
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Default Fermentation question from noob

So I brewed a weak version of a belgian strong ale.
I used 6.25 lbs Pilsen DME
1 lb of cane sugar
.5 lbs caramel malt 60L
.5oz Coulmbus @60
2oz Czech Saaz@60
Pitched a 3 liter starter made with wyeast 1388.

The first three to four days the air lock was going crazy. Actually within the first 10 hours it had begun. Then four days later nothing. I know that the airlock is not a definitive sign of that fermentation is going on or has stopped. That being said it seemed to stop rather quickly considering it was in the basement at around 70 degrees.
I decided on day five to bring the bucket upstairs into the house where it averages 75 degrees. WIthin a couple of hours the airlock was active, steadily, again. I understand that moving it can rouse the yeast or push co2 out of the liquid but the airlock hasn't stopped for the last week.
Is this normal behavior for this strain of yeast? Was it just pooped out after eating all the sugar and the increased heat and rousing has awaken it? Who is going to be first to tell me to open it up and see what the gravity is?
thanks


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Old 08-16-2011, 06:27 PM   #2
dubiouschewy
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I can't speak to that strain specifically, but what you're describing is not at all uncommon. Incidentally, a medium gravity beer with a big starter (which it seems you have here, assuming it's a 5 gallon batch) can absolutely finish fermenting in 3-4 days.

In fact, the resumed airlock activity could just be CO2 coming out of solution instead of renewed fermentation. I would check the gravity using a hydrometer and compare it to the expected gravity from your recipe, if it's listed-- your beer might be ready to bottle!


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Old 08-16-2011, 06:31 PM   #3
JonK331
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dubiouschewy View Post
I can't speak to that strain specifically, but what you're describing is not at all uncommon. Incidentally, a medium gravity beer with a big starter (which it seems you have here, assuming it's a 5 gallon batch) can absolutely finish fermenting in 3-4 days.

In fact, the resumed airlock activity could just be CO2 coming out of solution instead of renewed fermentation. I would check the gravity using a hydrometer and compare it to the expected gravity from your recipe, if it's listed-- your beer might be ready to bottle!
+1 but I'd leave it alone for at least 3 weeks before bottling and keep it in the basement.
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Old 08-16-2011, 08:24 PM   #4
Clementine
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Two things could be happening here,

Option One your done, I just had a Hefewiezen finish in under 30hrs. 4 days is average for a good size starter of fresh yeast. If it is done then bringing it up stair and heating it up causes the CO2 to come out of solution the more heated a fluid is the less gas is will hold dissolved.

Option Two (given the time your beer is off gassing my bet) your beer was almost done and bring it up stair and giving it that extra little bit of heat made the yeast rethink eating that last little bit of sugar left in the wort. I raise the temps of my brew at the end for this reason and also to allow the yeast to clean up the brew for a day or two.

Usually (mid strength beers 0g < 1.060) 4-5days at mid 60s and then two or three days as low 70s. Then I either cool it back down to clear, sit it on dry hop or bottle it depending on the brew. As you obviously know a moving SG reading is the only sign of fermentation you can believe everything else is a evidence but not proof.

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