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Old 01-19-2013, 02:55 AM   #1
arborman
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Jan 2013
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I just boiled my first batch, chilled down with wort chiller to 80, and put in primary to set for pitching. My fermometer is not reading. Not sure what to do? I was planning on pitching at 70, but I now don't have a way to gauge temp. What should I do?



 
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Old 01-19-2013, 03:42 AM   #2
CCericola
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Jan 2012
Atco, NJ
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One option, ice path the primary and stir like crazy. You'll eventually show up on your fermometer. You could also sanitize a floating thermometer but be very careful if you stir.

Another option, put your wort chiller in your fermenter. Sanitize it really well before.

Finally, you could just seal it up for the night and let it sit until morning, check the temperature then, and pitch if ready. The only negative here is this is probably highest risk for infection. I'd hate to see your first patch go bad.

In the very worst case, you could always pitch a little warm. You might get some off flavours. Being your first batch, you probably will be so excited that you won't even notice an off flavour.



 
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Old 01-19-2013, 03:56 AM   #3
BrewMasta
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Dec 2012
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Relax, just let sit for an hour or to untill it comes to room temp. Then pitch.... And relax, let the yeast do all the work... And they usually do.
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Old 01-19-2013, 07:29 AM   #4
arborman
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Jan 2013
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Thanks for the input. Not sure if I blew it, but I think I may have. Pretty sure I pitched way to warm. While wort chilling, my kettle thermo read 80, so I transferred into my carboy. Like I said, the fermometor did not read, so I was unsure about when to pitch. Being a noob, I was worried about waiting, so I pitched. Well, it's only been about 5 hrs, and it appears to be fermenting. Also, my fermometor now reads, and it shows 78. I'm guessing I pitched while it was still too warm. Can't figure out why my kettle thermo read 80, then it took nearly 3 hrs for my fermometor to read 78. My recipe told me to cool rapidly to 100, then begin the transfer. I thought that was too high, so went to 80. Should I be cooling the wort to below 80, say 70?

 
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Old 01-19-2013, 07:32 AM   #5
CityOChampBrew
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Feb 2012
Pittsburgh, Pa
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even if you pitched it now it wouldn't hurt it, it's just going to start reproducing and get ready to chow down
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Old 01-19-2013, 01:36 PM   #6
RM-MN
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I like to chill my wort even more than you've suggested because as soon as the yeast take off they give off heat and it's really hard to bring the temperature down. I prefer to pitch my yeast when the wort is nearer 60 and I try to keep it below 65 for the first few days to control how fast the yeast ferment, then warm it to the low 70's to encourage the yeast to complete cleaning up the byproducts.

 
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Old 01-19-2013, 01:47 PM   #7
arborman
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Jan 2013
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Got it.... I will go way lower on the next batch.


So, should I cut my losses now and start a new batch? Not even 5 hours after I pitched my yeast went by and I had to remove my airlock and install a blow off tube. I just checked it now, and the fermentor is going crazy, and it only been 10 hours since I pitched. Temp is still really warm, about 78.

I would prefer to pour this one out and chalk it up to a learning experience, rather then invest more time into it only to turn out 5 gallons of undrinkable beer.

Should I stay the course, or cut my losses? I do have another kit of Russian River Blind Pig IPA waiting to be brewed

 
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:12 PM   #8
Ricochetbrew
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Dec 2012
Orangevale, California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arborman

I would prefer to pour this one out and chalk it up to a learning experience, rather then invest more time into it only to turn out 5 gallons of undrinkable beer.

Should I stay the course, or cut my losses? I do have another kit of Russian River Blind Pig IPA waiting to be brewed
Do not give up on this brew. Beer fermented at higher temps can produce fusel alcohols. Fusel alcohol can give the beer a harsh solvent like flavor. However, do not fear. Aging your beer can mellow these flavors. Aging may cause the alcohols to esterify and gibe the beer a banana like flavor. Again, do not fear age can help these too. Also just because it can produce these flavors doesn't mean it always will and even it does it rarely renders your beer un-drinkable. If you toss the batch you will lose out on a valuable learning experience and most likely a decent beer.
Just remember to note what you did and what the temps were. Then you can keep from replicating the mistake in the future.
Good luck on future brews.
Ryan.

 
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:15 PM   #9
ericbw
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Dec 2012
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If you throw it out now, you'll never know what it tastes like. If you want to learn from it, you have to see what the finished product is like. Finish it and see how it is. In spite of what you read/hear, it might be fine.

Also, it sounds like maybe your temp was/is a little too high, but that's all. This isn't rocket science, and it's even more forgiving than baking bread.
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:15 PM   #10
aiptasia
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Jul 2011
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RDWHAHB.

Next time, just feel the sides of the container while it chills or sanitize your finger in alcohol and stick it in.


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