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Old 09-22-2007, 03:22 PM   #1
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Default Typical beginner question.... (Problem should be solved!)

Or I guess I should say typical beginner worries....

I brewed my first batch last Friday, it had very vigorous fermentation the first 2-3 days (had to use a blow off tube), then tapered off to about 1 "burp" from the lock every 25 seconds or so. The thing is it is still going off at just about every 25 seconds like clock work a week later.

The temps have stayed around 70F the whole week and there is no longer a krausen on the beer, there is some stuck to the top of the carboy, but it has not formed a new one since it had its last blow off.

I took an hydrometer reading yesterday and it is sitting right at 1.030 (1.031 with temp corrections).

The FG of the recipe is supposed to be around 1.015, 15 points is a long way, so I have to ask the question....

Is my fermentation stuck?

Recipe called for Nottingham yeast, if that will help....

Edit: I stole a sip from the hydrometer tube when I took the SG reading, it tasted good, smelled great, but was super sweet.



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Old 09-22-2007, 04:44 PM   #2
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Take another gravity reading in a couple of days. That will tell you if it is still fermenting or not. What was teh gravity before you r fermentation started?


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Old 09-22-2007, 04:53 PM   #3
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You will need to get it below 1.030 for sure, that's too sweet for a normal ABV beer. If another hydrometer reading shows no change in a few days you should probably by another pack of dry yeast and pitch it, swirl it, and keep it at 70F
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Old 09-22-2007, 05:18 PM   #4
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A viloent fermentation can cause the yeast to get stuck up with the krausen wall. Give your fermenter enough of a gentle swirl to knock that yeasty goo back down into the beer.

Be careful not to aerate the beer.

I think you're yeast has simply beached itself on the walls. This is more typical of Wit Yeasts, but it may be possible with nottingham as well.
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Old 09-22-2007, 05:22 PM   #5
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how long has it been fermenting all together?
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Old 09-22-2007, 05:25 PM   #6
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It sounds okay to me. You want to wait at least two weeks anyway. Be patient! Go get a 12 pack or two of Sam Adams and start collecting bottles. Sounds like you only have three weeks left of buying beer that someone else has made.
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Old 09-22-2007, 05:32 PM   #7
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Thanks for the tips.

I brewed last Friday, so it's been going for a week.

I will give a gentle swirl and take another hydrometer reading tomorrow.

I was planning on racking to secondary this weekend, but I have no problems letting it sit for another week in Primary.

Again thanks for the help!
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Old 09-23-2007, 03:06 PM   #8
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No change this morning, so I went ahead and pitched another packet of Nottingham.

After an hour or so it is already starting to bubble about every 10 seconds or so, hopefully this will get me to 1.015ish.
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Old 09-24-2007, 02:56 PM   #9
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When you swirl around to get your yeast back into the beer (or just to rouse what you have), you don't have to be too gentle if you're dealing with the primary. Aeration isn't much of a concern, since the headspace of your fermenter should be filled with CO2 that your yeast produced during their initial party.

You don't want to make a mess, though!


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Old 09-24-2007, 03:36 PM   #10
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Update, I spent yesterday afternoon exploring downtown Indianapolis, when I came back there appeared to be no activity again. I swirled the bottle around a bit (grabbed it by the red carboy handle and gave it a few twists) and managed to keep it from shaking around too much. It still had me worried abit last night when I turned in.

This morning there is a small layer of bubbles, not what I'd call a krausen, but the airlock is bubbling erratically so I guess I'll just wait.

Is there any kind of outside contamination that will stop a fermentation so drastically?

I also wonder if maybe I did not aerate wort enough when I put it in the primary. Looking at my notes my OG was 1.020, a number I threw out once I realized I topped off the carboy with water (preboiled) right before I took the OG.

Should I give it a good shake or is that layer of bubbles a good sign?

Not a good start overall.....

Anyways I'll give it until next Friday or so.


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