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Old 03-30-2013, 07:35 PM   #1
Veritas
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Hey everyone. I'm sure there are plenty of posts about this, but I thought I'd throw it out to the community for advice/suggestions.

I brewed JZ's bohemian pilsner, brew day went great, ended up with OG of 1.056. Chilled wort to 44 degrees, pitched a nice big starter of WLP800, and slowly brought temp up to 50 over the next few days. Had nice fermentation start, etc. All looks good.

Well, I took a sample today, and although there is still obvious signs of fermentation activity (airlocks are "up," and it does bubble every 10 seconds or so) I am only down to 1.030. (I checked last week, and it was at 1.032, week before that 1.038) So it dropped from 1.056 to 1.038 the first week or so, now it seems to be crawling. I brewed this last year, and it did take awhile, but was much faster.

So anyhow, should I just RDWHAHB? Or Is there something I should be doing? Is yeast "repitching" advised with lagers?

Thanks for reading and replying.
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Old 03-30-2013, 11:34 PM   #2
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Has it been at 50 the whole 4 weeks?

Also, you should post the recipe as well as any other info you recorded from the brewday.
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Old 03-31-2013, 01:45 PM   #3
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If you know JZ, you may know who Tasty is--google his lager fermentation regimen. I used it on my latest CAP with great results. Super clean, super brite, and I finished the initial ferment at 66F or so after ramping up from 52F where it started.
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:47 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dawgmatic View Post
Has it been at 50 the whole 4 weeks?

Also, you should post the recipe as well as any other info you recorded from the brewday.
after ramping up to 50 (over the course of a day or so,) I held it there for the next 3 weeks. Last week I nudged it up to 53, and roused the yeast. Again, there is fermentation activity in the airlock, so it is fermenting... just slower than usual.

Brew note wise,
* 12 gallon batch
* 21 pounds of pilsner and 1.25 pounds of carapils
*50/50 blend of tap and RO water (my normal lager water mix)
*mashed at 154 for 90, did a starch test to check conversion
* 90 minute boil adding 4oz saaz at 60, 4oz at 30, 2oz at 10, 2oz at flameout.
*chilled through plate chiller down to about 68
*2 nice and full carboys in the fermentation chamber at 8:00pm
*10:00 am next morning, wort down to pitching temp (44 degrees) pitched plenty (and I mean big old starter using Mr. Malty calculation) spun up on stirplate with new vials of wlp800
*Preboil, OG, and volume numbers were all on.
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:48 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piratwolf View Post
If you know JZ, you may know who Tasty is--google his lager fermentation regimen. I used it on my latest CAP with great results. Super clean, super brite, and I finished the initial ferment at 66F or so after ramping up from 52F where it started.
Hey thanks for the advice. I sure do know who Tasty is. I did Google and found a few references but nothing absolute as to his regimen. Can you help a brewer out? Do you have a link? (thanks)

Anyhow, I will try his technique next time. Brewing is about experimenting. I'm game!
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:51 PM   #6
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I would look at oxygenation. If you did everything else perfectly and still didn't oxygenate, you will risk a stuck fermentation.
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Old 04-01-2013, 07:20 PM   #7
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What about mash temp? 154F seems high for a lager. Not 1.030 high, mind you. But if you struck a little hot and settled down to 154F, it's possible that you still had some hot spots and reduced the fermentability of your wort. It may be that your yeast just slowly chewing through what's there. I was listening to JZ's German Pils show yesterday and he was advocating 146-48F for 90 min or more.

As urbanmyth said, oxygen can play a role as well.

 
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Old 04-01-2013, 09:07 PM   #8
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I know this is old news, but are you using a refractometer to check your post-fermentation gravities? They don't work once alcohol is in the mix.
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Old 04-02-2013, 12:24 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Veritas

Hey thanks for the advice. I sure do know who Tasty is. I did Google and found a few references but nothing absolute as to his regimen. Can you help a brewer out? Do you have a link? (thanks)

Anyhow, I will try his technique next time. Brewing is about experimenting. I'm game!
http://www.thebrewingnetwork.com/for...089603#_thread

I let mine lager for 8 weeks, but otherwise followed this regimen pretty closely. My best lager yet.
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Old 04-03-2013, 01:01 AM   #10
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Thanks to everyone for all of your responses! This is a great community of brewers and I appreciate your help. Reading through some of your posts (and without quoting all of them) here are a few more pieces of info:

* I brew using a single tier RIMS system (based on the electric brewery's build) and my mash recirculates constantly.
* Sorry that I forgot to mention that I do oxygenate my wort (pure O2 for 60 seconds, lots 'o oxygen)
* My mash temp is at 154 is a bit high for some pilsner recipes, but JZ's bohemian recipe does mash a bit higher than others I've seen (ie: 154) I'm pretty sure my RIMS maintains enough flow to minimize hot spots, but I might have struck a bit hot and it came down to 154. Not sure about that one... interesting.
* I use a hydrometer to take my measurements, but also "double check" it using my refractometer and adjust it for fermentation using Beersmith software. (But the 1.030 measurement was taken from the hydrometer.)
* And thanks Piratwolf for the link. I'll try that process next time!

Again, thanks for the feedback. If you have more thoughts and ideas, I'm open.
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