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Old 11-27-2007, 07:43 PM   #1
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Default lack of carbonation

This may be mildly premature, but I just wanted to bounce my concern off of more experienced brewers while I am waiting.

My first beer is not carbonating very much (a milk stout - my recipe is the second entry on this page: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthre...40262&page=2 ).

The beer sat in primary for 1 week, secondary for 3 weeks, and has now been in the bottle for nearly 3.5 weeks at 69-70 degrees F. When I opened a bottle this past Sunday, I got a miniscule fizz sound (barely anything), and the carbonation is pretty meek. I have been racking my brain to assure myself that I added the priming sugar solution, so that isn't the problem. And none of the bottles have exploded, so I figure it's not a case of some being under-primed, and other being over-primed.

Any thoughts? I really want this to be ready for Christmas, and I am willing to wait until then for them to carb up. But, if they haven't carbed yet (at least, not appreciably), should I try to re-prime? Or add more yeast and re-prime?

Any thoughts are appreciated (even the inevitable replies of "have patience!").


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Old 11-27-2007, 07:53 PM   #2
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Honestly, in my experience, if it's not carb'd within 10 days, it's probably not going to be carb'd. I've run into lackluster carbo problems many a time, and here's what I'd do if I were you:

Buy some carb tabs made by Munton's (not Coopers). Take 6 bottles randomly (RANDOMLY!!!) from various parts of your cases. Uncap 4 of them. In two of them, add 3 carb tabs. In the other two, sprinkle a small amount of dry yeast into the bottle. Recap these 4 bottles. The remaining two stay capped, but shake them up. Be sure to mark each type of bottle (original, new yeast, carb tabs) on the cap.

Take all 6 bottles and put them in a warm place. At least in the mid 70's. Leave for 1 week, and take one of each "kind" of bottle and chill them down. Then open them up and see how they did. Whichever method worked best, that's what you'll need to do for the rest of the bottles. Hopefully it's just a case of shaking them up and putting them in a warmer place.


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Old 11-27-2007, 07:57 PM   #3
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Being a scientist, I like your methodical approach.

I will give it a shot. I am willing to get the carb tabs, but would I also be able to just calculate how much dextrose I'd want to add to a single bottle (not the normal full-prime amount), and make a syrup for it?
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Old 11-27-2007, 07:59 PM   #4
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Everything capped tight?
Did you stir the priming sugar in the bottling bucket?
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Old 11-27-2007, 08:01 PM   #5
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Are you the girl with the boil-over in the Sam Adams commercials?
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Old 11-27-2007, 08:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by olllllo
Everything capped tight?
Did you stir the priming sugar in the bottling bucket?

As far as I know, the caps were tight. I used a combination of regular beer bottles and caps, as well as plastic bottles and tightened down plastic caps. Some hard cider that I bottled the same day has carbonated without any problem, so my method of capping shouldn't be the issue.

I did stir the priming sugar syrup in the bottling bucket (although I did not pour the beer ONTO the priming syrup as I'd meant to).
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Old 11-27-2007, 08:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesefood


Are you the girl with the boil-over in the Sam Adams commercials?

If I am, I'd better be getting paid in 6-pack royalties...
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Old 11-27-2007, 08:25 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmulligan
Being a scientist, I like your methodical approach.

I will give it a shot. I am willing to get the carb tabs, but would I also be able to just calculate how much dextrose I'd want to add to a single bottle (not the normal full-prime amount), and make a syrup for it?
Sure, you could do that, but you have much less control and I wouldn't trust it. Carb tabs are cheap and easy to use. Just make sure you get the Muntons.
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.planned:
•Scottish 80/- •Sweet Stout •Roggenbier
.primary | bright:
98: Moss Hollow Soured '09 72: Oude Kriek 99: B-Weisse 102: Brett'd BDSA 104: Feat of Strength Helles Bock 105: Merkin Brown
.on tap | kegged:
XX: Moss Hollow Springs Sparkling Water 95: Gott Mit Uns German Pils 91b: Brown Willie's Oaked Abbey Ale 103: Merkin Stout
98: Yorkshire Special 100: Maple Porter 89: Cidre Saison 101: Steffiweizen '09 (#3)
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Old 11-27-2007, 08:28 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evan!
Sure, you could do that, but you have much less control and I wouldn't trust it. Carb tabs are cheap and easy to use. Just make sure you get the Muntons.
Ok, I am browsing the homebrew supply shop website as I type. Just one question, I have come across some comments that the carb tabs leave white chunks in the beer. One person suggested it was the heading powder in the tabs that causes this. Have you had this problem? Could I possibly avoid the issue by crushing the tabs to powder and THEN adding it to the bottle? Thanks for your help!
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Old 11-27-2007, 08:31 PM   #10
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I think that might come from the DME in the carb tabs. Occasionally, I prime with DME and there might be a wee little ring in the neck. I wouldn't worry about it- I've used those carb tabs a few times and it was fine!


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