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Old 04-09-2008, 02:45 AM   #1
Apr 2008
Posts: 24

I messed up two days ago when I began by not letting the yeast pack start before begining. I was told to wait, now it is doing something. There are small bubles but not a lot and most of it is a white substance on the top. I will feel stupid if it is just fermenting. I took another hydrometer reeding as well. My first was 5.25 of alchohal, and now it is 6. Isnt that supposed to go the other way? Should I pitch more yeast? Do I need to pictch the batch? I think it is most likely that it is just begining fermentation, although the hydrometer reading is a bit odd. Maybee I didnt adjust the hydrometer to a proper temperature?

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Old 04-09-2008, 03:03 AM   #2
BrianP's Avatar
Sep 2007
Dexter, MI, Michigan
Posts: 1,151
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You could try attaching a picture. It's hard to give advice from what you're describing. Chances are it's fermenting, unless you were less-than-careful at sanitation. Generally beer is pretty forgiving about sanitation, but it's best to follow good sanitation practices.

I would say don't worry - give it time. In the meantime, read up on how to take a hydrometer reading. You may be doing something wrong there too. Actually, don't take a reading for a little while - the more you sample, the more chance you take at infecting the beer.

Keep the beer in the dark, take a peek at it occasionally, watch for bubbling in your airlock, although if it doesn't bubble, it could be because it's done fermenting already and you missed it, you didn't have a good air-tight seal, etc.

After 5 to 7 days after pitching, take your sample and reading. Repeat for a couple days in a row. If it doesn't change from day-to-day, and if shows that it has fermented, you're good.

If you haven't already, check out the wiki, and try reading up in You can learn a lot from both, and they can answer a lot of questions you may have.


Fermenter 1: Best bitter (1)
Fermenter 2: Best bitter (2)
Fermenter 3: APA
Fermenter 4: APA

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Old 04-09-2008, 03:13 AM   #3
c.n.budz's Avatar
Feb 2007
Pistol Wavin' New Haven, for now...
Posts: 3,093
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Your beer is fermenting. And, it sounds like you're reading the potential alcohol scale on your hydrometer. That scale is very inaccurate and unreliable, you want to use the SP.GR(specific gravity) scale.
Knucklehead Brewery, Est. 2007

Always do sober what you do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut. -Ernest Hemingway

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Old 04-10-2008, 09:17 AM   #4
EvilTOJ's Avatar
Dec 2005
Portland, OR, Oregon
Posts: 6,401
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Yep, your beer is fermenting. And I'm not sure which scale you're using on your hydrometer, but like CNBudz said use the Specific Gravity scale. Those are the numbers that start at about .998 at the top and go down to 1.120 at the bottom.
There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."

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