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Coopers lager is yeasty, fizzy with no head

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IEpicDestiny

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Hi,

My first coopers lager batch went perfectly well however this time it did not. I did exactly the same as the instructions told me for the first kit however this time I used the brew enhancer 3 instead of 2. I also used half a teaspoon of sugar for each bottle instead of 2 carbonation drops. In the first batch I actually added the yeast part at the bottom of the fermenter to each bottle (I thought I had to) but for my 2nd batch I made sure to avoid that.

I also cleaned the fermenter by rinsing with hot water for a long time after its use and using vwp cleaner and giving a thorough rinse as well as using starsan before use (I did exactly as I see people do in youtube videos etc). It has been in bottles for almost a year now and it still has not gotten better.

I am very confused what had caused this, the only possible explanation I could think of is the amount of sugar I used when bottling because everything else is pretty much the exact same as my first attempt.

Please help! Thanks!
 

IslandLizard

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It has been in bottles for almost a year now and it still has not gotten better.
A year is a long time! How and where are they stored?

What has not gotten better? The flavor or just the carbonation?
Have you tried any of the bottles of that last batch before? When was the first time, when before the last?
 
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IEpicDestiny

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A year is a long time! How and where are they stored?

What has not gotten better? The flavor or just the carbonation?
Have you tried any of the bottles of that last batch before? When was the first time, when before the last?
I stored a few in a cupboard and the rest in boxes covered in towels (same as I did with my 1st batch which went well) The temperature was the same as the 1st batch too.

Both really, it sort of tastes like flat beer but it looks fizzier than normal beer. Their is no head at all and it smells and tastes quite yeasty.

Also the 1st time I stored the beer in PET bottles and this time I stored them in glass bottles with swingtops. (Which should be better right?)

Oh and before serving them I would keep them in the fridge for a few days, but I have tried them straight out of the box and also testing them by leaving them in the fridge for a few weeks
 
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IslandLizard

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Maybe you didn't use enough priming sugar?
Or the bottles leak a little?

Have you used a carbonation calculator?
They generally recommend 4-8g of table sugar per liter, depending on style, but using 5g (2 volumes) is fairly low.
1 (level) teaspoon table sugar is about 4.2 gram, but varies due to fineness.

It should take around 2-3 weeks to carbonate at around 68F/20C.

Swing tops are good, just flip the gasket each time you're filling. Depending on the quality of the gaskets, some can be reused 5-10 times. Others, the more plasticy, harder ones, only a few times. When you see a firm indentation in the gasket, better replace them. Storing them closed, with beer, for a year may also leave a more persistent indentation. When not in use don't engage the bale, just leave them open, so the gasket can relax and spring back.
 
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IEpicDestiny

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Maybe you didn't use enough priming sugar?
Or the bottles leak a little?

Have you used a carbonation calculator?
They generally recommend 4-8g of table sugar per liter, depending on style, but using 5g (2 volumes) is fairly low.
1 (level) teaspoon table sugar is about 4.2 gram, but varies due to fineness.

It should take around 2-3 weeks to carbonate at around 68F/20C.

Swing tops are good, just flip the gasket each time you're filling. Depending on the quality of the gaskets, some can be reused 5-10 times. Others, the more plasticy, harder ones, only a few times. When you see a firm indentation in the gasket, better replace them. Storing them closed, with beer, for a year may also leave a more persistent indentation. When not in use don't engage the bale, just leave them open, so the gasket can relax and spring back.
Thank you! This is a big help! However it still seems like I have added the right amount by using half a teaspoon according to the calculator. Each bottle was around 500ml. The bottles definitely did not leak either. I have tested most of them
 

IslandLizard

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it still seems like I have added the right amount by using half a teaspoon according to the calculator
That is still low carbonation at 2 volumes.

How precise is that half teaspoon measure you're using? Small deviations at that level are quite noticeable.
Also, sugar granules in parts of Europe tends to be much coarser than in the U.S. The granules are closer to those of salt here, so a teaspoon may not yield the same mass (weight) where you are.

Another question is how much carbonation was retained in you beer from the fermentation. If it was (partially) degassed at some point that starting level of .7-.8 volumes wasn't quite there either.

If you're using PET bottles they can withstand easily 30 psi, likely a lot more. On your next batch, you could try adding different amounts of priming sugar to a few bottles, and see what the resulting carb levels become, and which are more to your liking. That will give you a new starting point.

Just don't experiment with glass bottles. ;)
 
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IEpicDestiny

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Thanks! This helps alot. Are you sure its low carbonation if my beer is fizzy? and it does taste quite yeasty which I'm confused by, could sugar affect the yeast? I definitely did not disturb the yeast sediment when bottling.
I will definitely look into the amount of sugar I should be using in more depth, I did use half a teaspoon but I suppose I did not use exact measurements however if they were off by a little then it still doesn't make sense why all my beers are the exact same (I have tested about 30 of the 40 now).

I just did exactly as I did before pretty much and it turned out fine the first time. The OG was 1.035 and the FG was 1.005. Making sure the FG was the same for 3 days in a row

Would it be too late to add some more sugar to my bottles now?

I remember asking a forum how much sugar to use for 500ml bottles for the UK and they all said half a teaspoon.

I'll definitely experiment with the PET bottles next time :) I've just been really put off making beer after this event. I have watched hundreds of videos and done exactly what they did (even the temperature was the same) and yet this happens.

My wine has turned out horribly too and I did that to the letter too -_- They've been in a bottle a year too

Okay I have just poured myself a pint of my coopers lager and the head was just bubbles that fizzed out in a few seconds (completely no head) and if I look at the beer itself the colour looks normal but the bubbles are completely still so possibly it isin't fizzy after all but when the head fizzed out I expected it must have been that I put too much sugar. Could more sugar actually be what keeps the head?
It basically tastes like flat beer and smells of nothing.
There are alot of bubbles but they are completely still stuck to the inside of the glass. literally no bubbles at all in the middle of the glass.

Perhaps its not yeast I'm tasting and its just my imagination, it slightly smells of yeast but its hard to tell because it could just be because its flat

Also I should probably mention that I clean my glasses in my washing machine (which is exactly how I cleaned them for my 1st batch that went well)
 
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