Do these instructions sound odd?...Primary fermentation

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

megamanisrad

Active Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2010
Messages
32
Reaction score
1
Location
ontario
Hi all! So this is my second batch ever (the first one turned out nice! A simple Red Ale) I am now doing a Dark Lager Kit by Brewhouse (the kit uses pre made wort...all you do is mix it up with water, throw the yeast in and you are good to go!)
Yesterday I was putting everything into the primary when I came upon these instructions...(after I had pitched the yeast)...
'Put the lid on the fermenter and store at room temperature for 3-5 days'
So i get the room temperature part, but for the lid part, my newbie brain was telling me to just put the lid on with a solid grommet in place.
I woke up this morning and the fermenter was pretty pressurized to say the least. This afternoon I had a minor blow-up (thankfully I have a few small leaks in my fermenter so the krausen was able to escape) so I replaced the grommet with an airlock and am monitoring the situation as we speak...i got krausen coming out of the airlock...
so after all that my question is...
would you ever just put a solid lid on for the primary stage? no blow off tube, airlock, etc? These instructions sure make it sound that way!
Thanks!!
 

BendBrewer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 26, 2010
Messages
3,126
Reaction score
82
Location
Bend
would you ever just put a solid lid on for the primary stage? no blow off tube, airlock, etc? These instructions sure make it sound that way!
No, that is called BOTTLING. The instructions assumed that your lid was fitted with an airlock.

What you need now is a blow off tube. Search the site for that.
 

LuckyRVA

Active Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2010
Messages
42
Reaction score
0
Location
Queens, NY
Sounds like a good way to paint the inside of your house with beer.

Did you not use a blow-off or airlock with your first beer?
 
Joined
Nov 6, 2007
Messages
62,016
Reaction score
6,921
Never ferment in a completely sealed vessel. CO2 is created, it needs somewhere to vent. If you don't give it somewhere to vent, it will find somewhere, AKA, blow the lid off your fermenter and make a huge mess.
 

BendBrewer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 26, 2010
Messages
3,126
Reaction score
82
Location
Bend
And throw those 'instructions' away and leave it in the fermenter for 12-14 days.
 

rjwhite41

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2010
Messages
1,421
Reaction score
28
Location
Osceola
By the way, I noticed that you said you have a few small leaks in your fermenter. Does that mean that it doesn't seal properly? You need to make sure that your wort is not exposed to air during the fermentation process and that the only way it can vent is through an air lock or blow off tube submerged in liquid. You are inviting contamination if the lid is not properly fitted.
 
OP
M

megamanisrad

Active Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2010
Messages
32
Reaction score
1
Location
ontario
@LuckyRVA
I used an airlock for my first batch but I was so fixated on making sure that my second batch be sealed. I know it's stupid but again, the way these instructions sound to a noob it made sense...

Anyways I've spent the better part of 2 hours searching the site and have learned some neat stuff! Blow-off tube will be a must next time around!

@Bandbrewer
12-14 days you say? I've read alot about just leaving it in the primary for a month...would like to try that out some day. For this one I think I'll rack into a secondary just to try it out again.
 
OP
M

megamanisrad

Active Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2010
Messages
32
Reaction score
1
Location
ontario
@rjwhite41

There is definitely a leak. The krausen is escaping from one side of the lid and falling down the wall of the fermenter. I did a red ale in the same bucket and it turned out good! But I will buy another pail before I do my next batch...!
 

Flomaster

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 5, 2010
Messages
2,084
Reaction score
38
Location
Orange
can you take a ratchet strap and wrap it around the lid and cinch it down to stop the leaking?

-=Jason=-
 

ultravista

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 28, 2007
Messages
2,528
Reaction score
83
Location
Las Vegas
- can you take a ratchet strap and wrap it around the lid and cinch it down to stop the leaking -

:) :) :)
 

rjwhite41

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2010
Messages
1,421
Reaction score
28
Location
Osceola
Did it pop off because of the fermentation or is there a defect there is what I'm getting at. If you can't seal it completely without any leaks when you initially put the lid on then you have a problem.
 

ajf

Senior Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Oct 29, 2005
Messages
4,648
Reaction score
119
Location
Long Island
I think you need to check out Merriam Webster for a definition of grommet.
"
1
:
a flexible loop that serves as a fastening, support, or reinforcement
2
: an eyelet of firm material to strengthen or protect an opening or to insulate or protect something passed through it"

A grommet is not a plug that prevents anything passing through it.

-a.
 

mr_bell

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2008
Messages
374
Reaction score
5
Location
Chicago
By the way, I noticed that you said you have a few small leaks in your fermenter. Does that mean that it doesn't seal properly? You need to make sure that your wort is not exposed to air during the fermentation process and that the only way it can vent is through an air lock or blow off tube submerged in liquid. You are inviting contamination if the lid is not properly fitted.
Don't want to hijack the thread, but this got me thinking. I haven't done this, but I saw Michael Dawson (of Northern Brewer / Brewing TV) do an OPEN fermentation--open for at least the first 2-3 days, and the beer turned out fine, though with a different flavor profile than the same beer done in a closed environment. What I'm asking related to this, is does the fermenter need to be that airtight other than the airlock? (Here's a link to that episode if you're interested:)

http://www.brewingtv.com/episodes/2010/5/17/brewing-tv-episode-4-open-fermentation.html
 

rjwhite41

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2010
Messages
1,421
Reaction score
28
Location
Osceola
Open fermentation is actually quite traditional and very interesting to me personally. It is quite common in Belgian breweries; in fact I know Ommengang in New York does it. However, for repeatable results a closed fermentation is preferred. In the case of homebrewers, the consensus is that open fermentation should be left to experienced brewers with proper equipment. However, if you want to give it a shot go for it. One of these days I will, I can promise you that.
 

Frodo

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 11, 2009
Messages
1,074
Reaction score
40
By the way, I noticed that you said you have a few small leaks in your fermenter. Does that mean that it doesn't seal properly? You need to make sure that your wort is not exposed to air during the fermentation process and that the only way it can vent is through an air lock or blow off tube submerged in liquid. You are inviting contamination if the lid is not properly fitted.
I don't ferment in a bucket, but I thought it was very much common for the buckets not to seal completely. It's understandable to me that they wouldn't, considering they have a snap on plastic lid... and with the blanket of CO2 on the top of the beer in the fermenter, I don't think you're "inviting contamination".
 

rjwhite41

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2010
Messages
1,421
Reaction score
28
Location
Osceola
I don't ferment in a bucket, but I thought it was very much common for the buckets not to seal completely. It's understandable to me that they wouldn't, considering they have a snap on plastic lid... and with the blanket of CO2 on the top of the beer in the fermenter, I don't think you're "inviting contamination".
I don't ferment using buckets either but I have heard that getting them to seal can be problem. If exposing beer to the outside elements wouldn't invite contamination then why do I bother with an airlock (without getting into a conversation about open fermentations)?
 

Frodo

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 11, 2009
Messages
1,074
Reaction score
40
If exposing beer to the outside elements wouldn't invite contamination then why do I bother with an airlock (without getting into a conversation about open fermentations)?
The really short answer is gravity... Miscellaneous stuff including microbes can fall in the beer easier if you don't put a bung and airlock on it... In regards to fermentation buckets, I imagine it's much tougher for nasties to crawl up under the plastic lid and slide in through a microscopic gap that CO2 pressure can escape through.
 

rjwhite41

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2010
Messages
1,421
Reaction score
28
Location
Osceola
That still doesn't explain to me why you would fill a 3 piece airlock with liquid but I do see your point. If it was me, I would still want to make sure that my lid fit securely.
 
OP
M

megamanisrad

Active Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2010
Messages
32
Reaction score
1
Location
ontario
great stuff guys! im glad my stupidity can open up so many doors for good discussions! keep 'er coming!
as for temperature, i know that lagers generally need a cooler tepmerature, and we keep our house around 20C (68C), but I've read that they should be kept cooler than that...I'm hoping it'll work out! Again, the instructions are weird cause I brewed a Red Ale kit which stated the temperature should be around 18C - 25C (65F-75F) and they gave the same temperature for the Dark Lager kit.
Thoughts??? Thanks everyone!!
 

wendelgee2

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 5, 2008
Messages
324
Reaction score
3
Location
New York, NY
great stuff guys! im glad my stupidity can open up so many doors for good discussions! keep 'er coming!
as for temperature, i know that lagers generally need a cooler tepmerature, and we keep our house around 20C (68C), but I've read that they should be kept cooler than that...I'm hoping it'll work out! Again, the instructions are weird cause I brewed a Red Ale kit which stated the temperature should be around 18C - 25C (65F-75F) and they gave the same temperature for the Dark Lager kit.
Thoughts??? Thanks everyone!!
I'm really not trying to be a dick, but my first thought is: Find a better kit next time around. Stick to Northern Brewer, or Midwest Supplies, or Austin Homebrew. There're probably other reputable suppliers out there that I'm leaving out...morebeer. Anyway, between this ale/lager confusion and the poor instructions, I think it's time for you to take the next step and spring for some quality ingredients and quality directions. Which reminds me...throw away the directions and just read Palmer's How to Brew, it's free and online.
 

rjwhite41

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2010
Messages
1,421
Reaction score
28
Location
Osceola
Lager yeast should primary around 50F and the lagering phase or secondary should be 32-40. Be kind to your yeast and it will be kind to you!
 
OP
M

megamanisrad

Active Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2010
Messages
32
Reaction score
1
Location
ontario
Thanks everyone!! I appreciate all your input! I will definitely stay away from this kit and hopefully start doing my own thing very soon!!
 
Top