Early Signs - Fast Die off

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I'm currently fermenting a Kölsch and had it take off quickly, very noticeable active fermentation within 12 hours of transfer. The krausen pushed up into my blowoff tube as it always does, and it setteled into a very rythmic 1-2 bubbles per second.

When I checked it this morning, roughly 36 hours after fermenting started, it seemed as though most activity has stopped.

I have seen this happen on a few of my other brews, but none so drastically as this one.

I had planned on transferring to a secondary fermenter, now I'm just wondering what my time frame would be in order to make the transfer worth it.

Also any reason that could cause my fermentation to be so rapid? I normally ferment around 70-75 degrees, in a nice dark corner.

I also added some yeast nutrient to this batch.
 

OnePlate

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Have you taken a gravity reading? It could be pretty nearly done already, especially if you added yeast nutrient and ferment that warm. Yeast nutrient was probably unnecessary. Was your yeast pitched from a starter?
 

kh54s10

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Any differences? Warmer will make fermentation faster. Nutrient might make fermentation faster. Pitch count - more yeast will make fermentation faster. Healthier/fresher yeast will make fermentation faster.

It is almost always unnecessary to do a secondary. I would skip that step. It is more likely to cause problems with infection or oxidation than actually helping the beer.
 
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Have you taken a gravity reading? It could be pretty nearly done already, especially if you added yeast nutrient and ferment that warm. Yeast nutrient was probably unnecessary. Was your yeast pitched from a starter?
I have not yet taken a gravity reading, just happened to notice the drastic change as I was getting ready for work this AM. I did not use a starter, just the dry yeast into the wort.

Thanks for the tips!
 

kh54s10

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I have not yet taken a gravity reading, just happened to notice the drastic change as I was getting ready for work this AM. I did not use a starter, just the dry yeast into the wort.

Thanks for the tips!
You don't want to make a starter when using dry yeast. It is engineered so that you don't need one. In fact it may be worse to actually make a starter with dry yeast.
 
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You don't want to make a starter when using dry yeast. It is engineered so that you don't need one. In fact it may be worse to actually make a starter with dry yeast.
I was looking at making a starter then noticed in a thread that it wasn't a good idea.
 

day_trippr

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Neither is racking to another fermenter.
Seriously, the whole secondary thing is old, tired rote, and truly unnecessary with a kolsch, for certain...

Cheers!
 

thaymond

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I'm in the same boat. Two of my three batches I started on Sunday began fermenting within 8 hours, and are seemingly done this morning. One Notty, one S04. Both dry yeasts, both rehydrated following packet directions, in 5 gallons of 1.051 wort. Ferment temp right around 75 (swamp cooler set up, cant do true temp control yet.) Usually it will take 3 to 7 days. I'm hoping I don't have 10 gallons of rocket fuel on my hands. I'll be doing a sample later this afternoon to see if I'm truly done or not.
 

kh54s10

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I'm in the same boat. Two of my three batches I started on Sunday began fermenting within 8 hours, and are seemingly done this morning. One Notty, one S04. Both dry yeasts, both rehydrated following packet directions, in 5 gallons of 1.051 wort. Ferment temp right around 75 (swamp cooler set up, cant do true temp control yet.) Usually it will take 3 to 7 days. I'm hoping I don't have 10 gallons of rocket fuel on my hands. I'll be doing a sample later this afternoon to see if I'm truly done or not.
Work on your temperature control. Look up each yeast's ideal range and shoot for the middle. 75 degrees is on the warm side. Even with a swamp cooler you should be able to keep the temperature cooler. For those yeasts I would be trying to hold 65 -68 degrees.
 
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I'm in the same boat. Two of my three batches I started on Sunday began fermenting within 8 hours, and are seemingly done this morning. One Notty, one S04. Both dry yeasts, both rehydrated following packet directions, in 5 gallons of 1.051 wort. Ferment temp right around 75 (swamp cooler set up, cant do true temp control yet.) Usually it will take 3 to 7 days. I'm hoping I don't have 10 gallons of rocket fuel on my hands. I'll be doing a sample later this afternoon to see if I'm truly done or not.
I checked mine closer after work yesterday and watched it this morning. Mine is still slowly going, I'm going to give it a day or so before I pop it to test
 

mongoose33

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I checked mine closer after work yesterday and watched it this morning. Mine is still slowly going, I'm going to give it a day or so before I pop it to test
Geez, you're an impatient bugger!

Since you're fermenting so warm, I'm going to guess it's done. Any bubbling you're still seeing could be continued fermentation, or just CO2 offgassing from the beer, with either temperature or barometric pressure changes.

All the above advice is spot on, IMO.

When your beer is done fermenting, it's usually a good practice to leave it on the yeast for a while. Typically I'm not going to rack off the yeast for at least a week, and it's common for me to leave it there for two weeks. As noted above, there is no need for a secondary. In fact, while there is still yeast in suspension in the beer, racking early costs you the conditioning that sitting on the yeast cake can provide.

One more thing: when you say you normally ferment at 70-75 degrees, is that the ambient temperature of your dark closet, or is that the temperature of the beer? Yeast is exothermic, meaning it produces heat while working, and that effect can add 5-10 degrees to the temperature of the wort above ambient temp. Which means if the 70-75 is the temp of the closet, your wort's fermentation temp is really anywhere from 75-85, which unless it's a farmhouse ale or saison (or Kviek yeast), is too hot.

I do a Kolsch using WLP-029. I ferment it at 60 degrees, which is below the recommended range. But I control that temp to within a degree of 60. I can't imagine doing the same recipe at 75 or higher. That, BTW, is probably why your fermentation is proceeding so quickly--warmer generally equals faster chemical and biological processes.
 
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