Save the blowoff?

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taylornate

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I was pouring about half a gallon of blowoff down the drain when I had a thought. Why not save the blowoff and pour it back into the fermenter once activity dies down? It would be pretty easy to do. Use a stopper with two holes in your blowoff container. One hole is the blowoff tube from the fermenter and the other hole gets an airlock. Thoughts?
 

Yooper

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I have to answer your question with another question- "Why?"

What would you hope to gain from adding the sanitizer-mixed blow off into your beer?
 

babalu87

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If you can save JUST the FOAM in a sanitary fashion then yes, thats alot of good yeast but NO NO NO to adding anything back in like you're describing
 
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taylornate

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With the added airlock you would not need any sanitizing solution in the blowoff container. I suppose I should have made this clear.
 

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I guess if your primary fermenter is too small, you'd lose quite a bit of beer in the blow off. You could use a larger fermenter. I use a 7.5 gallon ale pail bucket- and I've had one beer that needed a blow off.

You could use an extra sanitized fermenter, with an airlock, and divide the wort between them if you don't have a single fermenter big enough for all of the wort.
 
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taylornate

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I guess if your primary fermenter is too small, you'd lose quite a bit of beer in the blow off. You could use a larger fermenter. I use a 7.5 gallon ale pail bucket- and I've had one beer that needed a blow off.

You could use an extra sanitized fermenter, with an airlock, and divide the wort between them if you don't have a single fermenter big enough for all of the wort.
Both of these options have their own drawbacks, mainly cost. I just started using a couple 6 gallon better bottles because I'd like to be able to see what is going on in there. I'm not about to abandon them or use both on a single batch. I'd like to know what you think of my idea now that you know I'm not talking about puring sanitizer into my primary. The way I see it is you are essentially increasing the volume of your fermenter.
 

crazyboy

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According to Papazian the blow off contains a large amount of very bitter hop oils and that if you don't use a blow off its best to scrape off the krausen.
 

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Both of these options have their own drawbacks, mainly cost. I just started using a couple 6 gallon better bottles because I'd like to be able to see what is going on in there. I'm not about to abandon them or use both on a single batch. I'd like to know what you think of my idea now that you know I'm not talking about puring sanitizer into my primary. The way I see it is you are essentially increasing the volume of your fermenter.
If you don't want to spend the money on a larger fermenter (an ale pail is about $15 or so, but a bigger glass carboy is $$$$), that does narrow your options. I LOVE my ale pail, and often don't even use my Better Bottles (except for 6 gallon batches of wine in secondary), but I understand that once you buy them, you'd like use them.

In order of preference, I'd do:
1. Bigger fermenter
2. Accept that sometimes the beer will blow off in a 6 gallon carboy- keep the temperature at the low end of the yeast's optimum temperature and the blow off should be minimized. Discard the blow off.
3. Slightly smaller batches- make 4.75 gallon batches. Scale the recipe to that size, and not have any blow off.
4. Use the BB for most of the batch, use a 1 gallon jug (those 4L Carlo Rossi jugs work fine with a #6 stopper) for the extra wort.

I don't think I'd mess around with an airlock on a blow off container, etc. to save a little wort.

Maybe it would work, but it means making sure that the blow off tube is completely sanitized (krausen really gunks those up), the blow off container is sanitized, that the weather favors it (as to not get a vacuum between the blow off container and fermenter during a cold front, etc), and then if you actually get beer from the blow off, you don't want to pour it (because of aeration/oxidation issues) so you'd have to rack it. And the krausen that fell back into the beer would be much more predominant in the vessel that held the blow off material. In short, I don't see any advantage, but I see plenty of disadvantages.
 

heyvail

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If you truly want to save that stuff use FERMCAP-S in your fermentor and you will never even need a blowoff tube!!! IF I was forum knowledgeable I would insert a link to some great threads about FERMCAP. Maybe someone else can help.
 

Picobrew

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Where would the infection come from? The way I see it is the whole apparatus would be one big container.
What you are talking about is something that people do for yeast cropping purposes. I don't know how well it works. In a 6G better bottle, i barely have much blowoff, certainly not enough that would warrant worrying about this.
 
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taylornate

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I think maybe I'll do this but instead of pouring it back in, if I get enough of it I'll bottle it separate and see how it differs. Or maybe I'll just use fermcap. I knew about that stuff but I forgot about it's usefulness in the fermenter.
 
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