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Too long in the secondary?

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angrek

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Hey all. Just found this place looking for an answer. I have a pilsner in a glass secondary that's been there about 4 or 5 weeks. I've never kept one in there that long but I've heard that it's ok. I was about to keg it today and noticed a lot of bubbles on top... I've never seen this before and I have no idea what this is. I"ve read around about oxidation and I do have maybe....6 to 8 inches to the top of the carboy.... is this oxidized? Or is this normal? Just as a better description there's a ring of them around the outside and maybe 4 or 5 in the middle with a large cluster of 5 or 6....looks like they have yeast particles or something on them....?? and house temp is always right around 70 to 75... any ideas? Really appreciate it cause I've really been anticipating this batch...
 

uglygoat

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did you recently move the carboy and stirr up some of the sediment off the bottom?
 
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angrek

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t1master said:
did you recently move the carboy and stirr up some of the sediment off the bottom?
Nope. It's in a dormant corner where my wife and I leave our carboys. (she does wine) We intentionally picked a place out of the way of traffic so they wouldn't get disturbed. As a side note, I've noticed in the last couple days that the air lock has bubbled...it did it an hour ago and I'm not even sure I remember it bubbling at all during the secondary fermentation.... errr...funny it should do it while I'm typing...go figure... anyway, it's just something that I've caught a couple times out of the corner of my eye when it really wasn't that active of a fermentation in the first place... (primary or secondary...)
 

uglygoat

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how long were you gonna lager it? is it too hot to lager a pilsner at 75?

sounds like it found some more fermentables...

i think it's cool that yer wife brews too... mine just looks at me like, oh god, here we go again... ;)
 

Janx

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It's fine to leave it in the secondary that long. It's not oxidized, since all of the airspace in the carboy has been displaced by CO2.

It could be just a bit of lingering fermentation, or an infection. Did you keep the airlock full? I only ask because I have let them dry up when I leave beer in the fermenter a long time.

I bet you're fine. Give it a taste when you bottle or keg. It'll probably be really nice with the ageing, as long as it's not infected (sometimes that shows as a scummy ring around the carboy). Good luck! And welcome to the forum :D
 

NUCC98

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t1master said:
i think it's cool that yer wife brews too... mine just looks at me like, oh god, here we go again... ;)
my girlfriend just shook her head, laughed, and said "Heh...you're definitely Irish....." I took it a compliment!!! :D
 
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angrek

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t1master said:
how long were you gonna lager it? is it too hot to lager a pilsner at 75?

sounds like it found some more fermentables...

i think it's cool that yer wife brews too... mine just looks at me like, oh god, here we go again... ;)

Dunno. I used to just bottle it and leave it in a closet for a few months and then find some room in the fridge that my wife wouldn't miss for another month...heh This one I just kept looking at going 'well...maybe I'll just wait and do it this weekend...' heh.

Unfortunately I live in Florida so it stays pretty warm. I'd love to keep it cooler but I just don't have any place that's that cool right now. House is always the same temp. (maybe 7 or 8 degrees warmer in the summer) We have cats that live in the garage and the have a habit of whacking the air lock when it bubbles... :eek: heh so I can't store them out there even though it's a little cooler right now...

Yeah, this started out as MY hobby...now my wife has a 450 bottle wine rack in the living room and 6 glass carboys with 2 full at any given time... :) The nice thing about it is that I get to build a brewing room in our garage here in the next month or two to keep it temperature controlled for fermenting. ;) Yeah, we have a large garage you might say....you can fit 4 suvs in it. Well, if it was filled with my tools and her cases of empty wine bottles...

Anyway, thanks for the welcome and thanks for the replies...I was really worried but you guys have boosted my confidence in this batch. Incidently I'm kind of watching it and it bubbles like every 5 minutes... maybe it's just a reeeeeaaaally sloooooooooow fermentation...heh
 
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angrek

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Janx said:
It's fine to leave it in the secondary that long. It's not oxidized, since all of the airspace in the carboy has been displaced by CO2.
I was just worried because I saw somewhere that it can happen if you leave more than an inch in there (even though I've had this much in there in the past, the amount of time made me unsure..)

Janx said:
It could be just a bit of lingering fermentation, or an infection. Did you keep the airlock full? I only ask because I have let them dry up when I leave beer in the fermenter a long time.
Well, sitting here now after 6 weeks total and it's bubbling is just kind of odd. heh. And yup, air lock is as full as it was when I put it in originally... what causes infection and what does it look like? Does it get all bubbly on top? Hmmm. Maybe I'll just take a picture and link to it. Give you a better idea of what this looks like...

Janx said:
I bet you're fine.
I probably am. I usually don't worry about it at all but just seeing something different really gave me a pause.

.
 

brewmaster

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angrek said:
I was just worried because I saw somewhere that it can happen if you leave more than an inch in there (even though I've had this much in there in the past, the amount of time made me unsure..)



Well, sitting here now after 6 weeks total and it's bubbling is just kind of odd. heh. And yup, air lock is as full as it was when I put it in originally... what causes infection and what does it look like? Does it get all bubbly on top? Hmmm. Maybe I'll just take a picture and link to it. Give you a better idea of what this looks like...



I probably am. I usually don't worry about it at all but just seeing something different really gave me a pause.

.
hmm, you state that You keep the beer in close proximity to the wifes wine..... I wonder if you got a cross-contamination, or rather introduced some wine yeast to the beer. All it takes is a few yeast cells to start things all over. And, the time frame makes sense. if you start with only a few 'different' yeast cells, it takes a while for the colony to grow. When it grows, it finds new food. that food being the carbo chains the first yeast did not break down. i used to live in florida, and can relate to the high ambient temps. I had a fridge with a dayton thermostat(32-80) in it. I could dial in the temp I wanted, depending on the yeast I used, and what ever lagering temps I wanted. With your temps, I would stick to ales. much more forgiving on your high temps...
 

DeRoux's Broux

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angrek, i'm in the same boat. i have a imperial ipa that started acting back up in the secondary, and it's been in there for three weeks, all nice'n quite. i was getting ready to keg, and bloop, there goes a bubble in the ferm lock. hacked me off! i was wanting to drink it w/ our weekly home made pizza night :mad:

oh well, it''ll be better if i wait. i wish my wife would brew, AND STOP DRINK'N ALL MY BEER! :)

Cheers!
DeRoux's Broux
 

masondelux

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DeRoux's Broux said:
angrek, i'm in the same boat. i have a imperial ipa that started acting back up in the secondary, and it's been in there for three weeks, all nice'n quite. i was getting ready to keg, and bloop, there goes a bubble in the ferm lock. hacked me off! i was wanting to drink it w/ our weekly home made pizza night :mad:

oh well, it''ll be better if i wait. i wish my wife would brew, AND STOP DRINK'N ALL MY BEER! :)

Cheers!
DeRoux's Broux
You can put it in a keg with it still working. You can also use natural carbonation by doing this. You can secondary in kegs too and blow off any excess co2 generated by yeast. You can also cut a inch off the dip tube and serve right out of the secondary. I tranfers from keg to keg with co2 going from beer line to beer line. So many ways to do things and save time.
 

DeRoux's Broux

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masondelux said:
You can put it in a keg with it still working. You can also use natural carbonation by doing this. You can secondary in kegs too and blow off any excess co2 generated by yeast. You can also cut a inch off the dip tube and serve right out of the secondary. I tranfers from keg to keg with co2 going from beer line to beer line. So many ways to do things and save time.
that's pretty much what i do too. i went ahead and let it sit in the secondary for another 4 days, chilled it, force carbo'd it, and now i'm drinkin' it! :D taste, color is very similar to the micro i cloned.
when i start lagering, i'll use that keg-transfer your talking about. just need another freezer......
thanks.
DeRoux's Broux
 

Janx

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The keg-to-keg transfer method is way sweet. I used to brew with a few other guys and between us we had a ton of kegs. So we started keeping the beer in kegs for most of its life. All your racking is totally sanitary. Never any aeration...at all. It's definitely a cool way to go.

Incidentally, they make those orange caps for carboys that have two nipple. A racking can goes in one and you attach CO2 line to the other. That kind of turns it into a keg, so you can transfer out of carboys with CO2 and never let it touch air. We jury-rigged a cap like that for our demijohns at one point.

Now I'm back to just racking normally out of laziness. But the completely closed transfer system is really cool for sure. Cheers! :D
 

D-brewmeister

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Janx said:
Incidentally, they make those orange caps for carboys that have two nipple. A racking can goes in one and you attach CO2 line to the other. That kind of turns it into a keg, so you can transfer out of carboys with CO2 and never let it touch air. We jury-rigged a cap like that for our demijohns at one point.
Do you think there is much significant risk of infection if you just blow on the second nipple? I recently bought one of those caps, and don't have a CO2 setup, so was planning on the low tech technique. :rolleyes: It has to be better than sucking on the syphon tube in anycase (something I try to avoid).
 
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