Early stages of fermentation - no bubbling

Discussion in 'Beginners Brewing Forum' started by Tal Orbach, Jun 30, 2018.

  1. Tal Orbach

    Tal Orbach Member

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    Hi.
    I brewed my second batch a couple of days ago. Last time I brewed, the morning after, the airlock was bubbling like crazy. This time, it's been a day and a half since the yeast went in, and still no bubbles.
    There are some major differences between the two brews that might help explain the difference:
    • Pitching: last time I made a "starter" - mixed the dry yeast with preboiled water and sugar, and let it sit for about 45 minutes. This time, as per the recommendation from the owner at the brew shop - I just poured in the dry yeast.
    • Batch size: last time was 20L, this time it's two batches of 4L.
    • Yeast per wort volume - last time I used one packet for 20L, this time I used one packet for the two batches, so half a packet for 4L
    • Temperature: last time I did the whole thing at room temp, which was about 20C (68F), this time, I cooled the wort to 16C (60F) prior to adding yeast, and I also keep the fermenters in a cooler with water at about the same temp (adding ice every now and again)
    • Timing: last time I used extract, so I just cooled it with ice and immediately pitched yeast. This time I used BIAB, so couldn't cool like that, so I cooled partly in a tub, and then put in the fridge (in an airtight pot), and added yeast the next day.
    So, with all that said - What do you think? Should I be worried? Wait longer? Do something else?

    Tal
     
  2. Blackmuse

    Blackmuse Well-Known Member

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    What size are your carboys and can you see in them?

    If you can see a krausen or ring at the top then things are going along just fine.
     
  3. Tal Orbach

    Tal Orbach Member

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    The carboys (rather - one carboy and one jar) are 5L each. They are see-through. I see some foam on top, which I believe is krausen (I was just about to edit the OP to add that bit of info).
    So, you're saying I'm probably fine?
    [​IMG]

    When should I be expecting the crazy bubbling?
     
  4. Blackmuse

    Blackmuse Well-Known Member

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    You probably have a slight leak around the lid. If you can see foam on top - it's good. If the jars are truely clear then you may even see the yeast in action - lots of swirling inside wort.

    If the foam looks like it is dropping and leaving a ring if gunk behind then the yeast have done a bulk of the "primary" fermentation and are starting to settle down for clean up time.
     
  5. Blackmuse

    Blackmuse Well-Known Member

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    You may never see any action in the bubbler if there is a leak on the lid - gas is just escaping elsewhere. Noting to really worry about.
     
  6. Tal Orbach

    Tal Orbach Member

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    They are clear, but they are also mostly submerged in water in the cooler, so I can only really look at them from above.
    If gas is escaping, doesn't it also mean gas could also get in and contaminate my brew? isn't that the reason why we put the airlock in in the first place?
     
  7. Blackmuse

    Blackmuse Well-Known Member

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    If gas is being pushed out nothing can get in. Once gas stops being generated maybe then but I still wouldn't worry. Try tightening lid and airlock but don't worry if that doesn't change anything. Let it ride.

    Post a picture of what you can see if possible.
     
  8. Tal Orbach

    Tal Orbach Member

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    Don't know if that is the case. The plastic jar is still soft. I thought it would be hard, from all the pressure build-up.
    Anyway, here are some pics:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  9. Blackmuse

    Blackmuse Well-Known Member

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    Those are rocking! No worries. Peak fermentation!
     
  10. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Looks like good fermentation to me. Don't trust airlocks! Get a hydrometer or refractometer and trust that. Of course, batches this small, you probably don't want to lose a lot to testing so a refractometer and correction - this site has a refractometer correction routine - and use that to tell you if your beer is fermenting.
     
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  11. Blackmuse

    Blackmuse Well-Known Member

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    So, are you saying Nosybear that I can use my refractometer to read SG? The correction fixes the alcohol issue? That would be sweet!
     
  12. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    That's what I do. I have my own spreadsheet but the calculator on this site works well.
     
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  13. Tal Orbach

    Tal Orbach Member

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    [​IMG]
     
  14. Blackmuse

    Blackmuse Well-Known Member

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    Rock on! Thanks for that tidbit! I'm about to save so much beer!
     

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