First Time Brewing Problems

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Michael's Alcohall, Sep 1, 2017.

  1. Michael's Alcohall

    Michael's Alcohall New Member

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    Good Day! It is my first time to brew beer and encountered two problems that I would like to correct in future brews. Hoping I could get some feedback from experienced brewers here.

    Today is bottling day (after 12 days of fermentation) of my first all grain ale beer. Everything (at least from what I know) went well during the mash and brew day. Within 12hours after pitching the yeast, I noticed my airlock bubbling already. Upon checking, i missed my target FG of 1.017 by 0.001 but proceeded with bottling anyway.

    Upon opening my bucket i noticed something weird floating, is this (attached photo) normal? Is this the yeast?

    Then when I proceeded to capping, my red bottle capper won't properly crimp the crown. Are there different sizes of "capper bell"?

    Going to give this another try within the next few weeks and I hope I can correct my mistakes. Thank you for your help.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Mmmm looks infectious too me I hope I'm wrong! Can you give the beer a taste for us please? You can tell a lot about a beer of course by how it's tasting as your brew progresses along the production line from raw wort through to bottleing / Kegging to final product in the glass. If your tasting any acrid harsh bitter tastes then you may have an infection.

    On the capping yep you need that cap to seal for carbonation purposes one size fits all in Aus except I've found for wine bottles their larger diameter any regular beer bottle should suffice.
     
  3. jmcnamara

    jmcnamara Well-Known Member

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    That does look weird, but I wouldn't run for the hills just yet. If it smells bad (vinegar, baby vomit, band aid, etc.) I'd say dump it, but it might just be hop matter and such if you just poured your whole boil kettle into the bucket. Your FG seems a little high, so I wouldn't think an infection or wild yeast is the culprit (assuming your sanitation was good). They eat sugars that normal yeast can't, so I'd think the FG would be much closer to 1.000

    And there are different size caps and bottles. I've noticed European bottles, typically the 11 oz ones, are a little small compared to the US ones. I'll typically toss them out instead of trying to get it to seal
    Good luck!
     
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  4. Myndflyte

    Myndflyte Active Member

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    As others have said, give it a taste. If it doesn't taste sour, you're probably good. If I had to guess it's probably just some trub that got transferred from the boil kettle.
     
  5. Hatchertiger

    Hatchertiger New Member

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  6. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    In answer to all your questions: First, a miss of 0.001 in gravity is negligible. Unless you have a far better hydrometer than me, it's measurement error. Second, the floaty stuff looks like some trub or yeast floating on the top, might have a bit of CO2 still stuck to it, it doesn't look like anything infectious to me. I've seen gunk like that on top of my beer and for the record, you can have mold on top and if you siphon the beer out from under it, it may still be good. The third question, crown caps come in two sizes. Standard crowns are 26 mm - these fit 12 and 22 ounce bottles. Belgian crowns are 29 mm - they fit champagne bottles and 750 ml wine bottles that take crown caps. The bell has to be sized for the bottles you're using. Since you didn't mention the size, I'm assuming you're using standard caps.

    And, from a place of great kindness because all of us have looked at the first batch of beer and wondering if we were making five gallons of swamp water, let me be the first to introduce you to the Homebrewer's Mantra: Relax, don't worry, have a homebrew (as soon as you have some to have). Your beer will be fine.
     
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  7. Mase

    Mase Well-Known Member

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    Too bad we can't give ratings to forum responses... this would be a 5 Stars out of 5 response. Well said Nosybear... well said. :)
     
  8. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    Nice try man, A few things from a "Veteran" (I started in November). I went to plastic 1L bottles with screw on taps cause screw all that work, and then immediately went to kegs after my first extract batch.

    I honestly don't know jack about glass bottles but what others are saying about the beer itself is good advice.
     
  9. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

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    That looks like trub to me. If there is any cO2 trapped, it can cause trub to float. Since you didn't use a glass, you can't see the trub rise or fall. Shaking it up will dislodge the cO2 and the trub will sink. If not trub, it will have a funny odor.
     

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