First timer worries

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Brewer #116017, Nov 8, 2017.

  1. Brewer #116017

    Brewer #116017 New Member

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    Brewed my first batch on Saturday. A Beer Simply Beer IPA kit. Wanted to try something inexpensive and basic for my first brew. Things went fairly well except I didn't aerate as well as I hoped and didn't re-hydrate the yeast before pitching. I did a lot of reading beforehand and was really afraid of using an airlock and having it blow off so I decided to ferment in my 6.5 gallon plastic bucket instead of a carboy and use a blowoff tube stuck in the rubber grommet on the top of the bucket lid and have it going into a growler with starsan/water mixture. I didn't see any activity in the blowoff tube and no visible fermentation until Monday morning. I still don't see any activity (bubbles) in the tube and the kraussen looks like it is dropping. Of course being my first batch, I am always checking on it and it smells good so I'm hoping everything is moving along. I plan on checking the gravity after about 2-1/2 weeks and possibly bottling at 3 weeks if the gravity hasn't changed. Any words of wisdom or suggestions?
     
  2. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    Stop checking it... Every time I use a bucket and open it up a few times, I have issues with unwanted microbes. ;)
    Get used to the carboy...use the same blow-off tube into the stopper if you're concerned. You probably won't ever have a blow-out with a low to mid-gravity beer and a standard pitch and proper temp control. If anything you'll get a big krausen and puke some foam into the airlock. It's messy, but it's not likely to clog unless you have a ton of dry-hops in the primary at yeast pitch.
    It'll probably finish well within 2 weeks...your plan to check gravity at 2 1/2 weeks is solid. Just don't open the bucket any more than you have to.
    Also...take extra care transferring to bottling bucket or bottles. That's where a lot of things can go wrong. Watch the sanitation extra carefully and really try to keep splashing and air bubbles to a minimum.
    Good luck! :)
     
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  3. Brewer #116017

    Brewer #116017 New Member

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    I have resisted the urge to open the bucket. I shine a flashlight from behind the bucket to see what's happening inside. I am planning on a practice bottling session using water to get used to the equipment/process before actually doing the beer. My next batch will be a 2 gallon kit and will use the carboy so I can "watch" it better.
     
  4. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    How big is your carboy? You’ll want headspace during fermentation. I use a 6 1/2 gallon carboy for a 5 gallon batch. I can’t say I’ve never had a blowout, but it’s rare. Also, I never rehydrate my yeast. Maybe it helps, but it’s not necessary.
     
  5. Brewer #116017

    Brewer #116017 New Member

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    I have a 5 gallon carboy that came with the kit I bought but I also have a 6.5 gallon. I may use the 5 gallon when I try the 2 gallon kit.
     
  6. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    You'll need a blow-off tube for the 6.5 gallon carboy.... Your worry is one all of us have undergone. The first few fermentations always go that way: You worry something is wrong. Understandable - you've never seen it! I can easily say relax, don't worry, have a beer (once you have some in stock, have a homebrew). We've answered the "no bubbles" question a bunch of times: You likely have a gas leak that's letting the gas go out there rather than through the blowoff tube. The yeast have been doing their thing for us for fourteen thousand years. They will make beer for you. Now keep your hands off that bucket for a week or so and let the yeast do their thing! And next time, use the carboy so you can watch things work - it's quite fascinating!
     
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  7. thunderwagn

    thunderwagn Well-Known Member

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    Just for an idea, here is my latest batch fermenting in a 6.5 gallon carboy with blowoff.
    There is just a bit less than 5.5 gallons liquid. I still love watching and being able to see my ferments so I continue using glass carboys. I'm not a big fan using my plastic buckets. Still prefer my glass. :D
    If you can see your fermentation happening, you will be less likely to mess with it.

    [​IMG]
     
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