Hypothetical solution to stuck fermentation

Discussion in 'Beginners Brewing Forum' started by Sunfire96, Feb 26, 2021.

  1. Sunfire96

    Sunfire96 Well-Known Member

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    Hello all! Unfortunately my Chinook pale is stuck at 1.028. It's a one gallon batch brewed with reused S04 slurry that was in my fridge for about a month. The yeast is happily cemented to the bottom of the fermenter, as S04 likes to do.

    Here's what I've done: moved to 75F ambient room, gently roused the yeast up some, and added my dry hop addition (I figured why not?).

    Here's the hypothetical solution I'm debating: I'm currently brewing and could take a couple ounces of wort, and once sterilized, could add those 2-3 oz of wort to the stalled one gallon batch. Would the additional fermentables help wake up the yeast? Obviously final abv will increase as well, if the sugars are indeed fermented. I could save some wort before boiling, so that the flavor is not altered by the hop additions of the new batch.

    Is this a terrible idea?
     
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  2. Donoroto

    Donoroto Well-Known Member

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    No, not terrible. But not sure it accomplishes anything.

    Disclaimer: I still consider myself uninformed and a newbie.

    So, what can cause a stuck fermentation? Yeast that is dead or tired? Dead means you need more yeast, tired, well, some temperature might help (72 is the top end recommended by Fermentis)

    Yeast that is starving despite sugars available? I understand yeasties need certain non-sugar compounds to work right, maybe some yeast nutrient?

    Lack of fermentables? 1.028 means there's theoretically more to ferment, but what if your mash produced unfermentable stuff that raises gravity? (Is there even such a thing?) In this case, adding a little wort will let that little bit ferment, but that seems pointless.

    Measurement error? Could you have measured the 1.028 incorrectly? Not accusing, just speculating.(I once checked FG and found it to be 1.032. I panicked. It took me half an hour to realize I was using a refractometer. DUH.)

    Time? You know patience is rewarded, maybe it just needs a few more days?

    Taste the result, does it taste 1.028 sweet? It'll be obvious.

    Rousing the yeast is a good idea, and generally can't hurt. Maybe be less gentle?


    Sorry, it's just the long post, it is just the troubleshooting-problem solving-engineer in me. Identify every possibility, then eliminate them one at a time to find the root cause.
     
  3. Sunfire96

    Sunfire96 Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for your response! I totally forgot to include the recipe, whoops

    https://www.brewersfriend.com/homebrew/recipe/view/1120841/chinook-hoppin
     
  4. Frankenbrewer

    Frankenbrewer Well-Known Member

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    I would also say that your yeasties might be tired and could use a few more friends. Could your PH be a bit high or maybe give it a couple more days. Wait for more informed help. It's on the way.
     
  5. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    I think that what you have done is a good start, rouse it up, warm it up, give it another day or two.
    S-04 fermented down to 1006 for me on Wayner's, I attribute that to the dry hop, so you may get where you need to go with steps taken, and dry hops added.
     
  6. Bubba Wade

    Bubba Wade Well-Known Member

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    Warming up the batch might help. You could also add a little champagne yeast. These are high alcohol tolerant yeasts that can produce a dry finish. They also have a very neutral flavor profile.

    Having said that, I’ve never had a problem getting S-04 down to target FG. So maybe just a bit more time is needed.
     
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  7. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Active Member

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    It's only been fermenting 3 days? Leave it alone, don't touch anything. Give it about 10 or 12 days, then report back again.
     
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  8. Sunfire96

    Sunfire96 Well-Known Member

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    I really appreciate the replies on this current batch of beer everyone, but what do y'all think of my hypothetical suggestion to add sterilized wort to wake up the yeast? :)
     
  9. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Active Member

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    You can if you want, but I honestly don't think it will make much difference either way.
     
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  10. thunderwagn

    thunderwagn Well-Known Member

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    Looking at your recipe, it shows you're using a Tilt? If so, that may be a misreading. I don't have one but I've seen the issue over and over.
    And like mentioned above, if it's only been 3 days give it some time.
     
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  11. Herm_brews

    Herm_brews Well-Known Member

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    Being a patient old soul, I have to go with what @dmtaylor suggests.
    @Sunfire96 you have stated that you are not blessed with patience, but try to walk away from this and let it do its thing, whether or not you put in the additional wort. I once left a pale ale in primary for 6 weeks, and it was probably the clearest beer I have ever made.
     
  12. Sunfire96

    Sunfire96 Well-Known Member

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    Nope, no tilt. I wish tho :D
     
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  13. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    I think the risk is not worth the potential benefit. Let it ride girl!
     
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  14. thunderwagn

    thunderwagn Well-Known Member

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    Oh my bad. The way the brew log history displays made me think Tilt. Has it really only been 3 days though?
     
  15. Sunfire96

    Sunfire96 Well-Known Member

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    Yes 3 days :) I guess my idea about adding more fermentables did not provoke the lively discussion I was hoping for lol
     
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  16. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    Ya, especially only 3 days in;)
    Good effort though!
     
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  17. Sunfire96

    Sunfire96 Well-Known Member

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    Haha I think my error was including a real life example. Should've left it purely academic :D
     
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  18. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    I'd do a small starter of fresh yeast and pitch it. What can happen when harvesting yeast is you harvest too early and only get the highly flocculant yeast. Next batch it drops out before finishing the job. Fresh yeast can help...
     
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  19. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    Let it buck, she'll be right.
     
  20. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Have you got any Krausen there?
    I'm pretty impatient but you can read what's happening in there by what the yeast are doing.
    If it's been three days there is no harm in rousing and warming fermentation this is when id bump the temp if it were my brew.
    You said they've all flocked out but is there any Krausen still in place?
    Give it another day or two and then take a reading again. If no change add some fresh yeast as stated above.
     

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