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Bottle Condition = effin oxidisation

Discussion in 'General Brewing Techniques' started by neal.p, 20/5/18.

 

  1. neal.p

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    Posted 20/5/18
    Hey,
    Just a little about my process first.
    1. I brew with a 20L Braumeister.
    2. Vit C added for chloramines.
    3. Wort cooled via a Therminator.
    4. And into fermenter.
    5. Oxygenate.
    6. Pitch yeast.
    7. Ferment in water filled (ice blocks) plastic containers.
    8. Crash in fridge 1-3 days.
    9. Remove airlock.
    10. Bottle prime and transfer with beer gun (no gas).
    11. Try to cap on beer or residual sanitiser foam.
    12. Store in spare room at about 20c.
    I understand that oxygen + heat are the main culprits of oxidisation. But it's getting riduculous!
    Recent beer was the Vienna IPA from Mad Fermentationalist. Approx. 100g of dry hops (simcoe, amarillo, columbus) were added.

    Beautiful orange colour out of fermenter. Opened a bottle after 7 days. Similar colour but flat...as expected. Seven days later I opened another and there was a mild carbonation but aroma and flavour were fine. Three days later, I opened a bottle and the flavour and aroma was sweetish, caramel like, cloying. The colour was browning...but it was appropriately carbonated. So it seems, across other beers as well (more pronounced with light and hoppy beers), that my process of carbonation is oxidising my beer. It's annoying, expensive, and wasteful.

    I've read that kegging can or may solve (partially) these issues, but that isn't an option right now.

    So trying to make the most of what I have. Could I add a sodastream + mini gas reg to the beer gun. Bottle prime. Purge bottle and then fill and cap on foam? Does the mini gas reg have enough fine grained control for this process?

    Lastly, Will a Campden tablet added in the mash water inhibit oxidisation but allow secondary fermentation in the bottle?

    Cheers guys!
     
  2. captain crumpet

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    Posted 20/5/18
    From my experience oxidised beer presents itself with distinct sherry and 'wet cardboard' flavours, and i mean distinct. I started discovering what oxidised beer tastes like when i moved to open/clingwrap fermentation. Leaving it one day too long post fg allowed enough oxygen in to absolutely ruin the beer. Now when i hit fg i will split into kegs and seal up pronto. The only similar process problem i see with yours is the cold crash. As the beer cools the airlock is going to draw oxygen into your fermenter. If oxidised beer is your problem that would be my guess.

    Im not entirely convinced this is the problem you are thinking it is though. I would like to know your recipe and more about your brewing liqour.
     
  3. Markbeer

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    Posted 20/5/18
    Hi Neal

    Why are you using a beer gun?

    I found with anything other than a direct bottler to my stainless or plastic fermenter I had oxygenation issues. It seemed to create a syphon rather than gravity fed that wanted to suck in air wherever possible. Even with everything clamped. Was quicker though.
     
  4. MHB

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    Posted 20/5/18
    How sure are that it's Oxidisation?
    Enough live yeast in the beer to carbonate will usually mop up O2 in a matter of 10 minutes or so (there are other oxidisation pathways and harm done early in the process cant be un-done).
    It really sounds like it could be an infection. If you have a good HBS or a beer club take some along and get someone else's opinion (hopefully a trained judges). There is a really good reason why Doctors shouldn't self prescribe, something similar in brewing, we get used to the taste of our beer - its called Brewery Mouth, can make self-diagnosis really hard.

    One more bit of gratuitous advice, brew something really simple, just one base malt and one hop bittering addition to something like 20-25 IBU, along the lines of a Coopers Pale (or even just do a kit with a kg of DME, boil lightly in the BM and follow your normal process).
    The lower flavour simpler beer will make picking out the flavour faults a shed load easier.

    If it is oxidisation as bad as you think, odds on you will get the same problem in a keg, so better to fix the problem first.
    Mark
     
  5. neal.p

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    Posted 21/5/18
    Yes it very well could be an infection. It's really consistent across the last eight batches or so. I've read a bit about reducing oxygen while cold crashing...I fill the airlock with boiled water in case of suckback...other than a CO2 recycling setup, I'm not sure what to do.
     
  6. neal.p

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    Posted 21/5/18
    I used to use a standard bottling wand (is that what you mean by direct bottler?) but switched when I was trying to reduce oxygen.
     
  7. neal.p

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    Posted 21/5/18
    I hear you. My beer drinks great even when it's crap! Advice is more than welcome. And yes, thanks for the tip, I think a really simple recipe may help isolate the issue.

    I clean with SPerc (80c water) and sanitise with StellarSan (phosphoric acid). Recirc through hoses and therminator (forward/reverse) via pump for 5-10 mins.
     
  8. neal.p

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    Posted 21/5/18
    There's a bit of wort and hop/grain material in both ball valves. One is from the kettle and the other is from the pump outlet. Both are before the chiller.

    There was a little in the pump head too.

    I'm wondering what's in the Therminator now.

    20180521_134436.jpg
     
  9. brewgasm

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    Posted 21/5/18
    If it is an infection you might benefit from changing up cleaners and sanitisers.

    Sodium perc is my main cleaner but I have another 4 cleaners in the arsenal

    Phosphoric was my main sanitiser but switch it up with Iodophor and hydrogen peroxide and just got some stellarSan.

    I think that it's the 99.9% problem. That 0.1% that survives is seemingly immune to the sanitiser used and can gain a foot hold (same theory behind hand sanitiser making people sick)

    That's all just my opinion and might have no more merit than that. I would nuke all your gear and pull everything apart :)
     
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  10. neal.p

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    Posted 21/5/18
    Just finished reassembling ball valves and now recirc 100c SPerc through system. May as well dump after done and use a new cleaner.
    What are the other cleaners you use?
    Iodophor and pink stain remover are available at my local. Might drop in and torture him with some dodgy homebrew as well.
     
  11. MHB

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    Posted 21/5/18
    Don't use Pink on Stainless, it is Chlorinated Trisodium Phosphate and can do evil things to stainless.
    That said its great on plastic and silicone.
    Phosphoric acid and IodoPhos (Iodine and Phosphoric Acid) will both actually improve the Stainless and kill bugs.
    Mark
     
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  12. brewgasm

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    Posted 21/5/18
    I have PSR but only use it on plastic.

    Other cleaners I use, other than sodium percabonate are,

    Sodium metasilicate aka keg cleaner
    Sodium metabisulfite aka brewers detergent
    Tri sodium phosphate (non chlorinated) aka tricleanium.

    Take it easy with the tricleanium, it's pretty nasty to the environment

    I some blend some of those chemicals for specific applications like blc
     
  13. brewgasm

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    Posted 21/5/18
    I would keep the sodium perc as the main cleaner , it's the best out of the bunch I think
     
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  14. neal.p

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    Posted 22/5/18
    HBS wasn't game enough to try one of the beers.
    As it happened in the last month or so, he suggested that they may have oxidised due to the colder weather hindering the yeast. It's prob 15-16c overnight inside.
     
  15. Hpal

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    Posted 22/5/18
    Doesn't sound likely. It will still carb at that temp.
     
  16. neal.p

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    Posted 27/5/18
    I thought the same.

    But anyway, yes it's an infection. I noticed bottle caps bulging and leaking. Four batches, and many many salty tears, down the sink...

    I changed two things prior to this happening: Filled kitchen sink with hot water (some boiling) and sanitiser to bulk sanitise bottles. I used to fill one bottle with sanitiser, shake, and then pour into next bottle, etc.. I also started using the beer gun to bottle over a standard bottling wand. I think one of these two is the most likely cause...and I lean towards the sink...although I did scrub it clean.

    My secondary thought is the fermenters and taps. Although I guess that an infection in the fermenter would be noticeable? Visually, but also aroma and taste? The tap is a different matter.
     
  17. Hpal

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    Posted 27/5/18
    Fermenter taps I ALWAYS pull apart completely because there always is something in them, let both parts dry thoroughly before reassembly. I only use 2 piece ball valves too. I don't use sanitizer for bottles either, they get rinsed with hot water after I drink them then the go away till next time. When it comes to bottling time I boil the jug and give them a first rinse, then I give them a second rinse with boiling water and prime and fill them with the wand. Works every time, I use mostly boiling water for sanitizing.
     
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  18. neal.p

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    Posted 27/5/18
    I have a mix of those 2 piece taps and the snap taps (which have 7 parts (too many)).

    7TAP SNAP TAP.jpg
    fermenter.tap_large.jpg

    I have 2x10L ferms in fridge right now. I spose there's not much I can do with them except clean and sanitise the accessible parts. Mmm, I guess I could siphon the beer into another just cleaned/sanitised fermenter/tap to use as a bottling bucket.
     
  19. brewgasm

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    Posted 27/5/18
    I don't wash anything in the kitchen sink, a few years back I picked up some square plastic tubs from the reject shop (the white ones made in Italy)
     
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  20. neal.p

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    Posted 27/5/18
    Yeah, way too many sources of infection it seems. I'll use your tip and go buy a brew only sink tub.
     
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