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Hi all,
Started first brew ever on wednesday, and thought all was going well. Must have a slight air leak somewhere as theres no bubbles in teh airlock, however about 10mm of 'head' covering the beer inside. Ive got it sitting at 19 degrees making an amber ale. Started with a kit, added an extra can of malt, and 3 sets of hops, saaz, fuggles i think, and cant remember the other. Each were done at the 3 different stages set out in teh brew kit.

Problem now is, theres a brown sorta thing developing on top of these bubbles. Is this normal? Or have i got an infection from somewhere?
Likely just some yeast getting caught up in the rising gas, and coming to the serface of the krausen.

Leave it alone, all should be good.

The brown stuff is most likely yeast/malt/protein. It just about always happens and is normal.

Do not worry - the bubbles (Krausen) will settle down as the fermentation subsides.

Best thing you can do is try and keep the temperature faily stable, 19C is probably good if you've used the yeast that came with the kit.

As for not getting bubbles through the airlock, it's a problem that most of us get. Sometimes it really hard to get a good seal. Just make sure that the seal is as tight as can sensibly be done.

Some of the guys have listed in previous threads some of the best tips for new brewers and I guess my summary would be:

1/ Ask questions - no such thing as a dumb one. Everbody has started at the same place as you.
2/ Cleanliness, use a good sanitiser like Idophor or One-Shot on everything.
3/ Ask questions.
2/ Lower temps are just about always better than higher temps. Try to keep your kit brews down around the 20C marl or even a smidge lower. It just takes a bit longer to ferment but the result is a much better.
4/ Ask questions (am i repeating myself :p )

Welcome aboard.

Cheers for that guys. I guessed the bubbles were normal from the co2. but wasnt sure about the browny stuff on top. Yeah the kit reccommended 22, but everyone ive talked to, and everything written in here talks slightly lower, so ive got it hovering around 19.

I wasnt expecting bubbles after reading everybody elses posts here regarding not getting any and wondering whether it was working right or not.


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