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First brew - I stirred in the yeast and I don't see bubbles

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slagfart

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Hey guys, it's my first ever brew. The homebrew store recommended the below:

1.7kg Black Rock Dark Malt Extract
1.7kg Black Rock Miner’s Stout
10ml Liquorice Extract
500g Dried Corn Syrup
11g Safale S04 British Ale Yeast
Fill to 18L with water

So I followed his instructions, but when I poured the dry yeast in, I stirred the yeast into the wort. Assumed it was like making bread. Since then, I had that thick foam rise, fall, but I still don't see bubbles coming out of the airlock. Unsure if my fermenter lid is tight enough - but I'm pretty sure it is. Should I just chill out, or do I buy more yeast and throw that in?

Also please don't laugh but I didn't put the tap in when I got the fermenter, and now I have to do it on bottling day.

I assume I can tip the thing on its side and do it somehow. Any advice?
 

apples2910

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Fermentation doesn't happen instantly, I've had brews take 48hrs to show signs of activity, was your wort at correct pitching temp?
 

slcmorro

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Chill out. It's been said a million times before and it'll be said a million times again... a lack of airlock activity means nothing. Gravity samples will be your best bet. Might be harder without a tap in though. Good luck.
 

brzt6060

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Looks good other then the missing tap....

Looks like you had a nice healthy krausen as well. Don't stress about no bubbles I have never seen any of my FVs bubble.
 

joecast

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Sorry, I laughed ;)

The yeast can take 24hrs to start actually bubbling out the airlock. Give it time. Watch your temp and maybe cover with a towel or blanket to keep it out of the light.
As for getting the beer out, yeah tip it on its side to put your tap in. Make sure its all sanitized first and you should be fine. Itll be heavy so maybe get some help. Good luck!
 

doctr-dan

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I wouldnt worry about not having any airlock action, if you followed the instructions and it seems you have a heat mat so temp shouldnt be a issue so it just means the gasses are escaping through a easier point other than the airlock.
Ive put down a dozen brews and the airlocks have only bubbled on the last two for that reason.

One suggestion I would make is moving it off the concrete.
The concrete will be drawing the heat just as fast as the heat mat can make it so it would be working overtime.
 

doctr-dan

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Also maybe put the tap in prior to bottling day so all the sediment can settle again
 

slagfart

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joecast said:
Sorry, I laughed ;)
Yeah. Knew it. :D

The kit gave me a wine thief, so I don't think it's going to be a huge catastrophe if I do need to check the grav. But, wary of contamination, I'm planning to just bottle at 10 days (instructions say 7-14), and pray. Good idea?
 

slagfart

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doctr-dan said:
I wouldnt worry about not having any airlock action, if you followed the instructions and it seems you have a heat mat so temp shouldnt be a issue so it just means the gasses are escaping through a easier point other than the airlock.
Ive put down a dozen brews and the airlocks have only bubbled on the last two for that reason.

One suggestion I would make is moving it off the concrete.
The concrete will be drawing the heat just as fast as the heat mat can make it so it would be working overtime.
Sitting on concrete with the heat mat and a little shirt on it is keeping it real solid at ~20C, +- 2C.

Does my heat mat cut out when it gets too warm, or does it just stay on all the time? I thought it was the latter.
 

danestead

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slagfart said:
Yeah. Knew it. :D

The kit gave me a wine thief, so I don't think it's going to be a huge catastrophe if I do need to check the grav. But, wary of contamination, I'm planning to just bottle at 10 days (instructions say 7-14), and pray. Good idea?
The best way to know fermentation is complete is by measuring the gravity with a hydrometer. Going based on days like you have suggested is not a very good way of doing things and could result in bottle bombs.

Ale yeast ferments at the top of your wort/beer which is the foam (krausen) you will start to see after a few days. What I do, is wait untill the krausen has subsided and the top of the beer is now clear. I will then test the gravity with a hydrometer, and then test it again 2 days later. If the gravity readings were the same and in the normal range for a final gravity (could be anything from about 1.005-1.020ish depending on the beer) you are ready to bottle.

Please note, if you brew a lager with a lager yeast, you will not get a krausen as lager yeast ferments at the bottom of your beer. You will need to test the gravity every few days until you get a stable final gravity rather than using the visual signs of an ales krausen.

Hope that isnt too confusing.
 

beercus

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I have the same Fermenter, it does not bubble, don't think it seals well, makes good beer though....

I would put the tap in ASAP....if it is still fermenting (or has not started) the yeast will use up the O2 you introduce and you will have less oxidation... Take the advice on sanitation...
 

Pokey

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If the airlock didn't bubble I'd be very careful laying the fermentor on its side, doesn't sound like the top has much of a seal.
 

TheWiggman

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Look at the picture and his first comment fellas/gals.
Slagfart (?), the "foam" that rose and fell is the krausen. A thick krausen is an excellent sign of fermentation. Your brew has probably done most of its work since the krausen has settled ie alcohol has been produced and nearing bottling. You've used a good ale yeast at decent temps so it's a fairly safe bet (never 100% without gravity readings) at 2 weeks from pitching the yeast it will be ready to bottle.
There will be a lot of stuff (trub) settled on the bottom. As suggested above, gently put the tap in a day before bottling so the trub settles back down after stirring up from being tilted. Take a gravity ready while you're at it to be sure it's ready to bottle.
Then the real waiting game begins. Good luck!
 

stevemc32

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Listen to Pokey, don't lay that thing on its side to fit the tap until you've tightened up the lid. Tighten it real good.

If you look at the picture you uploaded in the first post you can see where the seal is in contact with the lid and where it isn't in contact with the lid by looking through the plastic. Seems like you've got about 50% contact at this stage. Tighten that bugger up.
 

Curly79

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When you say you stirred the yeast in do you mean RIGHT in? submerged? Or did you just sprinkle it on top?


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slagfart

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Curly79 said:
When you say you stirred the yeast in do you mean RIGHT in? submerged? Or did you just sprinkle it on top?
Stirred it right into the body of the wort. Like it was some sort of spice in bolognese.
 

The Judge

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stevemc32 said:
Listen to Pokey, don't lay that thing on its side to fit the tap until you've tightened up the lid. Tighten it real good.

If you look at the picture you uploaded in the first post you can see where the seal is in contact with the lid and where it isn't in contact with the lid by looking through the plastic. Seems like you've got about 50% contact at this stage. Tighten that bugger up.
Be careful with this advice, try it, but be careful.

My fermenters that use an O-ring and lid (like this one) sometimes don't seal when I overtighten them. It is due to the O-ring buckling very slightly when it is super tight. To get it to seal, I can sometimes loosen the lid a little and let the ring re-seat itself. But more often than not no matter what I do it will not get an adequate seal. So when you tip this bad boy on its side I would expect you'll get leakage of the wort (I always get leakage of my sanitiser when sloshing it around in a closed fermenter so it'll be worse when it's full of wort!).

If you're afraid of this happening, read up about bulk priming. You'll need another vessel, but it means you can syphon your wort from this vessel into one with a tap (and in doing so set your sugar content right for carbonation in the bottles).

Good luck grasshopper.
 

Mr. No-Tip

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As wiggman said, that stain of Krausen above your liquid says most of the work is done. Airlocks are for astronauts.
 

Curly79

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Somebody correct me if I'm wrong but yeast should be sprinkled on top just before screwing the lid on your fermenter ?


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philmud

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Curly79 said:
Somebody correct me if I'm wrong but yeast should be sprinkled on top just before screwing the lid on your fermenter ?


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Lots of brewers sprinkle. Many rehydrate the yeast in water and pour it in. I can't see a problem with what Slagfart (that's one nasty username, dude) did, but may not be necessary either. If he stirred really vigorously it may have helped aerate the wort I guess.
 

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