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Swollen cube

Discussion in 'General Brewing Techniques' started by Colo, 28/1/17.

 

  1. Colo

    Well-Known Member

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    Posted 28/1/17
    Howdy All,

    I have read a few historical posts already about swollen no chill cubes, unfortunately all were doom and gloom saying the worts infected and should be tipped. Is this the only experience or has the odd person had another outcome?

    Ive often heard of peoples cubes swelling up when after pouring the boiling wort into the cube they then put it in something like a swimming pool to get the temp down faster, I'm sure these must be ok otherwise nobody would do it...right?

    My situation is I have moved to All Grain recently but still had one more partial mash recipe with ingredients to brew. So I brewed the PM like I would an all grain except was only left with about 12L of wort in the kettle at flame out. So I racked this to the cube (which had been cleaned an sanitised) and then tipped the cube on its side so the hot wort could get into the handle part. After 5-10 mins I then topped up the cube with water and sealed it.

    Two days later the cube was like a balloon, but I couldnt see any signs of fermentation from wild yeast so just left it. It has slowly gone down over time so I'm guessing one of the seals eventually started leaking under the pressure. I have another brew fermenting atm so I dont want to open the cube only to find the wort is ok.

    I realise I may be clinging to false hope but currently it takes me about 4 1/2 hours to knock a single brew over in the brewing process so I kinda just want it to be "ok".


    Cheers Colo
     
  2. DJ_L3ThAL

    Such rapp, very bass

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    Posted 28/1/17
    Have some dry yeast on hand, open it to check if it is OK. If it is OK then pitch the yeast and ferment in the cube. When you taste test the final result if it is not OK you can throw out the cube which you would have had to do anyway.

    You'll know if it is suspect. I've had one bad cube and there was ropy slimy bacteria all through the wort.
     
  3. Maheel

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    Posted 28/1/17
    Afte
     
  4. Maheel

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    Posted 28/1/17
    i keep messing up the quote...

    "colo said . After 5-10 mins I then topped up the cube with water and sealed it."


    was this with boiling water? could be your issue i reckon...

    if i top up a cube it is with boiling water from a jug i have boiled 2 times....
    boil jug just before filling cub ...fill cube.... and re-boil during filling and top up.
     
  5. manticle

    Standing up for the Aussie Bottler

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    Posted 28/1/17
    Smell. Off wort smells off.
     
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  6. dammag

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    Posted 28/1/17
    Feed some to your cat. If the cat dies then tip it out.
     
    4 people like this.
  7. kevo

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    Posted 28/1/17
    If you do own a cat - it might be best to do away with the cat anyway and then follow the other advice above. ;)
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. Yob

    Hop to it

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    Posted 28/1/17
    swolen cubes arent worth the risks (debunked or not)

    Ive lost a number over the years, some really random shit too.. tip them in the gutter, not the yard.

    Cubes will need an EXTENSIVE care program if you wish to keep it.. Ive never thown a cube and dont see re infection..but I nuke them many times before use.
     
  9. dblunn

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    Posted 29/1/17
    Don't forget to pry the o-ring out of the lid and give the lid and o-ring a good clean and sanitise. I have lost a couple of cubes but since being thorough with the lid I have have not had any more issues.
     
  10. MHB

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    Posted 29/1/17
    Personally I would treat it like a swollen can of baked beans.
    M
     
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  11. Yob

    Hop to it

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    Posted 29/1/17
    put it in the fire?
     
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  12. S.E

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    Posted 29/1/17
    Put it in someone else’s fire?
     
  13. S.E

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    Posted 29/1/17
    If the cube swelled like a balloon then went down over time the lid seal could have leaked but there is a good chance the cube has ruptured and has a tiny pin hole at the top so check it before using again.

    I use cubes as real ale casks so prime them and let them swell as the beer carbs. I let one of my cubes swell too much and found beer squirting from a pin hole in the side but after many years use another cube had a pin hole at the top above the beer that wasn’t as obvious just the cube didn’t swell when it was primed anymore.

    If you intend to use your cube for no chill again test it first with warm water and a little sodium percarbonate.
     
  14. shacked

    I like beer

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    Posted 29/1/17
    When in doubt just chuck it.

    I've had one cube go bad out of the last 60. It smelt like burning tyres.

    As much as it sucked to throw out 200g-odd of hops and 5 hours of my life, it had to be done.
     
  15. Colo

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    Posted 30/1/17
    I cracked it open yesterday, at first it smelt ok and I couldnt notice anything growing in the wort so when tipping it out I filled a jug so I could further analyse. After smelling it a little more I was picking up a faint scent of what I could only compare to the harsh disinfectants you get in hospitals (hospital smell).

    Not worth the risk in keeping the cube, the mrs said she will use it for something rather in the garden so not a complete loss.

    Thanks everyone for the responses.
     
  16. GalBrew

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    Posted 30/1/17
    Right there is where you have gone wrong. You can't crack open a no-chill cube and fill it with extra water and expect it to not get infected. The only time you open the cube is when you are ready to ferment.

    .....and I would chuck out that cube too.
     
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