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General Category => Yeast and Fermentation => Topic started by: aaspinall on May 18, 2014, 09:43:28 PM

Title: stuck fermentation
Post by: aaspinall on May 18, 2014, 09:43:28 PM
I brewed a high gravity (1.078) biere de garde and after two weeks in the primary the gravity has only dropped16 points. This recipe has 12 oz. of sugar and I usually see an explosive fermentation, but that never occurred.  I did all the usual things for a high gravity beer: 2 qt starter, aerated with a stone, proper temp (68-70). So, I'm kind of flummoxed. I brought the carboy upstairs (temp 72), stirred and rocked it, and after 24 hrs. not seeing much of anything (although it's chugging along slowly). Would adding another round of a neutral yeast help? Should I make another starter for that?
Give me your ideas, please.
Art
Title: Re: stuck fermentation
Post by: morticaixavier on May 18, 2014, 10:05:07 PM
patience.

are you measuring with a hydrometer or a refractometer?

What's the recipe? What yeast? How's it taste?
Title: Re: stuck fermentation
Post by: majorvices on May 18, 2014, 10:17:14 PM
I'm curious, too, if you are using a refractometer and not making the proper calculation.
Title: Re: stuck fermentation
Post by: aaspinall on May 22, 2014, 01:00:33 AM
I think I messed up in responding to the replies. Anyway, long story short. I used a Saison yeast. Measured with a hydrometer, and have kept the fermentation temp at 68-70F. Going back over the recipe, it says the temp should be 70-75F. So, the original question was, should I repitch using the same type of yeast, or a neutral yeast? Will that do me any good?
Title: Re: stuck fermentation
Post by: Stevie on May 22, 2014, 01:06:45 AM
Are you using wy3724? If so get it into the low 80's and it will get there.
Title: Re: stuck fermentation
Post by: duboman on May 22, 2014, 01:06:54 AM
What strain? Some saison strains need it hot and others really just chug along, like up to 4 weeks ever so slowly.

I think if you can get it into the 80's the yeast will wake up and get going for you:)
Title: Re: stuck fermentation
Post by: HoosierBrew on May 22, 2014, 12:23:57 PM
Are you using wy3724? If so get it into the low 80's and it will get there.

 +1.  If he used 3724, that would explain the stall for sure.  BTW,Wyeast now recommends 90F for 3724 to avoid the stall.
Title: Re: stuck fermentation
Post by: aaspinall on May 24, 2014, 12:02:28 AM
I've heard of using a aquarium heater with carboy in water to raise the temp. Any other methods to get to an 80 degree temp?
Thanks
Title: Re: stuck fermentation
Post by: duboman on May 24, 2014, 02:42:56 AM
I have a ferm chamber and use a 95 watt bulb in a coffee can hooked up to a controller, easily heats and holds up to 95oF.

The aquarium heater in water works well too but into the low 80's is my experience in the past. Heating pads and reptile heaters can also be used as well as ferm wraps and brew belts but all those will require a temp controller
Title: Re: stuck fermentation
Post by: reverseapachemaster on May 24, 2014, 03:49:37 PM
I use a reptile heater, which is basically ferm wrap at half the price and twice the longevity. You definitely need a temperature controller. I have taken it up to 105 but I'm sure it goes hotter so I wouldn't use anything like that without a temperature controller.

An aquarium heater is probably your easiest option if you want to roll with the yeast you have. Otherwise you could pitch a different strain.
Title: Re: stuck fermentation
Post by: RevLeonidas on May 29, 2014, 05:54:38 PM
...so, what did you do?

What temperature are you fermenting at? How's the beer look? How does it smell?
Title: Re: stuck fermentation
Post by: 69franx on June 02, 2014, 05:06:54 PM
I use a reptile heater, which is basically ferm wrap at half the price and twice the longevity. You definitely need a temperature controller. I have taken it up to 105 but I'm sure it goes hotter so I wouldn't use anything like that without a temperature controller.

An aquarium heater is probably your easiest option if you want to roll with the yeast you have. Otherwise you could pitch a different strain.
What size/wattage reptile heater are you using? Do you have it at the bottom of your ferm chamber/freezer or mounted to the side? Also, what size chamber are you using. I have a 7.2Cf chest freezer and 2 Johnson control units that i can use for heat and cooling. Just wondering what size pad to get. I ran into an issue recently with 2 batches fermenting in same freezer, with 1 ferm wrap: The one without the ferm wrap, which had a 2 week head start, has stalled probably due to low temps. So i would like to just have heat for the whole unit the next time I need 2 fermenting at once. Any thought would be appreciated