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General Category => General Homebrew Discussion => Topic started by: uintafly on March 08, 2011, 01:15:03 AM

Title: The batch from hell!
Post by: uintafly on March 08, 2011, 01:15:03 AM
My beer brewing career is having a rough day.  I did a Belgian Triple yesterday and everything went fine, except for overshooting my OG due to some miscalculations on my part, but really not a big deal at all. The real trouble started this morning. When I checked on it this morning it was at a good temp (62 degrees) and was bubbling away. But I noticed a few chunks in the stem of my airlock so I decided to clean it out so it won't get clogged.  So I take it out, clean it and sanitize it and as I am putting it back into the fermenter, the rubber gromet breaks through and falls in the wort.   >:( I don't have a spare at home so I rig up the hole to get a tight seal. Seems to work as my airlock is bubbling away again when I leave for work.  I pick up a spare gromet on my lunch break and come home to replace it only to find my lid 4 feet from the fermenter and my basement walls covered in a nice slime.  :'(  When I saw it all I really couldn't do anything but laugh.

To top it all off, this is the first batch that I haven't used hop bags so the slime is filled with fine chunks of hop particles. On the bright side I had the door closed so at least my dog wasn't down there drinking away! 
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: jeffy on March 08, 2011, 01:22:48 AM
My beer brewing career is having a rough day.  I did a Belgian Triple yesterday and everything went fine, except for overshooting my OG due to some miscalculations on my part, but really not a big deal at all. The real trouble started this morning. When I checked on it this morning it was at a good temp (62 degrees) and was bubbling away. But I noticed a few chunks in the stem of my airlock so I decided to clean it out so it won't get clogged.  So I take it out, clean it and sanitize it and as I am putting it back into the fermenter, the rubber gromet breaks through and falls in the wort.   >:( I don't have a spare at home so I rig up the hole to get a tight seal. Seems to work as my airlock is bubbling away again when I leave for work.  I pick up a spare gromet on my lunch break and come home to replace it only to find my lid 4 feet from the fermenter and my basement walls covered in a nice slime.  :'(  When I saw it all I really couldn't do anything but laugh.

To top it all off, this is the first batch that I haven't used hop bags so the slime is filled with fine chunks of hop particles. On the bright side I had the door closed so at least my dog wasn't down there drinking away! 

And I'm willing to bet it will be your best beer ever!
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: pinnah on March 08, 2011, 01:27:37 AM
 :D, that is a classic for your brewing career. 
On the bright side, you won't let that happen again, and I will bet with jeffy.

Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: hopfenundmalz on March 08, 2011, 02:01:46 AM
These problem beers often turn out much better.   They do!
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: bluesman on March 08, 2011, 02:11:09 AM
The battle tales of a homebrewer...you will be telling this one for a long time to come.

The fix for this, as some of those Belgian strains are turbo-charged, is a blow off tube in a bucket of water. I know you're probably thinking...a day late and a dollar short but it will cure that problem from ever happening again.

At least you laughed because if you didn't laugh you'd probably cry. It should be fine. Let us know how it tastes.
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: Mark G on March 08, 2011, 04:46:40 AM
This will be a great story to tell over a pint of Belgian Triple... It will turn out to be one of your best beers, just wait.
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: gordonstrong on March 08, 2011, 04:58:18 AM
Be thankful it didn't explode next to you...

Beer should be ok. It's early in the fermentation and likely has kraeusen covering up the beer.  Clean the lid, replace the parts, and get back on the horse. 
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: tubercle on March 08, 2011, 04:59:49 AM
This will be a great story to tell over a pint of Belgian Triple... It will turn out to be one of your best beers, just wait.

 These times build character :D

  BTW, the next time you push the grommet out of the lid just wrap the airlock stem in tinfoil to hold it in place. This has always worked  the 15 or so times it happened to me.
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: tschmidlin on March 08, 2011, 07:04:58 AM
But where are the pics?!  You took some before cleaning up, right? ;D
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: euge on March 08, 2011, 07:18:59 AM
This just goes to show that there is no need for a fermentation lock if you primary in a bucket. Open fermentation...
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: bluesman on March 08, 2011, 12:28:59 PM
Be thankful it didn't explode next to you...

Beer should be ok. It's early in the fermentation and likely has kraeusen covering up the beer.  Clean the lid, replace the parts, and get back on the horse. 

+1

Keep in mind that open fermentation was the normal order of business back in the day.   8)

I agree that it will be just fine.
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: uintafly on March 08, 2011, 01:29:19 PM
It seems I may have not been the first to do something like this and I hope you guys are correct and it turns out okay.  I should have taken some pics but my wife was on her way home and I didn't want to see what she would say when she saw it all.  Though I guess if I got a picture of her face that would have been pretty good too.
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: corkybstewart on March 08, 2011, 06:17:35 PM
My most hellish batch went wrong from flameout until I finally had it in the kegs, my wife even suggested I pour it out in the yard and start over.  But it did turn out to be one of my finest ever.
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: hamiltont on March 08, 2011, 06:45:50 PM
Might I suggest naming this one "Apollo 13"....   ;)  Cheers!!!
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: euge on March 08, 2011, 06:47:52 PM
Not really a batch from hell but I checked my latest test batch and about a quart had leaked out of it. >:( I was gonna bottle but luckily there was a 2.5 gallon corny handy.
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: Slowbrew on March 08, 2011, 10:08:39 PM
We've all learned this the hard way and if we tell everybody who's new, how much fun would that be?   ;D

I have some beers that know will need a blow off tube.  Others tell me they need one by pushing crud into the air lock.  The first sign off junk in the neck of the airlock and it gets a blow off tube.  I've cleaned up far too many walls.

I'm with the others, the beer will be great!!

Paul
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: oscarvan on March 09, 2011, 02:40:40 AM
You see, this is why I am going with small chest freezers as fermentation chambers..... that is , IF I can stop murdering them......
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: tschmidlin on March 09, 2011, 06:32:05 AM
Oscar, since you're not actually using them as freezers I'm sure the compressor has enough power to chill more than one.  Something to consider - you can put collars on them, connect them together, and push cold air from one to another.  Or you can get rid of the broken one :)
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: euge on March 09, 2011, 06:54:18 AM
You see, this is why I am going with small chest freezers as fermentation chambers..... that is , IF I can stop murdering them......

Why? Elaborate please.

Is it because of the mess? Is the Berber ok? :o
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: oscarvan on March 09, 2011, 12:52:01 PM
Yes the Berber is fine.....however Sweetie expressed concern. So, IF something were to happen it wouldn't be an "accident".  ;D

Actually, it all has more to do with temperature control. In winter the office is 62-64 which is on the low end, but consistent. Spring, Summer and Fall the temperature range is much higher, and gets into the 80's in summer. No can do. The only other place would be the basement........more Berber. In the freezers in the garage I walk by them many times a day and can keep an eye on things.

Tom, thought about that. But I really want two separate units. The beauty there is that you put two buckets of the same batch in one. Let them do their thing, then change the setting and crash cool them before kegging. The other cooler would be somewhere else in the cycle.....
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: tschmidlin on March 09, 2011, 04:56:48 PM
Tom, thought about that. But I really want two separate units. The beauty there is that you put two buckets of the same batch in one. Let them do their thing, then change the setting and crash cool them before kegging. The other cooler would be somewhere else in the cycle.....
Yes, but you rig a temperature controller to the fan and only blow the air over when you need to cool the second chamber, so you can keep them at different temps.  It would require you always keep the first chamber cooler than the second, but it would work.  It might be more of a PITA to rig it up than to just get another one though. ;)
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: rayallen on March 09, 2011, 05:53:59 PM
My 1st batch I pushed that little rubber seal through to with the airlock.

You should have seen me, sitting there for at least 15min with a sterilized spoon trying to get that damn thing out of the wort.
Title: Re: The batch from hell!
Post by: denny on March 09, 2011, 05:56:33 PM
My 1st batch I pushed that little rubber seal through to with the airlock.

You should have seen me, sitting there for at least 15min with a sterilized spoon trying to get that damn thing out of the wort.

It won't hurt anything.  You're better off just to leave it.