Author Topic: First lager, some quick questions  (Read 616 times)

Offline jivetyrant

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First lager, some quick questions
« on: May 12, 2011, 05:46:02 PM »
     As the subject says, I brewed my first lager yesterday!  Everything went well, the carboy is currently chilling (har har) in a temp controlled fridge, the beer is low 50's according to my fermometer.  24 hours later I still am not seeing any airlock activity and the yeast seems to have sedimented out.  How long does it take to see signs of active fermentation with a lager?  Should I expect to see vigorous fermentation like I am used to with my ales?  Will it krausen up?  (I'd assume not)  How can I tell if I have a healthy fermentation?

     I did everything I could to ensure a healthy environment for the yeast.  I thoroughly aerated with O2 injection, added yeast nutrient and pitched plenty of yeast. (3 packets of dry, rehydrated)  I guess I'm used to ale fermentations that take off like rockets go strong for quite a while.  I expected less activity out of a lager but I'm somewhat concerend at this point.

     Any information the community can provide would certainly put my mind at ease!

Offline tygo

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Re: First lager, some quick questions
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2011, 06:16:27 PM »
What yeast did you use?  What temp did you pitch it at?

It can take awhile to get started.  If you don't see anything in the next 12 hours or so then maybe there's a problem but I wouldn't sweat it at this point.  You'll still get krausen it'll just be a little flatter looking than with an ale yeast.

Clint
Wort Hogs

Fermenting: Wit
On Tap: Lucifer's Hammer Golden Strong Ale, Dopplebock, Old Fuzzynut's Ale

Offline jivetyrant

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Re: First lager, some quick questions
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2011, 06:44:28 PM »
I took a page from the book of a buddy of mine and mixed yeast strains on this one.  He loves to meddle with yeast in a variety of ways, one way that he does it is by pitching multiple strains at the same time in the same batch.  MrMalty recommended 2.5 packets of dry lager yeast for my OG and I did not have access to a third packet of the same strain, so i mixed them and used 2x Saflager W-34/70 and 1x Saflager S-23.  The fermometer read ~57 when I pitched.

Offline tygo

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Re: First lager, some quick questions
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2011, 07:37:24 PM »
I usually pitch below my desired fermentation temp and let it rise up.  Pitching higher and chilling it down afterwards may have slowed things down a bit. 
Clint
Wort Hogs

Fermenting: Wit
On Tap: Lucifer's Hammer Golden Strong Ale, Dopplebock, Old Fuzzynut's Ale

Offline jivetyrant

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Re: First lager, some quick questions
« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2011, 06:30:23 AM »
It's chugging along nicely now!  I checked it again at around the 48 hour mark and all was right with the world.  Let's hope things stay that way!

Offline bluesman

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Re: First lager, some quick questions
« Reply #5 on: May 15, 2011, 11:25:12 AM »
Congrats on the success of your first lager fermentation. Allow it chug along and when it settles down after 10-14 days allow it to slowly warm up to 60F for another 5-7 days and take a hydrometer reading. Let us know what it settles down to.

What was your recipe detail?
Ron Price

Offline mxstar21

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Re: First lager, some quick questions
« Reply #6 on: May 16, 2011, 02:21:06 AM »
Congrats on the success of your first lager fermentation. Allow it chug along and when it settles down after 10-14 days allow it to slowly warm up to 60F for another 5-7 days and take a hydrometer reading. Let us know what it settles down to.

What was your recipe detail?

+1
After the 5-7 days at 60F,  slowly lower the temp back down to the forties to lager for a few weeks.  What yeast did you use?