Author Topic: Nobody home......  (Read 1675 times)

Offline oscarvan

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Nobody home......
« on: June 02, 2011, 06:21:52 PM »
A totally new set of circumstances during yesterdays brew is presenting new results.... doesn't it always.

The scenario:

An IPA with 1056, two buckets which spent 2 weeks plus in a fermenteezer at 64º. And: two buckets of Belgian Strong Ale with 3787, spent three weeks in temperatures starting at 64º and ending in the mid 70ºs. Both are done, in that they have reached final gravity as predicted and activity has stopped.

Yesterday morning I kegged them, and saved most of the 3787 and half of the 1056. I rinsed, in that I put the yeasties in containers and swirled, let sit for 10 minutes to let the heavy stuff drop, then racked to another container. Everything sanitized of course. Then they sat in the brew house, which reached 90º yesterday.....(that is a totally new circumstance for me)

I brewed 10G of American brown ale and 10G of Belgian ale. (both to an OG of 1052, what are the odds). Cooling brought it down to 85, then I put them in their respective fermenteezer set at 64º, with the yeast on the side on the hump (should have done that right as I kegged I guess....) Anyway, after an hour in the fermenteezers, with bucket temps in the high 70's I pitched about 300ml of thin slurry in each bucket: the 1056 in the ABA, the 3787 in the Belgian.

This morning, nada. Tonight (24hrs) zip, zilch, nada, niente, nothing, butkus......

If nothing happens by tomorrow morning I will be buying yeast and pitching that. Meanwhile, I am wondering what the hell happened. I have never in 30+ batches waited this long for fermentation to start, especially after repitching a boat load. 8-12 hours MAX.....

What's really interesting is that it happened to both of them. Hmmmmmm......The ONLY thing they have in common is that they sat in the 90º brew house all day.....Does that kill (sorry Gordon) eh, denature them?
« Last Edit: June 02, 2011, 06:25:27 PM by oscarvan »
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Offline dannyjed

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2011, 06:36:54 PM »
90 is not good for yeast and that is probably the problem :(
Dan Chisholm

Offline oscarvan

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2011, 06:42:17 PM »
It's the obvious answer. Oh well...lesson learned... :(.... 2 packs of 3787 and 2 packs of 1056 please.... Anyone see any problem with pitching that on top of what I have now?
Wooden Shoe Brew Works (not a commercial operation) Bethlehem, PA
http://www.woodenshoemusic.com/WSBW/WSBW_All_grain_Setup.html
I brew WITH style..... not necessarily TO style.....

Offline dannyjed

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2011, 06:47:00 PM »
I say go ahead and try it.  The thought of dumping all of that beer is starting to bring a tear to my eye.
Dan Chisholm

Offline oscarvan

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2011, 06:59:45 PM »
Nope, not giving up THAT easy.
Wooden Shoe Brew Works (not a commercial operation) Bethlehem, PA
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Offline maxieboy

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2011, 07:14:28 PM »
 I always keep a stock of dry yeasts appropriate to the styles I brew most for unforeseen mishaps(tougher for Belgiums ;)). Not exactly sure what effects of the mishandled yeast will be, someone will be along shortly to school us. To reference another thread, my first beer on brewday is poured after the yeast is pitched(learned the hard way...)  ;D Good luck!

edit: last night's edit removed. Drinking and diagnosing not recommended either.  ;)
« Last Edit: June 03, 2011, 10:19:52 AM by maxieboy »
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Offline oscarvan

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2011, 08:33:29 PM »
edit:  I'm wondering if maybe you had some viable(proper pitch rate, eh) yeast but they were thermally shocked..thrice. From 90 to 64, then 64 to high 70s, then high 70s to 64. Nighty night..

Not quite that dramatic.....

The 1056 from 64 to 90 to 64
The 3787 from 74 to 90 to 64
(Over a 12 hour period)
Wooden Shoe Brew Works (not a commercial operation) Bethlehem, PA
http://www.woodenshoemusic.com/WSBW/WSBW_All_grain_Setup.html
I brew WITH style..... not necessarily TO style.....

Online tschmidlin

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #7 on: June 02, 2011, 10:31:55 PM »
90F is fine for yeast.  Totally fine, it won't kill them.  Recommended rehydration temps are 95-105F, and it is only slightly above the temp for optimal growth, 86F.  Is it possible that it actually got hotter than that?  110F can be problematic.

If it didn't get that hot, I would look to something else as the source of the problem.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline thomasbarnes

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2011, 03:00:01 AM »
Other than temperature are there any other common factors?

Did you switch sanitizer brands or forget to rinse the sanitizer from the inside of your yeast harvesting/storage containers?

Did you wash the yeast? (If you did it wrong you might have zapped your yeast in addition to any bugs.)

Did you properly aerate your wort? Any weirdnesses with your tank or airstone?

Are you sure that you got yeast cake and not trub?

It could also be that the wide temperature swings just somehow made your yeast a bit slow to wake up, so you're getting a longer lag phase than normal.

Offline gordonstrong

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2011, 04:20:04 AM »
What's really interesting is that it happened to both of them. Hmmmmmm......The ONLY thing they have in common is that they sat in the 90º brew house all day.....Does that kill (sorry Gordon) eh, denature them?

Yeast are fungi, and are alive.  You can kill them.  It's enyzmes that aren't alive, so denature.

Taking yeast used to warm temperatures and putting them in drastically colder temperatures (30F is pretty drastic) will shock them.  Think about it.  It's like fermenting an ale at 65F and then crash cooling it to 32F.  You do that when you want to drop the yeast out fast.  So that's what it sounds like you did.

90F won't kill them.  I think Chris White said in a presentation at MCAB once that most brewers yeast reproduce quickest at about that temperature (not that it produces the best flavors...).

I know 3787 doesn't like to be cooled down once it gets going.  Have you tried warming up the fermenters to see if that starts them?  Then you can cool them down slowly (maybe; the 3787 still doesn't like that). 

I would expect the yeast to be shocked and probably recover, just not sure in the time frame you want.  Warming it up a bit might help them wake up.  That's basically the behavior I see with White Labs tubes if I don't make a starter.
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Offline bluesman

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2011, 04:33:57 AM »
I agree with Gordon, allow the beer to warm a bit and then rouse them gently from the bottom. I would get the wort slowly up to 70ish and then rouse. Then sit back and watch those bad boys commence to partying.  ;)
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Offline oscarvan

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2011, 05:07:12 AM »
Good news.... this morning, 30 hours after pitching, the 1056 is alive..... both barrels.  8)

No sign of life with the 3787 yet. Temp in fermenter dialed up to 70.....

I appreciate all the input.... Learning is taking place.

Watch this make some yummy ale and I'll never be able to duplicate it....
« Last Edit: June 03, 2011, 05:28:25 AM by oscarvan »
Wooden Shoe Brew Works (not a commercial operation) Bethlehem, PA
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I brew WITH style..... not necessarily TO style.....

Offline oscarvan

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #12 on: June 03, 2011, 08:16:36 AM »
The air locks in the 3787 are off the bottom. Not sure if this is from expanding volume as a result of the rising temperature or in fact from fermentation. I am cautiously optimistic.......36 hours.
Wooden Shoe Brew Works (not a commercial operation) Bethlehem, PA
http://www.woodenshoemusic.com/WSBW/WSBW_All_grain_Setup.html
I brew WITH style..... not necessarily TO style.....

Offline oscarvan

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #13 on: June 03, 2011, 09:23:48 AM »
OK, one of the 3787's is actually bubbling...40 hours after pitching...I think we are out of the woods.

Now the big question.... The 3787 fermenteezer is at 69-70 degrees..... with internal heat buildup this could bring the beer up to 74....
I know this yeast likes to end warm, but I also know it shouldn't start this way. But, I also know that if it cools it may go back to sleep.

So, do I turn it down? When? How much, and how quickly?

BTW, to reiterate, this is not a big Belgian. Just a simple blond ale 1052 OG so no marathon attenuation....
Wooden Shoe Brew Works (not a commercial operation) Bethlehem, PA
http://www.woodenshoemusic.com/WSBW/WSBW_All_grain_Setup.html
I brew WITH style..... not necessarily TO style.....

Offline oscarvan

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Re: Nobody home......
« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2011, 04:21:40 PM »
OK, everyone is bubbling....phew. Slowly working the temp in the 3787 down to 64 ish.
Wooden Shoe Brew Works (not a commercial operation) Bethlehem, PA
http://www.woodenshoemusic.com/WSBW/WSBW_All_grain_Setup.html
I brew WITH style..... not necessarily TO style.....