Author Topic: Probably infected  (Read 4533 times)

Offline phillamb168

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Probably infected
« on: September 16, 2011, 03:46:33 AM »
BetterBottle #1  has an airlock and is bubbling happily, high krausen, etc. BetterBottle #2 has a piece of aluminum foil which I forgot to sanitize (hey, it was late...) and has what seems to be high krausen plus something that looks like slimy cloudy spiderwebs. I am guessing that #2 is infected? Beer is a Mild.

Thank God for double batches...
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Offline jeffy

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2011, 04:01:06 AM »
I never sanitize aluminum foil and always use it to "cap" primary carboys.
Are you saying there are actual spider webs in the head space or does it just look like that?
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Offline Jimmy K

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2011, 06:01:09 AM »
Yeah. I'd guess that foil is pretty sanitary out of the box and provides a good enough seal when the pressure inside is high. Taste it before you decide it is infected.
« Last Edit: September 16, 2011, 12:35:32 PM by mtnrockhopper »
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Offline phillamb168

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2011, 06:08:39 AM »
I gave it a whiff and it smelled a bit weird - like a tang or something. The other smells like normal ferment. I'll post pictures when I get home this evening - perhaps that will help? And no, not actual spider webs, but definitely weird in a slimy cobweb kinda way. It's on top of the normal krausen layer.
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Offline bluesman

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2011, 06:42:04 AM »
Acetobactor can set in fairly quickly, usually after a week or two and then eventually will turn to vinegar aroma/flavor. In time it will form a milky white layer over the beer. The bacterial cells are worm like and form web-like structures.

Can you post a pic?
Ron Price

Offline Mark G

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2011, 06:48:03 AM »
I'll bet Ron is right... acetobacter, especially if you detect a "tang." I'll admit, I use foil all the time without sanitizing, mostly because I'm in a hurry or forget. Maybe I'm just lucky that it hasn't caused a problem. Post a pic if you've got one, and maybe taste a sample too.
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2011, 10:25:16 AM »
Acetobactor can set in fairly quickly, usually after a week or two and then eventually will turn to vinegar aroma/flavor. In time it will form a milky white layer over the beer. The bacterial cells are worm like and form web-like structures.

Can you post a pic?
Worm like? :)
Tom Schmidlin

Offline bluesman

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2011, 11:45:07 AM »
Acetobactor can set in fairly quickly, usually after a week or two and then eventually will turn to vinegar aroma/flavor. In time it will form a milky white layer over the beer. The bacterial cells are worm like and form web-like structures.

Can you post a pic?
Worm like? :)

Like this.

Ron Price

Offline euge

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2011, 11:49:08 AM »
I was told not to worry about weird smells coming off the fermenter. ;) But, visual cues ought to help aid in the diagnosis. Can you post some pics for us Phil?

And the good old taste-test should be the best indicator of whether or not this beer is infected.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2011, 11:49:33 AM »
Yes, they are rod bacteria.  They just don't seem worm like to me. ;)
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Offline tygo

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2011, 12:27:55 PM »
Yes, they are rod bacteria.  They just don't seem worm like to me. ;)

More like little caterpillars.
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Offline blorvak

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #11 on: September 16, 2011, 05:35:56 PM »
I've heard that labs consider aluminum foil as sanitary off the roll.  It's a pretty hostile environment for something to try and grow on. 

However, I always use a rubber band to secure foil on my starters, as fruit flies are pretty industrious.

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #12 on: September 16, 2011, 11:52:36 PM »
I've heard that labs consider aluminum foil as sanitary off the roll.
It never came up for us - the only thing we used foil for was covering flasks that were then autoclaved.
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Offline bluesman

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2011, 03:30:23 PM »
Yes...rod like is a better descriptive. In any event they are not preferred in beer. Keeping tabs on your sanitation will prevent these little guys from rearing their ugly heads.
Ron Price

Offline majorvices

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Re: Probably infected
« Reply #14 on: September 18, 2011, 03:44:05 PM »
FWIW aluminum foil, plastic bags, paper towels are sanitary from the roll/box.
Keith Y.

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