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Lorenzai

Slow Ferment?

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Pitched yeast about 5 days ago. Saw some light bubbling in 24-48 hours, but it seems to have slowed to a crawl. Not sure what my yeast pitch temperature was. I didn't check, but the wort was mixed with plenty of cool water like described in the instructions. I think it was ok but I want to be sure. Anything I should do? 

I have the Mr. Beer Craft Beer Kit. The brew in question is the Oktoberfest. In the picture looks like a little krausen inside, so I think that's a good sign right?

 

IMAG3218.jpg

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Look at the bottom of the LBK.  If you see some trub there then fermentation is progressing.  Not all brews will have an incredibly active fermentation; sometimes it seems as if nothing much is going on.  But if you've got a layer of trub at the bottom, the yeast are feasting.

 

You say you don't know what the temperature of the wort was when you pitched the yeast, but do you know it now?  If you don't have a stick on thermometer I highly recommend getting one to ensure you're keeping the wort at a good fermentation temperature.  Fermentation creates heat, which will raise the temperature of your wort and can cause off flavors if allowed to get too high.

RickBeer likes this

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My kit came with the yeast thermometer stick on thing. I stuck it to the LBK in the front so I could see it. I don't know how accurate it is, but that's what it shows anyway. Oh and yes, it does seem to have a small layer of trub down in the bottom.

IMAG3219.jpg

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 another thing that happens is sometimes you get high krausen while youre asleep and it falls when you arent there to see it.  if your temps are good and as others mentioned, you see something in the way of krausen and trub.. youre golden.

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Thanks! I appreciate the help. I upped the temperature in the room for a little while and the temperature tape turned from an off orange color to the green with the checkmark. So maybe it was just a little too cold in here.  I'll keep an eye on it.

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Alright I got a question for you guys. While browsing the Mr.Beer online store I just realized that both the American Light and the Oktoberfest appear to come with brewmax booster packs. Neither of my ingredient kits came with that.  So does that mean my Oktoberfest is going to be extremely low ABV? Basically a really watery beer? I'm concerned now that I've been waiting for this to ferment and I'm not going to have much of a real beer to drink. All I received were the HME cans.  Should I add some DME to the fermenter and would it be safe to do so? I realize that will dilute it even more to a certain point, but I'd rather have something drinkable than a watery 1.9% alc/vol beer.

 

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You should add nothing, it's too late.

 

The base cans of refill will produce around a 3.1% ABV.  They USED to be sold this way, and then you could buy booster, or order the Deluxe version with LME.  Some time ago, Mr. Beer decided to add booster to each base refill instead of charging for it, to raise the ABV.  Many 3rd parties sell the refills without booster still.  Have no idea if the kits (LBK, bottles, refill) that come with base refill cans (vs. the ones that come with the Craft refill cans include booster or not.

 

FYI, the American Light doesn't have much to it regardless.  Oktoberfest is good with an LME packet.

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10 minutes ago, RickBeer said:

You should add nothing, it's too late.

 

The base cans of refill will produce around a 3.1% ABV.  They USED to be sold this way, and then you could buy booster, or order the Deluxe version with LME.  Some time ago, Mr. Beer decided to add booster to each base refill instead of charging for it, to raise the ABV.  Many 3rd parties sell the refills without booster still.  Have no idea if the kits (LBK, bottles, refill) that come with base refill cans (vs. the ones that come with the Craft refill cans include booster or not.

 

FYI, the American Light doesn't have much to it regardless.  Oktoberfest is good with an LME packet.

 

Yeah I got the Craft Beer kit, but it only came with the base refill cans and no booster.  Well, that's a bit of a disappointment.  I guess I'll bottle it as it is and order DME and hops to doctor up the American Light. I will probably add a couple pounds of amber DME and some cascades to turn it into an American Ale.  Live and learn!

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You really don't want to add more than a pound of LME, or 0.8 pounds of DME.  More than that and there's little reason to start with a can of HME, because you've totally changed the character of the HME at that point, not to mention destroyed the economics of that batch.  

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Understood on that. I wanted to change the character of it anyway, I was just thinking of the HME can as base malt more or less. The economy thing is ok since I don't much care for light American beer anyway, so I might as well use the fermentables in the can and make something I like. My plan was something like this..

1.5lb Amber DME

1.0oz Cascade

1 can American Light.

 

Boil the usual amount of water (or double, haven't decided yet) for the Mr. Beer instructions. Once boiling, add a couple ounces of DME for hop utilization + 0.5oz Cascades. Boil for roughly 40 mins. At 40 min mark add remaining 0.5oz Cascades. Continue boil for 10 mins. At 50 mins add remainder of DME and bring back to a boil. I assume bringing back to a boil may take as long as 10 mins. Then once the DME is thoroughly mixed into solution turn the stove off and move the pot. From there add the can of HME to the mix and follow the Mr. Beer instructions for the remainder of the procedure.

I'm still playing with different beer calculators trying to get the final numbers I'm looking for nailed down, but you get the jist of what I'm trying to do at least.

Edit: OR I could try turning it into a cream ale perhaps. Something like Gennessee.

Shrike likes this

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