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First batch ever fermenting!

My wife got the brew kit for a Christmas gift so lucky me, I get to start trying my hand at brewing. Did my first batch today, caribou slobber, and hope i did everything correctly. I have a few questions though.

I used regular softened tap water, is that ok?

When I put the 2gl into the carboy I took it directly from the tap, is that ok?

I just poured the dry yeast in and some of it stayed in the foam and I shook up the carboy to mix it around, next time can I use water to mix the yeast before I pitch it?

I already have a 2nd kit, EPA, that I will brew when I move the slobber to the secondary in a week or two. Want to make sure if there are things I can do to make sure it all is done correctly I do them :slight_smile:

Thanks !

Yes - I used regular softened tap water, is that ok?
Yes - When I put the 2gl into the carboy I took it directly from the tap, is that ok?
Not necessary IMO but wouldn’t hurt - I just poured the dry yeast in and some of it stayed in the foam and I shook up the carboy to mix it around, next time can I use water to mix the yeast before I pitch it?

I usually give it a good shake before adding yeast to aerate. 45-60 seconds of heavy shaking.

You’re going to love it!

Probably be ok with the soft water however if you have no major issues (smells/tastes) with your hard water I’d probably lean toward that just to be sure you don’t end up with a lot of sodium in your brew.

I’m not familiar with the CS kit but I wouldn’t rack to secondary just to do it. Is there a dry hop on that brew? If not I’d let it sit in primary for 2-3 weeks and bottle it. Just less chance for an infection.

Keep everything sanitary.

I’d look into rehydrating that dry yeast for improved viability. Check out the following link (or better yet just buy the book) for some great general info.

http://www.howtobrew.com/

Most of all have fun brewing!

I realized I only used soft water in the boil as my cold water is not soft so I’m good there.

It does say to move it to a secondary so I will do that as I want as little sediment in the beer, I will probably try to some sort of filtration when I move it from secondary to the bottling bucket. The OG was spot on so now I think it’s just a waiting game.

Thanks for the replies.

Don’t move to secondary too soon, and transfer some of the yeast when you do. The yeast continue to clean up some off flavors for a couple of weeks.

Feels good, huh?

I’m about to get back into HB after some time away. Constructing recipes and doing equipment inspection/inventory. I can smell it now.

Enjoy it. Just be patient. It’ll pay off.

To reiterate what others have said, and what others will say. DONT move it to secondary, there just isn’t a reason. If you put that carboy somewhere cold, and its winter everywhere, it will get just as clear as if you had secondaried, and you won’t risk contamination. Second, don’t attempt to filter while moving from one vessel to the next, just get it cold, let gravity work its magic and it will end up being plenty clear. You are going to bottle condition it, so you will just end up creating more yeast and gunk when you do that anyway, so the beer inevitably will have stuff in it no matter what. By trying to filter while transfering you risk aeriation and thus ruining the whole batch.

I got my deluxe NB kit for Christmas. With it i got the Dry Irish Stout extract kit. My only issue is that i have a pellet stove in my basement so I’m kinda stuck until i can get an old fridge with temp control. I cannot wait to get going.

Any suggestions to us newbies on what we should considering adding to our kits or what upgrades we should make?

Went to check the beer today and most of the water was gone from the airlock…must have been a small blowout :frowning: I just added more water to it, hope that’s ok.

Upgrades: Bench capper. You can cap any bottle with them. See this thread for issues with the “wing” cappers.

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=106556

Also purchase either Star San or Iodophor for your sanitizer. Iodophor will stain your counter and concentrated Star San will eat the counter. So be careful wen mixing them. They are both excellent products, have short contact times and are no rinse. You only need 1 gallon to sanitize everything. Star San has a longer “use” life if you keep the mixed product in a sealed container so I would go that direction.

See this thread for ideas on keeping the fermenting beer cool.

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=103505&p=917359&hilit=swamp+cooler#p917359

For your air lock, purchase a cheap bottle of vodka. If for some reason it gets sucked into the beer it will not affect the flavor.

Nighthawk, thanks for the recommendations. I have 1st step, the guy at the local store said it is a cleaner as well as a sanitizer. I don’t see that on the label though, hmm. Vodka, ha, that stuff is just loaded with usefulness.

1step was what came with my set also. It has similar properties to PBW/Oxyclean. The “oxygenating” properties are suppose to sanitize. At one time they may have had FDA approval for this claim. But they have not done the testing to keep the claims.

You can also use a mix of water/bleach/vinegar to make a no rinse sanitizer. This is from Charlie Talley the maker of Star San. REMEMBER: Bleach/vinegar makes a toxic gas. Mix the bleach with the water, then add the vinegar.

http://media.libsyn.com/media/basicbrew ... -29-07.mp3

Ok, the air lock is empty again…wtf…should I just use the blow off hose and shove it in a bucket of water?

This should not be happening

Well its foamy all the way to the top, I assume krausen! Time for the blowoff hose !

Garret, which air lock are you using. “S” style or the 3 piece?

With the “S” style, you just need enough liquid in it to fill the bottom of the curve. Much like the trap in a sink.

The 3 piece needs about 1/4 to 1/2 fill.

I have seen neither go empty during fermentation. If the wort(beer) is warm and then cools, it can be sucked into the fermenter.

If you have a real active fermentation then the krausen can “blow out” and fill either airlock with crud. Then you would want a “blow off” tube in a bucket.

If using a carboy, you can cover the opening with a piece of foil. Escaping CO2 will get out, but nothing will fall in. Bacteria doesn’t walk, it get blown around.

Well if the water is being replaced with foam, it makes sense, but not for the water to just disappear. I have created a system where I use blow off hoses for all my primaries.

I’m using the S type and I did have just enough to fill it. What I see I’d all the water is blowing out top of it and ending up in the bung plug. I ended up just putting in the blow out tube.

I am in your same situation. Received my kit on Sunday, started Sunday, and have my wort fermenting away in the other room. But, I have done one thing different that may be causing your blowout. I live in Midland, TX and tap water is terrible here(to the point where teenagers get gallstones!). Anyways, I used the blue 5 gallon water cooler jugs and bought some RO water from down the street. They filter out all impurities(lead,arsenic,etc.), but leave in “necessary” minerals that your body needs. Needless to say, I have not had any blowout or foaming problems yet. Could this be a possibility?

@Kevo…It’s possible, but I seem to have pretty good water here. We do have a live spring about 8 miles from my house and I’m tempted to go get 6 gals and see if that makes a difference. I did watch a video and the brewer gets his water from that same spring for his brews.

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