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First Fermentation- missing yeast

I’m brewing my first batch of Phat Type and may have hit a snag. After pitching the dry yeast I realized I fotgot to get a hydrometer reading. I used the thief to get a sample and in the process inadvertently pulled about 25% of the dry yeast out of the wort.

24 hours later I noticed primary fermentation began but it only last a few days. I was down to 1 bubble per minute by day 4.

I’m now at 1 week since beginning primary fermentation. I’m at 2 minutes betweeen bubbles and I’m ready to siphon to the second carboy for secondary.

My questions are these:

1.) Is there an issue if not all of the dry yeast was in the wort for fermentation?

2.) What hydrometer reading should I expect at this 1 week point between primary and secondary?

3.) If I do have a problem, can I add yeast at the 1 weeek point to reignite fermentation?


Okay, update to the original post after moving the beer to the secondary carboy…

The original gravity was 1.050. After moving the beer I measured 1.014 at 68F. I’m reasured with this. This means the beer is currently 4.75 % alcohol by volume. In comparison, the real Fat Tire is 5.25% alcohol.

Based in this updated gravity I’m reassured. I need secondary fermentation to actually ferment. I was at 1 bubble every 2 minutes before moving the beer.

Does any of this sound normal? If not, any recommendations?


Meaning you want the gravity to continue dropping? In that case, you should have left the beer in contact with the yeast.

What most home brewers call “secondary fermentation” is conditioning, not fermentation. To do a secondary fermentation you either need to leave the beer on the yeast and add more fermentables, or rack it and add additional yeast.

a couple of questions…

what do you mean by “not all the dry yeast”?

what was the OG? that’s going to really impact the amount of yeast you should have pitched.

the OG and type of beer you’ve brewed will effect the FG you can expect to have. what was your recipe?

at this point, adding yeast will probably do nothing as most of the consumable sugar has been eaten already.

invest in a hydrometer if you don’t have one. this is the only way to tell where you’re at. the airlock bubbles are fairly meaningless when it comes to judging readiness to bottle. for most beers you’re brewing, a secondary isn’t really necessary, as that is for bulk conditioning for strong beers/spices/dry hopping.

The OG you have is consistent with New Belgium’s website, 12.2 (1.051). They give a FG of 2.2 (1.009). Do you have a beer so you can measure the gravity?

I haven’t had many beers get much below 1.015. Except my sasion’s. I would say the beer has reached the FG. But I would have left it in the primary for a longer time like other have eluded to.

I do have a hydrometer. I gave the readings in my second post.

Hopefully it’ll ferment a little more during secondary, if not, it’s still pretty close to what Fat Tire normally is. I don’t have a Fat Tire on hand to get a hydrometer reading so I was going off the alcohol content listed online to get an idea of what the end point should be.

Hindsight, I should have let the beer stay on the yeast longer.

So would you guys just recommend that I let the beer stay the course and see what happens? or is there a way to add additional yeast during secondd fermentation (conditioning)?


Why don’t you leave your beer the way it is right now and accept it the way it is. Knock on wood, but the more you mess with your beer the higher chance it might get infected. For future reference, after you finish your boil take a sample out from the piping hot wort and cool it down in a separate container (cup) while using your chiller to cool the rest of the wort so you don’t have to worry about contamination. Then while your wort is cooling, cool down your cup of wort to 60F and use that to take your reading. This way when your wort is still cooling you will already know what your OG will be. Also at first you don’t succeed keep trying. Missing .5 percent ABV is not too bad. You should have just kept your phat tyre in primary for as long as you can perhaps 3~4 weeks then rack to secondary for 1 week. The longer you let your beer sit the better it will be. IMHO

I know that’s a popular opinion among home brewers, but it’s bunk IMO. Like Denny says, if you can’t transfer beer, make a starter, pitch more yeast, etc. without contaminating it, you need to take up knitting as a hobby.

It sounds like its best to just leave it alone at this point. This is my first beer. I was thinking that leaving the beer in the primary after it appeared to be done fermenting was not a good thing. My bad.

So I’ll just leave it in the secondary for a few weeks and see what happens.

Unless it’s a better idea to get some more yeast and pitch in half a packet to get something started…


^^This I like!

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