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Help with Buffalo Sweat partial mash kit fermentation

I started a batch on Saturday and pitched Wyeast 1098 into the cooled wort. The yeast pouch was fully expanded so I assume my yeast is good. After a few days, no bubbles in the airlock so I opened up the fermentation bucket this morning to take a look. There’s a little krausen ring around the rim but the beer surface is clear. Is this normal or do I have an issue with stuck fermentation?

  1. Buckets are known to not always create an air tight seal, so you might not see activity through the airlock.

  2. A krausen ring is an indicator of fermentation activity.

  3. Did you take a gravity reading prior to pitching yeast? Measuring gravity is key to determining when a beer is finished. If you haven’t already purchased a hydrometer, I highly recommend you get one with your next purchase.

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If you have a krauesen ring then you had fermentation. Do you know what the temperature of the wort was when you pitched the yeast? Or the wort now? Room temp?

It sounds like you fermented warm and the most active part of your fermentation is done.

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English yeasts tend to ferment very very fast, within 36 hours. I think that’s what’s happened here. It’s done. Check specific gravity.

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I didn’t take a gravity reading because I broke my hydrometer in half when I sanitized it in the bucket :angry:. The wort was probably about 65 degrees when I pitched the yeast and I’m storing the fermenter at room temperature, about 67 degrees.

That all sounds reasonable, your temps in the fermenter were undoubtedly a bit higher, but ok. Since you had krauesen you have yeast, but since you can’t check a gravity I’d be sure to let it ferment out the recommended time and then some, say minimum of 2 weeks.

Also you can tell a lot by tasting the beer prior to packaging, as a fully fermented beer should be reasonably dry to style, with perceptible ethanol in some/most cases. If it just tastes sweet, “Houston you may have a problem”.

I have 2 hydrometers just for this reason.

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Appreciate the response. My plan is to let it sit in primary for 3 weeks (the directions say 2 in primary, 2 in secondary) and then bottle. I guess I’ll go to the local homebrew place and plunk down another $20 for a new hydrometer. I only got 1 use out of the broken one so I’m not excited to buy another one.

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It is one of the most important pieces of equipment in brewing, if not the MOST important.

I had a similar tragedy happen a few weeks back when my wife was rearranging things in the basement and bumped it off the shelf. I felt blind on brewday without it, but got a new one before kegging. Beer tastes good, but still it’s another tool in the toolbox to help ensure consistency.

:beers:
Rad

Thats why I like my refractometer… To find the Starting Gravity only… I will use a finishing/low reading hydrometer for a Final Gravity. Sneezles61

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I took @sneezles61 advice last summer and have been really happy ever since. I got a free refracrometer through a promotion from northern brewer and the finish hydrometer gives a very clear final reading. The refractometer is a must for me since I dont like “wasting” unfermented wort and waiting for it to cool after I brew.

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You might want to look into a refractometer meter as well. I do use this on brewing day. For the rest a hydrometer.

I haven’t used my hydrometer in over a year since switching to a refractometer. @JerryP I think 5 weeks is a long time but now I see NB recommends 3-6 weeks

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To be clear, I’m thinking of leaving it in primary for 3 weeks and then bottle conditioning for 2 more. I’m open to suggestions if someone has a different view. From what I’ve gleaned on the message boards, that seems more popular than racking to secondary since I’m not doing any dry hopping.

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This is what I do. You can also dry hop in the primary. I typically wait three weeks for all my beers of 1.070 or less and they have always been ready at that time. I would take a sample reading before bottling though to avoid bombs

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Today was bottling day after almost 4 weeks in the fermenter. I bought a new hydrometer and the final gravity was 1.012 for 5.895% ABV which seems about right. I tasted a sample and it was pretty spot on for flavor compared to Buffalo Sweat in the can. Gonna be two long weeks before I get to try it!

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If you made 40+ beers then do not hesitate to start drinking them a few days after bottling. While a general rule is to wait until fully carbonated and aged, I find drinking some beers young allows me to fully appreciate the ingredients as they age. This allows me to design a better recipe next time because not every beer gets better with 2 weeks rest after bottling.

Ah Squeegee, you are just looking for the buzz! :innocent: Sneezles61

That’s the added bonus :zap:

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I cracked open a beer after one week to test. The color is perfect, almost no carbonation, and a the taste is not very smooth yet. Drinkable but certainly not ready to serve to company. I’m guessing it’ll smooth out over time and I assume this is all normal. Please chime in if you have any thoughts. Now to plan my next brew session.

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