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Low O.G. Now stuck fermentation?

I’m an experienced extract brewer but first time brewing NB Sweet Stout and I’m having trouble. I followed the supplied ingredients and instructions except that I added 1/2 cup DME at beginning of boil. While filling the carboy I measured OG at 1.040 instead of the expected 1.054 so I stopped adding water, ended up with about 4.5 gallons in the fermenter. I pitched Wyeast 1098 at 74 degrees and bubbling/foaming started within 24 hours. After 4 or 5 days the bubbling slowed and foam fell back in. My basement fermenting room was a little cold at 58 degrees and wort was between 62 and 65 degrees per fermentometer. After 9 days I transferred to secondary but S.G. was at 1.028, I expected lower. I moved the secondary to a warmer room at 68 degrees and at first there was more bubbling then it stopped a few hours later. 2 days later the S.G. is still at 1.028. Is fermentation stuck? I saved the yeast left in the bottom of carboy, should I take some of it and make a starter then add to secondary?

I went online and reviewed this recipe…with the pound of lactose and an extract recipe, it seems to come in for folks about 1.022, so your only off a bit high. Warm it up, maybe a light swirl to resuspend the yeast, and you should be fine. I wouldn’t add yeast as you have plenty of yeast at this stage of fermentation.

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It’s not stuck. It started fast because the wort was warm then slowed because the temperature of the wort caught up with the ambient temperature. I find British yeast slow to begin with so I’m not surprised at that low temperature. It should be closer to 70. Your only what 2 weeks ? My last British ale took closer to 4 weeks to reach .020. So do as @voodoo_donut said above

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Thanks for the replies, I will try that and see what the reading is in a week or so. I wonder why my OG was lower than expected, maybe I didn’t mix it enough and got a diluted reading off the top.

Curious if the 1.054 expected OG included the DME addition. It’s been a while since I brewed extract, but the OG difference seems like a lot, particularly since your fermentable sugar content is part of the recipe and not subject to mashing problems. The only other variables I presume would be water volume and boil time. Maybe an issue with your hydrometer?

I will say that I’ve also struggled with English-style yeast, both liquid and dry. I’ve tended to avoid it in favor of generic American Ale yeasts (US-05 or liquid equivalent for example).

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The 1.054 did not include the DME, I just added it because I had some around and sometimes my OG is a little lower than expected but not this low.

I think you are most likely correct here, dilutional factors with extract brewing is fairly common, as evidenced by the frequent postings to this effect.

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I like your thinking Voodoo… I believe the ingredients have to dissolve together… ( sugar… loosen up… relax) and the water ( ions separate and mingle with the sugar ions)…
That takes time and/or agitation… Choices…
Sneezles61

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