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Too high OG--now it's stuck!

Hey guys, this is a follow up from an old post about a racer 5 clone. Originally brewed march 15th-due to some mislabeling I added WAY too much extract leaving me with an OG of 1.135. Waited two weeks and bottled-at 1.070 (major dummy move on my part). Thought something might be wrong with such a high FG.

Based on some advice I made a starter with a vial of WLP090, uncapped all the bottles, poured them back in the fermenter, pitched my yeast and hoped for the best. Didnt get much activity or krausen, some but not much.

After two weeks the gravity was 1.060 :frowning: That was Thursday, so I decided to sprinkle in some US-05, not really any activity, this morning and this evening I gently swirled the carboy to stir up the yeast in the bottom to get it going but not seeing any signs of life besides a thin haze on the surface.

What can I do? Should I just toss this batch? Is there any hope for it?

Yes-I have calibrated my hydrometer, yes-I keep my carboy in a fermentation chamber, temp is usually between 69-73

I saw a recommendation on another thread to boil some corn sugar and some yeast nutrient add it to fermenter, and swirl that to get things started. Thoughts?

It’s sitting at about 8% alcohol, and beer yeast often don’t go beyond 8-10%. You won’t get it restarted using beer yeast. There are ways to get beer yeast to go higher, but it is a careful process that isn’t open to you. Wine yeast could do it, especially if you use EC-1118, K1-V1116, DV10 or some other yeast commonly used for secondary fermentation in Champagnes. But I’m not sure you would like the results.

If it was me, I’d consider diluting it with water and then hoping the yeast would take off, or dumping it.

Split it, dilute, then repitch.

I agree that dilution is the solution.

Another possibility: Why not brew a second batch of very low gravity beer, with an OG like 1.015-1.020, but add a ton of hops just like Racer 5, then about 18 hours after the yeast is pitched WHILE THERE IS FERMENTATION GOING ON, mix together both your high and low gravity batches, and let them ferment/re-ferment TOGETHER. Wait a week or so to finish fermentation. Now you’ll either have twice as much of a “fixed” beer, or twice as much of a crappy beer. So yeah, you’d be doubling down. But my bet is that this should work.

Ok so I’m finding it pretty hard to calculate how much water to add to make it fermentable again since it has already come down to about 1.050-1.060. Any thoughts?

One idea I had was to move half of the 5gl to another carboy and add 2 gallons to that one and try to ferment. While leaving the remaining 2.5 gl in the original carboy and trying to ferment it using some wine yeast…sort of an experiment. Thoughts on the plan? how much water do I use to dilute?

Forget about where the gravity is right now, just add water based on what the gravity was before fermentation and what you wanted the target to be. So if you were trying for example to get an OG = 1.080, and instead ended up with 1.135, and your starting volume was 5 gallons, then you want the new volume to be:

V = 5.0 x (135/80) = 8.4375

So you would want to add a cup less than 3.5 gallons of boiled then cooled water.

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