Questions from a new brewer (some might be stupid)

Discussion in 'General Home Brew Equipment Discussion' started by Chris_Coconut, Jan 21, 2019.

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  1. Jan 21, 2019 #1

    Chris_Coconut

    Chris_Coconut

    Chris_Coconut

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    Hi

    Hope someone can help me out with a few answers to some beginner questions...

    1. Pitching the yeast - to stir or not to?

    On my recent beer, I noticed that the leftover marks from the krausen (right?) was much higher up the Fermentation Bucket than the previous two brews. Presumably, that's not unusual and usually dependent on the beer and the yeast? Is there any danger to yeast not being "used" if it's just floating on the surface of the beer? And maybe "carried up" with the krausen?

    2. PB Tap.

    On my first brew, the output from the tap is explosive! Unless I want a pint of head, I have to dribble the beer from the tap. Could I alleviate that by releasing some pressure from the barrel? Or should I simply NOT do that?

    3. PB Tap #2.

    Do people clean the tap while it's still it on the barrel? If so, presumably just a damp cloth?

    4. Bottle cleaner.

    Anyone use a bottle cleaner and can you combine that with a sterilised solution?

    5. Re-doing second fermentation.

    Recently had a leak from the tap of the PB and quickly siphoned the beer into bottles. Beer is great but a but a bit flat. If this happens again, would it be a good idea to just add half a teaspoon of sugar into each bottle as a second attempt?

    Sure I got more...but can't think right now.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Jan 21, 2019 #2

    Arrakus

    Arrakus

    Arrakus

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    1. I usually give mine a gentle stir, hasn’t failed me yet. I forgot to aerate before pitching on my last brew and ended up giving it a good stir up 24 hours after pitching. Still didn’t fail athumb..

    2 & 3 I bottle so can’t offer an opinion

    4 I rinse the bottle after drinking, wash it through with a pbw or starsan at the point of bottling

    5 not tried that, be interested to hear what others suggest
     
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  3. Jan 21, 2019 #3

    Drunkula

    Drunkula

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    1. I'm a yeast hydrater (punky instagatah!) but if I direct pitched yeast onto the wort I wouldn't stir. I've read this leads to the yeast getting wet more slowly so it has less chance of osmotic shock. That's too much guff for day #1 brewing so just tip it on and put the lid on and read up on things later.

    2. You could let the gas out, but then you'll be annoyed when it glugs and pulls in air and then your beer starts going sour. Pressure barrel taps are a menace. I'm trying to rig some pipe up to mine so I can put an external tap on it and use it like a corny keg.

    3. I just give it a spray with a hand sprayer thing with sanitiser in. As long as there's pressure you're pushing stuff out... hopefully.

    4. You can use a bottle cleaner with sanitiser - make sure it's a no-rinse one if you want to go straight to bottling, otherwise you'll have to swill them anyway.

    5. Yeah, the bottling and bit of sugar I've had to do a few times in the past. It works.
     
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  4. Jan 22, 2019 #4

    Bigcol49

    Bigcol49

    Bigcol49

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    Hi!
    Having struggled with a PB leaking, you should be overjoyed that yours is holding pressure, so I would advise you not to open the lid.
    Reading around on t'Interweb it seems to be normal to serve the first few pints very slowly, and this is said to improve as more beer is served. Other comments suggest fitting a Dalex tap.
    This thread may be useful: https://www.thehomebrewforum.co.uk/...om-plastic-pressure-barrel.39083/#post-378711
    You could try a length of tubing in place of a turkey baster.
    I abandoned PBs in favour of Corny kegs.
     
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  5. Jan 22, 2019 #5

    terrym

    terrym

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    1. Some beers/yeasts create a large krausen, others don't. So long as the yeast performs as expected then there is nothing to worry about.
    2. 'Foam' can be a fact of life from a pressurised PB with a standard tap. The solutions are to take your time (frustrating) or dispense into a large serving jug (e.g Wilko £1.50). As the pressure drops in the PB things get better. I cant see the point in letting some of the the pressure out, because sooner or later you will have to put some CO2 back in, either by repriming or bulbs/cylinder. If you have a 4" cap PB you can buy a sparklets tap for about £15 -20 which may help with this problem but I have heard mixed reviews about these. They are not suitable for the thread on a 2" cap PB.
    3. I don't dismantle the tap from the PB for cleaning. Once installed is an integral feature as far as I'm concerned and gets the same cleaning/sanitising treatment as the PB. If you keep removing it or even taking it apart sooner or later it will leak.
    4. Cant help there.
    5. Yes reprime as normal, which is what I have done in the past. If you don't the beer will be flat as you found out.
     
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  6. Jan 22, 2019 #6

    Chris_Coconut

    Chris_Coconut

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    Thanks everyone.
     
  7. Jan 22, 2019 #7

    Dutto

    Dutto

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    All questions answered already, but for 2. I use a one-litre glass jug to take off enough of the brew to fill a glass; and after it has settled down a bit I take it straight into the glass.

    An alternative (one that I have never tried), is to attach a long piece of tubing on to the tap so that the brew enters the glass from the bottom. This apparently reduces the amount of foam.
     
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