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Subject: Red ale slow start
Author: tucker38
Aug 20th, 2012
1:36 pm
I brewed a red ale saturday and a brown ale yesterday and i used the wlpoo4 red ale liquid yeast and wlp001 . The two vials were in my frig for about 3 weeks. I didnt make a starter and i pitch the yeast at about 72 degrees.From there i went straight to my ferment chamber that was set @ 62 degrees. Here it is monday morning 24-36 hours later and no signs of fermentation. WHAT DO I DO HELP
Subject: Re: Red ale slow start
Author: dobl_D
Aug 20th, 2012
2:08 pm
Prior to pitching the two vials, did you smell to see if it was ok? 3 weeks isnt bad as along as they were in the fridge at a constant cool temperature.

First thing I would try before pitching more yeast is to warm up the fermenter alittle to about 68 F and see if the yeast wakes up. If you dont get any activity after warming it up and leaving it for a 24 hours, I would re-pitch more yeast... and this time, do a starter. It should be fine. Good Luck!
Subject: Re: Red ale slow start
Author: Hopper5000
Aug 20th, 2012
3:45 pm
I wouldn't worry too much. Agreed with above, you should warm it up a bit. Usually you are supposed to leave it in the 70s for about 12 hours so the yeast can get started. What were the OGs on these respective beers? Did you look at the "use by" date on the vials?

Are both of the beers not fermenting? These are in carboys and not buckets right?
Subject: Re: Red ale slow start
Author: DConn
Aug 20th, 2012
4:00 pm
I don't think I've ever left wort in the mid 70s for 12 hours to get the yeast started. I chill to low 60s (usually) and pitch at that temp. The bulk of fermentation is done in the mid 60s. You certainly can get faster starts at higher temp, but I've found that doing it that way I compromise beer flavor for faster starts. To me, it's not worth it.
Subject: Re: Red ale slow start
Author: MMMBREW
Aug 20th, 2012
5:21 pm
I dont' know that I'd warm it up either.

Is there no airlock activity? That doesnt' necessarily mean that fermentation isn't going as planned. that yeast isn't a very explosive one. It normally chugs along pretty slowly/steadily.

Is there any krausen on top? Is your bucket/carboy perfectly sealed?

I wouldn't worry until you begin to take gravity readings and see that it hasnt' moved or has stalled.
Subject: Re: Red ale slow start
Author: tucker38
Aug 20th, 2012
5:34 pm
In reply to above
the red ale was 1.045 and the brown ale was 1.051. Both batches are in buckets and yes the lids are sealed tight. My ferment chamber is set at 62 and as of the this morning there were no signs of fermentation. Maybe when i get home this evening we might have a start. I just didnt wanna loose two days of brewing if theres other options out there. should I remove the lid and get a visual to see whats going on? should I give it a stir?
Subject: Re: Red ale slow start
Author: MMMBREW
Aug 20th, 2012
5:38 pm
If there is no airlock activity check to make sure the seal on the airlock is tight as well. Many times there could be a slight air leak somewhere, allowing the gases to escape, but fermentation would still be going. I wouldn't stir, but feel free to give it a vigorous shake ans swirl by rocking the buckets some. If you don't have signs of activity in another day, I'd remove the bucket lid and have a peak inside to see if there is any bubbles or krausen on top, and smell for fementation activity/yeasty smells.

Relax, don't worry, have a homebrew
Subject: Re: Red ale slow start
Author: Hopper5000
Aug 20th, 2012
5:51 pm
That's the reason I was wondering about the buckets. Might be a bad seal. It has happened to me before when I brewed with buckets but I have moved onto glass. Agreed with above on taking a peek.

I only recommended to keep the temp up to get an active start since he is pitching vials. I do starters these days and pitch in the mid 70s and then throw it in a swamp bath.

I usually get activity within a couple of hours so it stays in the 70s while it is cooling down to the high 60s. I also usually use wlp1 for most of my brews these days so the temp threshhold is on the higher side for that yeast.

62 seems pretty low for wlp1 but do others have experience brewing with that strain at that temp? It's a pretty dynamic yeast so I am assuming it would be fine at lower temps.

Sorry all if that wasn't the best advice.
Subject: Re: Red ale slow start
Author: DConn
Aug 20th, 2012
6:20 pm
Not 001, but I use 1056 (which is essentially the same) at that temp every time.

I don't think you gave bad advice...there are a lot of ways to achieve the same objective. But since the majority of esters are created early on fermentation, I've found that I prefer the beers I make when I chill to a bit below fermentation temp. YMMV
Subject: Re: Red ale slow start
Author: dobl_D
Aug 20th, 2012
6:22 pm
When transferring the wort to your fermentation buckets, did you pour vigorously? ...just trying to figure out if there was any aeration given to the wort as little to no oxygen can stall the fermentation process.

In an article in BYO, Aerating Wort: Techniques - "Oxygen is essential for yeast growth and reproduction. Yeast must grow and reproduce first, before actually fermenting the wort to make beer. Yeast needs oxygen to synthesize the material for expanding cell walls; namely sterols and fatty acids. Overlooking proper wort aeration can lead to problems such as long lag times before the start of fermentation, stuck or incomplete fermentation, or excessive ester (fruit flavor) production, any of which would produce less than desired results."

Just as MMMBrew stated above- make sure the lid is on tight on your bucket and give it a good shake. If that cant be done without making a mess, There are a number of methods:
- a sanitized stainless whisk
- aquarium air pump with sanitized air stone
- etc , etc.

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