WLP820

Discuss all aspects of fermentation
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cc986
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WLP820

Post by cc986 » Tue Sep 22, 2020 8:53 am

Hello,
I brewed a bock beer with a OG of 1.060 over the weekend and used WLP820 Oktoberfest yeast. I only had one sachet and just pitched it without making a starter. A day and half in there is definitely some activity but it seems very slow and I'm wondering if I should have used two sachets or made a starter. It's my first lager-type beer so I have no idea what to expect really.
Should I order another sachet (which would take about 3 days to arrive) or do you think it's too late to be adding more yeast? Will the one sachet do the job but just take longer?
Thanks,
Chris

cc986
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Re: WLP820

Post by cc986 » Tue Sep 22, 2020 8:10 pm

Gave it a good rousing this morning, raised the temp a couple of degrees and its started bubbling away nicely now.

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Jocky
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Re: WLP820

Post by Jocky » Tue Sep 22, 2020 9:35 pm

I'm aAssuming you're fermenting at a 'lager' temperature (8-12c). If so then because of the lower temperature the yeast is not as active in fermentation, so you'll not see fermentation as soon, nor will it be as vigorous. For example, you'll get a light krausen but not a big fluffy one unless the temperature is too high.

For your beer, at this point there's nothing else you can do, just know that the fermentation will take it's sweet time but it will get the job done. Seal your fermenter up (with an airlock obviously!) and walk away for at least a couple of weeks, perhaps a month.

Just as a more general comment - a very basic rule of thumb is that for a lager you need twice as much yeast as for a similar strength ale. On top of that, personally I always make starters for liquid yeast. On their way over from the USA they aren't always kept in great conditions, so making a starter gets the yeast back to full health.

All the best with your lager!
Ingredients: Water, Barley, Hops, Yeast, Seaweed, Blood, Sweat, The swim bladder of a sturgeon, My enemies tears, Scenes of mild peril, An otter's handbag and Riboflavin.

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Re: WLP820

Post by cc986 » Wed Sep 23, 2020 7:15 am

Thanks very much Jocky. I'm mainly a traditional British ale drinker but I have happy memories of some of the darker German beers from when I lived there and I plan on doing some more in the future, so that's good advice thanks.
Correct, I am fermenting at 12c. I did raise it to 14 yesterday, but once it got going I dropped it back down to 12c.

WalesAles
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Re: WLP820

Post by WalesAles » Wed Sep 23, 2020 8:04 pm

Jocky wrote:
Tue Sep 22, 2020 9:35 pm
Seal your fermenter up (with an airlock obviously!)
Jocky,
Why do you tell cc to use an airlock?
Perhaps he/she/it/they/noun doesn`t want to! #-o
Lots of people don`t use airlocks.

WA

Let the fun begin!

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Jocky
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Re: WLP820

Post by Jocky » Thu Sep 24, 2020 7:19 am

WalesAles wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 8:04 pm
Jocky wrote:
Tue Sep 22, 2020 9:35 pm
Seal your fermenter up (with an airlock obviously!)
Jocky,
Why do you tell cc to use an airlock?
Perhaps he/she/it/they/noun doesn`t want to! #-o
Lots of people don`t use airlocks.

WA

Let the fun begin!
Short (flippant) answer: CC’s sealed fermenter would explode otherwise!

Long answer: With a long slow ferment typical of a lager you’re more exposed to the danger of oxidation, and I don’t see any downside of using an airlock in this case.
I don’t actually use an airlock at the start of most ale fermentations myself, but I do seal up my fermenter with an airlock when I see the krausen falling.
Having judged homebrew for a few years I’ve tasted oxidation in hundreds of beers, it’s one of the most common faults, so I’m always going to advise people to take steps to try and avoid it where possible.
Ingredients: Water, Barley, Hops, Yeast, Seaweed, Blood, Sweat, The swim bladder of a sturgeon, My enemies tears, Scenes of mild peril, An otter's handbag and Riboflavin.

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Re: WLP820

Post by WalesAles » Thu Sep 24, 2020 1:52 pm

Jocky,
Cheers for that! =D>
Point taken.

WA

cc986
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Re: WLP820

Post by cc986 » Mon Sep 28, 2020 7:27 am

CC is a he. I've recently returned to homebrewing after an eighteen year gap, and while I use an airlock now I can't actually remember using one the last time I brewed. I may be wrong, but I seem to recall just draping a tea towel over the plastic bucket. Nowadays I use a stainless steel fermenter which has a hole in the lid for an airlock so I just stick one in the hole.

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Re: WLP820

Post by guypettigrew » Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:55 am

Tea towels and plastic buckets--those were the days! Thankfully, things have moved on.

If you make a British style bitter with a higher temperature and faster fermentation time you may want to think about using the hole in your SS fermenter for a blow off tube. Loads of yeast coming through an airlock can be really messy.

Guy

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