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03/23/07 11:41 AM  
BSGA - 3 weeks no carbonation

BSGA OG 1.072, FG 1.010, Primary 4wks @ 74F, Secondary 1 wk 31F, Prime 5oz corn sugar, 2-3grams nottingham. Bottle condition 68f-70F for 3wks - Fusels have subsided but no carbonation.

Probably 3.5-4 gal left. Thinking of dumping all bottles in bottle bucket, reprime with 5 oz (or whatever ratio to gallons for 3 CO2) and a rehydrated package of nottingham then rebottle. Thoughts?


Mike T
03/23/07 12:13 PM  
Re: BSGA - 3 weeks no carbonation
Big beers take some time to carbonate. Give the bottles a swirl to kick the yeast back into suspension, and put them somewhere a few degrees warmer.

If you still aren’t getting anything in another 3 weeks start thinking about adding more yeast. You NEVER want to add more priming sugar if you are sure you added some already, that is a recipe for bottle bombs.

On several occasions I have been forced to pop the caps on a batch of beer pour in some dry yeast in and re-cap. It works well with a minimal risk of oxidation, but I doubt you’ll have to do it for this one.

03/23/07 12:13 PM  
Re: BSGA - 3 weeks no carbonation
You used too little yeast. Make a small yeast starter feeding it over a two day period. Then uncap each bottle and add at least 1/2 teaspoon (or 1 teaspoon if you have the headroom) of active yeast and recap. Wait two weeks and try one.

Always make a yeast starter even when bottling and you will not be disappointed ever again.

03/23/07 12:35 PM  
Re: BSGA - 3 weeks no carbonation
Don't bother with a yeast starter when using dry yeast. You aren't going to get the yeast in any better shape than out of the package. If you need more yeast use more, or brew a small beer and reuse the yeast cake.

Starters just don't make sense for dry yeast.

As for the problem at hand, give it time. Unless you are under the gun that's the easiest thing to do and has the least downsides. If it doesn't come around in a while more drastic measures may be needed.

03/23/07 12:45 PM  
Re: BSGA - 3 weeks no carbonation

So if i need to re-yeast at some time add it to each individual bottle? If I don't rehydrate or make a starter how much dry yeast out of the package should I use for each bottle (I have 12oz, 22oz, and 750ml)

03/23/07 01:02 PM  
Re: BSGA - 3 weeks no carbonation
"Starters just don't make sense for dry yeast."

I disagree. Starters are for feeding yeast to get it to the active stage of life and get them in the best shape possible for fermentation. Re-hydrating dry yeast does not prepare it properly for it's new life. Do you like being suddenly waked up and forced to do intense manual labor without a solid feeding before hand????

Al B
03/23/07 02:05 PM  
Re: BSGA - 3 weeks no carbonation
I have not used dry yeast, however, from a microbiologist POV, I have to agree with Cisco.

All lyophilized or freezed-dried microorganisms need to be rehydrated correctly otherwise you're just adding yeast extract! Rehydration should not be with alcohol ;).

It is also important to use a starter on liquid yeast for priming bottles. I have with great sucess, removed caps and added fresh liquid yeast (from a starter) 2-3ml each and recapped. Good luck.

Mike T
03/23/07 03:02 PM  
Re: BSGA - 3 weeks no carbonation
I sprinkled just a touch of dry champagne yeast straight into bottles of 11% abv DIPA last summer (maybe a third of a pack for a case and a half). The bottles carbed up in about a week. More recently I tried to do the same thing with US-56, after the same yeast failed to start carbing after 3 weeks in a 9.5% abv DIPA. It took awhile (3 more weeks), but the beer is now nicely carbonated.

Incidentally does anyone know the alcohol tolerance of US-56?

This method has worked for me, but I’d agree that rehydration is certainly better for the yeast and might get you carbonation faster.


I have always heard that the yeast are dried with full reserves of glycogen and are thus at the peak of readiness with just a quick rehydration, unlike liquid yeast which have been depleting their reserves while sitting in the pack/tube for weeks or months before you brew and therefore need a starter to be “woken” up.

From Jamil’s yeast site( mrmalty.com ):

“In fact, with most dry yeasts, placing them in a starter would just deplete the reserves that the yeast manufacturer worked so hard to build into the yeast.”

However, there is enough misinformation out there about homebrewing that I’m never really sure what to believe.

03/23/07 04:54 PM  
Re: BSGA - 3 weeks no carbonation
>>However, there is enough misinformation out there about homebrewing that I’m never really sure what to believe.<<

I guess the only way to know for sure is to make a batch, split it, ferment one with straight dry yeast and the other with rehydrated. I can say to not build up a yeast I would have to really fight my instincts.

Al B
03/23/07 10:46 PM  
Re: BSGA - 3 weeks no carbonation
I can see the Champagne yeast working at 11% quicker than US56 at 9.5%. Champagne tolerance is what....around 20%? I'm gonna guess that US56 tolerance would be about 12% max.

Still, I suppose dried yeast have gotten better these days perhaps. When in doubt, I always err on the side of caution when dealing with living cells. I prefer to add alittle extra work to ensure health/viability. But I think what is important is when the pitch is. Obviously these glcogen-rich cells do a whole better in unfermented wort, rather than fermeted.

"In fact, with most dry yeasts, placing them in a starter would just deplete the reserves that the yeast manufacturer worked so hard to build into the yeast.”

- well, again this depends on how you handle the starter and when it is pitched, so thats a bit misleading to me.

I think there was an article dry vs liquid yeasts recently.

03/25/07 09:41 AM  
Re: BSGA - 3 weeks no carbonation
Thanks All,

Good discussion that gave me the technique answers I was looking for.

As far as starter vs no starter for dry yeast, as SG noted there are conflicting views and information out there. I will look at the rehydration volume for dry and determine if it is enough for the beer I have left.


04/09/07 10:04 AM  
Re: BSGA - 3 weeks no carbonation
Moved the bottles to a warmer place and gave the a shake every 2 or 3 days. At 5 1/2 weeks the beer is carbing up with a nice fluffy head. Once again your experiences bring me back to the basics of trouble shooting "patience grasshopper"

Thanks to all for the input and I can now add another variable to my ckecklist when brewing HG beers.


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