View Full Version : I wonder what happened???

03-23-2015, 10:50 AM
So I decided to make a T'ej BOMM. My smack pack proofed, and then I made a starter for 24 hours. I followed Bray's recipe. I pitched before bed time and woke up to some foam on top and sounds of fizzing. SG was 1100. Well, after 3 days I have not seen a change in my hydro readings. I have had foam each day and some fizzing sound but that's it. I have degassed/aerated it 2 times a day. The only thing I did different this batch was I added 3 Camden tablets to a 4 gallon batch of must and let it sit in there during the time I was letting my starter grow. It smells fine. Although it doesn't smell like fermentation, only smells like a normal must.

So I now have a stuck/dead batch and don't know why. The only thing I can think of is this: I do not have a stir plate so I just swirl a bottle of starter several time a day. I didn't realize that I had tightened the jars lid so tight after I had added a bit of the must to the starter. When I opened it again, (to feed it once again,) a lot of pressure blew out. I'm wondering if I hurt the yeast with al the built up pressure?

That's the only thing I can think of.

Thoughts anyone???

Marshmallow Blue
03-23-2015, 11:46 AM
The campden Tabs could have hurt it as well. I've seen a few posts about camden tabs used like they are in wine musts messing with fermentation. If you've been getting foam and there is airlock activity, I would measure the gravity of water to make sure your hydrometer isn't malfunctioning.

03-23-2015, 12:25 PM
Hey there Blue :)

I did check my hydrometer and it's all good. Not sure about the gassing as I have it in a bucket with the lid loosely sitting on top. I can't even hear anything now, nor can I see the tiny air bubbles rising and poping at the surface. A lot of the time, especially early on, there seems like there is a live creature churning up the entire bucket/carboy. None of that kind of normal activity :(

Marshmallow Blue
03-23-2015, 12:47 PM
So it seems like it's been at least 2 days; hopefully the sulfites you added have precipitated out enough and maybe you can pitch another pack of 1388 (if that or the pressurized starter was indeed the issue). Depending on what temp it is already sitting at, maybe warm it up some to higher in the yeasts ferment range?

Medsen Fey
03-24-2015, 06:12 AM
The slight pressurization of the starter is a non-issue. Yeast can tolerate lots of pressure. Something in your must is slowing it down. The Campden tablets may be a factor. Please give the recipe details.


03-24-2015, 10:50 AM
I used Wyeast 1388. I let warm to room temp and smacked. After the bag swelled up I emptied into a glass bottle, feed it a small amount of must,,,SQ 1010. For the next 24 hours I swirled several times a day and feed it must every 4 hours. I never added more than 1/4th of the total of the total volume/food.

So I made about 4 gallons of must so I would end up with 3 gallons in long term aging after racking. I threw in 3 Camden tablets into my 4 gallons. I decided to make a starter after I made the must, therfore I did the Camden while I waited for 24 hours for my starter.

I boiled my gesho (6 ounces) in 4 cups water for ten minutes. Let it cool. I warmed my plastic gallon jug of wildflower honey, just enough to pour easily and mixed well in water and added the Gheso sticks/water. I ended up with 4 gallons of must at 1010.

I added 1 TSP of K2CO3. I blend my food so I only measure each feeding from 1 container. I mix it 2 parts to 1. I feed it 3/4 tsp of food along with 1 TBSP Fermaid O. I then aerated my must and pitched my starter. Temp was 70 degrees F.

The following morning I awoke and checked it. Had some foam on top. Scraped off the foam, degassed with my drill/paddle then placed the plastic lid loosely on top of my plastic ferment bucket.

Over the nest 2 days I stirred out the gas and stirred in air until the third night. I added 1 TBSP of fermaid O just to see if that helped any. It didn't. Each day it petered out bit by bit until no signs of life on day 3.

03-24-2015, 10:52 AM
Failed to mention there is no odor. It smells and taste just fine.

Medsen Fey
03-24-2015, 11:35 AM
Can you check the pH?


03-24-2015, 06:33 PM
I added another TBSP of Fermaid O just for the hell of it. My pH strips were bad so I didn't have a way to check. I added a TSP more of K2CO3 just for the hell of it. I went to the store to buy some strips and stopped to get some groceries. When I go back there was some foam on top (there wasn't any when I left) and some air bubbling through the air lock. I checked it with my strips and it was 4.2. Looks like things are starting to happen. I bought another pouch of 1388 and smacked it. I'll add it tonight before bed

03-24-2015, 09:09 PM
Well hell! I think the little bit of life I saw earlier was just from the addition of the Fermaid O. I went back to lifeless :(