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Blow off tubes
  • GryllEGryllE
    Posts: 10
    No rush, just wondering if anyone has any thoughts/ideas... I have been brewing steadily for about 6 years, and 7 months ago I moved to Missouri from Mississippi and have noticed that a blow off tube has been neccessary here for the majority of batches. I have always made 5ish gallon batches in 6 gallon carboys with an airlock and I have actually never needed a blow off tube before moving here. I do extract/mini-mash recipes in all sorts of styles. Any thoughts on differences that can cause foaming and overly vigorous fermentation?
  • piping_pigpiping_pig
    Posts: 10
    I have rarley ever needed a blowoff tube.... but I use a 7.5 gallon plastic bucket fermenter. I have found that there is a lot more foaming with batches that include a lot of roasted malts... robust porters/stouts that kind of thing.
    Strange that moving has caused this.... are you fermenting warmer?

    ceannt
  • GryllEGryllE
    Posts: 10
    I think I've always brewed between 65 and 75 F (because that's what I keep my house at, and just don't brew much in the heat of the summer). Maybe I should switch to buckets!
  • GryllE said:

    I think I've always brewed between 65 and 75 F (because that's what I keep my house at, and just don't brew much in the heat of the summer). Maybe I should switch to buckets!



    there are advantages and disadvantages to both... I like the buckets cause they are easier to clean, and have a bit more headspace. Carboys work just fine, have less chance for nasties to hide in scratches... and are a whole lot easier to get the lid off and on...
  • ThymThym
    Posts: 99,196
    Has anything else changed in your brewing? Pitch rates, yeast strains, malts, mash temps, mash times, extract brand, boil vigor? There are a lot of factors that can factor into the vigor of fermentation and the thickness of the head. Even barometric pressure has a role to play, but I would start by looking at the other areas first.
    The only thing between me and a train wreck is blind luck..... - Kenny
  • GryllE said:

    I think I've always brewed between 65 and 75 F (because that's what I keep my house at, and just don't brew much in the heat of the summer). Maybe I should switch to buckets!



    there are advantages and disadvantages to both... I like the buckets cause they are easier to clean, and have a bit more headspace. Carboys work just fine, have less chance for nasties to hide in scratches... and are a whole lot easier to get the lid off and on...


    You can buy separate lids at home depot that have an o-ring built in. They're pretty easy to get off and on, but you have to be careful that it is seated properly before you walk away and forget about it.

  • GryllEGryllE
    Posts: 10
    I got extract and grains from various online suppliers while in Missip, because there aren't brew supply stores. I've been getting some different brands than I used to here, because of availability, maybe that's it - but I was frequently using different brands there too...
  • ThymThym
    Posts: 99,196
    GryllE said:

    I got extract and grains from various online suppliers while in Missip, because there aren't brew supply stores. I've been getting some different brands than I used to here, because of availability, maybe that's it - but I was frequently using different brands there too...



    Hmmmm..... I'm not convinced. Have your recipes/styles changed?
    The only thing between me and a train wreck is blind luck..... - Kenny
  • GryllEGryllE
    Posts: 10
    I don't feel like my recipes or styles have changed much - I'm all over the place with styles (variety is the spice of life!)) and always trying new things and experimenting with herb/veg additions. I guess it could be a combination of things mentioned (barometric pressure, different ingredient source)... one thing that has changed, I didn't think of before, I got a larger kettle and a wort chiller (versus smaller pot with ice bath). Could that make a difference?
  • FuzzyFuzzy
    Posts: 45,611
    GryllE said:

    I don't feel like my recipes or styles have changed much - I'm all over the place with styles (variety is the spice of life!)) and always trying new things and experimenting with herb/veg additions. I guess it could be a combination of things mentioned (barometric pressure, different ingredient source)... one thing that has changed, I didn't think of before, I got a larger kettle and a wort chiller (versus smaller pot with ice bath). Could that make a difference?



    it most certainly could. quicker chilling affects the different proteins including the foam/head producing proteins.
    "Oh, you were serious? I was drunk."-C_B
  • GryllEGryllE
    Posts: 10
    That might be it then. Thanks! ...sorry I didn't think of the chiller sooner...
  • FuzzyFuzzy
    Posts: 45,611
    if it's causing problems, and messes, you can always ferment a little cooler to keep it under control.
    "Oh, you were serious? I was drunk."-C_B
  • jlwjlw
    Posts: 16,410
    Personally I use a blow off tube on every beer. I have had a few messes and it's just as easy to set up a tube that runs into a bucket of sanitizer.
  • frydogbrewsfrydogbrews
    Posts: 44,679
    i have to use a blow off tube every third or fourth batch. i wait until gunk gets into the airlock then hook up the blow off tube. since i strain my wort, there isn't much in there to clog up the airlock, not quickly anyway.
  • BenvarineBenvarine
    Posts: 1,606
    I use a blow off from time to time. Basically after about 24 hours I can tell if its headed for eruption. I use a 6g Carboy with the bottom part of the airlock, stick a hose on the inner tube and run that to a growler of star san water.
    image.jpg
    2592 x 1936 - 2M
  • FuzzyFuzzy
    Posts: 45,611
    i never thought to do it like that. i just jam the hose directly into the stopper.
    "Oh, you were serious? I was drunk."-C_B
  • BenvarineBenvarine
    Posts: 1,606
    You have to dedicate an airlock and hose, once on, tough to get off.
  • ThymThym
    Posts: 99,196
    Benvarine said:

    You have to dedicate an airlock and hose, once on, tough to get off.



    make sure you break off the little cross on the bottom of the air-lock tube, or it will clog and blow out.
    The only thing between me and a train wreck is blind luck..... - Kenny
  • FuzzyFuzzy
    Posts: 45,611
    Lakewood said:

    Benvarine said:

    You have to dedicate an airlock and hose, once on, tough to get off.



    make sure you break off the little cross on the bottom of the air-lock tube, or it will clog and blow out.


    true, but not all of mine have them.
    "Oh, you were serious? I was drunk."-C_B
  • ThymThym
    Posts: 99,196

    Lakewood said:

    Benvarine said:

    You have to dedicate an airlock and hose, once on, tough to get off.



    make sure you break off the little cross on the bottom of the air-lock tube, or it will clog and blow out.


    true, but not all of mine have them.


    yup. just wanted to put that out there, just in case... just in case you do what i did the first time..
    The only thing between me and a train wreck is blind luck..... - Kenny
  • jlwjlw
    Posts: 16,410
    Benvarine said:

    I use a blow off from time to time. Basically after about 24 hours I can tell if its headed for eruption. I use a 6g Carboy with the bottom part of the airlock, stick a hose on the inner tube and run that to a growler of star san water.


    this is exactly how I rig up my blow off tubes
  • ceanntceannt
    Posts: 46,182
    Always wondered why they started putting the little cross doohickies on airlocks .... back when I started brewing they didn't have them ......????
    In wine there is wisdom.
    In beer there is freedom.
    In water there is bacteria.