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Thread: recirculation FV in first few days of ferm?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    83

    recirculation FV in first few days of ferm?

    hi, i started my first big brew on the 11th, 3 days ago. its fermenting nicely, the gravity has already gone from 1058 to 1046 and producing a lot of gas.

    i still have my recirculation pump connected which i used for mixing and aerating the wart prior to adding yeast. (i should add that i'm making cider, not beer but i think the same principles apply).

    anyhow, i've been running the circulation pump (suck from the bottom, dump back in on top, 3000liter tank, closed FV under about 0.6bar pressure currently) for a couple of hours a day just to keep everything mixed nicely and fermentation happy and so far it seems to be working fine.

    but i was wondering, is this normal practice or do you typically leave the FV undisturbed once fermentation is up and running? if its ok mix it up, how many days or what SG would you stop and let is rest?

    thanks, steve
    Last edited by fullmoonwinery; 06-14-2010 at 05:11 AM.
    Full Moon Winery, Thailand
    http://www.fullmoonwinery.com/

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    12
    I worked at a production facility (beer) with open fermentation. Our fermenters were single, double and triple batch sized. We found that the single batch fermenters needed the pumps over the course of the first few hours until there was about a 10-20% reduction of gravity, otherwise they would not fully attenuate.

    Since our castouts were 4 hours apart it seemed that our yeast was so flocculent that a single knockout needed to be roused to get the yeast to stay in suspension to finish the job. The other tanks didn't require the pumps, it was either the agitation of additional castouts or the aeration/oxygentation that occurred part way through the fermentation cycle of the first batch.

    Additionally, we found, and i've read elsewhere that the pump needs to move the beer above the lip of the fermenter or else the CO2 blanket would negate any aerating effects. Not sure of the effects of oxygenation on cider, but for beer, if we left the pumps in too long we noticed negative effects in product quality down the road (oxidation).

    So, not sure what this means for cider or for a closed fermenter under pressure. Do you get full attenuation without doing this? Do you aerate/oygenate the cider before pitching yeast? Haven't made cider on a commercial level, interesting...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    83
    i turned the pump off yesterday anyhow and i had to open the top hatch to fix a leaky seal problem.

    while looking in the top i noticed that the fermentation seems to be creating a nice circular flow from front to back, don't really know why but i'm guessing something to do with the front hatch poking inside the tank a bit creating a turbulent flow.

    anyhow, clearly it seems to be mixing its self quite nicely so i'm going to leave the pump off and let nature take its course.

    thanks, steve
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    Full Moon Winery, Thailand
    http://www.fullmoonwinery.com/

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