Big Krausen with little Bubbling in Airlock

What went wrong? Was this supposed to happen? Should I throw it out? What do I do now?

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Big Krausen with little Bubbling in Airlock

Postby cleone » Sun Apr 02, 2006 10:04 pm

I am experimenting with adding strawberries in the secondary to a hefeweizen. I brewed a 5 gallon batch of hefe, fermented for 5 days in primary and split the batch into two separate secondaries--one normal, one with 3 lbs of pasterized/crushed strawberries.

The non-strawberry secondary is finishing fermentation as expected (fair amount of airlock bubbling, residual krausen). The strawberry one has a significant krausen (expected), but VERY little airlock activity! I thought that the airlock may have a leak, so replaced it but having the same issue. All visual indications of the batch appears to be working fine, but I can't understand why I would not have much CO2 byproducts???

Any ideas what is going on?

P.S. I am using WYeast Wheihenstephan yeast. Again all visual indicators looks normal--above average krausen . . .
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Postby BillyBock » Mon Apr 03, 2006 6:44 am

Are you using a rubber stopper or a carboy cap? In either case there might be a leak where they meet the carboy or where the airlock inserts into it.
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Postby cleone » Mon Apr 03, 2006 1:59 pm

I use a plastic, food-grade bucket fermenter:

http://www.hoptech.com/cart/cart.php?ta ... ory_id=272

It has a air tight locking lid and uses a rubber stopper with the airlock that from all visual inspections appears pretty tight fitting. If I press down on the lid, the normal bubbling vents correctly through the airlock.

Never had an issue in the past, but I guess the CO2 has to be getting out from somewhere . . .

Maybe it waits for me to stop watching it and then vents!
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Postby BillyBock » Mon Apr 03, 2006 6:56 pm

The buckets are notorious for leaking at the lid-bucket interface.
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That must explain it

Postby cleone » Mon Apr 03, 2006 7:27 pm

Bill,

Thanks. That has to be the story. I guess I can still rely on the layer of CO2 to protect the beer . . .
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