No airlock! What to do?!

Reads 5541 • Replies 22 • Started Saturday, February 18, 2012 6:33:19 PM CT

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drowland
beers 7803 º places 242 º 18:33 Sat 2/18/2012

I panicked for a little bit earlier because I am out of airlocks and have to brew tomorrow. Iíve never brewed this much in my life before, and all 4 of my airlocks are being used.

I realized I can take the one off of my yeast starter and use that tomorrow, so problem is solved, but I wanted to propose the question anyway because I think itís interesting and maybe our new members can chime in on what they think.

So here is the potential situation:

I HAVE to brew tomorrow. Long story, but tomorrow is the only day, and it has to happen to be done in time for a trip.

I have no airlocks.

I HAVE to brew at 9am or earlier because of (school) required afternoon plans and the local homebrew store doesnít open until 10am.

What would you do?

1) Frantically call homebrewing friends to borrow one?
2) Have a friend go to the local store at 10am?
3) Finish brewing, cover the carboy with something (what?) and go pick one up yourself?
4) Something else?

 
nathanjohnson
18:34 Sat 2/18/2012

starsan + aluminum foil = problem solved.

 
SourNut
19:53 Sat 2/18/2012

Originally posted by nathanjohnson
starsan + aluminum foil = problem solved.


Yep. Should be fine with aluminum foil for a day or two.

 
lithy
beers 2996 º places 156 º 19:54 Sat 2/18/2012

Another plus one for foil, you could also, if you have a bung and some hose, just rig up a blow off tube into a pitcher of sanitized water.

 
Swillbur
beers 62 º places 25 º 19:57 Sat 2/18/2012

I always start my beers off with a blow off hose into starsan water

 
502Che
beers 999 º places 47 º 20:06 Sat 2/18/2012

its also compltetely fine to open ferment in a clean area. Your beer will be fine!

 
bitbucket
beers 2165 º places 63 º 20:08 Sat 2/18/2012

Originally posted by nathanjohnson
starsan + aluminum foil = problem solved.

Absolutely. People have made beer for centuries without an airlock. My grandparents used a RedWing crock, covered with boards that were tacked together, covered with a towel. Worked like a charm.

 
SamGamgee
beers 2452 º places 182 º 21:04 Sat 2/18/2012

I use foil on my starters because you want oxygen to be able to get in. Itís also fine for primary, but youíll want to let the beer mature in a sealed container once the yeast stops fermenting and producing CO2. So a few days until an airlock is freed up is fine, but I wouldnít keep foil on it for a couple weeks.

 
jctribe25
21:11 Sat 2/18/2012

Originally posted by SamGamgee
I use foil on my starters because you want oxygen to be able to get in. Itís also fine for primary, but youíll want to let the beer mature in a sealed container once the yeast stops fermenting and producing CO2. So a few days until an airlock is freed up is fine, but I wouldnít keep foil on it for a couple weeks.


Right, starters shouldnít have airlocks unless you are trying to build up something special.

Take the starters airlock or just let it open ferment.

 
wnoble
beers 1251 º 22:25 Sat 2/18/2012

If your rackin hose is 5/16" ID it will fit perfectly in your carboy bung or rubber stopper. Run it in to a glass of sanitizer and you have made your own airlock. If the yeast foams over the hose will be shot after this brew..obviously. And why use an airlock on the starter?

 
drowland
beers 7803 º places 242 º 22:34 Sat 2/18/2012

Also no extra bung in this hypothetical situation. In my personal instance, my quantity of bungs matches my quantity of airlocks.

As for airlocks on starters... no idea. Always did it that way because someone or something told me to... mostly likely a book because Iím like that, and itís always worked like a charm, so Iím not sure I see the issue? I suppose I would fear an infection? But apparently not! (I mean no sarcasm there, seriously)

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