Topics Topics Help/Instructions Help Edit Profile Profile Member List Register  
Search Last 1 | 3 | 7 Days Search Search Tree View Tree View  

Visit The Brewery's sponsor!
Brews & Views Bulletin Board Service * Brews and Views Archive 2012 * Archive through April 03, 2012 * Stir Plates Very Under Rated < Previous Next >

  Thread Last Poster Posts Pages Last Post
  ClosedClosed: New threads not accepted on this page        

Author Message
 

aleman
Member
Username: Aleman

Post Number: 242
Registered: 04-2003
Posted From: 108.167.45.37
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2012 - 12:04 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I'm growing out my second starter using a stir plate. I've been very happy with this brewery upgrade. On Monday I pitched a vial of White Labs Kolsch yeast into a clear 1/2 gallon growler of wort. Two days on the stir plate and there is a heck of a lot of yeast swirling around in there. I highly recommend this purchase for brewers with thick wallets (another poster from the past).
 

Graham Cox
Senior Member
Username: T2driver

Post Number: 2878
Registered: 11-2004
Posted From: 72.15.96.196
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2012 - 12:21 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Welcome to the club. Poor yeast management is probably the single biggest quality problem most homebrewers have. I think the yeast companies do them a big disservice by claiming that a vial or smack-pack is a pitchable quantity of yeast. It may be on the day it leaves the plant, but within a few weeks it isn't anymore.
 

dhacker
Senior Member
Username: Dhacker

Post Number: 2506
Registered: 11-2002
Posted From: 99.117.36.145
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2012 - 12:21 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I agree . . I now consider stir plates essential in the home brew process if using liquid yeast. Doesn't necessarily need a thick wallet though! (see the Tool Box section of B & V)


 

Marc Rehfuss
Intermediate Member
Username: Marc_rehfuss

Post Number: 331
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 12.204.98.94
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2012 - 01:07 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Couldn't live without my stir plate. Why some homebrewers will take the time to undergo the whole process of brewing, but will cut corners and severely underpitch (e.g. pitching a vial or smackpack)is beyond me. Agree with Graham! Those vials or smackpack are usually insufficient. Of course one doesn't need a stir plate to make an adequate starter, but it definitely helps with cell count and DME cost, as the biomass yield is higher per amount of malt than with a static starter.
 

Josh Vogel
Junior Member
Username: Loopie_beer

Post Number: 92
Registered: 02-2011
Posted From: 65.60.214.75
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2012 - 02:09 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Most improvement in my beer= starter with stir plate! Luckily for me I am one to just jump into things (my wife doesn't always like this as I might spend a lot of money then not do/use it again) so I bought my stir plate and starter kit rather early. I ALWAYS recommend to people just starting out to use a starter.
 

Andy Hancock
Intermediate Member
Username: Ahancbrew1

Post Number: 348
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 192.55.55.37
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2012 - 08:15 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Are your stir plates noisy?

I stopped using my stir plate years ago because of a constant ticking noise that was bothering my old roommate. Maybe I should give it another try now that I have a new roommate.
 

Dave Hacker
Senior Member
Username: Dhacker

Post Number: 2507
Registered: 11-2002
Posted From: 99.117.36.145
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2012 - 12:09 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

There is a little adjustment needed as far as flask positioning on the plate in order to get the stir bar suspended in the magnetic field just right. That will keep the clicking to a minimum. The type of stir bar can also have some effect.
 

Bierview
Senior Member
Username: Bierview

Post Number: 1123
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 68.192.180.228
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2012 - 12:46 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

My stir bar has flat edges on two sides. That seems to make it difficult to center. Where do you guys buy your stir bars?
 

aleman
Member
Username: Aleman

Post Number: 243
Registered: 04-2003
Posted From: 208.107.48.219
Posted on Saturday, February 18, 2012 - 04:49 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I bought two sizes of stir bars. The larger sized one makes the ticking noise. The small one does not. I bought everything through morebeer.com
 

Dave Witt
Senior Member
Username: Davew

Post Number: 1648
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 24.7.227.140
Posted on Sunday, February 19, 2012 - 02:46 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

You could go to "stirbars.com".
 

Vance Barnes
Senior Member
Username: Vancebarnes

Post Number: 4273
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 76.122.104.54
Posted on Sunday, February 19, 2012 - 11:47 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

stirbars.com is good if you're wanting a boatload of stirbars. I like teohsci.com for selection and being able to get small quantities at a reasonable price.
 

Dave Hacker
Senior Member
Username: Dhacker

Post Number: 2512
Registered: 11-2002
Posted From: 99.117.36.145
Posted on Monday, February 20, 2012 - 12:39 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

What was Stirbars is now Brewershardware. Ya don't have to buy in quantity . . $4 for a single.

That's where I bought the Stir plate kits 2 years ago. Derrin has reasonable prices on all sorts of cool brewing stuff.
 

Paul Hayslett
Senior Member
Username: Paulhayslett

Post Number: 3023
Registered: 02-2002
Posted From: 24.2.134.193
Posted on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - 01:02 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Well, you guys pushed me over. I haven't spent a dime on new equipment in 2 or 3 years (except for replacing hoses and spigots) and I kind of liked it that way. But all this talk of the benefits of stir plates got to me. Just got one. My next brew day (3/11) will be its maiden voyage. You better not have steered me wrong!
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 13683
Registered: 01-2002
Posted From: 24.150.9.127
Posted on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - 01:50 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Don't worry, Paul. You'll soon be a believer.
 

Paul Hayslett
Senior Member
Username: Paulhayslett

Post Number: 3024
Registered: 02-2002
Posted From: 24.2.134.193
Posted on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - 03:45 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have to say that the purchase has already yielded a certain "return on investment". I have gotten to that age -- maybe all guys do -- where I find that I exhibit exactly those personality traits that most enraged me about my dad when I was younger. In this case, "frugality". When I was my son's age, I thought my dad was the cheapest SOB walking in two shoes. It used to drive me nuts. But now it took me a couple solid weeks to talk myself into spending an amount that wouldn't feed my family a cheap Chinese take-out dinner, and I'm still wondering if it was worth it. After all, it's not so tough to swirl a starter whenever I walk into the kitchen, is it? Maybe it's time to lighten up a little and not be quite so "thrifty". No need to give my son more topics for his future therapy sessions.
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 13684
Registered: 01-2002
Posted From: 24.150.9.127
Posted on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - 05:20 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Paul, I can identify with that. One of my criteria now for any equipment purchase is that it better last longer than I will.
 

michael atkins
Advanced Member
Username: Mga

Post Number: 869
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 204.26.72.234
Posted on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - 07:24 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

"After all, it's not so tough to swirl a starter whenever I walk into the kitchen, is it?"

Paul - With your new stir plate, You will not have to walk into the kitchen so often now.

Thanks to Hacker a while back for pushing me over the "frugality" hurdle. One of my best brewing purchases ever.

For some of you other older frrts out there - do you remember when buying that microwave wasn't necessary when that "kitchen oven" would do just fine?
 

Paul Hayslett
Senior Member
Username: Paulhayslett

Post Number: 3025
Registered: 02-2002
Posted From: 24.2.134.193
Posted on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - 09:04 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I can remember the microwave argument, the second phone extension argument, the color TV argument, the air conditioning argument, the lawn-mower-with-a-motor-on-it argument, and a few others. I've given up trying to explain to my kids what life was like back in the day.

Now that I've broken the logjam on brewing equipment expenditures, I might just go crazy and buy some new fermenting buckets or something. No telling where this could end!
 

Dave Hacker
Senior Member
Username: Dhacker

Post Number: 2526
Registered: 11-2002
Posted From: 69.167.206.190
Posted on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - 10:08 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I can see it now, new buckets will lead to something like new airlocks . .

Uh oh, yer outta control!
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 13687
Registered: 01-2002
Posted From: 24.150.9.127
Posted on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - 10:29 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Paul, I can recall all of those and more. Somewhat over a year ago, with my 63rd birthday quickly approaching, I finally broke down and bought a snow blower. I grew up in snow country, and shoveling was a rite of passage, what real men did to stay fit over the winter. It took a lot of swallowing my pride to admit that my 15- by 90-foot driveway just might be the makings of a heart attack someday.

At least last winter I got seven good uses out of it. This year it sits quietly in my storage shed. Only once have I touched a shovel to quickly clear the walks and steps of a little more than a dusting. Just perhaps (March 1 is tomorrow) I won't have to use it at all until next winter.

(Message edited by BillPierce on February 29, 2012)
 

Paul Edwards
Senior Member
Username: Pedwards

Post Number: 2235
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 76.240.207.117
Posted on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - 11:14 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I still have a rotary dial telephone hooked up down in the basement. It works like a champ. Where does that put me?

Lawn mower with a motor? We don't have one of those, either. But, then, lawn mowing is my wife's job.

OK, we do have a gasoline powered chipper/shredder (like the one in the movie "Fargo"), and a single stage gasoline powered snow blower (which, like Bill's, hasn't gotten any use this winter)
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 13688
Registered: 01-2002
Posted From: 24.150.9.127
Posted on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - 11:32 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Paul, I'm surprised you don't have a crystal AM radio down there, too. There's enough output to drive a small pair of headphones, and it never needs batteries. You might get only a couple of stations, but who needs more than that, anyway?
 

Josh Vogel
Junior Member
Username: Loopie_beer

Post Number: 97
Registered: 02-2011
Posted From: 65.60.214.75
Posted on Thursday, March 01, 2012 - 02:36 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

After all, it's not so tough to swirl a starter whenever I walk into the kitchen, is it?
I bought my first stir plate for this exact reason, got tired of walking into the kitchen and wearing my arm down to get tose yeasties in suspension. Well, that and the fact that my friends would make fun of me for carrying it around, bringing it to their house, swirling it every so often... well you get the picture.
OK, we do have a gasoline powered chipper/shredder (like the one in the movie "Fargo")
I'm a little worried to ask... did you use it like it was used on "Fargo?"
 

Nephalist
Advanced Member
Username: Nephi

Post Number: 565
Registered: 12-2005
Posted From: 76.94.30.23
Posted on Thursday, March 01, 2012 - 05:00 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Am I the only one seeing a connection between the "old fogey" thread (what do you like about hombrew sites from this century) and this thread? I just had a good laugh nonetheless which is why I am here. Maybe you can fashion a converter to harness the power of your snowblower or motorless lawnmower to drive your stirplate, all the while thinking about the latest showing of doomsday preppers. I love this place.

(Message edited by nephi on March 01, 2012) since I didn't know how to spell doomsday

(Message edited by nephi on March 01, 2012)
 

Andy Hancock
Intermediate Member
Username: Ahancbrew1

Post Number: 349
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 192.55.54.40
Posted on Thursday, March 01, 2012 - 10:48 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I'll be making a 3 liter starter soon. I'll dust of my stir plate and look for my stir bars. I know I saw one somewhere a few weeks ago.

I remember when Batman was "in color", but that didn't do me any good because my TV was black and white.

I'm approaching 50 so my electric stir plate should be fine. When I turn 60 I'll see if I can find a gasoline powered one
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 13689
Registered: 01-2002
Posted From: 24.150.9.127
Posted on Thursday, March 01, 2012 - 12:18 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I want a steam-powered stir plate.
 

Paul Edwards
Senior Member
Username: Pedwards

Post Number: 2236
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 76.251.231.237
Posted on Thursday, March 01, 2012 - 01:18 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Bill,

I may actually have the pieces for a crystal radio in a box someplace. I built one when I was a Cub Scout. If it's not in a junk box here, it's in a junk box in my parents' basement.

You could probably find an antique toy steam engine someplace that you could rig to run your stirplate. If nothing else, it'd be a conversation piece.

Josh, we did put the chipper/shredder in the front yard one year for Halloween, with a mannequin leg sticking up out of it. Didn't get many trick-or-treaters that year.

I do have a Christian Becker Chain-o-Matic analytical scale on the mantle in the living room:

scale.jpg
 

michael atkins
Advanced Member
Username: Mga

Post Number: 870
Registered: 11-2003
Posted From: 70.59.171.202
Posted on Thursday, March 01, 2012 - 03:04 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

For that stir plate - Go Green.

Use a Hampster in a Treadmill Cage!
 

Paul Hayslett
Senior Member
Username: Paulhayslett

Post Number: 3026
Registered: 02-2002
Posted From: 24.2.134.193
Posted on Thursday, March 01, 2012 - 05:32 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Gotta give props to Dan at stirstarters.com!

I just opened my box of 3 stir plates (one for me and one each for my two regular brewbuddies). Nicely built units with stir bars, keeper magnets, instructions, and lifetime warranty. Very well packed for shipping. Totally reasonable price. I'm a fan.
 

Jeff Rankert
Intermediate Member
Username: Hopfenundmalz

Post Number: 385
Registered: 06-2008
Posted From: 76.122.178.91
Posted on Thursday, March 01, 2012 - 08:56 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Dan also stands behind his product and will replace it for any reason. He replaced mine, and I had dropped it,and admitted it was my fault. Great service.

Disclaimer - I also know Dan, as he is in our club. Great person. His little retirement hobby blew up on him and became a business. He was at SN ~4700 when I boiught mine, the replacement was 5300 a few months later.

PS - He has a special on his page under Feb news that includes a 2L flask also, $67 total delivered. Good deal.
 

Paul Hayslett
Senior Member
Username: Paulhayslett

Post Number: 3027
Registered: 02-2002
Posted From: 24.2.134.193
Posted on Thursday, March 01, 2012 - 09:14 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

My SN is 6246, so he must be shipping them at a good clip.

Just tested mine with a growler half-full of water. Instructions say a growler won't work due to the convex bottom, but it worked fine for me as long as I kept the speed reasonable.

If you see Dan at a club meeting, tell him I'm a happy customer and will gladly send other homebrewers his way.
 

JeffS
Junior Member
Username: Steinie

Post Number: 97
Registered: 07-2010
Posted From: 68.80.234.33
Posted on Thursday, March 01, 2012 - 10:32 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Once I got a stir plate, I realized I didn't need to buy as much yeast. For a 10g batch, I would buy 2 packs/vials of yeast and make a starter from each for the fermenter. Then when I got the starter I realized I could ramp up the starter a little more and make enough for the 10g. Been saving $6 a batch ever since. Sure I could have done that before the stir plate, I guess, but at least that's how I justified buying one.

For my next invention, a CO2 powered stir plate using the pressure and weight of C02 produced from the starter to run the motor.
 

Paul Hayslett
Senior Member
Username: Paulhayslett

Post Number: 3035
Registered: 02-2002
Posted From: 24.2.134.193
Posted on Friday, March 09, 2012 - 12:41 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

"Then I saw my yeast,
Now I'm a believer,
Without a trace,
Of doubt in my mind..."

(Too soon after Davey Jones' death? Sorry.)

Watching my first stir plate starter sure is an education. Makes me wonder if I could rig up a monster stir plate for my primaries.....
 

Andy Hancock
Intermediate Member
Username: Ahancbrew1

Post Number: 356
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 134.134.137.73
Posted on Tuesday, March 13, 2012 - 08:54 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I made a 3 liter starter with 12 ounces of DME and 6 grams of Mount Hood pellets for my Whitelabs WLP838 South German Lager yeast on Sunday afternoon. I placed the starter on my stir plate and placed a small stir bar (about Ĺ inch) inside. I got the stir bar in the center, set the speed to the slowest setting, and still heard a ticking noise from the stir bar clinking on the glass. No big deal though. About 8 hours later there was 2 inches of krausen. I usually donít get a much krausen with my starters, so this sure looked different. 24 hours later the foam has settled some to about Ĺ inch.

Iím planning on crash cooling the starter for a batch of Dunkel Iím brewing on Sunday.

How long should I leave the stir bar on?
 

Dave Hacker
Senior Member
Username: Dhacker

Post Number: 2541
Registered: 11-2002
Posted From: 99.117.36.145
Posted on Tuesday, March 13, 2012 - 11:47 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I leave my stir plate running til I'm ready to crash cool it.

On a separate note, I also take another magnet, (in my case a neodymium) hold it to the outside bottom of the flask and drag the stir bar up and out before I crash it.
 

Andy Hancock
Intermediate Member
Username: Ahancbrew1

Post Number: 357
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 134.134.137.73
Posted on Tuesday, March 13, 2012 - 12:53 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Thanks Dave,

I remove my stir bar the same way
 

Dave Witt
Senior Member
Username: Davew

Post Number: 1657
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 24.7.227.140
Posted on Wednesday, March 14, 2012 - 12:52 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I leave the stir bar in as it helps to slosh the slurry to a pourable consistency, kind of like an agitator ball in a spray paint can. (Of course, this is after I have decanted the liquid)