HOMEBREW Digest #2906 Mon 21 December 1998

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  Medieval Malting (Badger Roullett)
  Welding Oxygen ("Colin K.")
  Tempering malt (kathy/jim)
  Re: Carbon Monoxide Blues (Brandon Brown)
  Milling, ("David R. Burley")
  Milling, Dry Counties, Thermometers (Dan Listermann)
  Prison Booze (Kim Thomson)
  Subject:  A tasting Question (michael w bardallis)
  Muddy Beer? (Badger)
  Re:  A tasting Question ("Jim Hodge")
  Maltmills, fixed vs. adjustable (Randy Ricchi)
  keg conversion questions (Randy Miner)
  No sparge data point ("Eric Fouch")
  Oxygenation ("C.D. Pritchard")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Fri, 18 Dec 1998 11:14:11 -0800 From: Badger Roullett <branderr at microsoft.com> Subject: Medieval Malting >>From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> >>Subject: Re: Badger's Medieval Ale Recipe >>I'm sure midieval British Brewers used wood as well as peat to dry their malt." The research I have so far shows that yes they used wood, but they preferred straw... "In some places it is dried at leisure with wood alone, or straw alone, in other with wood and straw together, but of all, the straw dried is the most excellent. For the wood dried malt, when it is brewed, beside that the drink is higher of color, it doth hurt and annoy the head of him that is not used thereto, because of the smoke." - -- William Harrison, A Description of England 1577. Gervase Markham in his book "The English Housewife" originally published in 1615, he goes furthur into the details of the fuel that is best for drying malt. He points out that of the types of straw you can get, wheat straw is the best, "because it is most substantial, longest lasting, makes the sharpest fire, and yeilds the least flame." next in his eyes is rye, oat straw, and last barley straw. After straw Markham recomends the use of dried long fen rushes, and makes a comment on smoke here as well, where he recomends rushes as fuel. "...for they make a very substantial fire, and much lasting, neither are apt to much blazing, nor the smoke so sharp or violent but may very well be endured..." Next he goes on to recomend many other straws such as pease, bean, and the like. Only after all of these different fuels does he recomend the use of wood as a fuel. There apparently was the opinion that when an ale tasted bad, the first thing to blame was "wood dried malt". Peat was used, but it was probably not in common usage in england until around the middle in 1600's. Here is a passage from Markham to support my theory.. "Now for coal of all kinds, turf or peat, they are not by any means to be used under kilns, except where the furnaces are so subtly made, that the smoke is conveyed a quite contrary way, and never cometh near the malt; in that case it skilleth not what fuel you use, so it be durable and cheap it is fit for the purpose, only great regard must be had made for the gentleness of the fire; for as the old proverb is 'soft fire make sweet malt'..." Later in the book he describes a new Kiln to roast malt in called the "French Kiln" which has the virtues above, and recomends to all that they embrace this new technology, and says its starting to be "common amoung us", and he also describes a Kiln that is built into a chimney to use the heat of the fire, but avoid the smoke. I hope this helps.. I have found these two books to be of enourmous help in researching Malting and Brewing in my chosen area of study. ********************************************* Brander Roullett aka Badger (Seattle, WA) Brewing Page: http://www.nwlink.com/~badger/badgbeer.html Badgers Brewing Bookstore: http://www.nwlink.com/~badger/brewbook.htm Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 18 Dec 1998 20:07:16 -0800 From: "Colin K." <colink at wenet.net> Subject: Welding Oxygen >And as far as the welding O2 goes, it's pure O2 like the Oxynator stuff also ... but may have >dirt and oil in it too, so it's not clean. I am a student pilot and my instructor runs a glider port. They have the concern of medical oxygen vs. welding oxygen for pilots breathing above 12,000ft. They have come to the conclusion there is no difference between the two. They are processed the same. You pay more for the medical oxygen because of the guarantee there is no water in it. But they are made at the same time. Therefore my home glider port uses welding oxygen for their planes. I have never noticed a off smell or heard of any off smells or any regulator freezing (the biggest concern for a pilot). I am told that small welding oxygen bottles at the hardware store are the same as oxynator bottles with a different label but have not checked that myself. Just my 2 cents. Colin K. Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Dec 1998 09:39:05 -0500 From: kathy/jim <kbooth at scnc.waverly.k12.mi.us> Subject: Tempering malt Jim Liddell writes about adding water to malt before milling. I've written HBD several times on this subject and want to reinforce Jim's and Siebel's practice. Flour millers temper their grain with water to toughen the bran and reduce the bran particles in the fines. Based on this, I add two tablespoons of water per pound of malt stir it around and let it set a half hour or so in a closed container. I have a sieve made of window screen (size unknown) and testing the fines of tempered malt vs untempered malt thru my Corona, the tempered malt produces significantly more fines. Visual inspection suggest larger bran flakes. More fines and larger bran particles is the desired result of malt milling. More water than 2 T/lb produces a malt impossible to push thru my Corona. Incidently, I probably would have upgraded to an expensive mill except that the tempered product thru the Corona mashed so well. Try tempering ....you'll like it. cheers, jim booth, lansing, mi and 65 mi NW of brew brother Jeff. PS Hasn't anyone out there tried the SA Spring Ale "in the Kolesch style". No responses so far. I wanna know if SA Spring Ale is as my 1991 outing to Koln and Koelsch was before I was brewing. Then I expected some wild exotic product from the buildup Koelsch had and I thot it drank like a good American bar beer. Dhhhhh! Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Dec 1998 07:38:21 -0800 (PST) From: Brandon Brown <brandonbrown at yahoo.com> Subject: Re: Carbon Monoxide Blues On Wednesday Dec 16, Jeff Renner wrote about Carbon Monoxide monitors and their use in brewing. I'll have to say from some experimental procedures I used, he's exactly right! When I bought my King Kooker from Cabella's I always wanted to brew in the basement of a house I live in in Chicago. Putting the propane stove underneath a window wasn't enough. I wanted to make sure I wouldn't kill us all, so I bought a CO monitor. Its a digital one with PPM shown on the front and a peak button, to view the peak level of CO. When all of the windows were closed in the basement, the biggest level I could get was in the high 80s. Maybe my stove burns more efficiently, but that was the best I could do. Opening the window by the stove helped, but the levels were above 50 when 1 burner was on. If I opened a couple of windows at opposite ends of the basement, one over the stove and the other across from it, it reduced it to below 28. Only when I opened one window and mounted a window fan in the window did I go below 10. Actually during the entire wort boil, I was never above 5. It's nice to know that the furnace is working correctly also..... Brandon _________________________________________________________ DO YOU YAHOO!? Get your free at yahoo.com address at http://mail.yahoo.com Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Dec 1998 10:45:21 -0500 From: "David R. Burley" <Dave_Burley at compuserve.com> Subject: Milling, Brewsters: Jim Liddil says that milling has been discussed more than other topics and like him, I do not wish to re-start a subject that has been beaten to death. However, his comment about "wetting" the grain before milling may be misleading to some readers and I would like to clarify this a little as both wet and dry milling is used commercially. "Tempering" is the term used when dry millers apply a very small amount ( like 1%) of water sprayed and stirred into malt and allow it to sit for several hours. The water reduces the brittleness of the husk, so as to minimize the breakage of the husk and probably reduces the amount of flour generation during milling. I have on occasion used this technique when milling barley in an attempt to soften it but I would recommend an alternate technique for the tough unmalted barley and that is to cook it in the husk in three times the water as barley by volume and allow it to swell for a few hours ( overnight usually) and then "wet mill" it in the blender. Commercial wet milling often uses rolls after the malt has been steeped. Jim is exactly correct that professional multiroll dry mills use screens to control feedback and short circuit between rolls. However, in my own experience, not a theoretical argument, husk breakage is not a problem of any great degree using the technique I outlined, since I mill at a large mill nip at first to largely crack the malt grain and the dehusk it. The freed husks do not become significantly smaller on the second pass because they are so thin and the nip is only 0.060 in and perhaps because my little mill is less efficient than the giant rollers in a professional brewery. Breweries often continue on to 0.012-0.014 in. nip , depending on the physical arrangement of the lauter, so in this case it is possible that the husks could get milled. Point is, when I do it the way I outlined, I get good extraction efficiency and easy lautering. Keep on brewin' Dave Burley Kinnelon, NJ 07405 103164.3202 at compuserve.com Dave_Burley at compuserve.com Voice e-mail OK Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Dec 1998 11:18:23 -0500 From: Dan Listermann <72723.1707 at compuserve.com> Subject: Milling, Dry Counties, Thermometers Jim Liddil writes: By passing all the grain through a mill multiple times one is subjecting all the husks and endosperm to the rollers multiple times. Yes one can achieve the same size distribution but the make up of the size distribution will be different from a multiple pass technique vs a true 6 roller mill. Particularly in the small screen sizes one will see more husk material in the multipass technique. > Try as I might, using several different kinds of mills - including an eight inch diameter roller mill,- eventually employing screens between passes and a variety of gaps ( in desperation I resorted to "design of expriement" methods to determine the gaps) I have never come close to duplicating the specs outlined by the Practical Brewer. Further, the more that I moved into the direction of the Practical Brewer, the less desirable the grist appeared - even with the eight inch mill and screening between passes. I seriously doubt that one can come close to the same size distribution of a six roll as outlined in the Practical Brewer by any number of passes with any homebrew mill even using screens between passes. I would even like to see a commercial six roll mill attempt it. Jack Schmidling reminded me of the year that I lived in Danville, Kentucky. At the time I lived there ( 21 years ago - I haven't been back ), Danville, Boyle County and all the counties surrounding Boyle County were dry. The stories I could tell. There wasn't a legal beer in thirty-five miles in any direction. I was the JCs "Liquor Chairman." It was my job to drive to Richmond every other week to purchase about five cases of beer to sell at the JCs meetings. I would sell the beer openly at restaurants where the meetings were held to anybody who was a JC, including the county prosecutor and state troopers. We had a "wet-dry"election that year. To read the papers, we were going to have painted ladies lying in all the gutters. They voted it down 2 to 1. Timo Peters writes: the temperatures will be checked with two or three thermometers before the mashing procedure to be sure that temp. readings are okay> This reminds me of a saying that goes like this: A man with one watch knows what time it is; a man with two watches is never sure. Dan Listermann dan at listermann.com Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 18 Dec 1998 15:22:51 -0600 From: Kim Thomson <alabrew at mindspring.com> Subject: Prison Booze "Prison Plot to Make Booze Goes Sour: When not working here at the shop, I work for the Alabama Department of Corrections. As a matter of fact, it was an old convict that told me how to make "homebrew" like he did during prohibition - 1 can of Premier, 10 lb. of sugar, 5 packs of Fleichmans to make 10 gal. Good thing I found a good homebrew shop to set me straight (Thanks to Hunter Bell at the now closed Birmingham Homebrew). Convicts here have been making "julip" (as it is known here) for as long as anyone can remember. Today the normal recipe is Kool-Aid and all the fruit and yeast they can steal from the kitchen. It is a rather nasty, foul smelling brew that they hide in all sorts of places - most popular is in a bleach bottle hanging from a cord in a pipe chase. The pipe chase is between two 2 man cells so the owner can not be determined without someone claiming it (not likely since it could lead to lock-up time). In 15 years, I've never seen anyone get sick from the brew - have seen people stabbed over it, not sick from it. Kim Thomson - -- ALA-BREW Homebrewing Supplies Birmingham, AL http://www.mindspring.com/~alabrew/ Full Service Home Beer And Wine Brewing Supply Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Dec 1998 12:31:57 -0500 From: dbgrowler at juno.com (michael w bardallis) Subject: Subject: A tasting Question John Adsit sez: "I started with a brown ale, and immediately felt something was very wrong. It was overly hoppy, and I thought it was cascade I was tasting. It tasted like SNPA with a LITTLE chocolate malt." "If not, what does their stout taste like SNPA with a tan? Or were my taste buds numbed by the fine Bass experience preceding it?" John, Finishing hops are considered OK/optional by many in American stouts and brown ales. My preference is to go very easy or leave them out entirely, especially in stouts. Sierra Nevada Stout, with noticeable hop presence, is quite welcome in my glass, however! The fact is, ANY beer sampled after Bass "IPA" (no kidding, check the tiny letters on the label,) is going to seem pretty hoppy. It's pretty wimpy in every dimension. I think the reputation as a representative beer has a lot to do with its wide availability well in advance of many more flavorful beers available nowadays; said availability owing mainly to, I'm certain, its inoffensiveness to the average American palate. Mike Bardallis wishing vainly for snow in Allen Park, MI ___________________________________________________________________ You don't need to buy Internet access to use free Internet e-mail. Get completely free e-mail from Juno at http://www.juno.com/getjuno.html or call Juno at (800) 654-JUNO [654-5866] Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Dec 1998 15:07:22 -0800 (PST) From: Badger <badger at nwlink.com> Subject: Muddy Beer? I just checked the keg of beer i had ready for the wedding of my friend. The beer came out of the tap, thick, brown, and opaque. very upsetting. it looks like chocolate milk. tastes like beer. but looks like crap. i pulled about 6 pints, no change. it had some wheat malt, and mostly extract based, with a pound of crystal steeped. fermented 1-2 weeks with Nottingham ale yeast, and then kegged. stuck on the back porch to chill, and carbonate. i put it on at ~20psi for a couple of days. its not over carbonated, just icky looking. does this lame-o description hint at anything? can someone help me figure this out? I have no idea what happened. Badger ************************************************** Brander (Badger) Roullett email:badger at nwlink.com Homepage: http://www.nwlink.com/~badger SCA: Frederick Badger, AoA, Light of St. Bunstable, Green Leaf Squire to Viscount Sir Nicholaus Barchatov Pursuivant At Large, Senior Marshal Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Dec 1998 20:31:07 -0600 From: "Jim Hodge" <jdhodge at worldnet.att.net> Subject: Re: A tasting Question John, I think the point is: Did you like the beer? If you didn't, don't go back there and tell your friends not to patronize the place. The brewer/owner will get the message eventually. Brewpubs and microbreweries are not constrained by BJCP guidelines. If they can make a beer and sell it, regardless of the recipe or its fitting a particular style, then, from their perspective, their mission is accomplished. If they can't sell it, then they will change or go out of business. This is one of the great accomplishments of the American micro revolution.....anything goes. Of course, not everything works, but when it does, life is interesting for both the brewers and the consumers. To paraphrase Voltaire: I disagree completely with your recipe, but I will defend to the death your right to brew it. Jim 'One time zone away from Jeff Renner' Hodge Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Dec 1998 23:06:36 -0500 From: Randy Ricchi <rricchi at ccisd.k12.mi.us> Subject: Maltmills, fixed vs. adjustable John Wilkinson stated in Saturday's HBD: "Actually, I find I never adjust the gap now that I have found the one that seems to work best." This is exactly why I believe their is no need for an adjustable Schmidling Maltmill. The fixed Maltmill is adjusted beautifully, and I don't need to worry and fuss over the setting on my mill because I can't. IT'S FIXED!!! It's human nature to dink around with stuff like maltmill adjustments if you're given the opportunity. I think that's why some people like adjustable mills; they think they're going to find some perfect setting that's never been discovered before. The fixed Maltmill setting, in my opinion, is already there. If you need to improve your extraction efficiency, work on your sparging technique, or your water chemistry. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 21 Dec 1998 14:15:44 -0500 From: Randy Miner <randyminer at mpinet.net> Subject: keg conversion questions Hi, I have read of several people drilling and threading their sankey and screwing a pipe nipple right in with some teflon tape, with good results. I have some 1/2" ball valves nipples, etc. I don't know the size of the threads though. When I say 1/2" NPT does it refer to the thread on a fitting with a 1/2" id, where the thread diameter is actually larger? This is what is confusing me. I need to know so that I can try to find the right size tap. Can anyone tell me if a national course thread tap of the appropriate diameter will work with pipe thread, and also a source to buy the tap, such as Grainger or other? I have seen some taps specified as national pipe thread in some craftsman sets, but they are small diam. and the sets are $$$. I know I could go the route of a bulkhead type with some teflon washers, etc. but I like the idea of threading the keg directly. I have some borosillicate (sp?) glass for sight tubes also, but am not exactly sure how I am going to mount them to the keg. Anyone have any experience with it? I know where I can get milky colored teflon tubing, but want to try this glass first. I would also like to improve the surface finish of the keg. The inside has some stain/discoloration from something, and the outside is beat up, dirty and not shiny/reflective. I have read in a jewelry making book (Jewelry Concepts and Technology, by Oppi Untracht) that a Hydrochloric acid pickle can be used to remove oxidation. I have tried various polishes with little success. My three-tier is coming along slowly but surely. People laugh when I tell them I want thermometers for Christmas... TIA "drink better beer" Randy _______________________________________________ ______| Randy Miner |_____ \ | randyminer at mpinet.net (home) | / \ | | / / | http://home.mpinet.net/randyminer/ | \ / |_______________________________________________| \ /________) (_______\ Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 20 Dec 1998 17:51:33 -0500 From: "Eric Fouch" <fouches at iserv.net> Subject: No sparge data point Kyle mused: " I did my first no-sparge brew tonight and here are the results: -61% efficiency from theoretical maximum yield -1.64 qts/lb in the mash (1.33 qts/lb during conversion, then added 1 gallon during mashout) -1.34 grain scale up factor I am not sure how this will affect the final taste of the beer, but I am hoping for the best. " I do this all the time. It should taste like butt. Eric Fouch Bent Dick YoctoBrewery Kentwood MI Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 20 Dec 1998 20:06:55 From: "C.D. Pritchard" <cdp at chattanooga.net> Subject: Oxygenation Brain posted: >If shaking the carboy, it seems the best method was laying it horizontally >across your knees and rocking it back and forth to make "ocean waves"... I wouldn't try this- the walls of a glass carboy are surprising thin and knees/legs are easily cut by any resulting glass shards. YM (and risk tolerance) MV. >And as far as the welding O2 goes, it's pure O2 like the Oxynator stuff >also but may have dirt and oil in it too, so it's not clean. You may >consider doing it anyway, but use a 2-micron inline filter between the O2 >bottle and your wort. Dirt, maybe; oil, never. Well, maybe for a few microseconds before the very rapid exothermic reaction between the two consumes the oil. Just some SWAGs: if one flushes the O2 regulator (i.e. high flow of O2) before using it for oxygenation, dirt is likely not a consideration. Since 100% O2 is a rather hostile enviroment, I don't think many wort damaging microbes would survive in the cylinder or high pressure side of the regulator. I use a Berzomatic O2 cylinder and the regulator from their small torch outfit for oxygenation without problem. c.d. pritchard cdp at chattanooga.net http://chattanooga.net/~cdp/ (homebrewing stuff) Return to table of contents
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