HOMEBREW Digest #3341 Fri 02 June 2000

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		Digest Janitor: janitor@hbd.org
		Many thanks to the Observer & Eccentric Newspapers of 
		Livonia, Michigan for sponsoring the Homebrew Digest.
				URL: http://www.oeonline.com

  re: mash pH ("Stephen Alexander")
  Re: Steve Lanes Stuck Mashes ("J. Kish")
  re: pseudo-saaz ("Stephen Alexander")
  my lord... (Scott Morgan - Sun On-Line Telesales Representative)
  Fosters ("Richard Pass")
  Homebrew Tri-Nations? (Ant Hayes)
  Dirty play by SAB ("Braam Greyling")
  Beer on airplanes ("Fred L. Johnson")
  Hop Scale (Hop_Head)
  Water analysis help ("Bob Opalko")
  Simple fix for false bottom woes (Paul Shick)
  Re: Fosters recipe (Jeff Renner)
  Brewing Software??? (Dan Martich)
  re:mashing specialty malts ("Nathaniel P. Lansing")
  RE:false bottom design for RIMs (J Daoust)
  Low FermentationTemps/Sulfur (Richard Foote)
  Specialty grain mashing & cheap sanitizer (VS Central)" <SIER1 at Aerial1.com>
  mash pH - something's a miss ("Alan Meeker")
  re: Foster's Recipe (Bill.X.Wible)
  San Francisco trip ("Alan Meeker")
  Thermocouple braid problem. ("Peter J. Calinski")
  Digital Thermometers ("Peter J. Calinski")
  RE:Hops disease, false bottom design for RIMs (Jonathan Peakall)
  Thermocouples and Thermistors (Jeff Berton)
  Fred Garvins Memory (fred_garvin)
  Growing Saaz (John Varady)
  Czech Hops ("St. Patrick's")
  Diacetyl ("Houseman, David L")
  mateship (Graham Sanders)
  false bottom design for RIMs (AKGOURMET)
  Blanche De Chambly (Graham Sanders)
  Hops Health ("Eric J Fouch")
  French Homebrewing (TtobbaMS)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 00:13:51 -0400 From: "Stephen Alexander" <steve-alexander at worldnet.att.net> Subject: re: mash pH A little context: Nathaniel Lansing attempts to prove that I am in error when I report that I have experienced entirely normal levels of head foam in beers brewed without a mashout. His refutation of my repeated experimental result is a journal experiment paper which shows a 14% increase in certain foam related proteins during a 76C 'mashout' of a modified Congress mash. I question the relevance of this paper to typical brewing and his overgeneralized conclusion that mashout is *necessary* for normal foam levels on several grounds. The amount of foam active proteins (and correlative factors) needed for normal foam is not evident and the extended 90 minute mashout period only increase levels of the critical protein fraction by 14%. The experimental mash is rather thin (~2qt/lb). The mash is not pH adjusted (see below). The experimental malt is very overcrushed by brewing standards. The step mash period is unusually lengthy (3.3 hours mash + 1.5 hour mashout). Nathaniel Lansing experiments and writes ... >Steve had said a congress mash of 25 g malt in 100 ml >distilled water with 150ppm Ca++ was not pH adjusted; it obviously is. "pH adjustment" means controlling the pH to a predetermined value or range based on measurement. It does NOT mean happening upon a reasonable pH based on a particular combination of calcium addition, malt and temperature. This must be so because most reports I have read indicate entirely different resulting pH values under similar conditions to your experiment. Also a Congress mash CANNOT include a calcium addition; you have described a *modified* Congress mash with respect to ion addition. temperatures and time. That your experimental result produced a mash pH in the normal brewing pH range is a very interesting, even odd result and I sincerely applaud you for performing and reporting on the experiment. The paper you cited did add 150ppm calcium ions to the mash water, but was NOT pH adjusted to any specified value as far as I can tell. Some obvious problems arise in your experiments implementation and your report. 1/ The paper's calcium ions may have been from calcium's sulfate, calcium hydroxide, calcium bicarbonate or other sources. I would expect different pH results from each of these for several different reasons. See the 'procedures' or 'methods' portion of the quoted paper. 2/ Adding the calcium after the mash-in, as you did, should have a different effect than adding the calcium before mash-in or at a lower temperature. 3/ The explanation of the pH increase you observed is an anomaly, as Dave Burley and Aaron Sepanski noted, which violates reference sources and common experience and *requires* an explanation. Your pH both in distilled water and after gypsum addition defy common experience, as noted by A.J.deLange and ubiquitous reports in the brewing lit. It is puzzling that Continental lager brewing with Plzen water quite close to distilled require acidification, but your experiment required a pH increase !!! Your results call for experimental repetition, and explanation. To your credit you did repeat these, with the same anomalous result. Now it is time to have someone else repeat the experiment - someone without an axe to grind. It would be nice if AJ or Alan Meeker or Scott Murman another party not directly involved in the discussion but with access to the lab equipment and a good reputation for accurate unbiased reportage would repeat this portion. 4/ Based on the unusual pH result you observed and the lack of explanation, any conclusion is unwarranted. But yours is outlandish ... >Conclusion: An extremely small mash responds to mash liquor >mineral content the same way a production mash responds to >mineral additions. Size (proportion) has nothing to do with the result of course. Calcium's normal effect is to DECREASE mash pH but your calcium addition INCREASED pH. These are not "the same" but are opposite results. As George Fix writes in PoBS2, pp4, "....Calcium.... . These ions react with malt phosphates (primarily K2.HPO4) and thus decrease [mash] pH ...." . The most readable and detailed description of the impact of calcium and phosphates related to brewing pH that I have *ever* read appeared in the HBD as a discussion primarily between Alan Meeker and A.J.deLange not so long ago. Again Nathaniel, I sincerely applaud your report of an interesting experiment and result. To me your result defies the literature, the methods of continental brewing and my experience with calcium additions, and I cannot make sense of your conclusion that a pH increase is "the same" as a pH decrease. -S Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 31 May 1999 22:12:51 -0700 From: "J. Kish" <jjkish at worldnet.att.net> Subject: Re: Steve Lanes Stuck Mashes Hello. Don't you hate stuck mashes when you are trying to re-circulate with a RIMS? Why not try a half pound of rice hulls, mixed in with the grist. You wouldn't believe how the circulation improves! It's like magic! You can almost run your pump at full flow! I wouldn't mash without it, now that I discovered how nice it works. You can obtain a whole bale of rice hulls at your animal feed store. Not expensive. Joe Kish Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 02:14:20 -0400 From: "Stephen Alexander" <steve-alexander at worldnet.att.net> Subject: re: pseudo-saaz Stephen Ross says ... >[....] but for a Czech Pils you may actually wish to >American grown Ultra. I think it's fabulous and perhaps superior >to Spalter. Ultra's aroma is outstanding IMO. I'll second that - Ultra is wonderful, and it isn't often that I can say anything positive about US hops for lagers. I think Ultra's spiciness is stylistically closer to Saaz and is completely at home in a Pils. Spalter is wonderful in a different way. -S Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 16:25:49 +1000 (EST) From: Scott Morgan - Sun On-Line Telesales Representative <Scott.Morgan at Aus.Sun.COM> Subject: my lord... My Lord, mention Fosters and see all those Aussies come out to play. It is a rare sight to see Regan posting more than once every 6 months. And the same day as Phil! I think your all giving Fosters a hard wrap. Its a great beer...to throw at a footy match.....to drink warm camping when some dumb bastard thinks it a funny idea for the only alcholic beverages to be bought are Fosters tinnies.....to unclog the sink. My house mates in Amherst Mass took no amount of convicing that the only beer on sale in OZ is Fosters. A bit like the idea in Oz that Amercians only drink budweiser I guess. Its an old mans beer...and definately not one that you asked for loudly over the bar. Come to think of it, i dont seem to know of many pubs in sydney with on tap. MAybe the best place to look is the Burradoo Hilton. Are you hiding secrets from us phil?? Scotty Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 17:24:13 +1000 From: "Richard Pass" <richard.pass at anu.edu.au> Subject: Fosters Regan writes: >while I resist the temptation to ask "why", here is what is used for all >CUB's mainstream (or is that midstream...?) beers. >60% 2-row lager malt, 40% cane sugar make up the fermentables Regan, a guy whose name escapes me but who said he was ex-CUB and who at the time worked for the Heathcote winery told me that the wort for VB, Carlton Draught, Crown Lager, Fosters and Melbourne Bitter was the same. According to him, after fermentation with no hops as you described and subsequent filtration, the wort was checked against specs before blending. Wort that was within spec was used for Crown. The rest was blended with wort from other ferments until within spec. All were then hopped using ISO Hop, coloured, carbonated, packaged and pasteurised. Yum! Still, I can't imagine what use this information could be to anybody. Cheers, Richard Pass Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 09:24:38 +0200 From: Ant Hayes <Ant.Hayes at FifthQuadrant.co.za> Subject: Homebrew Tri-Nations? All this talk of Fosters gave me an idea. Are any of the Kiwi or Aussie members going to be supporting their sides when they play rugby over here in SA? It might be fun to set up a Homebrew Tri-Nations. Ant Hayes Brewing where beer was invented. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 10:06:13 +200 From: "Braam Greyling" <braam.greyling at azoteq.com> Subject: Dirty play by SAB Hi South African Breweries is thge 3rd or 4th biggest brewery in the world. This is how they keep out the competition. (In my opinion, definitely not by providing a nice beer). >>>>> SA Breweries blocks Kenya Breweries with an elephant SA Breweries (SAB) has a registered elephant trade mark for one of its brands and it has told Kenya Breweries, which has indicated its desire to enter the SA market, that the elephant icon of its leading brand, Tusker, requires some alteration if it is to be introduced into SA. It refuses to do so, says SAB. SAB says conversely if it attempted to produce or export a product into Kenya bearing its elephant trade mark, it would be reasonable for the Kenyans to refuse to allow such a product to be sold there. <<<<< Braam Greyling Snr. Design Engineer Azoteq(Pty)Ltd Please note new e-mail address: braam.greyling at azoteq.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 01 Jun 2000 07:24:56 -0400 From: "Fred L. Johnson" <FLJohnson at worldnet.att.net> Subject: Beer on airplanes To the collective: Pardon me for getting a little off topic. I have always bemoaned the fact that the beers available on airlines are not of the quality that I care to drink unless I am REALLY thirsty. I have even complained about this to the airlines. It finally dawned on me that the problem here is that the airline serves everything in cans or in very small bottles, and I know of only a few high-quality craft-brewed beers that come in cans. Am I wrong in this assessment? What can we do about this? Drink wine? - -- Fred L. Johnson Apex, North Carolina USA Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 08:23:30 -0400 (EDT) From: Hop_Head at webtv.net Subject: Hop Scale Does any one know of a source for a good scale for weighing hops? I would prefer a digital model but anything will do. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 07:29:37 -0500 From: "Bob Opalko" <opalko at ebicom.net> Subject: Water analysis help Howdy all, as per suggestion by a fellow brewer who was of great help to me on rcb I am posting my local tap water analysis with the hopes of finding out if there is anything in there that is causing a "metallic" aroma and off-flavor in my brews (extracts/partial mash, concentrated boils). I have never boiled or let the water sit overnight before brewing... This is straight out of the tap and all are in ppm (except pH?). pH: 6.6 Alkalinity (P): 0 Alkalinity (T): 28.0 Chloride: 5.1 Sulfate: 3.6 Fluoride: 1.1 Free CO2: 15 Iron: <0.1 Magnesium: 1.4 Manganese: 0.034 Calcium: 8.1 Sodium: 5.5 Potassium: <1.0 Ca+Mg Hardness as CaCO3: 26 Chlorine content measured from the tap was right at 1ppm. Any suggestions? Boil first? Let it stand overnight? Now, having said that, I have access to water (w/o the convenience of being from the tap) with no treatment and the following analysis: pH: 5.5 Alkalinity (P): 0 Alkalinity (T): 12.0 Chloride: 15.0 Sulfate: 3.2 Fluoride: <0.1 Free CO2: 83 Iron: <0.1 Magnesium: 1.0 Manganese: 0.005 Calcium: 2.1 Sodium: 5.2 Potassium: 1.3 Ca+Mg Hardness as CaCO3: 9 No Chlorine measured. Would I see a significant improvement in my brew by using the untreated water or stick with the ease of tap water? Would I need to add anything for a good bitter (my favorite brew) to either one? Thanks for any help! Cheers! Bob Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 01 Jun 2000 09:03:55 -0500 (EST) From: Paul Shick <SHICK at JCVAXA.jcu.edu> Subject: Simple fix for false bottom woes Hello all, Steve Lane writes in about his problems with a set mash in his 2 tier converted keg system. He suspects that his problem is due to a sagging false bottom that restricts the flow. Steve, if the false bottom is really the culprit, then there's an easy solution that I'll outline below. However, the grain bill you mention has a lot of oats, which are notoriously "sticky," unless you do a low temperature beta-glucanase rest (104-108F, for about 15 minutes.) The other non-hardware suggestion is just to keep the flow rates as low as you can without scorching. Having mentioned these possibilities, here's the hardware approach. A few years back, I posted about my problems with a Sabco false bottom that kept collapsing during recirculation. Keeping the mash moderately thick and pump flow rates low avoided full collapses, but the false bottom still seemed to flex a bit, allowing grain to come through. Because of this, I had to clear the post-pump gate valve frequently during recirculation, to avoid clogging. After my initial post, a number of people suggested support systems for the center of the false bottom. I finally gotten around to fabricating a simple piece that seems to fix the problem entirely. The problem is that the Sabco FB is a 12" diameter circle of perforated stainless that's hinged in the middle, to make it easy to install/remove. There's a 1/2" hole in the middle where a drain tube runs through to the bottom of a converted keg. The FB seemed to flex in the middle, under the weight of grain and suction from the pump, because it's supported only aroung the edges. The easiest support for the middle section that I've been able to come up with is to take a short length of 1 1/2" OD copper pipe, cut to the distance from the bottom of the keg to the bottom of the FB (1 3/8" in my case.) I then cut four large "slots" in the bottom The pipe fits "around" the drain tube, under the FB, supporting it from below. To put the mash tun together, just put in the copper support pipe (slotted in the false bottom, with the center hole over the top of the copper pipe, then install the drain tube down the middle. Bad ASCII art follows: __________________________ / __________________________ / / | | <----- Drain tube Side view | | | | False Bottom ---------------- | | ------------------ ___________________ A | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | 1.5" copper | | | | | 1 3/8" pipe ------> | __ ____ | | | / | | \ | | | / | | \ | | | / | | \ | | ____ ---- | | ---- V _______ Keg bottom \__________________________________/ So far, the device has worked quite well. The FB has shown no evidence of flexing after a typical 20+ lb grain bill. With such batches before adding the support, the FB was coming out pretty warped. It seems to be a very simple fix to the problem. Paul Shick Cleveland Hts, OH Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 09:13:52 -0400 From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> Subject: Re: Fosters recipe Brad McMahon <brad at sa.apana.org.au> asks: >Which Fosters? The one you get in Australia, or the one brewed in the US >to American tastes... Ahh, the marketers here in the States are are much too clever to brew it here - they want to be able to say in big letters, "IMPORTED". So they brew it in Canada and ship it across the border duty free thanks to NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement). I wouldn't be surprised if they brew some here so the Canadians can drink imported Foster's too. Jeff -=-=-=-=- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, c/o nerenner at umich.edu "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 01 Jun 2000 09:29:50 -0400 From: Dan Martich <martich at nyct.net> Subject: Brewing Software??? Hello all, Are there any good brewing software out there? I think I've come across one or two but I'm still unfamiliar with what I should be looking for. Brewing Calculations? Inputting recipes? etc. I have both platforms but is there anything for the Mac? Any and all help is greatly appreciated. Cheers, Dan Martich martich at nyct.net Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 09:36:46 -0400 From: "Nathaniel P. Lansing" <delbrew at compuserve.com> Subject: re:mashing specialty malts stjones asked>>He says that specialty grains, especially crystal and dextrin malt, should not be mashed with the base malt because the enzymes will 'destroy' the dextrins, << Not really, dextrin malt is specially made to resist further hydrolysis by malt enzymes, and the malster states Carapils (r) _must_ be mashed. A good portion of the unfermentables in crystal malts is from the caramelization of the sugars, again resistant to hydrolysis (not as resistant as dextrin malt). If you are doing a full mash it is not a big deal to change the temperature profile to increase the dextrin production anyway. >>I've always put all my grain bill in the mash tun, << Do your beers come out thin and overattenuated? If they do, calibrate your thermometer, or kick your rest temperatures up a coupla degrees. crystal malts (excluding Carapils (r) 'dextrine malt') = color and flavor mash temperature=body and attenuation N.P. Lansing Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 01 Jun 2000 06:41:06 -0700 From: J Daoust <thedaousts at ixpres.com> Subject: RE:false bottom design for RIMs Steve,you never stated the flow rate of your system, maybe your problem lies with the gpm of your system. Even though you state you back it down, is it enough? I have another 3 keg system, but I am running a sort of rims/ herms hybrid. I have a separate heating vessel, about 2-3 times bigger than the average rims with a heat exchanger in it. This allows me to flow the wort at ~ 1 gal/min, I have used it for the past 7 months without any problems whatsoever. The grain bed has never stuck, and I haven't had any problems scorching the wort. I think if you backed down your flow rate(if possible) to the 1-2 gal per minute range you won't have the stuck mash probs. Good luck, Jerry Daoust Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 01 Jun 2000 09:43:24 -0400 From: Richard Foote <rfoote at mindspring.com> Subject: Low FermentationTemps/Sulfur Ant Hayes <Ant.Hayes at FifthQuadrant.co.za>wrote: >> >>I am fermenting an ale at ambient temperatures.<snip> >>the fermenting wort temperature does >>not go below 12C, and does not fluctuate too much. >> >>Question: For the last two days, in the morning, a sulphur odour emanates >>from the air lock, but at night everything smells normal. Is sulphur odour a >>sign of fermenting at too low a temperature? Jeff Renner Responds: > >I don't know, but sulfur is a pretty normal component of lager >fermentations, which take place at cool temps. I always thought it was >typical of lager yeasts, but maybe it's the temperature. One thing for >sure, it has never caused a problem with the finished beer. I certainly >wouldn't worry. I once used an alt yeast fermenting at the lower end of temperature range for ale fermentation. It produced the sulfur aroma of a lager yeast. It would seem that at least for certain ale strains, temperature can induce sulfur production. BTW, the beer came out fine. I've also used other ale yeasts in brewing a porter at 50 degrees or so (when you have an unheated basement in VT in winter, you do what you gotta do) and recall no sulfur production. Other than finishing at a higher than expected gravity, this one came out fine too. Hope this helps. Rick Foote Murrayville, GA Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 09:47:40 -0400 From: "Sieben, Richard (VS Central)" <SIER1 at Aerial1.com> Subject: Specialty grain mashing & cheap sanitizer The guy who told 'Steve' that specialty grains should not be mashed is speaking counter to every brewery text I have read and counter to every brewery practice I have seen. And given the 'authority' with which he speaks, I would assume him to be a fool. Ignore him. Think about it, you we mash out at 170 degrees to avoid tannin extraction from the grain husks, so what possible sense does it make to BOIL grains? Also, attenuation has more to do with your mashing schedule of times and temps than anything else anyway. Oh, I get it, the joke is on me because I responded. hahahaha Charley Burns asked what we use to clean equipment that doesn't cost body parts (arms and legs). I like PBW and Star San myself. And I set up my cleaning so I can clean several vessles (carboys, kettles, kegs) with one batch of cleaner and sanitizer. This stretches out the chemical and the per use cost goes down. Plus, I really like the no rinse and no flavor profile part of Star San. The cost of the Five Star products goes down further if you make a cooperative purchase with some other homebrewers and order at least $200 worth in a single order direct from Five Star. I don't know that any HB shop will be able to give you a better price for a larger purchase, you could always ask. One of my local shops won't carry it because they make iodophor and they don't want to compete with themselves. Too bad for them, they made no sale. Rich Sieben Island Lake, IL Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 09:43:27 -0400 From: "Alan Meeker" <ameeker at welchlink.welch.jhu.edu> Subject: mash pH - something's a miss Nathan, something seems seriously wrong with your pH experiment. As pointed out, the pH is changing in the wrong direction. I didn't read the original post closely enough - was the 4.78 the pH of the di-water or the mash made with the di-water? If it was the di-water then that could explain the "backwards" result, otherwise something is indeed fishy! >his results >purportedly shows a pH= 4.78 for distilled water and 5.68 for 150 ppm >calcium in wort. This is backwards to what one would expect.<< >Yeah, that is why I repeated the experiment! Another puzzlement is >why have I never measured 7 pH in distilled water? even after heating >and cooling to dispel any CO2. The reason you'll rarely, if ever, get a pH of 7.0 for "pure" distilled water is that you'll never have truly pure water! It will always be in equilibrium with whatever gasses it is exposed to - notably CO2 which will set up an equilibrium forming carbonate species and carbonic acid in solution. Boiling will remove dissolved CO2 gas and shift the equilibrium but it will be VERY difficult to ever get a situation where you've totally eliminated all the relevant species and since water has virtually no buffering capacity of it's own it doesn't take much to deflect the pH away from it's theoretical value of 7.00 -Alan Meeker Baltimore, MD Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 09:59:47 -0400 From: Bill.X.Wible at QuestDiagnostics.com Subject: re: Foster's Recipe Thanks to all of you for the responses. Yes, I am aware that the Foster's we get in the US is contract brewed by Molson, in Canada. It says so right on the label. So I expect it's not what the guys in Australia are getting . I did expect a number of those "why do you want to bother" responses. While I like everything from IPA to Barleywine to Stout to Porter to Berliner Weisse (without syrup), and brew those beers for myself, I also brew beer for people other than myself. I've always said that for me, part of the challenge of brewing is to be able to make beer that other people (family and friends) like and enjoy. If, in the process of doing that, I can turn them on to 'real' beer, then that's great, too. But I got off that soapbox. If people like lager and want to drink it, (and ALOT of people do), then that's their choice, and I don't think they're anymore "wrong" than they think I am for liking Berliner Weisse or Gueze. Hey - at least my friend didn't ask for Coors Light! ('fraid I would have to have said - NO.) Bill Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 10:00:56 -0400 From: "Alan Meeker" <ameeker at welchlink.welch.jhu.edu> Subject: San Francisco trip Greetings, I'm heading off to San Francisco this month and would like to get any suggestions as to what to see out there (beer-related or otherwise) Any info will be appreciated. Will I be close enough to Chico for a day trip? -Alan Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 09:21:50 -0400 From: "Peter J. Calinski" <PCalinski at iname.com> Subject: Thermocouple braid problem. Dave Burley suggests: >Pete Calinski has had trouble with dipping the thermocouple braid into the >wort and having it cause false readings since the top of the thermocouple >body is not sealed. >An idea which I have never tried but should work is to get a long piece of >flexible heat shrinkable spaghetti tubing from the electronics parts store >and cover the entire length of the flexible braid of the thermocouple such >that the tubing prevents the braid ( and thus the thermocouple) from >getting wet. Heat it with a hair dryer to shrink it on the thermocople body >and the braid. Maybe even put a little curable silicone adhesive around the >seal between the body of the thermocouple body and the spaghetti for >security. I think there is even some unpigmented heat shrinkable PTFE ( >Teflon) tubing available. To which I reply: I have a heat shrink "heat gun" and a spare thermocouple so I would be glad to try this and report the results. Can anyone point me to a suitable shrink tubing? I feel it would need to be "food grade" and be able to withstand boiling temperatures. In other experiments I have tried, I used the thin aquarium tubing assuming it is food grade. It doesn't hold up well to the high temperatures. It even seems to deteriorate after multiple mashes. Right now, I like to use the device because of its temperature alarm. I start the mash water and set the alarm to 5F below the temperature I want(making sure only the tip is in the water). Then mill the grain and do other stuff. The alarm lets me know when its time to pay attention. Pete Calinski East Amherst NY Near Buffalo NY Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 09:59:26 -0400 From: "Peter J. Calinski" <PCalinski at iname.com> Subject: Digital Thermometers Bill Wright wrote: >Word to the wise on digital thermometers -- just because they show the >temperature down to the degree, or even tenth of a degree, doesn't mean >they're accurate. It's not uncommon for digital thermometers in the $10-$30 >price range to be +/- 3f. Check them before you brew. If you check the archives for the last 12 months or so, you will find a post from someone that can provide these thermometers in a calibrated version (for a price). In my experience, they should be able to claim 1F repeatability. It seems that when the temperature is changing rapidly, the units seem to update in two degree increments. Once things settle down they fluctuate in one degree increments. They must have built in some kind of tracking loop that waits for a 2F change before update during rapid movements. I assume it is the same when set to degrees C. (Does "C" stand for degrees Canadian? ;-). Pete Calinski East Amherst NY Near Buffalo NY Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 01 Jun 2000 07:16:05 -0700 From: Jonathan Peakall <jpeakall at mcn.org> Subject: RE:Hops disease, false bottom design for RIMs Greg is having problems with his hops, and BR suggest it might be spider mites. BR says " And being one of those wacky environmental types, pesticides are not an option for me. ". Refreshing to hear! Count me wacky too! Seems to be a fair number of "Miracle Grow" gardeners out there. Anyway, safer soap may help *reduce* spider mites, as it will hurt them when young. Blasting the leaves with water is great too. If done early on, along with the Lacewings, these methods should work. Another semi green alternative is a paraffin wax based spray. This will wail on the mites, but is only semi green, for while the product itself is fine for the environment (so I'm told) it is a petroleum based product, and hence the manufacturing of it is presumably ugly. Steve asks about manifold designs for a RIMS. I use a cpvc manifold, details available on request, which I made when I discovered that my Phalse bottom had become a Phlat bottom (or, as I called it while dumping out 25 # of grain to unstick the mash, ph**ed bottom), and it is terrific. And I borrowed a phalse bottom from a friend and played with food dyes on spent grain, and it appears that the manifold distributes more evenly. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 01 Jun 2000 10:37:28 -0400 From: Jeff Berton <jeff344 at voodoo.grc.nasa.gov> Subject: Thermocouples and Thermistors Just a (nitpicking) clarification, but a few people lately have been writing about thermocouples becoming water-soaked and unreliable. Thermocouples operate by exploiting the Seebeck effect and are absolutely waterproof. Although I haven't seen them, the Lowe's digital thermometers almost certainly use thermistors, which measure temperature via resistance changes. And it is possible for the semiconductor material of a thermistor to become water-soaked and give false readings. Thermistor thermometers can be very sensitive and give repeatable readings. If your digital thermistor thermometer doesn't perform to your expectations, it might be possible to calibrate it with a more accurate thermometer. Jeff Berton North Royalton, OH Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 11:19:22 -0400 (EDT) From: fred_garvin at fan.com Subject: Fred Garvins Memory Phil seems to be talking nonsense: > Unaware until I returned home and Jill informed me "one of your weirdo beer mates has left a very odd message on the answering machine" Alas, Jeff and Fred Garvin had headed home in disgust! I'll make it up to you Jeff, and Fred, I promise. > Fred Garvin doesn't remember this trip. Fred Garvin does remember waking up on Mr. Renner's front porch in a shopping cart,with his pants around his ankles, and a $20 bill stuffed in his mouth. Fred Garvin has since retired. - --------------------------------------------------------------------- Get free email from CNN Sports Illustrated at http://email.cnnsi.com/ Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 11:22:38 -0400 (EDT) From: John Varady <rust1d at usa.net> Subject: Growing Saaz I have several varieties of hops growing in my yard, some two years and some three years old. My Cascade, Liberty, Tettnang and Perle are all at the top of thier trellis already (18'). My third year Saaz, however, is just about 6 feet tall, with the second year Saaz at about 4 foot tall. Is anyone out in HBDLand sucessfully growing Saaz hops? FYI, I am on the East Coast, specifically Philadelphia. If these czech buggers don't put out, I'm gonna have to dig 'em up and replace them with a more vigorous grower. - --- On the subject of Mead and Cider being included in a brewing forum, I think that there is plenty of room for them. I had no interest in making either of these beverages for the first few years of my fermentation exploits. Now, I make a batch of cider each year in the fall and the occasional mead when the mood strikes. And you know what, I might even make sake one day. And wouldn't it be wonderful if I could find information about it when the time comes in a brewing magazine or newsgroup? And even though I might not be currently making it, reading about it might just be the push I need to take it up. I'd rather see these fermented beverages included in brewing competitions than see them slip into the cracks of obscurity. - --- And now, for something completely different: "I lowered my balls into a glass of room temperature water and empirically confirmed my calculations." - Dan Listermann on his Phloating Balls. Now doesn't that paint a pretty picture.... (I don't know how that made it past the HBD stand-ups, but I sure wasn't gonna let it slide by!) - --- See you at the BUZZ-OFF this weekend! John - -- John Varady http://www.netaxs.com/~vectorsys/varady Glenside, PA rust1d at usa.net Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 06:27:07 -0500 From: "St. Patrick's" <stpats at bga.com> Subject: Czech Hops PU, as are many other czech pilsners, is made with only Saaz (Zatek in Czech) hops. There are only 3 other hops grown in Czech Republic. Bor, Sladek, and Premiant. Many breweries use Bor and Sladek (I never saw a brewery using Premiant) in early additions only. Neither Bor, Sladek, Premiant are available in US. Just as with German hops, the hop name also includes the region where the hops are grown. There are 3 regions in Czech Rep. Saaz hops are grown in all three but the Saaz (Zatek) hops from the Saaz (Zatek) region are superior. PU and Budvar, for example, use only Zatek Zatek. When you buy Saaz hops at homebrew shops, including mine, you can't tell from the labeling which region the hops are from. None of the hop processors in North America include this information in the labeling either; they just sell 'Czech Saaz', even though I'm sure at least some of the hops are in fact Zatek Zatek. I am certain that we sell Zatek Zatek and the labeling will reflect that in the next catalog. Lynne O'Connor St. Patrick's of Texas Brewers Supply 1828 Fleischer Drive Austin, Texas 78728 USA 512-989-9727 512-989-8982 fax www.stpats.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 18:27:38 -0400 From: "Houseman, David L" <David.Houseman at unisys.com> Subject: Diacetyl Doug Moyer asks about diacetyl, poor handling and autolysis. Different people have different perceptions. Personally I don't think the two can be confused. To me diacetyl is a buttery character that's quite distinctive; I'm pretty sensitive to it whereas I'm not as sensitive to DMS although I can detect it at higher levels. Autolysis to me has a rubbery, sulfury nature that quite distinctive as well. And I've rarely noticed it in homebrewed beers, but when it's detectable, it's VERY noticeable. The thing to think about is the sources of diacetyl. Produced during normal fermentation and later absorbed by the yeast, diacetyl is present in all beer at some point, but those that are not lagered, consumed too soon before the diacetyl is absorbed, perhaps racked too soon off of the yeast or the yeast fell out of suspension too soon due to thermal shock may have levels of diacetyl that are too high for the style. Some yeast produce more diacetyl or re-absorb less than others. Fermentation at higher temperatures tends to create more diacetyl, pehaps more than the yeast can absorb. Another source is infections the release diacetyl. Pediococcus is one of these. Most brewers do not sterilize bottles or in some cases even sanitize or rinse. They are delivered from the glass manufacturer and filled. So time spent unrefridgerated lends opportunity to any latent infections that can result in additional diacetyl. Especially long journeys in warm trucks. David Houseman Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 2 Jun 2000 09:11:27 +1000 From: Graham Sanders <GrahamS at bsa.qld.gov.au> Subject: mateship G.day all I sort of feel sorry for other people outside Australia. When we talk about mateship and use the term 'mate' it has a totally different meaning to the rest of the world. I say this with the information that my Wit yeast culture from Brad should arrive today. Now poor Brad lives in the colder clims of the Great South Land, and while I do feel sorry for that, he had no hesitation in sending the Wit yeast when I asked. And Phil, with his offer to send that famous rampant yeast to the far reaches of this brown land is truely appreciated. (although he does test it sometimes - more latter). There arn't too many places I know where people are that willing to share at the drop of a hat. Why even Scott is a true mate, will to share his French maidens if I ever make my way down there. But why do I write. Well I was in my local hardware store (handles all the purchases for Nth Aus) and could not but overhear a conversation. Seemed he represented the hotel industry in the Whitsundays, and they had decided to refurbish their toilets. Now the manager was more than pleased but wanted to know why? Well it seems that some bloke with a homie in hand was running from floor to floor and hotel to hotel, checking and complaining about the toilets, yelling something about fags and american rubbish in the one breath. Well it seems when he was eventually cornered and stated he was the owner of some famous hotel, and a quick tirade from him had forces the hotel industry to 'have a wee look at itself'. Its also strange that a local rice farmer thought the famous Bud was trying to buy up our rice crop. He wasn't convinced by the arguments from the guy that he was the brewmaster of a famous hotel in NSW and needed more rice. I dont know why, but I cant help but put the two incidents together. But how did I hear of this and about Phils mateship. Well I live a few hours North of the Whitsundays, and knowing Phil would be up, I offered my pool table, and even the ladies if he would supply the famous lager. Now I know Phil is only used to the best standards of the 'Hilton', and even I have heard that the Whitsundays didn't quite messure up, but when I told him that my pool table was not quite full size, and you dont have to bend over that much to play your shots, well he never did show. Yes Jeff, I can appreciate where you are coming from. Oh Phil, yes we are still mates, as long as I get the yeast, and not that vial on the far post. Shout Graham Sanders Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 20:56:05 EDT From: AKGOURMET at aol.com Subject: false bottom design for RIMs Steve Lane wrote in about problems with his RIMS false bottom. I've run a few batches thru my RIMS now, so thought I would chime in. I use a 48 qt. ice chest with a copper manifold for the mash tun. The manifold has four 1/2" pipes running the length of the cooler with slots cut every 3/8" or so. It works ok, but if I could afford it, I would buy a perforated stainless false bottom because of the greater open area. However, this works for now. I used to stick mashes too, until I added a grant to the setup. A grant is basically a holding tank between the mash tun outlet and the pump inlet. It eliminates the suction from the pump. The mash drains by gravity into the container and then is available to the pump. All I did to make the grant was buy a gallon-size plastic juice jug, add a drain in the bottom and hang it below the valve on the mash tun outlet. The drain is a 1/2" thru-hull fitting I got at the marine store. The jug also has markings on the side so I can figure flow rate. When sparging, I like to drain a quart from the mash every 40-60 seconds for 11 gallon batches. One more thing. I used to have a hard time priming the herms pipes when the pump was connected directly to the mash tun. No problem after adding the grant. I have a picture of my RIMS at www.gourmetalaska.com/wsn9B94.html, but it was taken before the grant was added. Bill Wright Juneau, Alaska www.gourmetalaska.com Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 2 Jun 2000 11:01:42 +1000 From: Graham Sanders <GrahamS at bsa.qld.gov.au> Subject: Blanche De Chambly Speaking of sharing yeasts, the Wit yeast Brad is sending me comes from this bottle. Any ideas what yeast this could relate to, just for technical info mind you. Shout Graham Sanders Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 21:13:01 -0700 From: "Eric J Fouch" <fouches at iserv.net> Subject: Hops Health HBD'rs- Looking at the picture of the unhealthy hops, I was stricken by the resemblance to my own hop bines, now a good 10 feet tall. Last year they had the same affliction. They put out good cones, and I brewed a few award winning beers with them (don't worry, my arm's double jointed) but they just don't look healthy. And- it's not how you feel, it's how you look. Rather than take one HBD participant and supposed future Ph.D. individual who seems to have an answer for EVERYTHING, except for when you ask for references, and lives in Maryland, and whose last name rhymes with "Geeker" 's advice and feed my hops sausage and butter, I picked an afflicted leaf and looked at it under a microscope. I took a picture of what I found, which is called a "photomicrograph" and not a "microphotograph", which is a very small picture, and found a very disturbing organism: http://www.swampgas.com/files/leaf.jpg Kudos to at , the Artist Formerly Known as The Artist Formerly Known as Kap'n Salty for posting this to his website for my purposes. If you go there, do not tease his robot geek buddies. He doesn't like that very much. Anyway, I sent this picture to my former college advisor in the biology department at Central Michigan University to see if she or any of the faculty would care to identify the offensive li'l sons o' bitches getting a free ride off my hop plants. I invite any myco, micro or xenobiologists on the list to do the same. I suppose I should have broke that into a few paragraphs for the likes of Steve Alexander, but I just kegged up some Big Brew 2000 APA, and a Belgian White that I will be serving up at the NHC in Livonia later this month, and am a bit tipsy. Stop by and say "Hi!" The first 30 visitors get a free sample of whatever presumable fungus this turns out to be. Eric Fouch Bent Dick YoctoBrewery Kentwood, MI Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 21:44:55 EDT From: TtobbaMS at aol.com Subject: French Homebrewing I will shortly be moving from the US to Toulouse in France and am looking for any information on homebrewing in France. If anyone has any information on homebrew clubs, supplies or French web sites would be appreciated. Please reply by e mail. Thanks for any assistance. Mike Abbott (ttobbams at aol.com) Return to table of contents
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