HOMEBREW Digest #3524 Mon 08 January 2001

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  Replies - Japanese hops, utilization, filters, wheat (craftbrewer)
  re: Reducing cider alcohol level (Rogers Michael B)
  Affordable conical fermentor II (Ken Pendergrass)
  Re: First All Grain Today ("patrick finerty jr.")
  Conical Fermenter ("Marcoux, Eric P")
  Brewater and Promash ("Pete Calinski")
  Plato ("A. J.")
  Re: conical II ("Kurt Schweter")
  Rust question (Tom Daniels)
  spent grain consumers ("Dr. Pivo")
  Mashing (Alan Davies)
  Affordable Conical Fermentor (Kevin Peters)
  Ale dropping & fermentation temp (Tom smit)
  dumb questions for the group ("Richard & Laura")
  long primary ("Jon & Megan Sandlin")
  Spreadsheet for # PrimeTabs Per Bottle (Todd Goodman)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sat, 6 Jan 2001 17:24:44 +1100 From: craftbrewer at telstra.easymail.com.au Subject: Replies - Japanese hops, utilization, filters, wheat G'day All Well I feel for our Japanese mate. He asked for a way to work out the approximate IBU's of some wild hops, and while it has been given on how he can scientifically work it out, I'm sure he left his chemistry set at home. So how can a homebrewer do this. well he cant they're hopeless at brewing, but us craftbrewers can certainly give it a shot. What you want to do is make up some small batches or very a simple 1.040-10.50 beer with just pale malt. Now each batch assume the AAU is say 3, another 6 another 9. and hop accordingly to a set IBU level you are accustomed to, for say 25 IBU's. Now also make a batch with a known AAU hop. Remember dont add flavour or aroma additions, just bitterness. Then simply simply taste them all together and see which beer comes closest to your known AAU bittering hop. Some will say you should do double blind triangular taste tests, but you are only really after a reasonable guide and this will give you it nice and easy. You will be with the margin of error for us craftbrewers on its AAU. Make it a fun exercise and have some friends arround and see if you can all agree on which is closest. Now From: "Hardter" <hardter at rcn.com> Subject: Whirlpool/cooling delay and increased bitterness Hello everyone, While reviewing Miller's Homebrewing Guide, I came across his opinion that aroma hops placed in at the end of the boil added almost as much bitterness (as bittering hops) when the boil is and left to sit for 30 minutes. Can this be accurate? <<< Steve you raise a very good point and you are right. I read somewhere that isomerisation of hops will start at temps above (give or take). So certainly isomerisation will be occurring. BUT (oh that word again I love), All these hop calculations that people use, they talk about hop utilisation. What that is simply is they have factored in what they think is lost thru the process to the finished product.. There are losses right thru the process, from the boil, in the trub, reactions in the fermentation, the crap that rises with the foam at krausen etc. What I suggest people do is just pick one formula and stick to it (me its rager). Whether its right or wrong is fairly immaterial, as the real final amount with vary brewer to brewer with his system and methods. But by sticking to just one, after a while you will recognise your level of a certain IBU you have calculated, and can adjust your hopping level accordingly. I hear many brewers say, I make my beer slightly higher IBU's than they suggest, cause i like it. Half the time they are twigging these formulas and dont even know it. One still has to pity poor Brian From: "Brian Lundeen" <blundeen at rrc.mb.ca> Subject: The Mystery is Solved! I mention this as encouragement to others out there that may be suffering at the hands of NetTyrants. We may not be able to overthrow them, but we can at least offer each other hugs of solace (Australians: substitute hearty mocking laughter) at our oppression.<<< And laugh we do, but I fear it wont take too long for this sort of cr*p to come over here. So to all you Southerners, live it up now. I give it two years and we will be swearing to. But I have bets at least we can actually type F==k, cr*p, sh+t, b=st=rd, and a host of other words like we can now. I refuse to distribute "Moral American For Beginners" in this country. Mind you Dr Pivo has a copy. Could sweden turn from fun lovers to lovers wishing they could have some fun upon his return. Now joel From: Joel Plutchak <plutchak at ncsa.uiuc.edu> Subject: Mashing a 100% wheat beer it got me thinking I'd like to brew a strong 100% wheat ale. Also FWIW, I have a bunch of rice hulls to help out with the lautering. Anybody have an idea what the recommended proportion and procedure for using then is? - -- Now I have brewed with 100% wheat malt and you do it no different to any other brew. Yes I would do a protein rest. As for rice hulls, well I add a good 10% by weight and that works., But rice hulls are cheep and to be safe go 15%. Shout Graham Sanders Oh Dear Jeff - ----------------------------- From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> BTW, Graham, have you visited that one enar you yet? Now jeff i didn't know you were serious about all this. Now I dont have a GPS but I could get damn close if you like. So do you want a picture of Hidden Valley. If so I'll get it for you. Anyway what the point getting it exactly right with a GPS. Continental drift will mean its wrong almost immediately. What are we moving, something like a centimetre a year North. Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 6 Jan 2001 02:03:54 -0500 From: Rogers Michael B <avatar at hemc.net> Subject: re: Reducing cider alcohol level You might want to try using potassium sorbate to stop fermentation, then adding more of the original recipe you started out with. Haven't worked with cider before, but it can work wonders for mead. Just a few problems. It will can't make a sparkling cider unless you have a CO2 system, and it may change how it ages (i.e. it may not pick up any nuances, etc.- I just don't know this one). There is also the potential for a clash of flavors. If there IS a flavor clash, you might want to consider "cutting" the cider with a flavor that would be complimentary such as water boiled with cinnamon or clove. I will be using this technique for my next batch so that I can add a complimentary flavor to a sack mead without kicking off a second ferment. Hope this helps, Ben Rogers "If mead spills in the woods, and nobody is around to drink it, is it still good?" Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 06 Jan 2001 09:05:46 +0000 From: Ken Pendergrass <kenp794 at earthlink.net> Subject: Affordable conical fermentor II Doug Hurst is concerned about fermenting in plastic.. being permeable and allowing oxidation. I don't think this is a problem. There is always air in even a closed fermentor. I have used both glass and plastic open and closed fermentors. I'v had many problems but not this one. Even Many commercial beers are fermented open. The real risk is in racking hot and after the secondary. I really like plastic because it's easy to clean and sanitise and dosen't break and light weight. Some of my carboys are over 10 years old. I'm getting a little woried about one breaking while I'm carrying it full of beer. I also mash in plastic. Ken in Ypsilanti Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 6 Jan 2001 09:35:22 -0500 From: "patrick finerty jr." <zinc at finerty.net> Subject: Re: First All Grain Today hi Tom, On January 5, 2001, Tom Daniels wrote: > Did my first all grain batch today using my newly converted > 12 gallon rectangular rubbermaid cooler for a mash tun. congrats! glad it worked out well for you. i was similarly successful with my first attempt. > One question, do you sanitize cooler mash tuns? Doesn't seem necessary > to me as long as the mash is relatively short, but I don't know. > How much sanitization work should I put into the pre-boil equipment? i don't sanitized anything used before fermentation. ie, the mash tun, kettle, hot liquor tank (for sparge water) are only cleaned well, not sanitized. i think it's wise to clean these items thoroughly and as soon as possible after use to avoid bacterial and mold growth. > In closing these ramblings, I'd like to thank everyone on the list for > all of their input and time. Just reading back issues and keeping up > to date on the digest has made my brewing so much better. although some would dispute this, sometimes the hbd actually contains useful, brewing related information! ObNonBrewing: i was back in the Evergreen State for the holidays and enjoyed watching the Huskies do their thing in the Rose Bowl. clearly WA state, in the NW region of the greatest country ever to exist, no matter what you say, keeps this country ticking: hops, excellent beer, coffee (starbucks), vids (nintendo), comp software galore (microsoft, etc), and big bad airplanes and rockets (boeing). -patrick, stuck in Toronto - -- "There is only one aim in life and that is to live it." Karl Shapiro,(1959) from an essay on Henry Miller's Tropic of Cancer finger pfinerty at nyx10.nyx.net for PGP key http://finerty.net/pjf Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 6 Jan 2001 09:36:35 -0600 From: "Marcoux, Eric P" <EPMarcoux at pbsj.com> Subject: Conical Fermenter Hi everyone! On the Conical Fermenters by Mini-Brew is it worth the upgrade from the Affordable Conical Fermenter ($95) to the Regular conical fermenter ($160)? Eric P. Marcoux GIS Analyst Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 6 Jan 2001 12:10:05 -0500 From: "Pete Calinski" <pjcalinski at adelphia.net> Subject: Brewater and Promash Lou says: "...isn't volume measurement of salts good enough. I find Ken Schwartz's Brewater software perfect for adjusting my water. I set it for volume (tsp) ..." I agree and I have used Brewater a lot in the past. My son got me Promash for xmas and it looks like it uses Brewater for its water calculations. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem to have the "tsp" option. It seems to be limited to "Grams Per Gallon". Is that correct? I took a quick look at the Helps and couldn't find any way to get the output in "tsp per total H2O" or per gallon. Anyone know if I missed something? Pete Calinski East Amherst NY Near Buffalo NY 0^45'49.1" North, 5^7'9.5" East of Jeff Renner (using his 12/28/00 Lat/Long). Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 06 Jan 2001 17:15:43 +0000 From: "A. J." <ajdel at mindspring.com> Subject: Plato For Frank Tutzauer: The Plato value of a wort is the percentage by weight of extract contained in it. Thus to make a sucrose solution of 10P you can put a beaker with a stir bar on a balance, tare, add x grams of pure sucrose and add water until the balance reads 10x or a little over. Now remove the beaker to a stir plate and mix being sure to keep the speed low enough that droplets don't get thrown up onto the side of the beaker. After mixing weigh again on the balance. If the weight after stirring is y then the strength of the solution is 10x/y Plato. This is a handy way to do it because 1) you'll never hit 10x exactly and 2) water will evaporate during stirring. Thus you won't have a solution of exactly 10 P but darn close and you'll know what the strength is quite accurately. As soon as you get the second weight measurement transfer the solution to a closed container to prevent further evaporation. As a side note, Plato's contribution was not in that his group made solutions with accurately known strength by weight but that they measured the specific gravity of these solutions to six decimal places thus correcting the Balling tables. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * RE Lou Heavner's comments. I think he has the proper perspective i.e. water treatment is done in order to emphasize or deemphasize some aspect of a regional beer that is tied to the local water. The hops character of Burton ales and their relationship to sulfate concentration is the obvious example. Given that this is the case, close approximation is definitely good enough. Lou cited some reasons for this but the major one is that the published ion content profiles for the various cities are by and large bogus. Take one of these to a chemist and ask him to fomulate it and he'll say "I can't. This water is physically impossible to produce". Thus approximation is not only good enough, in many cases it's the only option. WRT to chalk addition: chalk seldom contributes anything positive to a beer and, as has been noted, it is difficult or impossible to dissolve in water being treated (mother nature accomplishes solution of chalk/limestome by using carbonic acid from respiring soil bacteria and you can do the same but I suggest getting the CO2 from a bottle rather than soil bacteria) so I recommend that brewers add the "stylistic" salts to the liquor and reserve the carbonates and bicarbonates. These can be added to the mash later if and only if they are required to increase mash pH. I always note in this regard that in, for example, the case of a Munich Helles the authenticity minded brewer would synthesize the carbonate water of Munich only to then be confronted with the task of decarbonating it just as the Munich brewemaster would. By simply leaving the carbonates out when the water is treated, substantial trouble is avoided and the water has the desired stylistic effects. Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 06 Jan 2001 13:21:53 -0500 From: "Kurt Schweter" <KSchweter at smgfoodlb.com> Subject: Re: conical II I have used them for years with great results I have moved on to stainless though if anybody in the L.A. area is intrested-- I will let a few go cheep along with some 5 & 10 gallon cornies contact me directly Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 6 Jan 2001 15:06:28 -0500 From: Tom Daniels <daniels at cerias.purdue.edu> Subject: Rust question To rig a sparge sprinkler into my new cooler mash tun, (rectangular) I took a steel cookie sheet just big enough to sit in the cooler right under the lid and drilled about 50 small holes in it. To sparge, I just slowly gravity feed from the hot liquor tank slowly onto the cookie sheet and the dripping from all those holes makes a nice sprinkling sound. BUT, I noticed that the holes are rusty after just one use! (DUH!) So, I assume I'll be adding a miniscule bit of rust to my wort??? Will this be ok? I can certainly come up with something else, but this just seems to work so well. Thanks, Tom - -- Tom Daniels I guess we're all gonna be what we're gonna be, So what do you with good old boys like me? -----Don Williams Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 07 Jan 2001 02:14:20 +0100 From: "Dr. Pivo" <docpivo at hotmail.com> Subject: spent grain consumers A quick list..." of observed obfuscators of old oastings" (things that eat your spent grains). The following is a compilation of approximately 20 years of disposing of aproximately 300 kg (660 pounds.... which is of course abbreviated "lbs.", and as such should be pronounced "loubs") anually, in a quite haphazard manner, and watching same such ammounts being disposed of anally by a variety of species. Cows: Love them. Apparently enough cellulose there, that they even thrive on it, as even dairy cattle can have them and still be "producers". Pigs: As you would expect... not terribly "discriminate" eaters, and there table manners are not improved a whit by the introduction of such noble materials. Chickens: A bit related to the above when it comes to how restrictive they are in their diet. Wild birds: Never seen them take much interest, until the grain piles have been laying around long enough to attract worm production, at which time thrushes and magpies seem to be good "pile kickers" in search of what lies below. Turkeys: Whilst having a real "party" over things such as stinging nettles (imagine a mouthfull of THOSE!), they pay no attention whatsoever to spent grains for some reason.... I think that that is because they are genetically lobotomised. Roe deer: I've not had them approach mine.... which may be simply because I've spread a false rumour amongst them that I own several weapons,....but have acquaintances in the area who say they readily partake of piles they dump at the forest's edge. Moose: ditto Little black 6- legged crawly things which have a name pronounced the same as 4 very talented musicians, of which one moved to New York, never to be heard from again: There seems to be one group (Tentenibrianidae?) which does tend to mix about in the old piles, particularly if they become "mouldy" ones. ... As to other methods of diposal. 1) Since cooling the Christmas ham in the snow on the front lawn, and seeing the brown spot it produced in the lawn the following summer, it has occured to me how effective prolonged heat is in killing roots.... I have now begun a campaign of packing the hot grains around my strawberry plants, in order to intimidate the "quick-root" invasion.... alas, thus far without much success. 2) You might try wrapping them in a sort of "present" type packaging, with pretty bows on it, driving into the city of your choice, and then leaving the package on the front seat with the passenger door obviously unlocked, and abandoning the vehicle for a while. Some helpful soul will generally remove them for you. 3) Failing all else, you might pack them into pillow slips, take them to your local health food store, touting them as an "organic" method for curing neck pains, insomnia, psoriasis, piles, high blood pressure, a potency enhancer, and promoting natural weight loss, and selling them at 4 times the price you originally gave for them........ some folks will believe ANYthing. Dr. Pivo Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 07 Jan 2001 14:38:05 +1100 From: Alan Davies <afjc at cnl.com.au> Subject: Mashing Fellows I need help, my mashed beers are coming out with a tainted taste. The whole presentation of the beer is poor,head and with an off smell. My main suspect is the Crystal barley, I brought 10 ks. of cracked Jan 2000 It has been sealed in a drum with pale barley.Would it go off in that time. My Hops were purchased April 2000 have been kept in refrigeration, and are still green. However my Barley is stored in plastic drums, while the drums are sealed they are similiar plastic to a rubbish container, they are stored inside. Would it be possible the taint is coming from the plastic. I am using up to 500 grams of crystal per 10 gallons Big Al Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 07 Jan 2001 14:40:01 -0500 From: Kevin Peters <kpeters at ptd.net> Subject: Affordable Conical Fermentor Mike Roesch wrote: > I have been doing some surfing on websites for advanced equipment > and came upon the Affordable Conical Fermentor II by Minibrew. Has > anyone used this device yet? It seems to be a good choice for an > all grain brewer who would like to harvest yeast for subsequent batches > etc. > > Anyway, any opinions? experience? > I have one of these fermentors. I like the large opening for cleaning, the separate racking port and bottom valve. I found the base to be sturdy if on a solid floor, but wobbly on a carpet. On the model I have, the racking port is closed with a spring clip, which I don't care for. The web site now pictures a ball valve which should be better. I wish the plastic blocked all light, but some light does get through, so I cover the unit with a large box when in use. It is too big to fit in a refrigerator, but if you ferment at room temp it should be fine. You do need to be careful with the plastic threads, and liberally use the supplied pipe tape to get a seal on all the joints. Good luck if you get one. No affiliation, yada, yada, yada. Kevin Peters Mechanicsburg, PA Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 08 Jan 2001 08:52:01 +0000 From: Tom smit <tom at lunica-data.com.au> Subject: Ale dropping & fermentation temp Hi, A couple of questions. When I brew a batch of ale it is my practise to zip an old parka around the fermenter to keep the temparature constant. When the fermentation is really going it can reach a temperature of 24C, a bit above the ideal maximum. What is the main flavor effect this too high a temperature would cause? Over this holiday period I have spent a fair bit of time reading about brewing, including G Wheelers BYORAAH & Homebrewing. The Real Ale book describes dropping as racking without aeration wereas in Home Brewing he suggests running the ale out the tap of the primary fermenter into the secondary, i.e. with aeration. I have noticed the odd post here about brewers re-aerating their brew about 14 hours after pitching, whereas Graham recommends dropping after 36-48 hours. Does any one practise dropping with aeration? At what time? Have you noticed any significant positive or negative effects? Graham talks about northern yeasts needing rousing-how does this relate to Wyeast & White Labs yeasts? Perhaps a note re rousing/dropping could be added to the table of yeasts someone wants to build up? For those who responded about my questions relating to my bock, I racked it over the weekend when it had attenuated from 1.062 to 1.015-my panic about nothing happening seemed mostly due to the airlock not bubbling because the fermenter lid was not screwed on tightly enough (normally I make ales using open fermentation) Cheers Tom Smit Tiny Horses Brewery Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 7 Jan 2001 18:12:24 -0700 From: "Richard & Laura" <dromedary at worldnet.att.net> Subject: dumb questions for the group Greetings all, 1) Is there any reason NOT to "rinse" my carboys with a small amount of clear grain alcohol (vodka, rum) as a final step in the sanitizing process? The carboys have been thoroughly rinsed, but I want to negate anything bad in my tap water. 2) Should I try to aerate the beer when racking from the primary fermenter to the secondary fermenter? It seems to give the yeast new vigor. All advice appreciated! Richard Dulany El Paso, TX Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 7 Jan 2001 17:55:07 -0800 From: "Jon & Megan Sandlin" <sandlin at bendcable.com> Subject: long primary I have a batch that I made right before the holidays and I have neglected to bottle; it has been in the primary fermenter for about a month now. Will there be enough viable yeast in order to carbonate in bottles? Do I need to rack to a secondary or can I just bottle? What should I do. Thanks in advance for your help. Jon Sandlin Bend, OR Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 6 Jan 2001 10:43:16 -0500 From: Todd Goodman <tsg at bonedaddy.net> Subject: Spreadsheet for # PrimeTabs Per Bottle Does anyone have an Excel spreadsheet made up that takes temperature (to determine current dissolved CO2 volume), bottle size, and desired CO2 volume and gives # of PrimeTabs (500mg Corn Sugar) needed to achieve this? I know it should be pretty easy to whip up, but I'm not an Excel user and I thought I'd check if anyone had already done this. I took a look in the brewery (http://www.brewery.org) software pages but didn't see one. Also, I believe someone out there had a great spreadsheet or web page that converted between any kind of unit you could possibly think of. Does anyone have a pointer to that? Much thanks! Todd Goodman Brewing in Westford, MA 42'35.542N, 071'27.066W, 277ft elevation (according to my new toy) Return to table of contents
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