HOMEBREW Digest #4150 Tue 21 January 2003

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  Writer's cramp... (Bev Blackwood II)
  Re:Subject: Pumpernickel (jim williams)
  Re: No more brewers resource? ("Mike Sharp")
  RE: competition conundrums ("Jerry Barkley")
  What up wi'dat? ("Nathaniel P. Lansing")
  220 Volt Heater (Thomas Rohner)
  Controling 240V Brew Pot. ("Dan Listermann")
  Ownership of yeast strains ("A.J. deLange")
  re: Attenuation control options and affects ("Steve Alexander")
  multiple choice BJCP exam ("Tom & Dana Karnowski")
  Some basement brewing concepts ("Mike Brennan")
  RE: kit wines and doctors (Brian Lundeen)
  St. Pat's and the Free Market ("Eric R. Theiner")
  Reselling White Labs' yeast (Calvin Perilloux)
  Wheat beer questions ("Lyga, Daniel M.")
  potential extract dimensions (David Towson)
  Re: LBHS Chatter (Wil)
  Re: 220 Volt Electric Boiling Kettle ("Drew Avis")
  Immersion Heaters (David Hooper)
  Lots of good stuff lately (David Perez)
  batch sparging efficiency and Rubbermaid coolers ("Chuck Dougherty")
  converted keg brew pot (Wyatt Francis)
  off the shelf brew systems ("Steve Dale-Johnson")
  Melting Point of Stainless Steel? (Jennifer/Nathan Hall)
  Re: barleywine overcarbonation ("Tidmarsh Major")
  Lauter efficiency / diacetyl rests (George de Piro)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sun, 19 Jan 2003 23:07:39 -0600 From: Bev Blackwood II <bdb2 at bdb2.com> Subject: Writer's cramp... > Oops Phil, you're leaking like a sieve; any judge form received back > with > only a few dozen words is not a good example of what should be done. Hear, hear... even before I joined the program, I had good guidance regarding scoresheet protocol, which was basically that you need to be as specific as possible in your criticism and that single word responses aren't good judging. I tend to not re-enter contests where the feedback is poor. I want to have confidence in the judging if I am spending my money on the contest. > Frankly if someone isn't willing to put out the effort to write for > this exam, perhaps they should consider whether this is really the > right activity for them. An excellent point. If judging was easy, everyone could do it. I also agree with the point that unless everyone is taking the test the same way, then there's a disparity. While it was pointed out that good test software exists, then it becomes a burden to maintain continuity between sites. Finding the requisite number of computers for an exam (and the configuration issues) becomes an issue. Even in a corporate setting, there are 4 different versions of Windows (98,NT, 2000 and XP) running at my office, and I can see 10 loaned computers being a similar configuration nightmare for a proctor. Let's remember the BJCP doesn't have unlimited funds and that it's run by volunteers. Pencils are cheaper and easier to work with than PC's. I'll accept writer's cramp, just as I do at every contest, when it comes time to re-take my exam. Just a word of advice to those worried about writing AND tasting... take the sections independently, it gives you more time to focus on the task at hand. -BDB2 Bev D. Blackwood II Brewsletter Editor The Foam Rangers http://www.foamrangers.com Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 02:07:02 -0500 From: jim williams <jimswms at cox.net> Subject: Re:Subject: Pumpernickel Nice to see another baker on the HBD. I used to frequent this board often, but got busy moving across country, starting a business etc. I've just brewed a couple times the last couple years, but, will be doing more soon on my new pico system! Anyway, anybody looking for baking advice, can certainly contact me as well. http://www.sevenstarsbakery.com Cheers, Jim Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 19 Jan 2003 23:54:55 -0800 From: "Mike Sharp" <rdcpro at hotmail.com> Subject: Re: No more brewers resource? jim williams asked: "Damn. I needed to order some yeast, and it looks like they are out of business. Too bad, it was great dealing with them! I am in need of a new yeast supplier, preferably one offering yeast on slants as brewtek did. Does anyone have any ideas?" Mike Replies: http://www.brewingscience.com/ They have lots of strains, and they sell plates of all of them. They have something like 32 brewtek strains. Probably all of them. Click on Yeast, then Search on the left hand column. Regards, Mike Sharp Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 07:59:22 -0500 From: "Jerry Barkley" <gbarkley at charter.net> Subject: RE: competition conundrums Brian Lundeen wrote: "At the judging table, a judge is in no position to have their library of references at their disposal. There is nothing there to provide helpful prompts. The judge must know the necessary information, and be able to recall it from memory without other aids. By turning to multiple choice questions, I am concerned that we will be certifying judges who have not demonstrated an ability to do this." let me make a reply that is based upon my very limited experience: i would think that the biggest challenge in becoming a good judge would be developing the tasting acuity and ability to recognize the flavors, tastes and aromas called for in the style guidelines. i would think that it would be esaier to judge with good taste buds and a crib sheet on the style at hand, then to have memorized the style guide but not know the tastes, flavors and aromas. take myself as an example, my experiences in grad school tell me that learning the style guidlines and related info needed to pass the exam would be a reasonable task, but i do not have the taste buds for the job. could i pass an essay exam? yes; could i judge effectively? no way. if i had the tasting ability at hand, i would not feel the least bit of hesitation to take my palm with the style guide and go judge a style. in short, i think that good judging is about tasting ability more than anyting else. Cheers Jerry Barkley - -- http://webpages.charter.net/gbarkley/ - -- "It's not a popularity contest, it's beer!" Mike Dixon - -- - --- Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free. Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com). Version: 6.0.443 / Virus Database: 248 - Release Date: 1/11/2003 Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 08:16:42 -0500 From: "Nathaniel P. Lansing" <delbrew at compuserve.com> Subject: What up wi'dat? I remember way back when discussing the value of mashing out and the improvement of foam/mouthfeel; I was blasted because the experiment was conducted with the mash tested at a water grist ratio of 6:1. This was described as out of line with normal brewery practice and way too thin of mash. Now I read: >>A few rules of thumb --- >>According to the texts, total water (mash+lauter) should be >>under 8L/kg of grist. That's 3.75qt/lb in US HB terms. >> I think that the upper bound for HB use should be around >>3.25 or 3.5qt/lb. That describes a a water/grist ratio of 6.6:1 to 8:1, maybe that study of foam active components wasn't that out of line from normal brewery practice? NL Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 14:11:37 +0100 From: Thomas Rohner <t.rohner at bluewin.ch> Subject: 220 Volt Heater Hi Andy the part you need is called a PID temperature controller. You might as well need a temp. probe (thermocouple) if it is not supplied with the controller. These devices are also used for building RIMS systems. Omega Engineering, Inc. (Part #CN8590-DC1) would be a possible device. If your load exceeds the rating of the PID output stage, you need a solid state relay or something similar. As a electronics engineer i give you the advice that you should only work with 220 Volts in a wet enviroment, if you know what you do. That means especially proper grounding. And the use of a ground fault protector is mandantory. (If you love your live) 2. thought: if the temperature precision is not so critical, you could as well use a electromechanic thermostat. This will be much cheaper, but the rating of the contacts have to be considered as well. happy brewing and building Thomas Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 09:12:59 -0500 From: "Dan Listermann" <dan at listermann.com> Subject: Controling 240V Brew Pot. Andy Buhl <buhlandr at pilot.msu.edu> asks about this. While this may not be the answer he is looking for, I approached this problem differently. First you will pay dearly for a 7000 or so watt element. Common hot water heater elements are far cheaper and easier to find, but they only go to about 5500 W as far as I can tell. I have a pot with two elements, a 3500 and a 4500. When I want to bring the wort to a boil, I plug both in. I can then regulate the boil by using only one or the other. This solves two problems. I have inexpensive, easy to acquire elements and my control system consists of two electric cord plugs. Further, if one or the other element fails, I can still brew. It will just take longer to get to the boil. Dan Listermann Check out our E-tail site at www.listermann.com Free shipping for orders greater than $35 and East of the Mighty Miss. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 14:27:02 +0000 From: "A.J. deLange" <ajdel at cox.net> Subject: Ownership of yeast strains The world changeth. One of the oldest, most persistent and, IMO, charming traditions of the brewing profession over the years has been the willingness of one brewer/brewery to supply yeast to another without question. This tradition has certainly benefited many a homebrewer who lives near a micro or regional. But this tradition too seems to be disappearing, as have so many others, because of the lure of a few extra bucks. As for being able to sell the seeds from one's tomato plants - be careful. Read the packet carefully. You will find several that specifically enjoin the purchaser from selling or even replanting seeds derived from the fruits grown with the purchased seeds. The large seed companies consider the DNA in those seeds to be their intellectual property, covertly sample farmers crops and bring suit if they can prove that a second generation was planted without purchasing new seed from them. As an aside - you don't want to grow tomatoes from the seeds of last years plants as most varieties are hybrids. Cheers, A.J. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 09:28:28 -0500 From: "Steve Alexander" <steve-alexander at worldnet.att.net> Subject: re: Attenuation control options and affects Martin Brungard says, > Many of the readers on this list know about different brewing options that >purposely alter the attenuation of a beer. Options such as mashing >temperatures and water/grist ratios, yeast selection, or prematurely halting >fermentation are attenuation control examples that I know of. [...] When mashing for low fermentability - regardless of whether you are controlling time, temperature, pH, thickness, etc you are primarily limiting the beta-amylase and only secondarily changing the amount of alpha-amylase activity. You'd need specific alpha-amylase inhibitors to do otherwise. There are two major sorts of wort dextrins to consider - 1/ amylose (chains of 1-4 linked glucose) such as maltose(M2), maltotriose(M3), maltotetraose(M4) ... and 2/ branched dextrins which normally have 1-3 connected glucose molecules in addition to 1-4 links. There are a few odd sugars in wort like a little fructose and sucrose and isomaltose perhaps produced in the boil. We'll ignore the glucans and xylans and the other stuff that don't play in the current discussion. By the time an iodine test is negative there is little amylose with a length greater 10 or so (M10). The amounts of straight chain amylose increase as the amylose chain length decreases so there is more M3(maltotriose) then M4(maltotetraose), more M4 than M5, .... This is so till we hit Maltose(M2). Grain alpha-amylase doesn't produce as much maltose(M2) or glucose(M1) as you'd expect from 'random' 1-4 link cleavage because the enzyme molecule doesn't conveniently align on the 1st or second bond of an amylose segment. AA acts randomly, but not uniformly. Some texts show the probabilities of cleavage vs distance from the non-reducing end. Anyway a highly fermentable wort will have lots of maltose(M2), but most (not all) produced by beta-amylase. If we curtail the beta-amylase activity by mashing thin or hot then we get a lot less maltose and those lost maltose molecules remain attached to higher amylose molecules (there is more M4, M5, M6 ...) and also some lost maltose appears in larger more complex branched dextrins. If there was no beta-amylase activity at all we'd get some maltose from alpha-amylase activity. So for a given fermentability the mix of wort sugars is pretty similar. As the fermentability rises the amounts of Maltose rises substantially and the amounts of the higher amyloses (M4, M5, ...M10) decrease and the branched dextrins decrease in size. As Martin says you can also use a low attenuating yeast, or stop a yeast before it fully attenuates (with sulfite or sorbate). Usually this means the yeast consume the glucose, fructose, sucrose, maltose, but only partially ferments maltotriose. - --- So the difference between low attenuation by yeast vs low attenuation by mashing is the major distinction. If the low attenuation is due to mashing, then the extra final gravity comes from more unfermentable amyloses (M4...M10) and larger sized branched dextrins. The larger dextrins and amylose will increase mouthfeel - i.e feel dextrinously full and heavy like a triple. If the yeast are the limiting factor then you'll have a significant amount of maltotriose left unfermented. Maltotriose may be the most prevalent carbohydrate in this case. This would make the beer subject to infection since maltotriose is fermentable by wild yeasts. Maltotriose is modestly sweet, so an arrested fermentation beer should also have more sweetness. Maltotriose will add something to the dextrinous mouthfeel but likely less than the dextrin&amylose mix of a hot mash. - -- I have nothing against low attenuating yeasts that may leave a beer with attenuation in the high-60% range, but I don't think forcibly arresting fermentation with sorbate or sulfite is a good idea in beer since there is no diacetyl & VDK resolution. If you want residual sweetness or dextrins then crystal & caramel malts act more reliably and safely by adding unfermentable carbohydrates & complexes. In the wine industry 18 years back there were a spate of import wines with small amounts of aspartame added. Although an illegal adulterant in commercial wines, the aspartame gave an excellent warm melting sweetness to the wines (these were dry cabernets with just a hint of background sweetness). I see no reason why aspartame or sucralose wouldn't work in homebrew as a source of residual sweetness. You'd have to experiment and see. Maltodextrin powder, available from many HB shops will add dextrinous mouthfeel to beer and almost no sweetness. -S Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 10:01:21 -0500 From: "Tom & Dana Karnowski" <karnowsk at esper.com> Subject: multiple choice BJCP exam I agree with Brian Lundeen when he says multiple choice questions are like an actor with a teleprompter. There is nothing like an essay question to see if you really know a subject or not. Remember that "the purpose of the BJCP is to promote beer literacy and the appreciation of real beer, and to recognize beer tasting and evaluation skills." But I don't think including multiple choice answers for some of the questions would hurt the overall effectiveness of judges. I'm not sure I agree with some of Brian's logic when he says: >At the judging table, a judge is in no position to have their library of references at their disposal. >There is nothing there to provide helpful prompts. The judge must know the necessary information, >and be able to recall it from memory without other aids. At every competition I've been to, judges do have the BJCP guidelines in front of them, usually provided by the competition organizer. At the exam you do not get this luxury. Also, many of the BJCP exam questions do not immediately pertain to scoring beers at a competition, or do so only in an indirect way. As an example, some good feedback for an underattenuated, sweet beer could be "try to mash at at a lower temperature". You don't really get more information if the judge includes "to get more beta amylase activity as opposed to alpha activity". Knowing the DETAILS about the amylases and their effect on saccharification is important for beer brewing and beer literacy but it doesn't (IMHO) help you evaluate beers better. In fact, if you look at the BJCP study guide at www.bjcp.org, you will see that some(not ALL, of course) of the questions allow you to show your knowledge of beer & brewing but don't really make you a better beer evaluator or troubleshooter. These kinds of questions help show that a person is indeed beer literate, but they could be replaced in parts by multiple choice questions. I think this would help the writers' cramp that most of us get during exams. I don't think including them would reduce the effectiveness of judges at all, if they are done right. Tom Karnowski Knoxville TN National BJCP judge Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 10:01:34 -0600 From: "Mike Brennan" <brewdude at tampabay.rr.com> Subject: Some basement brewing concepts I used to brew in the basement many moons ago, before I moved from Chgo to Florida. Sheet metal is cheap. One could easily make a small enclosed brewing box and vent it using low cost drier exhaust parts, including an electric exhaust fan. Heck you could even rig it up to vent out an existing drier vent if you so desired. I used old metal shelving which I surrounded with sheet metal. I cut holes in the shelves big enough to place the keg, so it would sit on my Cajun cooker. The shelving added stability, although it was a pain to cut the holes. The top of the Keg protruded about 8 inches above the top shelf. I power vented the enclosed bottom near the burner using a 4" 90 degree elbow, drier tubing with an electric exhaust fan. I also used a window box fan mainly to exhaust the steam created by the boil and opened other windows in the basement to ensure a good fresh air flow. Having to do it again I would skip the shelves and build a custom brewing box using sheetmetal and angle iron. All of this stuff is very inexpensive. Yes, I had a CO detector and I never stored the propane in the basement. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 09:46:54 -0600 From: Brian Lundeen <BLundeen at rrc.mb.ca> Subject: RE: kit wines and doctors Nathaniel Lansing writes: > Brian, this is not meant as an argument, just food for > thought. Afterall, a manufacturer can say, "That's taste is > from hydroxymethylfurfural and unavoidable." or they could > say, "That taste is because of the added sugar." Which do you > think they are more apt to say? By the way, I never tasted > it, and I've tasted numerous kit wines. Which brand do you > taste that in? > I would say they are more apt to say, there is no such thing as a kit wine taste, and that I'm imagining it, and that any problems experienced are because the winemaker did not use all of their ingredients, in exactly the manner outlined in their instructions, and therefore, the problem is out of their hands. Now, for my own products, there is little I could do to dispute that last part. I won't add bentonite at the start of fermentation, I won't add potassium sorbate to a dry wine, I won't use a nameless yeast pack of unknown age, and I won't ferment them at 75 degrees F. I buy the white kits to get varietals that I can't source elsewhere, but I am not going to give up good winemaking practices just because the instructions must make the kit fool-proof for the lowest common denominator. ;-) A lot of my experience with kit wines is from other winemakers at club events. As such, I don't know (in truth, never bothered to ask) which kits the wines were made from. Obviously, there are many factors at play, from the quality of the kit, to the quality of the winemaker. My recent ventures have been with Spagnol's 16 liter products, I probably should give the Brew King 16 liter kits a try, for comparison. I can't bring myself to buy the pure concentrate, sugar added kits. Possibly those are where my worst tasting experiences are coming from. But so far, even the higher end kits just haven't produced a wine that I can drink without thinking, there's something in there that just ain't right. Anyway, thanks for your comments. I shall continue to perplex over this. Jeff Renner writes: > The doc didn't have much to say in the face of this irrefutable > logic. She then suggested my sister drink lots of cranberry juice. > Probably better advice. > That reminds me of a joke. Q: What do you call the person that graduated at the bottom of their class from medical school? A: Doctor. Cheers Brian Lundeen Brewing at [819 miles, 313.8 deg] aka Winnipeg Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 10:54:59 -0500 From: "Eric R. Theiner" <rickdude02 at earthlink.net> Subject: St. Pat's and the Free Market I have heard a few complaints about St. Pat's in the past (actually, about Lynne O'Conner), but I never heard of them refusing service to anyone. I have no reason to doubt Marc's story, though. Is this illegal? I don't know. Is it ethical? Absolutely. As a business owner, I reserve the right to do business with whomever I choose. Sometimes that can be based on being ticked off at someone (I simply can't imagine that-- a sale's a sale) and sometimes it might be through a courtesy to someone else. Case in point-- when I was contacted by Lynne about 8 or 9 years ago, I refused to deal with her on the product she was interested in (Straight-A). Why? Because I had an exclusive distribution deal in the U.S. with two other companies. I simply could not ethically sell direct, even though I had no written contract stipulating that. Lynne understood, and that was that. Boy, do I wish I was unethical!!!<g> If you have a problem with someone's exclusionary practices, do what has been done here-- publicize, criticize, and act if you are so moved. But when you starting talking about whether something is legal or illegal and whether or not we can regulate this type of behavior, you start putting into place the framework which allows special interest regulation to proliferate and the doors open wide to legislated corruption. (Yes, it seems like a stretch; feel free to email me in private for more information if you want it.) Bottom line-- shop at St. Pat's if you like it (I occasionally do, even though I can't sell them stuff), and don't if you don't. And feel free to spread your opinion, just don't expect everyone to agree with you. That's what being American is supposed to be about. Rick Theiner LOGIC, Inc. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 09:04:50 -0800 (PST) From: Calvin Perilloux <calvinperilloux at yahoo.com> Subject: Reselling White Labs' yeast <Peter Ensminger mentions Mark Vernon's problem and White Labs threatening legal action over re-selling of yeast cultures based on White Labs' strains> >> I have long been wondering just who *owns* all these different >> yeast strains anyway. Surely, Chris White got his yeast from >> somewhere... A very good point! Taking this from a legal perspective, I note that White Labs and Wyeast seem to take pains to avoid using the original source name of any of their yeasts. (Where's that debate about Ayinger a few weeks ago?) White Labs is probably passing along the "restriction". If you are selling the yeast as "White Labs 810", for example, I can see them getting upset. Whether they could actually win a legal battle (assume fair funding of lawyers on each side!) that's one I'd let more experienced legal scholars argue. But White Labs are probably basing their argument on the use of their name. If you *never* referring to White Labs per se, but instead offer your own description of the yeast strain, it's no different than reselling carrot seed (keeping in mind that you might not be able to use the Yates-trademarked name for the "Super Orange Deluxe" carrots whose seeds you're selling). It's not the yeast; it's the *name*. (Exception: Any bloody thing with Roundup resistance will bring swarms of Monsanto lawyers upon you because Monsanto actually "created" that organism. Sigh. That's philosophical/ethical/legal debate of whole 'nother dimension, though.) Of course, of you re-sell it under an unrelated name, you then have the problem of people not knowing for sure exactly what you're selling if you give it a name like "Vernons Folly Ale Yeast" :-) but that's what we deal with already when we speculate on which brewery White Labs got <name your strain> from to begin with. Calvin Perilloux Middletown, Maryland, USA Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 13:04:22 -0500 From: "Lyga, Daniel M." <daniel.lyga at pw.utc.com> Subject: Wheat beer questions Hello. I am planning my first attempt at a true wheat beer in the next week or so; I have had success with several batches of Kolsch. I would like to make a German wheat with a grain bill of about 53% wheat & 47% 2-row... and I have a couple of questions: 1. Is a protein rest required with this much wheat? (I really wouldn't mind a cloudy appearance) 2. I am planning on using a weizen yeast strain (wy3068). Are there any other special considerations (must dos) that I need to ensure I get plenty of clove, banana, and phenolic flavor/aromas? Thank you. Dan Lyga Harwinton, CT. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 13:08:03 -0500 From: David Towson <dtowson at comcast.net> Subject: potential extract dimensions In HBD 4148, Steve Alexander, responding to an earlier post, says: "Sugar dissolved in water yields only 46.22 point-gallons-per-pound(pgpp)." I much prefer this representation of potential extract dimensions to the usual "points-per-pound-per-gallon" , which I think is ambiguous. If one interprets pts/lb/gal as meaning "points-per-pound for each gallon" then it implies that for a given number of pounds, diluting the mash gives you more points, which is absurd. But on the other hand, if one interprets it as "points for each pound-per-gallon", then having more lb/gal gives you more points, which is correct. Dave in Bel Air, MD Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 18:17:07 GMT From: Wil at thebeermanstore.com Subject: Re: LBHS Chatter Vernon, Mark wrote in HBD #4148 >Okay I have been biting my tongue for a bit on this and cannot hold back any >longer Welp Mark, I think you should bite you tongue a bit longer. Its just amazing, I have a fellow here in SC that uses the exact same line "support your LHBS but only IF THEY SUPPORT YOU" word for freaking word. Are you two related? Anyway, you say you want support from your LHBS and then go on to tell the HBD how you tried to completely NOT support you LHBS by trying to go around him and under cut him at every turn. And what's worse is you expect him to like it. Sorry son, it has never worked that way and never will. Let me start of by asking you a few questions. Who do you work for? What product or service do you produce. Any unions in your line of work? Lobbyist? trade organizations? Counsels? perhaps copyrights or trademarks? Business laws involving licenses, zoning, insurance in your area? Hummm. What does this have to do with selling yeast? Well, If I were to go out and get my hands on Coke syrup, repackage it and call it something else and sell it, do you think The lawyers at Coke would just over look it? Not just no, but HE*L NO. I think I would have gone a bit further than just tell White Labs about you, I would have asked to see your business license, your sales tax numbers and perhaps looked into your zoning laws. Not for profit you say, Bunk, You were producing and selling a product. Besides, not for profits have laws, licenses and paperwork to follow too. A club selling only to club members you say, again Bunk, think Sams club and others. Your LHBS has to deal with ALL of this and if your going to compete, then lets make it a level playing field. Perhaps you think you were treated unfairly...I think you got off easy. Flyers, We don't need no stinkin' flyers. I have to ask you, Would you put up a advertisement for a club/business/co-op/non-profit that was competing directly with you in your business? I bet not. Besides, The argument your LHBS is a valid one to any one that has a business. I put up NONE. Look who's whining now! Wil Kolb The Beer Man Plaza at East Cooper 607 B Johnnie Dodds Blvd Mt. Pleasant SC 29464 843-971-0805 Fax 843-971-3084 www.thebeermanstore.com Wil at thebeermanstore.com God bless America! Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 13:20:23 -0500 From: "Drew Avis" <andrew_avis at hotmail.com> Subject: Re: 220 Volt Electric Boiling Kettle Andy Buhl asks about controlling a 240V system. I've seen two approaches, Andy, and they both seem to work well. The cheap b*stard method is to scavenge 2 stove switches. A buddy has done this - one switch per element - and it works well, though he has to fiddle a bit to get the boil just right. They're cheap (or free in the right situation), and rated to 240V. I use a digital temperature controller, a Watlow 965, easily obtainable on eBay. In its manual mode, you can set the % output. So while it's getting to the boil, I set it to 100%. Once the boil is achieved, I set it to about 50%, which maintains a nice roll. Cheers, and good luck! Drew Avis, Member of Barleyment for Greater Merrickville, Ontario Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 12:27:07 -0600 From: David Hooper <dhooper at everestkc.net> Subject: Immersion Heaters I presently use a Cajun cooker for my all grain and brew in my driveway. I have a tandem basement garage, so boiling is out of the question since it is very poorly ventilated. I am looking at going electric, but I can't find anything specific for beer. Some of the hang on units from plumbing supplies run in the neighborhood of $500 for an immersion heater, so I thought I'd turn to HBD and get input from my fellow brewers on my options. David Hooper David Hooper dhooper at eversetkc.net http://pages.prodigy.net/david_hooper Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 13:28:40 -0500 From: David Perez <perez at gator.net> Subject: Lots of good stuff lately With all the great threads lately, I thought I would come out of mooching mode and share some. With all the posts about wine lately I found myself in a great homebrew shop (more on that to follow) and bought my first wine kit. A brief discussion ensued about liquid -vs- dry wine yeast . The consensus was the dry yeast provided is fine for making great wine. Then we started wondering about the effects of water chemistry on wine. This is an area I have been avoiding in my beer brewing due to a notable inability to wrap my brain around the subject. Jeff Renner posted a sort of H2O for Dummies (should have used my picture on the cover) a while back but I still can't seem to figure it out. To get to the point, what effect does water chemistry have on wine? Please remember that I am ionicly challenged and will need bicarbonate (whatever the hell that is) spoon fed to me. On to the Local -vs- Mail order Homebrew Shop thread. The examples of the mail order shops sited have mostly been of the large company variety. We no longer have a local shop here in Gainesville and as such are forced to use mail order. I believe in supporting small local companies in most of my purchasing because I like the personal attention and the idea of helping a struggling business person make it. So I mail order from a really great small homebrew shop in Tallahassee called The Homebrew Den, http://www.homebrewden.com/ (najaVsc). John Larson, the proprietor, is dedicated to great customer service and is supportive of our club, even though we are over 100 miles away. We had the opportunity to visit the shop this weekend while judging at the Big Bend Brew Off (great comp guys!!!) and John was kind enough to open up on Sunday morning so a few of us could shop there. You just can't get that kind of service from a big company. Maybe we spend a few pennies more per order, but I would gladly pay that for the customer care I get from John and the other small businesses I frequent! Cheep is nice, but service is better. As for posting competitions early, how about this? The Hogtown Brewers are in the early planning stages of our first open competition, to be held sometime in early Fall. We really enjoyed our AHA Club Only experience and want to move into the big leagues. Help out a new competition and plan to enter a bunch of beers. You should easily have enough time to brew up even the biggest of beers with this kind of advanced notice. We will post more info as it develops. Dave Perez Hogtown Brewers Gainesville, FL Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 12:29:14 -0600 From: "Chuck Dougherty" <jdougherty at wlj.com> Subject: batch sparging efficiency and Rubbermaid coolers I have been playing around with no sparge and batch sparge techniques recently. My own highly unscientific analysis, and that of others that are ever-so-glad to perform beer tastings on my behalf, is that this does in fact produce a superior flavor. I am happy to burn a little extra malt to achieve this result. But I am very confused by the fact that some folks are claiming a higher efficiency with no sparge or a two-step batch sparge than with fly sparging. I can get close to my fly sparging efficiency with a two-step batch sparge, but I can't get quite the same, and I don't see how theoretically it would be possible (or even desirable) to do so. What am I missing? On the subject of insulated water coolers as mash tuns, my 10 gal. cooler is all kinds of warped on the inside but continues to serve me well after 5 years or so. Mine is a dark brown Rubbermaid model. I think it was (is?) marketed to food service folks; I got mine through a friend in the wholesale restaurant supply business. Chuck Dougherty Little Rock, Arkansas Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 13:56:45 -0600 From: Wyatt Francis <wyatt at francis.com> Subject: converted keg brew pot I just recently acquired a 1/2 (Sankey) keg and converted it to my new brew pot. Since I usually do 5 gallon (extract) batches, I'm only boiling about 3 gallons of wort. I plan to boil more once I get a wort chiller for it. A problem I noticed with the larger brew pot is that it is harder to tell if the wort is boiling, because of the level of the wort and because of not be able to see through the steam. I had considered one of those glass weights that sit on the bottom of a pot and clang as the liquid starts to boil. I was curious the clever ways that homebrewers have developed in determining when the wort is at a full boil? A second question concerns transferring and filtering the wort to the fermenter. I plan on putting an outlet on the side (near the bottom, but above the seam) to drain the wort, since I don't have a stand to mangae with a bottom drain. I imagine that I'll have to tip the keg as the level gets lower, but that's alright. Are there better ways to transfer to wort from a converted keg? I usually strain the wort through some sort of screen as I transfer it to remove most of the hops, however, a good portion of the cold break material makes it through. How important is it to remove this material when transferring to the primary fermenter? Are there better filters/strainers to use? Thanks for the help. Wyatt Francis Denton, TX Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 12:22:20 -0800 From: "Steve Dale-Johnson" <sdalejohnson at hotmail.com> Subject: off the shelf brew systems Rich Lanam in Warren, NJ was asking about off-the-shelf brew systems in Saturday's digest. If no-one has chimed in yet, there's an interesting computerized RIMS system ABT Compu-Brew) available from Paddock Wood ($1549 canadian, or about $1000 USD) The link: http://www.paddockwood.com/images/abtrims.pdf Still gathering the last of the bits (false bottom/ screen/tap)for my first all-grain batch, Steve Dale-Johnson Delta, BC, Canada [haven't figured out the rennerian yet ;) ] Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 22:02:02 -0500 From: Jennifer/Nathan Hall <hallzoo at comcast.net> Subject: Melting Point of Stainless Steel? A warning for those as dumb as me: Don't leave your $30 a piece stainless steel ball valves in the sterilizing pot too long, here's what happens: 1. Water reaches 212F and boils. 2. All bacteria die (hopefully) 3. Water continues to boil 4. Water boils dry 5. Valve continues to get hotter, melting the rubber coated handles and teflon seats 6. Pot becomes red-hot, and fumes given off by above reach auto-ignition point and explode, launching charred pieces of burnt valve seat and the pot lid 20 ft across the kitchen. The cool thing out of all this is that I immediately contacted Zymico via E-mail about where I could find more of these awesome valves. They immediately responded, telling me to send in the crispy valves in exchange for some brand spankin' new ones. What great guys! I guess the stupid don't always get punished.... Nathan Hall Melted Ball Valve Brewery Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 12:50:30 -0600 From: "Tidmarsh Major" <tidmarsh at bellsouth.net> Subject: Re: barleywine overcarbonation On 18 Jan 2003 at 0:13, Request Address Only - No Articles wrote: > Palmer says as temperatures decrease, you need *less* priming sugar. > What's up with that? I can see how the beer would absorb the CO2 more > quickly at lower temperatures, but shouldn't the system (head > space/beer) reach the same equilibrium given enough time? As gases are more soluble at lower temps, the cooler beer starts out with more CO2 in solution at ambient pressure than a warmer beer at ambient pressures, so less additional CO2 is needed for proper carbonation levels. Tidmarsh Major Tuscaloosa, Ala. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 22:39:53 -0500 From: George de Piro <george at EvansAle.com> Subject: Lauter efficiency / diacetyl rests Hi all, Steve A. has pointed out that minimizing sparging most probably has a positive effect on beer flavor. There is another reason that brewers, particularly in Europe, like to not oversparge in the quest for efficiency: energy savings. One could attempt to eek out as much extract as possible from the malt by sparging, but one would then end up with an overly dilute wort that would require a lot of evaporation to reach the required gravity. Malt is cheaper than energy. The latest lauter tun designs strive to reach a low runoff gravity quickly, in other words, the rate of gravity drop in the runoff should be as high as possible so that dilute wort need not be collected. Modern breweries (esp. in Germany) like to keep evaporation down below 5%. Did I explain that well enough? - ---------- Somebody wrote in a few days ago asking about diacetyl rests. I haven't noticed a thorough explanation yet, so here goes: Diacetyl is formed when alpha acetolactate (AAL) is oxidized. AAL is made by yeast, and is not detectable by humans in the concentrations normally occurring in beer. The more AAL the yeast make, the more diacetyl potential the beer will have. Yeast can take up and metabolize diacetyl, thus reducing its concentration in beer below taste threshold, but they do not metabolize AAL. The idea of a diacetyl rest is to speed up the oxidation of AAL to diacetyl so that the yeast can metabolize it and the beer can get on with its life. Increasing the temperature of the beer will speed up these reactions. You do not necessarily have to perform a diacetyl rest for every lager, and you may sometimes need one for an ale. How can one tell if the rest is needed? Take two samples of the young beer into covered containers. 50 ml should be sufficient. Heat one sample to about 50C (140F or so; you need not be precise) for about 10 minutes (again, precision is not critical). Keep the other sample at cool room temperature. Cool the sample in an ice bath to be about the same temperature as the unheated sample. Smell both. Interpret results as follows: 1) If the unheated sample smells clean, but the heated sample smells buttery, there is an appreciable amount of AAL in the beer and the batch can benefit from a diacetyl rest. 2) If both samples smell clean, the AAL has already oxidized to diacetyl which was then removed by the yeast and no further action is needed on your part. Note that if this beer later develops buttery flavors, it likely has a bacterial infection (pediococcus). 3) If both samples smell of diacetyl, the beer is either badly infected or the yeast have not yet taken up the diacetyl that has formed. If it is not diminished after a few days at warm fermentation temperatures (i.e., diacetyl rest has no effect), then kraeusen with fresh, active yeast. If you do deem it necessary to give a cool fermenting beer a warm rest, do not worry about the temperature rising too quickly. Yeast do not really mind going from low to high temperatures (unless you cook them!). Yeast can be shocked into inactivity if they are chilled too quickly, though. Please note that removing the yeast from the beer, or otherwise hindering its activity, will leave nothing in the beer capable of reducing the diacetyl as it forms. Such a beer will become buttery over time. Have fun! George de Piro Head Brewer, C.H. Evans Brewing Company at the Albany Pump Station 19 Quackenbush Square Albany, NY, USA 12207 (518)447-9000 www.EvansAle.com Brewers of Kick-Ass Brown: Twice declared the Best American Brown Ale in the USA at the Great American Beer Festival (2000 & 2002)! Return to table of contents
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