HOMEBREW Digest #4890 Wed 16 November 2005

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  Heat Tolerant Hop Varieties (Bob Tower)
  Re: 5.2 by Five Star (Bob Tower)
  Water pH ("A.J deLange")
  PET Bottle as a Gauge of Carbonation ("Pete Calinski")
  RE: Need advice -- All-grain system ("Mike Sharp")
  Re: ester result (Matt)
  Re: Need advice -- All-grain system ("Dave Larsen")
  Therminator ("Tony Wilkinson")
  re: Pressure limit of glass jug ("Dave and Joan King")
  Re.:  5.2 by Five Star ("Sean Richens")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 15 Nov 2005 22:58:07 -0800 From: Bob Tower <tower at cybermesa.com> Subject: Heat Tolerant Hop Varieties Dennis OBrien was having troubles growing hops in the Fort Worth, Texas area: > I'm not sure what I will replace the Liberty with. Anybody have any > recommendations on heat-tolerant hop varieties? Cascade and Nugget are two varieties that are extremely hardy and seem to handle dry heat well. It seems you've had good success with Cascade already, so follow it up with a Nugget or two. Bob Tower / Los Angeles, CA Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 15 Nov 2005 23:10:56 -0800 From: Bob Tower <tower at cybermesa.com> Subject: Re: 5.2 by Five Star Erik Nelson of Sauk Rapids, MN was wondering about the mash additive 5.2 by Five Star Chemicals. I've been using it for about a year now with wonderful success. My mash efficiency immediately jumped 10%. I also never bother checking my mash pH any longer. After checking the pH of the first few batches with 5.2 (including the pH of the runoff at the end of a 60 minute continuous sparge) and finding it dead on where it should be I realized that I didn't need to check any more. Others here have mentioned getting mineral or salt flavors. I think they may be over using the product however. It is only necessary to treat the mash water, not the sparge water. There is enough buffering capacity in the amount you add to your mash water to keep the pH in the ideal zone. Add at the rate of 2 oz. per 31 gallons (or 0.065 oz. per gallon) of mash water. Using 5.2 at this rate and only adding it to my mash water (I typically use a ratio of 1.25-1.5 quarts water per pound of grain) I have detected absolutely no flavor contribution. Bob Tower / Los Angeles, CA Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 12:49:40 +0000 From: "A.J deLange" <ajdel at cox.net> Subject: Water pH For Erik: The fact that your municipal supply went from a pH of 7 to a pH of 8.2 is not in itself significant. What is important is a change in the ratio of alkalinity to hardness if there was one. So check with the supplier and see if there have been changes in these two parameters. Calculate the residual alkalinity which is equal to the alkalinity minus the sum of the calcium harndess and half the magnesium hardness divided by 3.5 (i.e. add first and then divide). If the RA hasn't increased or hasn't increased much you may still be OK. It's probable that the pH change was done to protect the mains from corrosion and that it is acheived by adding lime at the water works. This will increase alkalinity somewhat but will also increase hardness so you may not be as badly off as you thought. You can, of course, also try brewing with the new water to see if there is any effect. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 10:04:33 -0500 From: "Pete Calinski" <pjcalinski at adelphia.net> Subject: PET Bottle as a Gauge of Carbonation Now that the subject of PET bottles has come up, I guess it is time for me to mention how I use one as an indicator of when the batch is carbonated. While bottling, I fill one 16 oz. PET bottle with beer and screw on the cap. At first the bottle is soft and can be flexed. When the batch is carbonated the PET bottle is hard as a rock. Time to drink. Hope this helps someone. Pete Calinski East Amherst NY Near Buffalo NY http://hbd.org/pcalinsk *********************************************************** *My goal: * Go through life and never drink the same beer twice. * (As long as it doesn't mean I have to skip a beer.) *********************************************************** Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 07:30:11 -0800 From: "Mike Sharp" <rdcpro at hotmail.com> Subject: RE: Need advice -- All-grain system Mark Mierzejewski from sunny Kirkland, WA wants advice... "I've already got a propane burner and 8-gal brewpot (though I'm also looking to upgrade to the Polarware 10-gal brewpot for Xmas)." There you have it! Just use your smaller pot as the mash tun. I followed a similar route. I turned my smaller brewpot into a mash tun by fabricating a false bottom (see my other posts), putting a hole in the side of it with a valve, and adding a pump. Low tech direct fired RIMS. It's actually very convenient to be able to adjust the temperature after dough-in. A couple weeks ago (on teach a friend to homebrew day) I was brewing outside in Seattle (you might remember how cold windy and rainy it was that day!) and missed my strike temp low by at least 4 or 5 degrees. No problem. Start the pump, and fire up the burner on low. Shut off when it gets the to the right temp. The burner is heating the liquid space below the false bottom, so there's no danger of scorching or overheating as long as you're not impatient. In fact, it makes doing a stepped infusion mash pretty easy too. No need to go with all automatic controls. The discharge of the pump goes into a hose that ends in a loop of copper tube, bent like a question mark. I slotted the top of the tube, and left the far end open. I lay this on the grain bed. When it's time to transfer to the kettle, I simply pick it up, and put it into the kettle, so there's no splashing or aeration. I do use the Minibrew conical fermenter--it's extremely well made, and I like the looks of their mash tun, but frankly I like being able to directly heat the mash tun--makes life a lot easier when you screw up--er, I mean experiment. This will get you into all-grain right away, at little cost, and later on, when you're more sure of the way you want to go, you can "upgrade". Ps. If you're not a member of a homebrew club here in the Seattle area, feel free to stop by the Impaling Aler's meeting some time. There are some very gifted brewers here (ok, some are actually pro brewers too). They meet at Larry's Brewing Supply in Kent (not far from where I live). I see their web site is long overdue for updating, but you can call Larry's for the meeting time. It used to be the third Friday of the month, I think. Regards, Mike Sharp Kent, WA [1891.3, 294deg] AR Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 08:27:30 -0800 (PST) From: Matt <baumssl27 at yahoo.com> Subject: Re: ester result If esters are really independent of temperature when the yeast are equally oxygenated, it could have real consequences on how some of us choose to brew. I wondered whether the same might be true of fusels, but then Steve burst my bubble: > Sorry to burst your bubble, but the fusels do increase with > temp. I assume that by this you mean that someone has shown that fusel production does increase with temp even when oxygen is controlled? > It's likely that the fusel formation at higher temps is related > to increased permeability of low quality cell membranes. If you > choose a good strain and keep them "fat", you *may* not > experience a fusel problem. If we control for oxygen, why should the cell membranes be of lower quality, at a given point in the ferment (given amount of sugar left)? I don't see a reason here why fusels should increase with temp if the yeast get equal oxygen. Who knows! Are Boulton and Quain available by email so we can ask them about the ester result and where it comes from, and whether it might also apply to fusels? In the meantime, I still have to think that *if* the ester result is true, there is reason to believe it might apply to fusels as well. I can't think of a reason why not, but I CAN think of a reason why it would: I understand that concentration of the fusel is not always (maybe never) the primary driver in production of fusel-based esters. But, it looks from some studies like addition of fusels or associated aminos leads to some increase in associated esters, for instance in (J. Inst. Brew. 109(1), 34-40, 2003), available at http://www.scientificsocieties.org/jib/. If fusels increase dramatically with temp (with oxygen controlled), then at least in some cases I'd expect SOME increase in their associated esters. This doesn't happen if the ester result is true. Also, there is the question of what Boulton and Quain mean by "oxygen maintained at a constant value." Do they mean initial oxygen concentration? Or constant aeration at some level--leading possibly to respiration by the yeast? I think somebody should contact them--I'll do it if necessary. Matt Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 17:41:17 +0000 From: "Dave Larsen" <hunahpumonkey at hotmail.com> Subject: Re: Need advice -- All-grain system Mark Mierzejewski wrote: >I'm looking to get back into all-grain brewing. I've done it before >(using the cheapie plastic bucket / Phil's Phalse Bottom/sparge arm >system), but left all my equipment behind when I moved from Houston >to near Seattle. That was 7 years ago, and I'm itching to get back >to it (extract brewing is fine, but...). Ask and ye shall recieve. I am currently doing a series on all-grain brewing in the kitchen on my blog: http://hunahpu.blogspot.com/2005/10/all-grain-brewing-part-i-how-to-mash.html http://hunahpu.blogspot.com/2005/10/all-grain-brewing-part-ii-how-to.html There lots of pictures. The whole system is not much more than an insulated water cooler, a plastic bucket, and a few enamel pots -- cheap. Dave, the all-grain evangelist Tucson, AZ Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 17 Nov 2005 09:29:22 +1030 From: "Tony Wilkinson" <awilk at bigpond.net.au> Subject: Therminator In reply to: Date: Tue, 15 Nov 2005 17:54:04 +1100 > From: "Murray Aldridge" <aldridge at fjc.net.au> > Subject: Theminator > > Re: Tony Wilkinson > > Thanks for the information Murray. I have put in an order one of these and should have it ready for a batch of pilsner within the next couple of weeks. I am going to shift from pelletised hops to plug in an effort to cut down on the amount of crud and am working on a filter method to help further reduce the introducion of trub as much as possible. I am going to try to get away with siphoning from kettle to fermentor as I don't really want to get into pumps and other more complicated arrangements to have to keep clean! I will ignore the cold break situation and let it sit in the primary for 3 or 4 days then rack into secondary. Hope this works ok. (I guess I am about to find out!) Thanks for your comments and suggestions. Tony Wilkinson Adelaide Sth Australia Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 19:19:09 -0500 From: "Dave and Joan King" <dking3 at stny.rr.com> Subject: re: Pressure limit of glass jug I'm a Metallurgist, who's done materials failure analysis professionally for decades. My experience tells me that brittle materials are absolutely not to be trusted at significant tensile stress levels. Ceramics like glass, concrete, and other ceramics will take a good bit of compressive stress, but minor defects can intensify even very low stress levels. Reinforced concrete is designed to allow the steel to take all the tensile stress, even then minor repetitive loads and thermal excursions will cause some cracking. Tempered glass is heat treated so that the outside (where a fracture will initiate) contains significant residual compressive stress, so any applied tensile stress first has to overcome the compressive stress before any actual tensile stress in the glass surface will be realized. Normal glass containers are known to fracture in relatively gentle handling, due to fatigue fracturing from a few solid bumps, or similar stressing. Glass carboys should not be lifted by their necks, due to this uncertain behavior. I strongly advise not pressurizing a glass carboy with CO2. Dave King, BIER, NY State Registered Professional Engineer Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 21:26:45 -0600 From: "Sean Richens" <srichens at mts.net> Subject: Re.: 5.2 by Five Star Sounds like a handy product. I suspect it will increase sodium and/or potassium levels in your beer, which shouldn't be objectionable. Almost neutral. If your water is difficult and you don't feel like owning a pH meter, it could be worth your while.. Lucky me, my water is fairly consistent so I only have to measure pH of paler beers. I like the crisp flavour of titrated amounts of phosphoric acid as a water treatment, but plan to return to lactic acid for some maltier beers. As far as the batch already made is concerned, if your yield was consistent with past batches the odds should be in your favour. Return to table of contents
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