HOMEBREW Digest #1843 Thu 28 September 1995

Digest #1842 Digest #1844

		Rob Gardner, Digest Janitor

  Acid wit (kit.anderson)
  Exploding minis (BF3B8RL)
  Boinked Kegs ("David Wright")
  Sparge acidification summary ("Dave Bradley::IC742::6-2556")
  sanitation/warmed beer (Carl Etnier)
  PID temp control (CHARLIE SCANDRETT)
  Racist Letter/ US Plastics spigots ("Dave Bradley::IC742::6-2556")
  Re-pitching at bottling time (John DeCarlo              )
  RE siphoning Hot break (Tim_Fields_at_Relay__Tech__Vienna)
  Drinking age (CGEDEN)
  9" False Bottom (Mark Kirby)
  Candling your beers. (Russell Mast)
  Brewing/Drinking age ("Colgan, Brian P.")
  Virtual Great American Beer Festival (Shawn Steele)
  Re: more RIMS questions (hollen)
  Re: Periodicals (hollen)
  brew pubs in Utah ("Mark J. Wilk")
  request@ hpfcmi.fc.hp.com ( ROBERT G SCHILLINGER)
  request@ hpfcmi.fc.hp.com ( ROBERT G SCHILLINGER)
  Apples or Cider in your Home brew (Art_Ward)
  Re: RIMS (hollen)
  Re: Hot on RIMS (hollen)
  RIMS Heating ("Fleming, Kirk R., Capt")
  Temp distribution in mashing (Ken Schroeder)
  Hop Util/Grain Conversion/Force Carbonating/Fermentation Temp Control (KennyEddy)
  Heat Source ("Herb B. Tuten")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Wed, 27 Sep 95 07:00:37 -0500 From: kit.anderson at acornbbs.com Subject: Acid wit Thanks to all who responded with suggestions on acidifying wit beer. The consensus is that Crosby & Baker acid blend has a distinctive flavor because it also contains malic, citric, and tartaric acids. The 88% lactic acid available in homebrew shops is better. Also, it takes about a month before the "added-in" flavor dissipates. The only problem is that this beer doesn't get a chance to hang around for a month. This is the only homebrew that my wife will fill a 18 oz mug with. Even my Coors Light friends will polish off a keg in no time. Some of the judges from the contest were at my house last night and we sampled it again. The acid blend flavor was reduced noticeably in just two days. Kit "Travels With Chiles" Anderson Bath, Maine <kit.anderson at acornbbs.com> * Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 95 22:12:18 +1000 From: CHARLIE SCANDRETT <merino at ozemail.com.au> Subject: Just Ribbing RIMS Kirk Fleming writes, >I think flow rate is hard way to go to get turbulence. Another >solution may be to use as large a heat exchanger as is practical >and drive the flow turbulent through vortex generation--force the >flow to turn as often as possible or use fins. Keep the pump speed >as low as possible to just maintain turbulence. The 0.1m/sec pump speed *will* create the turbulence in a smooth bore, but this approaches the "oversparging" problem. Not really a sparge, but the effect is the same if there is too much circulating through the grain. Machine stirring is the same as pumping, but with a larger area of exchange in any system, less circulation is possible. I like Kirk's suggestion of a pump and element running in parallel speed, that addresses the problem. The turns and fins suggestion is also commercially used in ribbed exchangers and dimpled jackets of tanks. The ribs are quite small (as is the boundary layer) like sharkskin ribbing. If you have not been intimate with a shark lately, then it is ...... more like the ribs on a ribbed condom. If you haven't been intimate with one those lately......... then I've run out of similes! Charlie (Brisbane, Australia) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 08:49:12 -0400 From: BF3B8RL at TPLANCH.BELL-ATL.COM Subject: Exploding minis "WHOLLY FERMENTATION BEERMAN, THAT MINIKEG'S ABOUT TO BOINK!" "RIGHT ON, CARBOY, LETS BLOWOFF OUT OF HERE BEFORE THAT BOINKING KEG GETS A CHANCE TO BOFF US!" Thanks to Charlie Scandrett for providing the info on exploding kegs. Sounds like the failure testing done on these kegs would have been fun to watch! I just wanted to double check Charlie -- these were the 5L mini kegs that were tested. You refered simply to "kegs" and I'm not sure that you were talking about minis. You mentioned that these kegs were not designed for carbonation by fermentation -- but clearly distributors of the minis intend you to prime the keg for carbonation. I am truly suprised that those rubber bungs can hold such pressures (up to 265 psi!). In any case you refered to putting in safety valves on these kegs: I STRONGLY ADVISE putting 3 ATM pressure relief valves on all natural carbonation kegs. Your local hot water system repair man should have a bag full of them. Have them welded/threaded securely into your system. The thickness of the metal of these kegs seems too thin for threading or welding. Further, welds would likely ruin the thin enamel coating on the keg's interior. Do you know of anyone who has successfully performed the addition of a safety valve to a mini-keg? TIA, Chas Peterson Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 08:54:22 EST5EDT From: "David Wright" <LSMAIL at osp.emory.edu> Subject: Boinked Kegs Charlie Scandrett said that he went to a keg manufacturer (sp?) and asked about the strength testing of kegs. I have been under the impression that the boinked kegs that we have been talking about are the 5 liter mini-kegs. If not the please pardon this post. Are these the kegs that you are talking about Charlie? If so, this is very eye opening. I have boinked (I think this is a great technical term!) a couple of kegs in my time and would be interested to know how much CO2 is created during a normal secondary ferment. I would not have thought that it could reach those types of pressures. Any ideas? David Wright Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 08:04:31 -0500 (EST) From: "Dave Bradley::IC742::6-2556" <BRADLEY_DAVID_A at Lilly.com> Subject: Sparge acidification summary Hi all. Several weeks ago I asked about sources of acid to bring down the pH of my sparge water. I received a half dozen direct Email responses, all of which suggest using tartaric acid instead of hydrochloric. One mentioned that indeed, the malic acid I had used will impart unwanted bitterness to the beer. Several mentioned their water has high Cl levels anyway, so adding HCl is out of the question. One said not to worry, the grain bed will buffer the pH to an acceptable level (for some of the sparge, yes, pending your grain bill and qty dark malts). I'll just use the tartaric myself. THANKS TO ALL WHO RESPONDED!!! Oh, and this acid is available in most brew shops. Dave in Indy From: BRADLEY DAVID A (MCVAX0::RC65036) To: VMS MAIL ADDRESSEE (IN::"homebrew at hpfcmgw.fc.hp.com") cc: BRADLEY DAVID A (MCVAX0::RC65036) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 14:09:19 +0100 (MET) From: Carl Etnier <Carl.Etnier at abc.se> Subject: sanitation/warmed beer Brian Pickerill has been bottling his 12-14 oz of beer from the hydrometer flask in unsanitized bottles with unsanitized caps and unsanitized sugar, even tasting it before putting on the cap, and not had any problems with spoilage or infection. The last several batches, I've tried a similar experiment. You know that half-full (not half-empty!) bottle that you always get at the end of bottling, when the siphon makes the sad sucking noise indicating the termination of that batch? I've been spitting in that bottle before capping it. 'Course, the bottle, cap, etc. is all per usual procedure, but I'm counting on some difference in taste, carbonation, etc. from my filthy spit. When it has come round to beer drinking time each day, I somehow have never yet felt inspired to open one of these bottles. Brian's report has made me curious. I'll let you know in November, when I've returned home to my aging beer. - ------------------- I asked a while ago about the custom of heating beer before serving, which I had read about in a novel about Vikings. The feedback I got, some of it posted on this august forum, was that heating ales by plunging a hot poker into them was customary earlier, with one respondent even saying his father had done it in Germany, sometime around 1950. Only one person reported tasting warmed beer, which he thought might have been called Grant's Holiday Ale. It had cloves, cinnamon, etc and did not impress him. It was also remarked that beer in the middle ages no doubt tasted very different from any modern product. Jeff Renner, ne'e *Jeff* Renner, said it best, about the beer drunk at the time of Henry VIII: >English ale back then was typically much stronger in OG than now >(>1.080), probably cloudy with yeast and suspended starch and >protein from poor mashing and sparging techniques, sweeter >(higher FG), and unhopped. To that I would only add, "and flat." I don't know when pressure vessels and thereby the possibility for carbonation were introduced for beer, but I suspect they didn't exist then. Thanks for your info, everyone! Carl Etnier A Yank temporarily transplanted from Sweden to Switzerland Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 95 23:20:23 +1000 From: CHARLIE SCANDRETT <merino at ozemail.com.au> Subject: PID temp control Harry Bush asks the unavoidable question, >What is PID (other than something really bad that happens only to >women), and is it something I should get? Here goes?... A thermostal is simply an on/off switch governed by a target temperature.The temperature fluctuates within a range of sensitivity, called the "Hysteresis". Proportional, Integral, Derivative control is just that. *Proportional* control provides added temperature stability by eliminating fluctuations in temperature by setting the proportion of heating power supplied to the process depending on the difference between the current and target temperatures. Unfortunately, the process temperature only settles at the setpoint if the load of the process exactly matches the heater. Otherwise it usually produces a stable error, offset from the target temperature. To compensate for this offset, a second control action is used. *Integral* action eliminates the offset caused by mismatch of heater and load, by responding to the duration of the error signal (through integration- remember Calculus?) when the actual temperature overshoots the target temperature. By small adjustments in the proportional output, it forces the actual product temperature to settle exactly at the target temperature. In many small capacity processes, the PID controller must respond to large and rapid changes in the target or actual process temperature. (Say, a 20C mash step). *Derivative* controlling action provides additional temperature stability by responding to the *rate* of temperature change. This is achieved by setting the controller output to oppose any temperature deviation from the target setpoint. This also reduces initial temperature overshoots when the process approaches the target setpoint for the first time. In summary, Proportional control varies the heating power in proportion to the actual-target temperature differences, like a car's accelerator. Integral moderates these variations to account for heating to load power mismatches, a sort of shock absorber that eliminates the offset error. Derivative is aware of the speed of temperature change, it is a sort of brake on the thermal momentum of a large rapid change. Combined = PID temperature control = a little black box! Charlie (Brisbane, Australia) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 08:46:32 -0500 (EST) From: "Dave Bradley::IC742::6-2556" <BRADLEY_DAVID_A at Lilly.com> Subject: Racist Letter/ US Plastics spigots In Tuesday's HBD, someone asked about a racist Email. I also received what could be termed a racist Email from the "National Alliance", based in WV, PO Box 90 in Hillsboro 24946. The note gives a homepage too. I disagree with what the letter implies/states, but more importantly, I also wonder how they get my address. I subscribe to one and only one BB style Email....the HBD. How has someone tapped into this list? And who else COULD tap into this list...now I don't want to hide the fact that I'm a homebrewer (nay, promote it!), but I would hope this list is a bit more guarded. Dave in Indy From: BRADLEY DAVID A (MCVAX0::RC65036) To: VMS MAIL ADDRESSEE (IN::"homebrew at hpfcmgw.fc.hp.com") cc: BRADLEY DAVID A (MCVAX0::RC65036) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 95 09:58:02 EST From: John DeCarlo <jdecarlo at mitre.org> Subject: Re-pitching at bottling time Kris Thomas Messenger <kmesseng at slonet.org> writes: >I have seen several mentions in the literature about re-pitching yeast when >bottling after long secondary fermentations. The rationale seems to be >that the yeast will have gone dormant, died off, or settled out. Thus to >assure carbonation in the bottle, it is suggested to add more yeast. [...] >If anyone has any first hand experience here, I would be interested in >hearing it. Another area this applies to is meads which I sometimes leave >for one or two years. Well, my overall impression is that this is yeast and environment/system dependent. As for first hand experience, I have not had any problems with bottle carbonation with: 1) An ale that was in the secondary for 6 months. 2) Lots of ales that were in secondary 3-4 months. 3) A mead that fermented/aged 14 months before bottling. Note that this does not include any lagers. Or fancy Belgian high gravity styles. All were fermented with various Wyeast ale yeasts except the mead fermented with Wyeast champagne yeast. All were carbonated within 2 weeks of bottling, and the mead was wonderfully clear in the carboy before bottling. John DeCarlo, MITRE Corporation, McLean, VA--My views are my own Fidonet: 1:109/131 Internet: jdecarlo at mitre.org Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 95 10:06:48 EST From: Tim_Fields_at_Relay__Tech__Vienna at relay.com Subject: RE siphoning Hot break We had a post within the past few days that mentioned the difficulty of siphoning hot wort off the hot break. As I recall, the poster noted that whirlpooling doesn't work with hot break/wort. My own experience is that whirlpooling _may_ work for the trub, but that it doesn't phase whole hops at all. Unless I am mistaken, it is a very good thing to siphon hot wort off the hot break (being careful to avoid HSA). I _think_ I've read that removing hot break is much more beneficial than removing cold break. I'd really like to know what the collective experience has to say about this. Which is more beneficial? Removing the hot break? the cold break? both? neither???? For me, the hotbreak removal process is a royal PITA, so I'd love to avoid it if the benefit is nil. -Tim timf at relay.com "How 'bout them Terps!" Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 95 09:51:54 EDT From: CGEDEN at NERVM.NERDC.UFL.EDU Subject: Drinking age WHen I was 18 the US government was busy sending lots of 18-yr-olds to fight and die in Southeast Asia. As Barry McGuire sang in "The Eve of Destruction": "You're old enough to kill, but not for votin'". We also weren't allowed to drink in most states, although 18 was considered adulthood for most other things. In some cases this resulted in such absurdities as 20-yr-old combat-veteran-homeowning-husband-fathers who were not considered mature enough to enjoy a beer. Then they lowered the voting age and in most cases the drinking age to 18 in about 1972. Since then its crept back up to 21 in the interests of highway safety. Lets face it, 18-yr-olds are adults and deserve the right to drink if they care to. Some of them will make unwise choices, but so do all of us from time to time. It makes no more sense to deny them this freedom based on highway statistics than it would to deny drivers licenses to people over 70 years old. Now, should 16-yr-olds be allowed to drive? That's another question... Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 10:15:17 -0400 (EDT) From: Mark Kirby <mkirby at isnet.is.wfu.edu> Subject: 9" False Bottom After reading Kirk Fleming's post regarding false bottoms, I should probably clarify my posting regarding the use of smaller diameter false bottoms: My mash\lauter tun also serves as my boiling vessel. I use a King Kooker (tm) (170K BTU) burner to heat the mash to appropriate temperatures when needed, and having the smaller diameter plate in the bottom allows DIRECT access to the bottom of the keg where hot spots can form and scorch the wort. If the perforated SS plate covered the entire bottom of the keg, I could not prevent scorching since I would be unable to mix contents above and below the plate (i.e. no recirculation). During boiling, I'm able to keep the wort recirculating until boiling commences, which helps avoid the same problem of hot spot scorching (HSS?) As for its use with RIMS, I have no experience with such a setup, but Kirk's reasoning for utilization of larger false bottoms seems clear. Hope this helps some of you designing your own systems. Todd Kirby Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 09:37:56 -0500 From: Russell Mast <rmast at fnbc.com> Subject: Candling your beers. > From: Kris Thomas Messenger <kmesseng at slonet.org> > Subject: Re-pitching at bottling time > Not wanting to have cloudy beer, I am wondering how much yeast I should add > at bottling time to accomplish this. I have had some beers go for around 3 > months in the secondary and become quite brilliant. A flashlight can be > seen shining through the carboy even with some fairly dark brews. Thus, it > would appear as if all the yeast has settled out. First, there are still many, many yeast cells in suspension, just not enough to make a noticable difference in the light shining through it. There are, probably, enough to fully condition your beer in about the normal time. Second, I really don't have any idea how much yeast to re-pitch. I guess if you did too much, you might have haze problems or, later, a big ol' hunk of sediment. I've found that using gelatin finings at bottling not only clears the yeast out better, it also helps the slurry to stay at the bottom during pouring, so it doesn't cloud up in the glass as much. Finally, and most important - I've been "candling" my beers for as long as I've been using glass carboys. You shine a flashlight through and see how clear it is, what color it is, how active the fermentation is, etc. My buddy Jake was over one time I was doing this, and he was aghast. He said that that will make my beers go lightstruck (skunked!) much faster than simply letting a light shine in from a room. (I was always aghast that he left his stuff in an open-door pantry, it was free from direct sunlight, but that's about it.) I've never had a problem with skunked homebrew, but, to be safe, I have tried to limit the amount of time I'm "candling" my beers. So, does anyone know - how much candling is safe? How much will light-strike my beer? A few seconds, a few days, what? Thanks, -R Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 95 11:13:39 EST From: "Colgan, Brian P." <bcolgan at sungard.com> Subject: Brewing/Drinking age >From: acostell at moose.uvm.edu (andrew costello) >Subject: Brewing/Drinking Age >Does anyone out there know if there is a legal age attached to hombrewing? >Does it vary from state to state ? I am also interested to find out your >thoughts on the 21 year old drinking age. There is a bill being introduced >in the House of Representatives that would remove the requirement on states >that they must have a 21 year old drinking age to get federal highway money. >This requirement forced many states into adopting their legal age as 21, >even though they may not have wanted to. This is sure to touch off a debate, >and I'd like to know what the brewers think. Thanks. Wow, legal brewing age? I shudder to think that my 2 (cellarman) and 5 (asst. brewster) year olds are a couple of criminals.... Not to mention the fact that my two year old son screams 'BEER!' at the dinner table until he gets his one sip. These are the same two in-utero beer swillers from the beer/pregnant thread btw, both big as trees and smarter that anything IMHO. So where do I surrender them? Brian Colgan "Every one has to believe in something." bcolgan at sungard.com "I believe I'll have another homebrew." h:(610) 527-8896 / w: (215) 627-3800 Radnor, PA. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 08:45:13 -0600 From: Shawn Steele <shawn at aob.org> Subject: Virtual Great American Beer Festival Our access provider mixed up our mail, so I don't know if this made it out the first time or not. My apologies if this is a duplicate. - ---------------- Spread the news! Virtual Great American Beer Festival October 5-7, 1995 There will be a virtual gathering on the World Wide Web for the 1995 Great American Beer Festival from 6:00 p.m, Thursday, Oct. 5, through midnight, Saturday, Oct. 7, Mountain time. This virtual GABF will coincide with the 14th annual Great American Beer Festival in Denver, Colorado. This event promises to be the largest, most exciting, domestic beer celebration to date, with more than 1,345 different beers from over 335 breweries. Visit the Virtual GABF on the World Wide Web at: http://www.aob.org/aob/gabf/virtual.html Our on-line events will include discussions with people at the Great American Beer Festival through our beer pages, as well as other beer enthusiasts around the world. Visit our web site to find out which beers and breweries will be featured during the Virtual GABF. On Saturday the 7th, the Professional Panel Blind Tasting results will be posted! Enjoy the Festival, Shawn Shawn Steele Webmaster Great American Beer Festival (303) 447-0816 x 118 (voice) 736 Pearl Street (303) 447-2825 (fax) PO Box 1679 shawn at aob.org (e-mail) Boulder, CO 80306-1679 info at aob.org (aob info) U.S.A. http://www.aob.org/aob (web) This information is subject to change. Great American Beer Festival is a registered trademark and GABF is a registered service mark of Brewing Matters. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 09:07:08 -0700 From: hollen at vigra.com Subject: Re: more RIMS questions >>>>> "Keith" == Keith Royster <N1EA471 at mro.ehnr.state.nc.us> writes: Keith> I plan on building a system that simply heats the wort with my Keith> propane cooker under the kettle and recirculates it to the top Keith> with a pump. No heating element, no computer chips. But it Keith> does (R)ecirculate, and it is an (I)nfusion (M)ashing (S)ystem, Keith> but is it a RIMS? It is my contention that the system that you describe *is* a RIMS system. While you may provide heat in many different ways, I feel that the *only essential* component of a system to make it a RIMS is constant recirculation during conversion. You do not even need the capability of raising the temperature to achieve the advantages of even heat throughout the mash and the grain bed acting as its own filter. Of course, without any heat being added to the system, you must have excellent insulation in the whole system including the pumping circuit. There are many ways to provide the heat and a temperature controller and a low density element are just one. Your hand controlled propane cooker is another. It is just that some ways of heating have more propensity for scorching and overshooting than others. You walk away from your propane setup during the boost and get distracted and you could come back to a mash at 180F, dead enzymes and a ruined mash. Unless my temp controller malfunctions, I set the dial to 150F, walk away and come back 2 hours later and it would still be at 150F plus or minus 1 degree. I am sure that I will once again be blasted because some people deem recirculation to be a *bad thing* and to be avoided like the plague. However, I am not attempting to debate that point. I do not have a body of scientific evidence to support or put down that point. I only find that my beer made with my RIMS is excellent. Keith> Also, what is the best way to control the speed of the Keith> recirculating pump? A motor speed controller (dimmer switch?)? Keith> or a ball-valve upstream of the pump outlet? I would like to Keith> use the same pump to transfer the wort from the mash tun to the Keith> brew kettle during the sparge, but I'm worried that trying to Keith> slow the pump down to a normal sparging speed might be too slow Keith> and damage/burn the pump. After talking with tech support engineers at several pump manufacturers, the preferred way of throttling a pump is to use a valve on the output side. Personally, I use an industrial fan motor speed controller (basically a dimmer switch). I have not yet had any apparent damage to my pump. I felt that running the pump at full capacity and throttling it with a valve might cause the wort to be "whipped" in the impeller chamber and therefore cause HSA. I opted for slowing down the pump. dion - -- Dion Hollenbeck (619)597-7080x119 Email: hollen at vigra.com Senior Software Engineer Vigra, Inc. San Diego, California Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 09:16:19 -0700 From: hollen at vigra.com Subject: Re: Periodicals >>>>> "Kris" == Kris Thomas Messenger <kmesseng at slonet.org> writes: Kris> Presently, I subscribe to Zymurgy as published by AHA. I have Kris> seen a magazine called "Brewing Techniques" and wonder if anyone Kris> has some comments on how the two publications compare. Thanks. As I just posted to rec.crafts.brewing, Zymurgy is geared more towards the beginning and intermediate brewer, while BT is geared to the intermediate to advanced brewer and craft brewers (micros and brewpubs). Also, it is more geared to high tech equipment than Zymurgy. There is certainly an overlap and I subscribe to both, even though I have published an article in BT, I do not consider myself "above" Zymurgy and learn from it as well. If you can only subscribe to one, I would determine which one based on your level of skill and love of gadgets. However, if at all possible, I suggest that you subscribe to them BOTH. From what I have seen of "Beer", if you are beyond the absolute beginner, you can forget that one. dion - -- Dion Hollenbeck (619)597-7080x119 Email: hollen at vigra.com Senior Software Engineer Vigra, Inc. San Diego, California Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 12:19:26 -0400 (EDT) From: "Mark J. Wilk" <mw5w+ at andrew.cmu.edu> Subject: brew pubs in Utah Can anyone tell me of any brew pubs in the Moab area. I will be there on a five day bike trip, and I hope to be able to load up on carbos at a local brewery. Thanks in advance. Mark Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 12:16:04 EDT From: ZYHM49A at prodigy.com ( ROBERT G SCHILLINGER) Subject: request@ hpfcmi.fc.hp.com zyhm49a Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 12:16:30 EDT From: ZYHM49A at prodigy.com ( ROBERT G SCHILLINGER) Subject: request@ hpfcmi.fc.hp.com zyhm49a Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 09:34:29 PDT From: Art_Ward at mc.xerox.com Subject: Apples or Cider in your Home brew Has anyone made any beer using Apples and/or Cider. I am looking for any receipts. I am mainly interested in how you added the apples (form, example: chucks peeled, sauced ect) to the brew. Private e-mail only. Thanks Art Ward Art_Ward at mc.xerox.com Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 09:37:18 -0700 From: hollen at vigra.com Subject: Re: RIMS >>>>> "Kirk" == Fleming, Kirk R , Capt <FLEMINGKR at afmcfafb.fafb.af.mil> writes: Kirk> Due to a gut feeling only, I'd prefer to recirculate my wort only Kirk> to the extent needed to maintain uniform temperature in the grain Kirk> bed, and foremost only enough to ensure no scorching in the heat Kirk> exchange area (be it a chamber or a direct-fired tun). Still, I Kirk> don't see how machine stirring of the mash is any less likely to Kirk> extract phenols (or anything else) than is constant recirculation. I agree with your gut feeling and I too, keep recirc rates to a minimum. Kirk> Also, I don't follow Charlie's "over sparging" concern...I don't Kirk> see a connection between RIMS and how much you sparge. I think what Charlie was alluding to is that any *bad* things which would happen because of oversparging would happen during recirculation. However, what Charlie may be overlooking is that during sparging, you are constantly changing the relationship of the water to the grain. The pH is changing, the grain is getting less sugars in it.... I believe that those things which might happen during oversparging do not occur during mash recirculation because the *same* wort is going round and round. It is not "washing" the grain like sparging is. How about it Charlie, like to re-evaluate your comments in light of this? Were you maybe extending characteristics of over-sparging to recirculation which are not there because of the very different chemical makeup of the wort during recirc from that during sparging? I am not baiting you, I actually would like to know about specifics that you feel are a down side of the recirc. I just feel that the chemical environment is very different in the two cases; different enough for me to not believe in the problems you seem to think exist. If you have hard evidence, I am open to it. And in fact, would welcome it and want to test it out. Since I am writing a book on RIMS design and fabrication, I want to be able to put in as much proven information as possible and if you have found a vulnerability to RIMS systems that can be identified and corrected, I want to do that. dion - -- Dion Hollenbeck (619)597-7080x119 Email: hollen at vigra.com Senior Software Engineer Vigra, Inc. San Diego, California Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 09:39:53 -0700 From: hollen at vigra.com Subject: Re: Hot on RIMS >>>>> "Bob" == Bob Sutton >>>>> <BSutton_+a_fdgv-03_+lBob_Sutton+r%Fluor_Daniel at mcimail.com> >>>>> writes: Bob> As an engineer, I find RIMS to be an elegant approach, Bob> conceptually. However, I would expect RIMS to overheat the mash Bob> passing through the exchanger/heating element, caramelizing Bob> sugars and degrading enzymes. On the other hand, a fired system Bob> still has heat localization concerns at the wall film. Bob> It would seem, to this innocent eye, that the damage at the wall Bob> film (assuming decent agitation) would be less than RIMS. What Bob> exit temperature do you RIMS advocates experience at each Bob> rest. Based on the pump rates and heat exchange capacity I have Bob> seen in recent posts, I'd predict that exit temperatures are well Bob> above enzyme tolerances. I agree with your concerns and one could construct a RIMS in such a fashion as to present you with the localized heating you are afraid of. My heater chamber has the thermistor probe for the temperature controller on the input side of the heater. The temperature readout is on the output side. In that manner, I set the dial to give the desired output temperature. When I am shooting for 150F, the exit temperature is always lower than that until it reaches 150F and then it never exceeds that because the duty cycle of the heater is lowered. I, too, am concerned by the temp differential and as soon as I have my BruProbe and BruTemp completely working, I plan on replacing my temp controller probe with a second digital temp readout and running the system flat out and seeing the actual temperature differential between input and ouput. I am pretty sure it will be only a few degrees. My normal boost rate while the heater is going full bore with a grain bill of abouit 15 lbs. is only 1.5 degrees per minute. The 1125 watts of the heater are spread out over a surface area of 72 square inches which means about 15 watts per square inch. This is an extremely low density of heat. When I get results from the heater differential test, I will surely post them here. dion - -- Dion Hollenbeck (619)597-7080x119 Email: hollen at vigra.com Senior Software Engineer Vigra, Inc. San Diego, California Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 95 10:49:00 MST From: "Fleming, Kirk R., Capt" <FLEMINGKR at afmcfafb.fafb.af.mil> Subject: RIMS Heating Bob Sutton expressed concern about RIMS wort heating... RIMS design (as I know it) generally shoots for continuous flow over a low energy density heating element, using a temperature controller setpoint equal to the desired infusion temperature. With the temperature pickup in the immediate vicinity of the heating element, no part of the wort ever exceeds that setpoint. The 'exit' temp he asked about is always exactly the setpoint temperature, or below. In my direct-fired, human brain-controlled system, the temperature pickup is in the plumbing immediately outside the bottom of the mash tank. Wort coming directly off the heating pan flows over the temp probe first, then goes into the pump and back into the grain bed. Even without the benefit of an electronic controller I have no temperature overshoot, except that occuring in the boundary layer at the heating pan (wall film). Unless you have infinite surface area, of course, the boundary layer temp *has* to be higher than the setpoint or you can't heat anything up. I have a large heated surface area, but it is certainly less than infinite. Since the circulation is continuous, and especially continuous during any heat inputs, I'm confident there is no significant difference between this arrangement and a manually stirred system with false bottom. KRF Colorado Springs Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 95 10:54:25 PDT From: kens at lan.nsc.com (Ken Schroeder) Subject: Temp distribution in mashing Jim Bush and Dion Hollen argue about which systems are better for even temp distibution in the mash tun. Dion hypes the push button, no worry rims system, while Jim advocates the hands free stirring, traditional fired system. Our two respected brewers seem to agree that even heat distribution is very important. I question this philosphy, or at least ask, how even is even? I have extensively measured heat distribution in my traditional, direct fired, cut keg system. I use a large wood paddle for stirring. With an expensive thermal couple themometer, I measured virutally every quadrant if the mash tun and found, after stirring, no more than a 2 degree delta. That is to say, if one section was 68C the other sections would be no less than 67C and no section would be more than 68C. During the heating process, the bottom of the mash tun would raise beyond this delta. The delta was (is) dependant on the amount of heat applied and the amount of time between stirrings. Once heat was removed, the 2 degree gradiant is established with stirring. So, how even is even? Also does "even" include the heating process and if so, how even is even? Further, when the beer style has high malt characteristics, both my wife I tend to use direct fire to bring the mash from mash in (25C) to sac temps. We strive for a 1 degree C per minute raise. We tend to raise the temp to 68C and then let the mash cool to about 65C before raising again to strike temp. I find very good results with this method (at least judges seem to think so). My wife (the scientist/bio-chemist) jumps up and down how all the emzymes and stuff are all active with this method. Does reflect an "even" heating proceedure? Comments Dion, Jim? My wife and I both believe that the uneveness (especically when heating)of our system and proceedures actually help create beers full of different characters. It hard to describe in words, but dry and sweet, full bodied but not thick and other apparent contridictions. I question the need for "eveness" in the brewing process. This is an opinion, others will have different opinions. Let's hear them. This is why brewing is an art AND a science! Deion, Jim? Ken Schroeder Sequoia Brewing (a direct fire, hand stirred, fully manual nano-brewery) kens at lan.nsc.com Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 14:03:56 -0400 From: KennyEddy at aol.com Subject: Hop Util/Grain Conversion/Force Carbonating/Fermentation Temp Control Hi one and all. I've been a peeping tom long enough so I thought I'd join the fray. I have a few questions which I have not been able to get answered satisfactorily elsewhere. This looks like the place! (1) Hop Utilization: Everybody seems to have different formulae for hop utilization. Considering how we homebrewers concern ourselves with getting just the right color numbers and gravities and worrying about extraction efficiency, it's odd that hop utilization is such an inexact science. I have read Glen Tinseth's paper on utilization and find it convincing but if I compare his curves with say Mosher versus Papazian versus Gareth versus Rager...you get the picture. Using these various gurus' approaches sometimes leads to IBUs off by dozens of percent from one to another! Who's right (or at least in current favor)? Or is it so hopelessly complicated and dependent on the phase of the moon that we can never hope to nail that IBU rating on the money? (2) Grain Conversion: Being relatively new to the art of all-grain brewing (and being the nerdy engineer that I am), I'm wondering about some details concerning conversion of starch to sugar. I understand that each malt has its own theoretical extraction potential; multiply this by your system's efficiency and the amount of grain and water and all that, and you have the OG contribution. Fine. But: how much of that OG is actually fermentable? A program like SUDS lists a variety of grains and their OG potential, but assumes that the resulting OG is fully fermentable (and also assumes that 75% is converted to alcohol [75% apparent attenuation]). What is needed is a chart that shows not only potential extract but also *percent fermentablilty*. For example, 40L crystal might have an extract potential of 31 points, of which say 65% is fermentable. Any such info available? On sorta the same topic, I would think that roasting grains would destroy some to all of the starch's conversion capability, yet I see malts like chocolate or even black patent listed with extractions not much different that pale malts. The stock answer I get for these questions is "well, we don't use a high percentage of these grains so we just ignore those effects". But I would like to know anyway. (3) Force Carbonation: Now that I'm kegging, I'm enjoying the convenience of sediment-free beer-on-demand. I'm also enjoying variable and unpredicatable carbonation levels. My current approach is to add pressure immediately after racking, according to temperature/volumes tables, then tossing the unconnected keg into the fridge. This buys a little time by pushing CO2 into the beer as it cools. Now I suspect two things should be happening here. One, the free CO2 will reduce in pressure due to the cooling temperatures. Two, the cooling beer would allow more CO2 to dissolve in (or would it...?). But I should end up with a pressure at final temperature euqla to that in the chart for the same CO2 volume I was originally after. Right? Next question: So assume I have my beer wonderfully carbonated at 2.5 volumes and 38 degrees. Now, I don't have the tables in front of me but I think this means about 12 psi. Whatever. But my serving pressure is necessarily 8 psi (to prevent beer-face). So-o-o-o, wouldn't the beer try to reach equilibrium by "flattening" out to the equivalent 8psi/38 degree volume level? If so, how does one maintain these carbonation levels without spewing beer all the way to the neighbor's house? Controlling Fermentation Temperature: In anticipation of good answers to the above questions, and in return for your indulgence, I have a suggestion for controlling fermentation temperatures without investing in a fridge. The key word here is CONTROL. Many brewers use an insulated box with a jug or two of ice, but must fudge with this to get just the "right" temperature. I have been using a box of my own design which is small and lightweight, can control temperature within a couple degrees, and costs around $50 to build from all new parts (less if you're a good scrounge). Those of you on America OnLine will find complete plans in the beer forum uploads board under "Fermentation Chiller for Summer Brewing" (dig back to like May). Unfortuantely, AOL does not support file attach over the net, so the rest of you can follow along here. The box is built from 2" styrofoam (the pink or blue extruded polystyrene is sturdiest & recommended, although a bit pricier). My original dimensions were a compromise between fitting a 5 or 6-1.2 gal carboy (not bucket) with airlock, versus fitting the pieces on a single 4x8 sheet of foam (or two 2x8 sheets). So if you have access to Foam Unlimited, size it to your liking. The box is 24"x16" at the base and 34" high. An interior wall divides the box into a "fermentation chamber" which holds the carboy, and another area which I will address shortly. If you add up the wall thicknesses to the dimensions given, you find the inside of the fermentation chamber is 12x12. Now, in each of the two top corners of the divider, I have cut a 3x3 notch (before assembly). In one notch I have mounted a 3" 12VDC fan, so it will blow into the fermentation chamber. The other notch is an "intake" which provides a circulation path for the air when the box is closed. The fan is controlled by a standard household COOLING thermostat, set to say 65 degrees (some will go below 50F, which might make it usable for lagers). I put two gallon jugs of ice in the chamber behind the fermentation chamber. But since I want to "corral" the cold air from the ice until needed, I have to put the fan and intake at the TOP of the divider (cold air sinks). So to get the intake air diverted DOWN so it will pick up the cold air and flow UP across the ice before exiting (cold) theough the fan, I added another divider which splits the "ice chamber". But the divider does not reach the bottom, so air flows down from the intake notch, UNDER the divider, UP across the ice, and finally OUT through the fan into the fermentation chamber. The ice chamber is larger than the intake chamber to allow the jugs to fit (8x8). The top panel and front panel (at the carboy end of the box) are removable. The top panel allows access to the ice and the front panel of course allows access to the beer. The box is assembled with Liquid Nails (except the top and front panels) and the whole thing is sealed with silicone caulk. Weatherstripping is applied strategically around the top edges of the dividers to seal them against the top panel. Additional weatherstripping seals the perimeter of the top and front panels. I used wooden dowels to "pin" the top and front in place; a good "press fit" and a heavy book on top would probably suffice. Everything is powered by a 12V 200mA wall adapter. In the hottest weather (90 degrees in my garage) I can go two days between ice changes. If you can park it in your home, three or even four days would not be unrealistic. Sorry for such a long-winded introduction but I hope (a) I get my questions answered and (b) you find the Fermentation Chiller useful. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 13:57:53 EDT From: "Herb B. Tuten" <HERB at zeus.co.forsyth.nc.us> Subject: Heat Source I'd like to expand my home-brew operation and move it to the basement. I could use a propane type heat source, but then I'd need to vent it and there are safety concerns. What about adapting a used stove? Or perhaps there's a way to attach an element directly to a keg with the top cut off. I'm in the process of obtaining the keg, so this would be the time to work out the details of how I'll heat it so I can make larger batches and/or move on to grain brewing. Does anyone have experience with a basement set-up? Also, I've always used a siphon for bottling and now I've seen the priming buckets with faucets everywhere. Any opinions on the faucet method of bottling? Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #1843, 09/28/95