HOMEBREW Digest #1986 Sat 16 March 1996

[Prev HBD] [Index] [Next HBD] [Back]

		Rob Gardner, Digest Janitor

  Summary of EasyMasher Responses ("Kenneth D. Joseph")
  Re: Calories Revisited (shelby & gary)
  Electric Boilers -- Please Read This (KennyEddy)
  Genetic Drift (Alan Folsom)
  Macintosh beer-related software (Robert Bush)
  The BeerStack link (Robert Bush)
  yeast mutations/polypropylene and hop storage (Algis R Korzonas)
  phenolic beer (Brian Gardner)
  cleanliness and yeast use (Rob Lauriston)
  Re: He is serious, Mr. Electrophobe, moralist, censor. ("Richard Okambawa")
  U.S Open (yes, another competition announcement) ("Keith Royster")
  Why build up starters? (Regan Pallandi)
  Pressure Gauges (usbscrhc)
  Bad to be a glad plaid clad lad... (pbabcock)
  CO2/Triple Strain (A. J. deLange)
  electric boilers (DONBREW)
  Distillation: Don't do the crime if you can't do the time (Mitch Hogg)
  To "B" or not to "B"... (PatrickM50)
  Brewing in Fishtanks (J. Matthew Saunders)
  extract brewing (I am kidding please no emails) (Scott Abene)
  Pennies as (PLACK)
  CO2 in what form? (David C. Harsh)

****************************************************************** * POLICY NOTE: Due to the incredible volume of bouncing mail, * I am going to have to start removing addresses from the list * that cause ongoing problems. In particular, if your mailbox * is full or your account over quota, and this results in bounced * mail, your address will be removed from the list after a few days. * * If you use a 'vacation' program, please be sure that it only * sends a automated reply to homebrew-request *once*. If I get * more than one, then I'll delete your address from the list. ****************************************************************** ################################################################# # # YET ANOTHER NEW FEDERAL REGULATION: if you are UNSUBSCRIBING from the # digest, please make sure you send your request to the same service # provider that you sent your subscription request!!! I am now receiving # many unsubscribe requests that do not match any address on my mailing # list, and effective immediately I will be silently deleting such # requests. # ################################################################# NOTE NEW HOMEBREW ADDRESS hpfcmgw! Send articles for __publication_only__ to homebrew at hpfcmgw.fc.hp.com (Articles are published in the order they are received.) Send UNSUBSCRIBE and all other requests, ie, address change, etc., to homebrew-request@ hpfcmgw.fc.hp.com, BUT PLEASE NOTE that if you subscribed via the BITNET listserver (BEER-L at UA1VM.UA.EDU), then you MUST unsubscribe the same way! If your account is being deleted, please be courteous and unsubscribe first. Please don't send me requests for back issues - you will be silently ignored. For "Cat's Meow" information, send mail to lutzen at alpha.rollanet.org ARCHIVES: An archive of previous issues of this digest, as well as other beer related information can be accessed via anonymous ftp at ftp.stanford.edu. Use ftp to log in as anonymous and give your full e-mail address as the password, look under the directory /pub/clubs/homebrew/beer directory. AFS users can find it under /afs/ir.stanford.edu/ftp/pub/clubs/homebrew/beer. If you do not have ftp capability you may access the files via e-mail using the ftpmail service at gatekeeper.dec.com. For information about this service, send an e-mail message to ftpmail at gatekeeper.dec.com with the word "help" (without the quotes) in the body of the message.
---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: 13 Mar 96 12:17:42 EST From: "Kenneth D. Joseph" <74651.305 at compuserve.com> Subject: Summary of EasyMasher Responses Thanks to all for the very helpful responses! A special thank you to Dan Listermann ( the manufacturer of my Phalse Bottom and Sparge Arm) for taking the time to evaluate my use of his products unsolicited. Here are some tips I received on the EasyMasher (which I have not decided whether or not to purchase): Mark Hogenmiller writes: >1. After hitting Mash-in temp on the stove. Slowly dough-in your grains a cup to 2 cups at a time and stir well. This will ensure all grains are wet. >My first couple of batches I just dumped in all the grains, stirred once or twice and walked away. >2. Unless you plan to insulate the kettle with foil insulation or a similiar product, you will have to keep a sharp eye on Mash temperature and keep >adding small amounts of heat, since the thermal efficiency of the kettle is not all that good. Now I set my oven on warm (approx 150F) and stick >the kettle in there to maintain temperature. About every 20 minutes I give it a stir and check for starch conversion. This has helped maintaining >mash temp and making it easier to walk away from the mash and attend to my three year old running around the house. >3. I read where Jack Schmidling advocated that the water in your Sparge vessel be in the range of 180F plus. I am using an uninsulated Bottling >bucket for my hot water tank and took some temps of the outgoing water. In the bucket I would put 170F water and by the time it came out it was >in the <160F range. Since that time I have put my water in at 180F+ and it comes out at a more consistent 168-170F for sparging. >4. To get a better boil on the kitchen stove, put the kettle on two burners. The 8.5 gallon kettle is big enough that it will fit over two burners (front >and back). This has helped in speeding up boil times and getting a better hot break. The kettle on one burner did not keep a good rolling boil >going and I had notes of DMS in my beer. Don Hatlestad writes: >An EasyMasher won't raise your extract rate on it's own. I use one, by the >way. You will get greater extract by using a multiple step mash schedule. SSLOFL at ccmail.m (name unknown) writes >Bad move! The hops plugged the easymasher, and I ended up having to >siphon it out as usual. From now on, I am only going to use leaf hops >during the boil. The leaves will make a nice filter bed, and should not >plug the masher. After chilling with my immersion chiller, simply allow >the easymasher to filter the cooled wort off of the spent hops and the >trub. This should make a much cleaner primary fermentation. >In other words, no need to buy another kettle for the boil! You >can save yourself the cash and have a smoother beer by using the same >pot. This is a common setup, and many people use it with good success. "R. Smith" writes: >Saw the HBD post. Here's my suggestion. Keep the enamel pot to (1) >heat sparge wtaer and (2) boil your wort. Buy a 5 gal ss stock pot for >about 25 bucks and install your EM in that. You can hold 10 lbs of >grain comfortably and stretch it to 12 lbs if you have to. You will be >able to brew 5 gal of beer up to about 65 SG. This is my set up and it >works very well for me. My conclusion (I'm still looking forward to Mr. Listermann's opinion) is that my problem may lie in the temp of the sparge water. I've been boiling all water prior to mashing, then putting in a heavily insulated plastic bucket until sparging. Bucket temp is 170 to 168 at the start, but exit temp may be lower, and may fall substantially during the sparge. I will also try Mr. Fix's schedule rather than my 122 (20min)/152-156 (60 min)/170 (10 min) schedule. I am very happy with the mechanics of the Phalse Bottom -- I get clear runoff in 5-10 minutes, and have only gotten a stuck sparge twice when I wasn't paying attention and let the water level fall too much. By the way, I have absolutely no afilliation with Listermann manufacturing or Mr. Listermann. I am, however, very interested in the effect of hot side aeration since I have simply been dumping my grains into the lauter tun after filling the tun w/ water 1" over the bottom. I am also interested the process of whirlpooling the wort after chilling to drop hops and trub. E-mail responses would be appreciated. Thanks for the info! Ken Joseph 74651.305 at compuserve.com Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 1996 10:54:45 -0500 From: shelby & gary <gjgibson at ioa.com> Subject: Re: Calories Revisited This probably will not help solve any questions on this matter but I = thought I would ramble on about the subject a little. First of all, it = seems logical that the lower the final gravity, the fewer the calories. = I come to this conclusion by looking at what a gravity reading really = measures. This would be sugar content, right? Sugar is a primary = source of energy for many animals. The brain and nervous system must = use glucose for energy, and without sugars we could not completely = metabolise fat (just for starters). I will not get into the trace = elements and vitamins and all that mess but we get approximately 60% of = our calories from carbohydrates, which are starches and sugars. Sugars = have about 4 kcals per gram whether it comes from corn, wheat, barley, = honey, whatever. As far as alcohol is concerned, your muscles, etc. cannot use it as an = energy source, but alcohol does have about 7 kcals per gram. It is = treated as a drug which is to be distroyed. About 20% is absorbed from = the stomach, the remainder in the small intestine. Having food in the = stomach, less alcohol will be able to reach the stomach lining (decrease = rate of absorption), you will get a delay in stomach emptying (decrease = rate of absorption in small intestine), and you will stimulate enzymes = that can begin to break down the alcohol. Drinking on an empty stomach = will make the alcohol go to your head more rapidly. About three percent = passes out the body unchanged through breath , persperation and urine. = The remainder goes to the liver where liver enzymes act to detoxify it. = If consumed faster than the liver can handle it, alcohol builds up in = the bloodstream and will begin to have effects on the brain (Surprise). = I'm only guessing here, but I would think that the calories taken in by = beer can be negated by a fraction because of the calories burned in = order to detoxify the alcohol and possibly some extra heat given off as = well as other factors ( I use negated because I want to only consider = beer and not the ten slices of pizza you had for dinner). Of course, if = you use this philosophy, you will probably just consume alot of hard = liquer in stead of going on a diet. I'll end with a nice bit of trivia. = A six pack of beer has the caloric equivalent of about ten slices of = bread (this would be a typical US beer like budweiser or something). = The average number of alcoholic drinks that college students with "A" = averages cunsume is 3.5 per week. The average number of alcoholic = drinks that college students with "D" or "F" averages is 11 per week. I = got this info in a nutrition class I had while at N.C. State. Shelby, Asheville, NC Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 1996 12:44:12 -0500 From: KennyEddy at aol.com Subject: Electric Boilers -- Please Read This I feel I must pause in my development and reporting of the Electric Brewery for a moment and regroup. The attractiveness of electric boilers is definitely offset by the safety issues at hand, and a couple hastily-made comments of mine haven't helped. Safety is and must be of PRIME concern; as Jeff Hewitt pointed out in HBD1983, none of this brewing stuff is worth dying for, or having a fire or other damage ensue. It's easy for someone like me who has played with electrons nearly all his life to easily and successfully rig up a safe working system, and it's just as easy for me to overlook the fact that someone with less knowledge in the field may put their enthusiasm ahead of safety and prudence. The Electric Brewery is not difficult to safely create, but if you lack the knowledge or experience, or are new to dealing with house-current wiring projects, please DON'T DO IT!! I know that many readers who have been interested in creating such a system do possess the required skills and safety-mindedness, but many more don't. There is help available. If you build the vessels mechanically (mount but do not hook up the elements, for example), you can hire an electrician to wire it up neatly and safely for you, and to inspect your house wiring for comapatibility. Sure, it'll cost money, but it's a worthwhile investment in peace of mind. We homebrewers are by definition "do-it-yourselfers". How much talent we have for different aspects of the job varies. That's why the Digest is what it is -- a repository of idea exchange to help bolster our individual weak spots and to help round out our mastery of this hobby. Any of you who have corresponded privately with me know me to be naturally inquisitive and eager to share my experiences. While the Electric Brewery is certainly not my original idea, I felt that my brewery was a success and that I could offer some helpful tips based on things I learned while building mine. However, in my enthusiasm I spoke out of turn, but fortunately people were paying attention and raised a flag. I am happy to provide information about how I built my system, but not at the risk of encouraging someone with inadequate skills to rig up a death machine. BTW the "Pail Ale" that I brewed in the Electric Brewery last week is shaping up very nicely, with no plastic character whatsoever. The water treatment I used definitely lent a dry, crisp character to the hops. As the beer finishes and matures I'll post an update. Please brew safely! Ken Schwartz Comments welcome at KennyEddy at aol.com Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 1996 09:48:19 -0800 From: folsom at ix.netcom.com (Alan Folsom) Subject: Genetic Drift In today's HBD Domenick Venezia wrote: >Perhap's Tam's use of the term "mutate" is unfortunate. A true >genetic mutation is probably rare. What Tam is referring to is more >appropriately termed "genetic drift". This is a darwinian selection >process by which the characteristics of the yeast will slowly change >due to selection pressures determined by a particular brewing process. >The yeast in the pitching population represent a certain amount of >variability; they are not all genetically identical. I'm curious. Since most yeast strains claim to be cultured from a single cell (and we are taught to do that when propogating yeast), and since yeast reproduction is via budding rather than sexual reproduction, how do we get yeast which are not genetically identical without mutation? I'm not trying to be a smart-aleck, just hoping that someone with more understanding of genetics than my 20 year old college memories can shed some light. Thanks, Al F. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 1996 20:08:52 +0100 From: bush at shbf.se (Robert Bush) Subject: Macintosh beer-related software Hallo all, there have been discussions in the HBD about beer/brewing software for the Macintosh. So far I have kept my mouth shut because I was working on an update of a HyperCard stack that I wrote a while back. However, now it's "finished" and version 1.1 is available (see below). For those of you who can obtain MacFormat (a UK mag) you can check out version 1.0 on the March issue cover disc / CD-ROM. The BeerStack 1.1 (the name of the program) can be downloaded from most Info-Mac sites. It's called The BeerStack but it's archived as /info-mac/art/beer-11-hc.hqx; 145K. If you use some kind of search-engine you'll find it if you search for "beer-11-hc.hqx". I hope someone on the digest finds it interesting. If you have any questions just E-mail me: %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% WASSAIL! %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% % Robert Bush Computer: Macintosh % % Eskilstuna,SWEDEN E-mail: bush at shbf.se % %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 1996 20:48:22 +0100 From: bush at shbf.se (Robert Bush) Subject: The BeerStack link Sorry, but I forgot to mention in my previous posting on Mac software that The BeerStack also can be downloaded via Netscape or similar via the following link: http://hyperarchive.lcs.mit.edu/HyperArchive/Archive/art/beer-11-hc.hqx %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% WASSAIL! %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% % Robert Bush Computer: Macintosh % % Eskilstuna,SWEDEN E-mail: bush at shbf.se % %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 96 14:12:47 CST From: korz at pubs.ih.att.com (Algis R Korzonas) Subject: yeast mutations/polypropylene and hop storage >Bob writes: >Tam Thompson writes, ". . . You can usually re-use that slurry about three >times before it starts to mutate too far into the unusable range. . . ." > >L o r n e F r a n k l i n writes,"I've read this assertion in many places >and >am wondering if anyone can profile the flavor, bahvior, or appearance of >"mutated" brewers yeast. I've never used yeast beyond the third generation, >but am curious of the potential problems involved with "inbred" yeast. > >Many micros and brewpubs reuse their yeast for many generations and some use >the yeast forever. There are several reasons for this, to replace the yeast >is expensive, it usually performs better after a few generations, and there >is no reason to replace it very often. I talked to one brewer who said that >he wanted his >yeast to mutate. That way he had a yeast that no one else had. It was his >own >strain of yeast. This may be true, but that brewer doesn't know that the odds are against him. Most mutations are undesirable. Natural selection was covered very nicely in Domenic's post (that's a keeper). >All brewers have their own methods of monitering their yeast. Some go by the >number of generations, others watch the performance of the yeast carefully >(such as how it flocculates and how the attenuation is ) and can tell >when things are different and then dump the yeast. Good point, but I feel you could elaborate on it. It is my understanding (I'm no microbiologist) that the most common mutations are (in no particular order): * losing the ability to reabsorb diacetyl, * losing the ability to ferment some sugars, * losing the ability to flocculate, and * respiratory deficient (RD) mutants -- aka "Petit Mutants" (this mutation exhibits itself as some combination of the first three... I don't recall which). As you can see, none of these are particularly appealing mutations. This is why Bob points out that you need to watch the yeast's performance and if something starts to increase or decrease suddenly, you should toss the yeast and start from stratch (or a master, if you've got it). >As a rule 3 generations are probably enough for homebrewers. We can't >possibly be as clean as a commercial setup, where they have heavy duty >caustics and acid sanitisers and boiling water to run through all of their >equipment, so we are risking passing an infected yeast on to another batch. Actually, we are probably cleaner than most commercial setups (we have far less to sanitize and we can see into or even through all of our equipment... except for maybe our counterflow chillers, which is partly why I use an immersion chiller), it's just that they pitch far more yeast than us and a small infection will take quite a few batches to become noticable. There are a couple of brewpubs that I've visited, at which they were serving severely infected beer (lactic acid bacteria). Every beer had the problem. One had a darn good Berliner Weiss, though... What I'm trying to point out here is that many brewpubs reuse yeast more than they should. As for us homebrewers and how many generations are safe, it depends a lot on your system and how well you keep to good sanitation procedures. Some homebrewers I know could probably go 20 or 30 generations without a problem. Others, should probably start with a new package of Wyeast each time. I'm somewhere in the middle, but my problem is that I use so many different yeasts and brew such a variety of styles that I rarely use the same yeast twice in one month. I just build up 2 liter starters from slants or liquid yeast packages as I need them. Lately, I've been brewing less than I want to and I've got three yeasts that I should either use or dump soon! I've been feeding them weekly, but that's an invitation for infection too. Every time I open the flasks, I'm risking contamination. >As far as mutations, it depends on the strain of yeast and how much you >stress >the yeast. High gravity beers stress the yeast and should not be repitched, >some say dark beers also. Lager yeasts are more prone than ale yeasts. Some >Weissen yeasts change rapidly and lose that clove-like flavor. I had not heard that about lager yeasts or Weizen yeasts. Could you point to a reference? I think that the Weizen yeast problem may be due to rumours started about the Wyeast #3056 Bavarian Weizen (which is a blend of two yeasts -- I think that with age, the clove-producing yeast pooped-out). It has been posted to HBD many times that Chico Brewing Company has said that they reuse the yeast from all their beers except the Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale and Bigfoot Barleywine-style Ale because the high alcohol content tends to increase the risk of mutation. *** Stan writes: >Are polypropylene containers suitable for whole hop storage: oxygen >permeability, etc? Thanks Well... polypropylene is 2.5 times *more* oxygen-permeable than high density polyethylene, which is notorious for being oxygen-permeable. However, you need to consider thickness and surface area too. If you are debating between 3 mil polyethylene bags (Freezer bags) and 1/8" polypropylene containers, you can clearly see that the thick PP would be better than the PE film. Can't you use the packages in which the hops came? Virtually all suppliers now are selling their hops in oxygen-barrier bags. You can buy a heat sealer these days for less than $20. Or what about glass? Glass would be far better than either PP or PE. Al. Al Korzonas, Palos Hills, IL korz at pubs.att.com Copyright 1996 Al Korzonas Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 1996 15:39:53 -0500 From: Brian Gardner <bgardner at hublink.com> Subject: phenolic beer I have been brewing for a few years now, and mostly do a partial mash. Most of my beers have been pretty good, but all of them seem to have varying levels of phenols in the taste. Is there something I can isolate that is the cause of this? If I could eradicate this off-flavor, I would be very close to getting the results I am seeking. - -- Brian W. Gardner "Captain, I protest; I am not a Hublink Inc. merry man!" - Lt. Worf bgardner at hublink.com (office) bgardner at infinet.com (home) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 96 13:15 PST From: robtrish at mindlink.bc.ca (Rob Lauriston) Subject: cleanliness and yeast use Bob Morris <BOBKATPOND at aol.com> writes about re-using yeast and sanitation. >As a rule 3 generations are probably enough for homebrewers. We can't >possibly be as clean as a commercial setup, where they have heavy duty >caustics and acid sanitisers and boiling water to run through all of their >equipment, so we are risking passing an infected yeast on to another batch. Homebrewers needn't be humble about their sanitation -- they can often be *cleaner* than a commercial setup. First, a homebrewery is staffed with far more conscientious and motivated personnel than the average mid- to large size brewery <g>. I use caustic, an acid sanitizer and boiling water on all my equipment at home and I know of others who do too. (Well, I don't put acid on the copper equipment or boiling water on the glass, but you get the idea.) I agree with the 3 generations rule of thumb for most situations, so this is not a flame, criticism or correction, it's just part of the Homebrew Pride Manifesto. We're not called ARB's for nothin' My method / experience: When I pitch the yeast from a mason jar into the carboy, I leave a half inch or so of slurry in the jar. Then I put cool wort back into the mason jar as well as in the main fermenters, so that I propagate more yeast in the mason jar for the next batch. I've been doing this for the last dozen batches over the past six months. Just like most other breweries, pico- to mega-, there must be some contamination, but it hasn't appeared in the flavour yet. (I did have a problem on one batch from another source.) I'll start a new yeast soon, before the bugs _do_ catch up with me. - Rob Lauriston in Vernon, British Columbia Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 1996 17:29:05 +0000 From: "Richard Okambawa" <okambawa at UQTR.UQuebec.ca> Subject: Re: He is serious, Mr. Electrophobe, moralist, censor. Jeff Hewit, Midlothian, Virginia wrote in HBD 1983 >To the guy who plans to somehow make a plug that will fit where >his electric stove burner does, I have some suggestions. > > - Make sure you have plenty of life insurance, and make sure > you're current on the premiums. > > - Make sure your family has another place to live, and that > it's paid for - your homeowner's insurance may not pay in > full if they think you intentionally burned your own house > down. > > - Look for other ways to save a buck on this hobby. > >Seriously, one sure way to .......and so on..... Jeff, this Forum is a place where we share experiences. You are not obligeto apply everything you get in the HBD. That's one of thescientific sides of our hobby. You are lucky to have plenty money to buy expensives stuffs an pay an electrician. Seriously, don't try to change your fuses yourself because electricity can be very dangerous. Also, take care with the kitchen knife, it can be very dangerous. Sans rancune, Sante! ********************* * Richard Okambawa * * 860 Ste Ursule * *Trois-Rivieres, Quebec * * Canada G9A 1P1 * * President, brewmaster and chief drinker * *Home: (819) 693 6445 * *Zymopolis Nanobrewery * *Work: Institut de recherche sur l'hydrogene * * (819) 3765170 ext 3591 * * http://para.uqtr.uquebec.ca/hydrogene2.html * * e-mail: richard_okambawa at uqtr.uquebec.ca * **************************************** Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 1996 18:49:04 -0500 From: "Keith Royster" <keith.royster at ponyexpress.com> Subject: U.S Open (yes, another competition announcement) The Carolina BrewMasters are once again sponsoring the very successful U.S. Open, which is a BJCP recongnized competition. We had over 250 entries last year, and we expect this year's competition to be just as successful. If you are interested in entering, judging, or stewarding, simply point your web browser to: http://www.wp.com/ at your.service/cbm/brewmast.html (or email me if you don't have web access). There you will find all of the necessary info, including an online entry form (thanks Spencer!). The deadline for entries is not too far away (April 15), so don't delay! Keith Royster - Keith.Royster at ponyexpress.com at your.service - http://www.wp.com/ at your.service/ Web Services - Starting at just $60 per YEAR! Voice & Fax - (704) 663-1098 Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 14 Mar 1996 14:32:33 +1200 (EST) From: Regan Pallandi <reganp at iris.bio.uts.EDU.AU> Subject: Why build up starters? Hello all - I am wondering about the practice of building up yeast starters into ever increasing volumes of wort (ie 500ml->1000ml->2000ml). Why not just pitch the few cells into the large volume to begin with, and do away with the steps in the middle? I would have thought, aside from maybe a longer lag time, the yeast will multiply up to the limit of the available nutrient, and it would be easier to just make up the desired volume of starter and leave it at that. None of the books I've read make any mention of the reason for "steps". Any ideas? Cheers, Regan in Sydney Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 14 Mar 1996 07:41:56 EST From: usbscrhc at ibmmail.com Subject: Pressure Gauges I read some confusing things in recent articles...Several people have said that a second gauge on a regulated tap system is useless until the CO2 tank is almost empty. I don't understand why the gauge is not continuously dropping as the contents of the tank are depleted. How can the pressure exiting the tank remain constant until it's almost empty, then suddenly drop? It seems to me that since the tank volume is constant, and the number of CO2 molecules is decreasing, the pressure must also decrease. PV=nRT. Welding tanks (oxy-acetelene) use a second gauge to monitor tank contents.... Someone please let me know what I may be missing. I currently don't use a second gauge on my regulator, but I plan to add one, so I'm very interested in a response....Thanks to anyone who helps me straighten out my confusion! Howard Smith Balt., MD e-mail: usbscrhc at ibmmail.com phone:410 388 6490 Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 14 Mar 1996 08:18:40 -0500 From: pbabcock at ford.com Subject: Bad to be a glad plaid clad lad... In HBD 1983, Domenick Venezia aptly warns brewers not to wear plaid due to detrimental effects observed in yeast culturing. As a matter of fact, recent government studies has shown this to be true. Worts fermented by all except for the hardiest Scottish Ale strains demonstrated signs of disfunctional yeast when exposed to various plaid patterns. Even Scottish strains could only tolerate the best tartans. Studies indicate that the plaid need not be in line-of-sight to the fermenter for the abherrations to manifest themselves. It was discovered that the reaction to concealed plaid boxer shorts was equal to that of exposure to plaid table cloths; though less that the effects observed from exposure to plaid pants. Studies also indicate that the detrimental effects of plaid are mitigated if the pattern is printed on good, heavy flannel shirts of sensible colors, worn by beard bearing brewers. Microscopic investigation has revealed myriad yeast having ruptured cell walls following even the shortest exposure to bright green and red plaid pants. Exposure to the same pattern on double knit materials has been shown to reduce the yeast to a viscous goo having no resemblance to the yeast from whence it came. Surviving yeast appears to be unable for process even the simplest sugars, and immediately flocculates upon pitching; some continuously rising and falling, seeming to bump off the bottom of the fermenter only to rise back to the top and repeat. Electron microscoice scans have revealed pained, laughing expressions on the faces of the deceased yeast. Surviving yeast, not surprisingly, bear expressions similar to those seen in human beings afflicted by catatonia. The American Civil Liberties Union has a suit pending against the yeast for insensitivity to the chromatically challenged. However, until yeast learns to be more politically correct in their reactive patterns, it is advised that the chromatically challenged restrict themselves to monochromatic outfits (colors selected from the gray scale are recommended to assure no inadvertent clashes) to avoid problems with fermentation. We now return you to your normally scheduled reading... - --- Pat Babcock pbabcock at oeonline.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 14 Mar 1996 09:59:20 -0500 From: ajdel at interramp.com (A. J. deLange) Subject: CO2/Triple Strain While I'm sure this is in a FAQ somewhere Dave Harsh's post on CO2 makes it look as if a review of this subject is timely. CO2 is delivered and stored as a liquid as long as it is below the critical tempature (31C/89F). The delivery trucks often are marked "liquid carbonic" and they have arrangements which ensure that the temperature is kept below the critical temperature. The fact that the critical temperature (the temperature above which the gas cannot exist as a liquid) is exceded on a warm summer's day may be responsible for some of the confusion over this. The pressure read on the tank guage attached to a CO2 bottle is the saturated varpor pressure of liquid CO2 at the temperature of the liquid. At 70F this is 853 psi and that is why the guage reads somewhere around that level at room temperature. There is a simple test which can be used to determine whether the a bottle contains liquid. Draw some gas off gradually and see if the pressure drops. If the bottle contains liquid it will not (unless the gas is drawn off so fast that the liquid cools to a temperature with a lower vapor pressure). The liquid will simple boil as its vapor is drawn off. If the bottle contains gas the pressure will drop linearly with the amount of gas drawn off. When the pressure guage on your bottle begins to drop, therefore, it is indicative that the liquid is all gone and you are "running on fumes" as the aviators used to say. Time for a refil. On the hot summers day, conversely, the pressure read by the guage will be over 1000 psig (if there was liquid in the bottle at room temperature) and will gradually decline over the course of the afternoon as the liquid level in your kegs declines and/or as the day cools. As the temperature drops below 89F the gas will recondense to a liquid. Refill is done from a "siphon" bottle. This is a bottle with a tube running from the valve stem to the bottom of the cylinder. The target bottle should be colder than the source bottle. When the target bottle is connected to the source bottle gas in the source bottle pushes liquid CO2 into the target bottle through the connectic hose. At first this liquid condenses cooling the target bottle somewhat. Now you have liquid in both bottles but the target bottle is colder so the vapor pressure is lower and liquid from the warm source bottle will continue to flow until the pressure in the head space is higher than the vapor pressure in the source bottle. Bottles are (or should be) filled to weight. In most cases the operator goes through the process described above and shuts off when the flow stops. You get 2-4 pounds of CO2 is a 5 pound bottle depending on how warm your bottle was when you brought it in and how much liquid is left in the siphon bottle. To get the maximum fill bring in a cold bottle. This is hard to do if you have to travel any distance. Leave it in the bed of your pickup in winter. In the summer dont leave it in a closed car all morning and then go to the fill station at lunch. I put the empty cylinder in the freezer overnight. In the morning I take it out, let it cover with frost and immediately fill it. A couple of seconds after the flow stops the warm liquid from the siphon will melt the frost up to the fill level and you can see how much is in the bottle. With a little experience you learn the 5 pound level. One of the neatest bits I picked up from the internet was the suggestion that you can tell how much liquid is left in your CO2 bottle using this same idea. Put it in the freezer overnight and bring it out in the AM. It will frost over. In this case the frost will melt above the liquid level first as the CO2 in this case is colder than room temperature. A fill station operator determined to give 5 pounds will weigh your bottle before and after filling. If you didn't get 5 pounds he would chill the bottle and repeat the process until there are 5 pounds of liquid in there. I have yet to hear of such an individual. It is, of course, possible to get 5.5# into a 5# bottle (I've never done this but I did get > 2.5 # into a 2.5 # bottle). As soon as the bottle warms up the pressure relief valve blows making enough noise to frighten wives, dogs and small children. Perhaps gas supply houses are more likely to give a complete fill than the bar owner or bar supply shop. This could be verified by weighing cylinders empty and full (i.e. when you get a new one and after it is empty: most of the gas houses swap you a full bottle for your empty rather than refilling your bottle). They may be using more elaborate filling apparatus with automatic shutoff at target weight. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Victor Farren asked about use of a purloined triple strain culture. The fact that the "strength" of the individual strains peaks at different times in the course of the fermentation does not mean that their flocculation properties are different. Nor does it imply that they are the same. As Domenick Venizia pointed out in his excellent posting in #1983 (thank you!) each strain will have members with short, middle and long flocculation times. I would think that the best thing to do would be to top crop in the middel of the cropping period so as to be sure of having some cells from each of each of the three strains. Now the tough part which is going to be a lot of work. Dilute way down to single cell level and make multiple plates. Harvest lots of single cell colonies, grow them up on slants and make mini brews watching, measuring and tasting very carefully. You should get "beers" in three distinct groups distinguishable by taste, aroma, pH, time to form kraeusen, time to flocculate, degreee of flocculation, color etc. If you are really, really lucky you may be able to distinguish the yeasts by morphology. I expect that only an expert could do that though. Anyway, at this point you have separated the three strains, can maintain them separately and blend starters made from them when you brew. Doubtless more trouble than it is worth. A.J. deLange Numquam in dubio, saepe in errore! ajdel at interramp.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 14 Mar 1996 09:05:21 -0500 From: DONBREW at aol.com Subject: electric boilers Uh... Re: the 15 vs 20 amp thread. I just did some quick math vis 13A X 110V = 1430W. Anecdotally speaking I have used _one_ 1500W 110V element on a 15 A circuit with great success (altho not to boil). Since all of my brewery/basement has exposed wiring I do touch the cabling to check for undue heat, however the cable run is quite short (about 4 feet from the branch box). Don Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 14 Mar 1996 09:21:52 -0500 (EST) From: Mitch Hogg <bu182 at freenet.toronto.on.ca> Subject: Distillation: Don't do the crime if you can't do the time On Thu, 14 Mar 1996 Michael Aesoph wrote: > A friend of mine has an old still that his grandfather made during > prohibition. He states that it is not illegal to distill your own > beverages. Is there any truth to this? If so, is distilling safe? I've > thought about distilling some of my wine or pseudo-brandy into Brandy. > Anyone know any good recipes for distilled beverages? Don't even think about it. Or if you do, for your own sake don't tell anyone you're doing it. Distillation is quite illegal (at least in the US and Canada), the primary reason for which is that it is potentially harmful. The stakes are much higher for distillation than fermentation. To wit, if you screw up your beer, it tastes bad; if you screw up a distilled beverage, it could kill you (or at least make you good and sick). In fact, a friend of mine who runs a wine supply shop was once visited by the police, who told her that if anyone ever came in even asking about distillation she was to notify the authorities immediately. She hasn't, of course (I don't think merely thinking about distilling is illegal yet), but this shows how seriously this law is being taken. I've even heard horror stories about police raids on private houses where distillation was taking place. In short, leave that still alone. During prohibition, people were far more interested in booze at any cost than safety, and I doubt your friend's grandfather's still has aged well. However, if you really want distilled/fortified beverages, do not despair; there are other, safer ways to do it. The first option is freeze distillation. According to Dennis Davison's eisbock article in Zymurgy (winter 1995), freezing beer or wine and removing the non-alcoholic ice crystals that form is not legally distillation but "fractional crystallisation", and is perfectly above-board. The other option is fortification. I have made brandy, port, and sherry by adding a bottle of grain alcohol or vodka to the appropriate type of wine. I hope this advice is helpful, even if it is not what you wanted to hear. Trust me, I can sympathise. A friend and I were all gung-ho on the idea of distillation and building a still a few months back (he's a soil scientist and has access to all the parts we would have needed), but after a little research we realized it just wasn't worth the risk. We homebrewers love to play with new gadgets, but I don't think a still should be one of them. Mitch. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 14 Mar 1996 09:37:36 -0500 From: PatrickM50 at aol.com Subject: To "B" or not to "B"... Congrats to Keith Royster for putting an intro to the HBD on his homebrew club's web page. Unfortunately, tho it will be helpful to many, it will still not solve the problem that haunts posters of messages like the following: > Please Suscribe me to your list. The same problem exists for those trying to "Unsuscribe" - both are missing a key ingredient in their signup/off messages: a properly placed "b". (Or as in the case of today's edition, an "r" as in "subscibe".) So Keith, maybe you could add a suggestion to have folks spellcheck their one sentence signup requests?? ;-) Now back to brewing, Pat Maloney Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 14 Mar 1996 09:53:12 -0500 From: saunderm at vt.edu (J. Matthew Saunders) Subject: Brewing in Fishtanks John writes: >What are the thoughts of using a 15+ gallon fish tank as a primary >open fermenter. Or can anyone tell me where to find carboys in the >10+ gallon range? John, a few things to consider first. 1) Use a brand new one (this seems self evident but I thought I'd mention it) 2) Do NOT pour any hot liquid at all into the tank. Make sure your wort is down to pitching temperature. I can think of two reasons. o The glass is very very likely to crack. o The glass panes in a tank are held together with a kind of non-toxic caulking. Heating it could weaken it. It could, perhaps, cause it to leech into your beer. Yuck! 3) Once its full of liquid, you can't move it. Moving a full fish tank will weaken the joins and cause it to leak. 4) Make sure that the caulking inside *IS* rated safe for food. Make sure that the acidic wort won't break down the caulking. On the other hand, I purchased a 20 gallon food grade Rubbermaid bucket from a restaurant supply store quite in-expensively a few years ago. Its sturdy, crack resistant, great for soaking bottles in, moveable (though you have to be careful when its full....20 gallons of water or wort is VERY heavy). It makes a fantastic primary for large batches. It was certainly less expensive than a 20 gallon fish tank and no worries of breakage/melting caulking/leeching. Cheers! Matthew http://fbox.vt.edu:10021/S/saunderm/index.html/page_1.html Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 14 Mar 1996 09:17:51 -0600 From: Scott Abene <skotrat at wwa.com> Subject: extract brewing (I am kidding please no emails) So everyone knows how hard it is to brew your first all-grain batch after brewing with extract. But what about your first extract batch after brewing strictly all-grain??? How do you lauter an extract brew? I had problems with the sparge going too fast and the mash seemed... let's just say a little thin. Where is the actual grain??? I couldn't find it in the lauter-tun. Did it simply "go to Vegas" or something? Also, packet yeast (5 gram packet of High quality English Ale)... I couldn't break the inner seal and it never swelled up like wyeast does. Is this a problem??? **********On a serious note I was showing someone how to brew their first beer with an extract kit and I found that after brewing with an all-grain regiment for many many years I really have no idea how to brew with an extract (I know it seems easy, but I'm a creature of habit). I just kept feeling that I was missing something with all those grain procedures missing from the brewing process*********** Thankyou for the waste of band-width -Scott "who has new respect for extract brewers" Abene **************************************************** * Scott Abene * * skotrat at wwa.com * * http://miso.wwa.com/~skotrat * * (Skotrats Official Homebrew "Beer Slut" Webpage) * * "Get off your dead ass and brew" * **************************************************** Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 13 Mar 1996 13:41:50 -0700 (MST) From: PLACK at elc300.ateng.az.honeywell.com Subject: Pennies as Using pennies as weights. I've been trying to catch up on my digests but I'm still more than a week behind. Sorry if this is a bit off the subject of beer and a bit late for the topic. Here is an interesting way to determine what material your pennies are made of... Flip the penny in the air (spinning them end-over-end as fast as possible). If you hear a ringing sound it is a pre'82 penny therefore weighs 3 grams. If you don't hear anything than it is a post'82 penny weighing 2.5 grams. Or I suppose you could just look at the dates (not nearly as much fun). Matt. MPlack at Primenet.Com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 14 Mar 1996 11:14:47 -0500 From: dharsh at alpha.che.uc.edu (David C. Harsh) Subject: CO2 in what form? Yesterday, I said (based on what my gas cylinder supplier told me) that CO2 wasn't shipped in liquid form. Tracy Aquilla informed me that he sees a frost line if he takes his CO2 tank out of the fridge and lets it warm up. Since I couldn't think of anything besides a liquid level that could cause it, I asked our supplier to fax me a spec sheet. The description starts off as follows: "A colorless, liquified, high pressure gas shipped at its vapor pressure...some research grades are shipped at reduced pressures" Al K. was right on target. If you do decide to weigh your cylinders remember that only about 25% of the total weight is the gas so you need to be accurate. Dave Return to table of contents