HOMEBREW Digest #2630 Fri 06 February 1998

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		Digest Janitor: janitor@hbd.org
		Many thanks to the Observer & Eccentric Newspapers of 
		Livonia, Michigan for sponsoring the Homebrew Digest.
				URL: http://www.oeonline.com

  Guiness Bitter ("Gregg Soh")
  temp control programming ("Chris A. Smith")
  Counter pressure bottler answer (Bill Giffin)
  Orlando Brewpubs? ("Schultz, Steven W.")
  Re: Natural gas cookers (Paul Shick)
  New Orleans / Washington, DC ("Jeffrey M. Kenton")
  Propane (Tom Clark)
  mashtime in the mashtun ("Spies, James")
  Medicinal flavors / Pump sanitation / my haze (George_De_Piro)
  Re: Use of LP Indoors (Steve Scott)
  Re: Plastic taste (Jeff Renner)
  Sparging, ("David R. Burley")
  Flushin' out that mash (Samuel Mize)
  No subject given ("Kirk Harralson")
  Beer Engine, Refrigerators (rbarnes)
  Brown Ale Recipe question for a friend (Rich Hampo)
  Natural Gas Burners ("Brian Rezac")
  Keg Lube alternative/modern malts (Tim Martin)
  peculiar yeast starter behavior (Kevin TenBrink)
  Butt jelly instead of keg lube... ("Pat Babcock")
  Re: Computerized Fridge Controller (Dave Thayer)
  mashout & extraction efficiency (Domenick Venezia)
  false bottoms ("Emily Neufeld")
  Growing Southern (US) Hops (GordonRick)
  Getting rid of chlorine (GordonRick)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Wed, 04 Feb 1998 21:09:49 PST From: "Gregg Soh" <greggos at hotmail.com> Subject: Guiness Bitter I came across the curious GUINESS BITTER in a green can today. There were crates and crates of 'em in the shop but weren't for sale as yet(they just came in). Never seen it before, anyone heard of it? (If I recall, Dave Burley has seen it, I think). Greg ______________________________________________________ Get Your Private, Free Email at http://www.hotmail.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 05 Feb 1998 16:17:29 +1300 From: "Chris A. Smith" <casmith at metro.telecom.samsung.co.kr> Subject: temp control programming Generally I'm a lurker on this list, but I thought I harp in here with a suggestion. Thumbing through the Dallas Semiconductor databook the other day, I noticed some temp control chips they build that might be of interest in homebrew applications. In particular, I remember a thermostatic control chip (DS1621 ?) that allows you to specify a temp setpoint, a hysteresis value, and to read back temp over a serial link. This serial interface has a very simple protocol which was obviously created so that you could simply connect the sucker directly to a PC serial port and generate the proper sequence of binary values in software. Also, they had some very curious temp sensors (DS1820) that could be connected daisy-chain style by a single wire serial interface. The weird thing about these sensors is they required no power supply - somehow Dallas figured out a way to use the serial link voltage to run the chip. I don't know how much these chips cost, but I'd be suprised if they were very pricey since Dallas makes a lot of utility-type chips for the PC industry, where cost is a big issue. Dallas Site: http://www.dalsemi.com - -- Insert standard 'not-associated-with' disclaimer here -- Good Luck. - -- Chris A. Smith Document Center Infrastructure Networks Division Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. Seoul, Korea Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 05 Feb 1998 07:36:22 -0500 From: Bill Giffin <billg at ctel.net> Subject: Counter pressure bottler answer Top of the morning to yea all, Ken Hawkins had a question, > >Now Bill had said to adjust the Foxx bottler to appear as such: > (plug)------(a > | > b)--|-- (c > | > \ / > | > (insert bottle hear) > >Shout when I make a wrong turn. I do not see what exactly makes this a >superior set up for c-p filling, then again fluids were never my strong >point in physics classes of old. Could someone please expound on this? >Also if we're going through the motions of converting wouldn't putting >an elbow on top keep from creating a dead spot which could (insert >possible bad outcome here), or at minimal inhibit the flow of sweet >liquid gold? The latter question could possibly be the ranting of an >anal retentive rookie to the c-p filling circle and if it doesn't matter >slap me now. The change in the filler is because there is CO2 always filling the bottle and the bottle is always under CO2 pressure. The bottler is far more controllable then the original Foxx and will allow you to fill more bottles faster with far less foam. When the bottle is full you purge the headspace with CO2 helping to prevent oxidation. Hope this is enough reason. Bill Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 08:15:46 -0500 From: "Schultz, Steven W." <swschult at CBDCOM-EMH1.APGEA.ARMY.MIL> Subject: Orlando Brewpubs? I'm taking a trip to Orlando, FL next week and would appreciate any private posts, informing me of the better brewpubs in town. Thanks in advance. Steve Schultz Abingdon, MD Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 05 Feb 1998 09:56:07 -0500 (EST) From: Paul Shick <SHICK at JCVAXA.jcu.edu> Subject: Re: Natural gas cookers Hello all, Tom Riddle asks about a source for natural gas burners for his new basement brewery. You can still get NG versions of the King Kooker at the Grape and Granary in Akron, Ohio (www.grapeandgranary.com.) I'm currently using three of these with converted kegs. The lower NG pressure seems to result in lower output than the propane versions. It takes about 35 minutes to heat 10 gallons from 50F to 165F (still a lot quicker than my stove was for 5 gallons.) I've had great service from the G and G people in person, so I assume that their mail order should be OK. The cost was roughly $45 per burner last summer. Paul Shick Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 09:00:29 -0600 From: "Jeffrey M. Kenton" <jkenton at iastate.edu> Subject: New Orleans / Washington, DC Hello All. A very brief message: I will be in New Orleans Feb 25-28 for a national conference, ditto Washington, DC March 11-14. If you know of some cool places to go (beer-related) in The Big Easy, or the Nation's Capitol, send me private email. Thanks Jeff Kenton - ------------------- Jeff Kenton brewer at iastate.edu Ames, Iowa jkenton at iastate.edu (515) 294 9997 Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 05 Feb 1998 10:13:36 -0500 From: Tom Clark <rtclark at eurekanet.com> Subject: Propane For those of you wanting to use propane, the outfit below has an interesting looking "stove" called the BIG 60. No affiliation... http://wwbcity.com/hgas2.htm Tom Clark Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 10:36:31 -0500 From: "Spies, James" <Jams at mlis.state.md.us> Subject: mashtime in the mashtun All - SMurman (sorry), in HBD #2629 stated that >>>While diffusivity is secondary during the sparge, during the mash it is not. While the mash is sitting parked at it's sacc. temperature, the sugar that's produced will try to evenly distribute in the water. The problem is that we usually stop mashing after 60 min. or so, and as I said above diffusion is slow, so there will always be sugar trapped within the grains . . . <<< That got me thinking. Perhaps this question as already been answered, but repetition is the spice of life, eh? . . . . I mash in a 10 gallon Gott, and usually limit the mash to a single sacc rest at ~156dF. I have always had complete conversion (per iodine test) in 60 min. However, has anyone done any studies comparing how much, if any, increase in efficiency occurs if we are to simply let the whole shebang sit for another 30 - 45 minutes? Would the slow diffusion of sugars *out* of the middle of the grains and *into* the spaces between them help increase efficiency more than simply doing a painfully slow sparge after 60 min? Would doing said painful sparge after 90 minutes be even better? 105 min? Let the collective wisdom flow . . . Jay Spies Wishful Thinking Basement Brewery Baltimore, MD Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 10:10:02 -0800 From: George_De_Piro at berlex.com Subject: Medicinal flavors / Pump sanitation / my haze Hi all, Dave Burley responds to a post about medicinal aroma/flavor in beer. He suggests that this can be from oxidation. In my experience oxidation is usually expressed as a papery/cardboard aroma/flavor. It can also come in the form of sherry and nutty tones (which, by the way, many people do not find unpleasant. In my early days of beer-geekness I thought that many beers were supposed to taste that way! Almost all of the imports were BADLY oxidized.) A more likely explanation of medicinal notes in beer is phenolic compounds. These are often produced by wild yeast. If the final gravity of the beer is lower than you expected, then it is almost definitely a wild yeast problem. Chlorine can react with phenols in the beer to form chlorophenols, but these are usually perceived as a strong swimming pool odor, not medicine. ------------------------------- Dean asks if running hot (160F/71C) wort through his pump for 40 minutes during the sparge will adequately sanitize it so that he can move cold wort through it later. I would NOT try this. The effluent from the lauter tun is often much cooler than the sparge water going in the top. I would not trust it to sanitize the pump. The bacterial load of grain is pretty high, too, which is another reason I wouldn't use lauter tun runoff for sanitizing purposes. I would run nearly boiling water through the pump and hoses immediately after the sparge is complete. If you can cap everything off, then you'll probably be OK until it is time to run the cast out wort through the system. You could always run more hot water through it just before running the cool wort, too. I avoid moving cool wort through my pump. Gravity is much simpler, and won't infect my beer! Pumps can get pretty gunky. ------------------------------- Dave Burley suggests that my CAP haze may be from unconverted starch from inadequate cooking of the corn meal. While I foolishly did not examine the beer with a microscope to determine the cause of the haze prior to fining, I feel confident that it is not starch. The iodine test was negative at the end of the mash, and cereal cooking is not new to me. From experience, I know that the amount of gelatin I used should have cleared a yeast haze. Since it didn't in this case, I'm thinking that it may have been a protein haze. The Polyclar definitely did not seem to help any, though. Hmmm... By the way, Classic American Pilsners tend to be pretty darn hoppy, Dave. This reminds me of an interesting story about flaked corn: One of my Siebel classmates was from a large Indian brewery. He complained that they could not get clear runoff when using flaked maize in the mash. I postulated that his flaked maize may not have been adequately gelatinized by the manufacturer. This supposition was then confirmed by one of the instructors: Siebel had recently been analyzing flaked maize from several Indian producers, and found them all to be inadequately gelatinized! The gentleman from India then noted that when they cooked the flaked maize in a cereal cooker, they got clear runoff, but a very slow sparge. The slow sparge confounded everyone in the room, and the poor guy had to go back to India without a complete answer. Any ideas from the HBD crowd? Have fun! George De Piro (Nyack, NY) Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 05 Feb 1998 11:14:04 -0500 From: sscott at lightlink.com (Steve Scott) Subject: Re: Use of LP Indoors >On various brew-related websites I have noticed the apparent use of=20 >LP gas burners on indoor setups. I understand the potential concerns=20 >of leaking LP gathering in low areas, however, what are the=20 >ramifications of *burning* LP indoors. Specifically, what are the=20 >byproducts of burning LP? Is there potential for carbon-monoxide=20 >buildup without adequate ventilation? If we assume adequate combustion air the byproducts are water vapor, CO2 and CO. Yes, there is a potential for hazardous levels of CO production. BTW, the same concerns are present with methane (NG). Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 11:08:02 -0500 From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> Subject: Re: Plastic taste David R. Burley writes (in his open verse style ;-) ) >Tim Burkhardt has a plastic taste in his bottled beer = > >that wasn't there before bottling. This taste is often = > >associated with phenols and such. Possibly what = > >you taste is due to the beer oxidation during bottling. I replied to Tim privately, but suggested wild yeast or bacteria as the likely source or this phenolic taste. That has been my experience as well as what I've read, here and elsewhere. I've never heard of oxidation as the source for this. Oxidation flavors are more typically cardboard, sherry, etc, I thought. Jeff -=-=-=-=- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan c/o nerenner at umich.edu "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 11:42:49 -0500 From: "David R. Burley" <Dave_Burley at compuserve.com> Subject: Sparging, Brewsters: I do not know what to do about the "=3D" signs and spacing = of my copy. I keep shortening the lines, etc. to no avail. = My apologies. I am sorry for the inconvenience. - -------------------------------------------- Jim Bentson makes a fine summary of the excellent = comments so far on the design of the sparging bed. And says: >The very fact >that we must drain the sparge and replace it with fresh = water makes me think >that there is some solubilty limiting factor at play. = Again I stress that >this is postulation, as I don't know the actual = solubility limits. Comments >anyone? Actually sugar is pretty soluble as you may know from = other experiences in life like candy making as well = as brewing. It certainly is much more soluble than a = few percent which is contained in the wort. Those = candy makers and pancake eaters among us know = that what also happens when something, as = hydrogen bonding as sugar, dissolves in water = is that the viscosity rises rapidly with concentration. = It is this viscosity functionality and not solubility = which is the controlling factor in efficient sparging. Viscosity is also dependent on the temperature of the = wort and other dissolved entities such as gums and = proteins. Viscosity is a kinetic phenomenon and not a = thermodynamic function like solubility, so rate makes = a difference. Anything you can do to reduce the viscosity of the = wort will make for a more efficient sparge. = What can you do? = 1) Lower wort SG and thereby the viscosity for a = given amount of sugar- in other words mashing out to = the maximum volume possible with hot water. You should do this in favor of adding more sparge water for the same total volume since viscosity is an = exponential function with concentration. This may = not be an option if you are already at full mash volume = unless you boil more off. 2) HIgher temperature ( a mash out at 167F, = for example, to heat up the grain bed) 3) Glucan and protein rests, especially with = things like wheat and rye = 4) Slow sparge with the sparge liquor to allow the wort = contained in the capillaries of the grain to diffuse into = the liquor. As has been pointed out here 60 to 90 = minutes is about right for homebrewing. 5) Smaller cross-section of the grist particle along one = dimension. i.e. a finer grind or maybe a flake shape = to the particle, such as you get in roller milling. This means the wort in the grain capillaries doesn't have = so far to diffuse. Keep on brewin' Dave Burley Kinnelon, NJ 07405 103164.3202 at compuserve.com Dave_Burley at compuserve.com = Voice e-mail OK = Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 13:12:22 -0600 (CST) From: Samuel Mize <smize at prime.imagin.net> Subject: Flushin' out that mash Greetings to all, and especially to: > HOMEBREW Digest #2629 Thu 05 February 1998 > From: smurman at best.com > Subject: mashout > Second, I think that molecular diffusion plays a secondary role in the > removal of the sugar from the grains. ... > So, if you agree that a mashout step cannot increase the efficiency by > either affecting the amylase activity or by decreasing the viscosity Me not know all them big words. However, I do know that more sugar dissolves in hotter water, and faster. >I think the mashout step can affect the efficiency simply by > the mechanical action of mixing to achieve the next temperature. Makes sense too. OTOH, Schmidling and the RIMS (I saw them on tour) are mechanically mixing throughout the mash in either case, so this would not explain any difference THEY are seeing. Has anyone who mixes throughout the mash compared efficiencies both with and without mashout? Best, Sam Mize - -- Samuel Mize -- smize at imagin.net -- Team Ada Fight Spam - see http://www.cauce.org/ Hillary's book about Bill's private life: "It Takes a Village" Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 05 Feb 98 14:18:25 -0500 From: "Kirk Harralson"<nie1kwh at ismd.ups.com> Subject: No subject given Every source on fining that I've seen (beer or wine) recommends adding the fining agent(s) at the end of fermentation. The instructions in the last wine kit I made said to add the finings (bentonite) at the start. I found an explanation for this in the winemaking faq: > G15. Why am I adding the bentonite at the beginning? How much do I put > in? Where do I get it? > > {As I understand it, bentonite is a clearing agent. However, in the > instructions for my kit it says to add the bentonite at the same time > as the yeast. Why? > > It helps to get rid of a lot of stuff (including millions of dead yeast > cells) during the primary fermentation by having it all fall out before > clearing ever starts. Doing so optimizes the actual clearing process > by taking care of a lot of it before you even try. It also helps avoid > foul smells from decomposing yeast -- a potential problem when your > wine is in the carboy for several weeks or even months -- when you > transfer the wine into the secondary by having them all fall out to the > bottom in the primary, therefore avoiding their transfer. > > In about 5 gallons, about 25 to 50 grams of bentonite is used. > Bentonite should be easily available from your brewing supply shop. Does this sound like a reasonable thing to do? Would this reasoning apply to beer in the same manner? What are the possible negative side effects of adding some bentonite (and/or other finings) in the last few minutes of the boil? Kirk Harralson Bel Air, Maryland Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 05 Feb 98 11:22:05 -0800 From: rbarnes at sdccd.cc.ca.us Subject: Beer Engine, Refrigerators Thanks to Sam Mize for answering my question about using a brass Fynspray pump to make the "$50 beer engine" featured in BYO. Can't use brass because of the lubricant in the pump, but the plastic pump works great. To add to the refrigerator thread: I have an old (25-30 years, judging by the "Harvest Gold" color) refrigerator, approx. 16 cf, with a single door (freezer and refrig. in same compartment). I've been using this to lager, but I noticed that by turning the control to a point between defrost and "1" (the warmest setting), I can maintain a temp of 50 degrees. Will this setting hurt the unit? If it won't, I could ferment lagers without buying an external controller. Thanks- Randy in San Diego Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 14:51:56 -0500 From: rhampo at ford.com (Rich Hampo) Subject: Brown Ale Recipe question for a friend Howdy to the Collective! A friend that I forward the HBD to is having difficulty posting so I am posting it for him. His email is drussel3 at ford.com. ****************************************************************** I have recently progressed to extract/grain brewing and would like to have a try at formulating my own recipe. I would like to create an English Brown Ale. I have a few questions: 1. What are traditional varities of hops for Northern/Southern styles? (bitter, flavor, etc.) 2. Many recipes I have downloaded call for brown sugar. Is this to style to use brown sugar? (light or dark) 3. Any other suggestions... Thanks for the hbd. I am now hooked and I am having a hard time justifying this with my wife. Private e-mail okay. - -- David Russell drussel3 at ford.com Plymouth, MI Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 13:10:00 -0700 From: "Brian Rezac" <brian at aob.org> Subject: Natural Gas Burners Tom Riddle <ftr at oracom.com> wrote: > Subject: Natural Gas Burners > > After a long, painful, absence from brewing due to changing jobs, > moving, getting married, etc I am ITCHING > to brew again. I used to brew in my garage with a propane Cajun Cooker > jet engine style burner, but now I must > move my brewing operation indoors to the basement, and hence to natural > gas. Does anyone know of a vendor > for a NG burner appropriate for brewing in a 1/2 bbl keg ? Does anyone > have experience / recommendations >to give ? Tom, In the spring issue of Zymurgy, we are featuring "The Burner Road Test". The article compares different propane burners specifically for homebrewing usage. It doesn't cover natural gas. However, in doing a little of the background research for the article, I was educated a little on converting propane burners to natural gas. You need to get a "Low Pressure" burner. These are the burners that operate with low pressure regulators. (Your jet burner is most likely high pressure.) To convert these burners to natural gas, you need to replace the orifice (the tiny hole in the end of the gas line). A few of the burner manufacturers will actually specify which burners are convertable to natural gas. I believe that they even provide the replacement orifice. There are probably more manufacturers that do this, but the two that I know of is: Metal Fusion, Inc. (King Kooker) 712 St. George Ave. Jefferson, LA 70121 (504) 736-0201 Empire Comfort Systems, Inc. (Suberb) 918 Freeburg Ave. Belleville, Il 62222 (800) 851-3153 Good Luck & Good Beer! Also, congratulations on your marriage and your new job. - Brian Brian Rezac Administrator American Homebrewers Association (303) 447-0816 x 121 (voice) 736 Pearl Street (303) 447-2825 (fax) Boulder, CO 80302 brian at aob.org U.S.A. http://beertown.org Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 05 Feb 1998 16:47:16 -0500 From: Tim Martin <TimMartin at southwest.cc.nc.us> Subject: Keg Lube alternative/modern malts Hey Neighbors, A mail order brew shop recommended I use Vaseline as a substitute for Keg lube. I personally never tried this, since I believe it's a petroleum based product, any brave souls care to try it and report back. ##################### I certainly have enjoyed the discussion on "modern malts" please keep it up. I posed a question several months ago concerning my confusion to which malt is modern and I must confess I am still confused. I have tried bitting the grain and I do see the difference now. I just did two batches with Klages, which are supposed to be modern fully modified malts (depending on which source I consult) and the Klages will definitely chip a tooth. To compare I chewed some Belgian caravienne and carapils and there is a remarkable difference in crunch ability. I did get considerable chill haze from the Klages with a single infusion at 156df. While I like this simple method of determining modification I still don't understand why there is not list stating these malts need a rest and these malts are fully modified and they do not and etc. But correct me if I'm wrong but I'm sensing if I use Marris Otter this time and I don't use a rest but order more at a latter date it may be different and will require a rest. Is this why there is so much confusion over this topic and why they are not just spelled out on a list. You lose me on measuring the acrospire not sure I would recognize one if I held it in my finger any way. I ferment in stainless steel so I can't visually check and compare break levels and quite frankly a malt analysis sheet, if you can find one is difficult to interpret. Yes, chill haze is my main reason I want to chose the correct malt. I have polyclar and gelatin standing by to use on a batch that I kegged this weekend but I have never used the two and I'm resisting the urge to use them but the chill haze is really bugging me. To Kyle Druey please keep up the research and the pursuit of truth and I agree with the articulate way you present the problem. From one grunt in the trench who's only pursuit is good clear beer in the simplest way (single infusion) I hope that one day soon we can solve this confusion over "under, moderate, highly, modern malts". Tim Martin Cullowhee, NC (next to The Great Smoky Mountain National Park) Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 05 Feb 1998 17:22:36 -0700 From: Kevin TenBrink <tenbrink at jps.net> Subject: peculiar yeast starter behavior I recently started doing yeast starters for some of my beers and have noticed some peculiar things happening and would like to know if anyone else has experienced the same things or has an explanation as to what is going on. I make a starter and add the yeast. The next morning there does not appear to be any activity, ie fermentation, in the gallon jug that I am using, that is, until I give it a shake or a swirl. Then a huge out gassing of CO2 occurs and it returns to its apparently docile state. I wait a few minutes and give it another shake and yet another large burst of CO2 is emitted from the wort/starter. This has happened on every occasion I have made a yeast starter, even though I have used different yeast, different amounts of starter wort, and different temps to store these starters. Initially I thought it was the tile floor in my beer closet sucking the heat out of the wort, chilling it, and making the CO2 more soluble...but this time I put a fermometer on the jug and put the jug on a phone book near a heat duct. The temp has not dropped below 70 degrees F and I am still witnessing this weird behavior. Any ideas? How am I to know when the starter is done, when it stops spewing CO2 upon agitation? In follow-up to the beer swap idea, I have gotten several replies expressing interest, I will wait a few more days and then the beer swap will take effect, if you are interested, please mail me. thanks Kevin Nine Inch Ales http://www.jps.net/tenbrink/nineinchales.htm Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 19:21:33 -0500 From: "Pat Babcock" <pbabcock at oeonline.com> Subject: Butt jelly instead of keg lube... Greetings, Beerlings! Take me to your lager... Tim Martin of Cullowhee, NC (which I'd imagine is quite a distance from Jeff Renner) spaketh thusly: > A mail order brew shop recommended I use Vaseline as a substitute > for Keg lube. I personally never tried this, since I believe it's a > petroleum based product, any brave souls care to try it and report > back. DON'T DO IT!!!! I used petroleum jelly (same by any other name), being the foolhardy lad that I am, on the o-ring for the strainer basket cover on my swimming pool filter. The seal swelled up and became gummy. Having learned this lesson ("Duh, um, it don't like rubber" occurred to my enfeebled mind) and being as thick as a brick (The mind could only understand the "duh" part), I proceeded to use some on the seals on a few of my cornie kegs. Those having more than two brain-cells to rub together (which appears to be everyone but me and your mail order supplier) should be able to guess what the result was... > ##################### Um, Tim? Trying to curse us? That looks an awful lot like plaid. See ya! Pat Babcock in SE Michigan pbabcock at oeonline.com Home Brew Digest Janitor janitor@hbd.org AOL FDN Beer & Brewing Maven BrewBeerd at aol.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 18:32:28 -0700 (MST) From: Dave Thayer <dthayer at netcom.com> Subject: Re: Computerized Fridge Controller In HBD #2629, Mark Riley wrote: > As to having a PC controlling the relay directly, all > I can say is that PC's have a tendancy to crash, > hang, or be otherwise ill disposed. Although the > circuit would be more complicated, a better idea would > be to have the PC set the desired temperature (with a > DAC) and do the data logging. Leave the switching > to a comparator. If the PC crashed, the comparator > circuit will still be active and your freezer will stay > at the last set temperature (i.e. your beer won't be > ruined). The Dallas Semiconductor (http://www.dalsemi.com) DS1620 temperature sensor/controller IC has a digital interface you can connect to your computer, is factory pre calibrated to 0.5 deg C, and can be hooked to a relay output with programmable hysterisis. If your PC goes down it will run in stand-alone mode. All this for about 6 bucks. Disclaimer: I have not actually used one of these (it's on my to-do list), but from the specs I've seen it looks perfect for this application. your pal dave - -- Dave Thayer Denver, Colorado USA dthayer at netcom.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 18:11:58 -0800 (PST) From: Domenick Venezia <demonick at zgi.com> Subject: mashout & extraction efficiency In 2629 Smurman at best.com speculates on the reason(s) for the increase in extraction efficiency often seen when employing a mashout. On two of his points I agree. First, reduced viscosity is irrelevant (I will explain below), and second, molecular diffusion can not possibly compete with the effects of simple flushing or rinsing. The subtle molecular movements driven by osmotic pressure are totally overwelmed by the movement of water. Try this experiment. Drop a couple of sugar cubes in a glass of warm water and let them dissolve on the bottom of the glass. Wait until the dissolved sugar diffuses throughout the water (hours). Then, fill another glass 1/2 full of water and drop in a couple of sugar cubes and wait until they have dissolved. As soon as they are dissolved fill the glass the rest of the way. Which glass "equilibriated" faster? I must however disagree with his conclusion that it is agitation that is the cause of the increased extraction efficiency. I might agree if we sparged while stirring the complete mash, but we don't. In fact we take great pains to NOT disturb the grain bed once established. Of course some "rake" or stir the very top portion of the mash bed to reduce channeling, but most of the solutes leave this portion of the mash quite quickly. Before I share my speculation let me say that it is unfortunate that someone, somewhere, at sometime brought up runoff viscosity as an explanation for the increased extraction that is often seen when employing a mashout. The viscosity of the runoff starts high as the sparge begins then falls as the sparge progresses, hitting every value in-between. If lower viscosity yielded greater extraction then it would happen at the lower viscosities that naturally occur during the sparge. Viscosity is not an issue. Solubility is the issue. More sugar dissolves in hotter water than cooler water. If you raise the temperature of the mash by 20F (150F to 170F) you increase the solubility of dextrose from ~3300g/liter to ~4000g/liter (21% increase) which easily explains the increased extraction efficiency. To realize the potential gains in extraction that mashout yields you must also sparge with water of similar temperature. (Please note that the solubility values were interpolated from the Merck Index data points of 1.1ml/g at 25C, 0.8ml/g at 30C, 0.41ml/g at 50C, 0.28ml/g at 70C, 0.18ml/g at 90C (ml of water per gram of glucose)). Domenick Venezia demonick at zgi.antispam.com (remove .antispam) Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 05 Feb 98 21:54:30 PST From: "Emily Neufeld" <eneufeld at michianatoday.com> Subject: false bottoms As a relatively new all-grain brewer with only one year experience and = limited equipment, I have been following the protein rest thread quite = avidly. I an effort to gain a bit more control over my mashing I purchas= ed a 10 gallon rubbermaid cooler and would like a recommendation on which= type of false bottom to build -- screen, manifold, eashymasher (imitator= ) etc. I would appreciate some advice and instructions on how to build = or at least directions to sites with instructions. Private e-mail is fin= e. (Note I am sending this from my wife's computer -- she is supportive = of my brewing but doesn't drink or brew: drewbuscareno at skyenet.net) Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 23:53:26 EST From: GordonRick at aol.com Subject: Growing Southern (US) Hops For the hopheads in "The Land That Beer Forgot"- In HBD #2629, Mark Tumarkin at Pura Vida Homebrewery asked about growing hops in the sunbelt south of the 35th parallel. I live in Columbus, Georgia - scorching hot summers and fairly sandy soil (similar weather to G-ville Fla, but fewer coeds!) My first attempt (Cascade) was a disaster - too much sun and too close to a reflective garage wall. Hops love sun, but not the heat. Too much sun will kill them in a hurry. They also love water but need good drainage. In my attempt to salvage a couple of not quite dead plants, I put them into large pots with potting soil and tomato stakes. Lots of water! Until they started outgrowing the stakes, I simply moved the pots in/out of favorable sunspots during the day (at the time I lived close enough to work to do this at lunch). After they got too big for this method, I used a nylon string tied to another cord strung from a corner of the house to a gutter (about 12' high). A fair amount of slack allowed quite a bit of movement to optimize sun/shade sort of like a dog run. Choosing a spot in the yard that will give several hours of early morning sun and some shade during the hottest part of the day is the key. The harvest wasn't big (4-5 oz after drying for two plants) but the smell of fresh lupulin (sp?) was wonderful. Unfortunately, we were transferred later that year and the dormant rizomes were *accidently* dumped out so I don't know if the pot method would work over several seasons. I suppose you could thin the roots each year. BTW, squirrels (tree rats) and deer love the tender shoots of new growth! Bottom line - HOPS DON'T GROW WELL IN THE SOUTH. With a lot of work it can be done, but I doubt commercially. I tried one plant up in the North Georgia mountains (grapes seem to like it OK) but I think the soil was too acid and it got too much shade. It survived virtually unattended, but was very scrawny and never produced flowers. I would really like to see some Yr2K Gregor Mendel come along and crossbreed hops with the mighty kudzu vine! If you have never seen kudzu, Its like ivy with a foot per day attitude - old barns turn into large green lumps in a matter of weeks, and you can not kill it! Any hophead botonists out there up to the challenge? I read somewhere (sorry - can't recall where) that an extract from the tuberous root of the kudzu vine increased the body's ability to metabolize alchohol. I think you see where I'm headed with this - hops that let you tip a few at your favorite local BP without too quickly becoming a menace on the highway! Until then, I guess we're stuck with designated drivers etc. Prost- Rick Gordon Do try this at home! Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 23:53:23 EST From: GordonRick at aol.com Subject: Getting rid of chlorine In HBD 2622 Michael Key asked about getting rid of chlorine. My personal experience with chlorine is based on high pH, low mineral content south Georgia water, so... The water I was using in my early HB days was sometimes so dosed with chlorine you could clearly smell it. I was relaxed and not worrying (sorry Charlie!) and figured it wasn't such a big deal. Bottom line, most batches tasted alot alike and tended to be very phenolic. I was thinking I had a rogue house yeast or bacterial infestation going on so I redoubled my sanitation ritual (with chlorine bleach no less!) I finally figured out that it might be the chlorine after all and installed an activated charcoal cartridge type filter on the kitchen water line. I noticed a dramatic improvement in my beers immediately. Not to mention the coffee, iced tea etc.Not being one to religiously follow directions on something so simple as a filter, I didn't stop to check the recommended max flow rate or anything and was pumping at least 1.5 to 2 GPM. I guess it worked good enough. I now filter all of my brewing water before treatment, but still don't worry too much about the flow rate as long as you don't overdo it. Boiling may not be completely effective with some municipal water treatments (see Fix's book), but the filter seems to knock the chlorine down to acceptable levels. BTW, I still use chlorine bleach for sanitization but rinse like the devil! Rick Hopfen und Malz, Gott Erhalt's Return to table of contents
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