HOMEBREW Digest #2829 Mon 21 September 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

  re: Sugar to honey and vice versa (Dick Dunn)
  cp filling ("Steve")
  Guinness Replication ("Michael O. Hanson")
  Vanilla Beans in Beer ("Eric R. Tepe")
  dark mild, alt, dunkelweizen (Gordon Strong)
  RE: Weld Free keg connections ("John Lifer, jr")
  Re: I second that emotion! (Scott Murman)
  Stepping up Starters (MrWES)
  HBD Pale Ale Experiment II -- die Alte weg auf dem bier ("Michel J. Brown")
  lye pain (bers)
  Cleaning with lye, Weld-Free Keg Conversion (Jack Schmidling)
  RE:  Duvel recipe (Richard Gardner)
  Kegged Hefe Weizen ("Jay Krause")
  Lye, ("David R. Burley")
  Unibroue (again) ("George De Piro")
  Clinitest or SMBG? (not Dave Burley but) ("bret.morrow")
  disposing of O2 cylinders (Scott Murman)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: 18 Sep 98 23:51:40 MDT (Fri) From: rcd at raven.talisman.com (Dick Dunn) Subject: re: Sugar to honey and vice versa > I have been brewing for only a short while and I would like to > substitute some of the cane sugar that I have been liberally adding to > my wort with some honey or molasses. Is there any sort of conversion I > need to make? (say, 2 lbs. sugar to 3 lbs. honey)... It would sure be nice to have this stuff in a FAQ somewhere, since this is a common question and some of the answers that you might stumble across are way wrong (in fact, egregiously wrong in the sense of being bottle-bomb formulas). Honey is pretty close to 80% sugar by weight (actually, typically a bit more than that) and almost all of the sugars in honey are readily fermen- table. So, by weight you can almost substitute pound-for-pound; in fact if you're substituting for malt you don't need to worry about the 80% factor because the sugars in honey are overall more fermentable than those in most malts. ==>Where you get into trouble<== is in trying to substitute by volume, because honey is a LOT heavier than DME or dry sugars. You'll see the occasional suggestion to substitute honey for DME (or dextrose for priming), cup-for-cup. DON'T do it. These folks are on the wrong drugs. - --- Dick Dunn rcd at talisman.com Hygiene, Colorado USA ...Listen, I'm a Virgo, and we Virgos don't believe that astrology stuff. Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Sep 1998 07:46:17 -0400 From: "Steve" <stjones1 at worldnet.att.net> Subject: cp filling Greetings fellow brewers! I hope you'll indulge me for a few minutes - I think I may have come up with something which may improve bottling from kegs. I have just finished constructing a counter-pressure bottle filler (actually a 'bottling station'). Sorry to consume so much space, but my results excited me so much I just had to share them. I've used a traditional style cp filler and had some difficulty with foaming. It had been recommended to me use a low pressure, to chill the bottles and the filler before use, and keep the keg cold also, but that seems like a lot of trouble, so I gave some thought to a new design. Anyone with a few woodworking skills could do the same. It is basically a typical cp filler (although home-made) rigidly mounted to a sliding piece of plywood which is spring loaded to hold the filler in the bottle. It is truly a hands free operation. I made a plywood base (I used 1/2" paraply thruought) about 12 x 24, with another piece of plywood about 10 x 18 attached vertically toward one end, with 2 triangular pieces to attach it to the base (all wood joints fastened with glue & countersunk drywall screws). The vertical piece faces toward the long edge of the base about 2 inches in from one edge, with space behind it for the corny. On the other end of the base I mounted a bench capper. At the vertical edges of the vertical piece, I attached 2 pieces about 3/4 x 1 1/2 (I used mahogany for color and just because I had it laying around) which were rabbetted to house the head assembly (plywood with rigidly mounted beer valve, co2 valve, vent valve, tubing & stopper, all pretty much standard cp filler stuff) which slides up and down in the rabbets. The head assembly is mounted in the upper end of the vertical piece, with an adjustable stop to prevent it from dropping down too low, and is attached to the lower end of the vertical plywood piece with a stiff spring, which has multiple mounting points for adjustability. The whole thing is finished with multiple coats of polyurethane for moisture resistance. All the wood parts were scraps left over from other projects, and the plumbing was purchased new. The total cost (w/o the capper) was about $35 (it's a hobby - I don't count my time). I used 1/4" brass ball valves ($8 each, a ripoff) and 1/4" ss tubing and tee for the beer in & co2 in, and a 1/8" needle valve and 1/8" rigid copper tubing (from a hobby store) for the vent. I mounted QDs on the beer & co2 inlets, and a gas corny fitting in the middle of the co2 line. I connect the QDs to the keg, and my co2 bottle to the corny gas fitting. Holding an empty in my right hand, I push the bottle up on the tube onto the stopper, lift it higher (stretching the spring) to clear the base, and then set it on the base. The spring holds the head assembly down giving me a hands free operation. After filling (purge, pressurize, fill, vent) I lift a pull the bottle toward me with my left hand and lower it as I grab an empty with my right hand and slide it up (no drips lost to the floor). While the new one is filling, I cap the one I just took off. The filler tube is about 2 1/2" up from the bottom of a standard 12 oz bottle, so I can fill several different sizes of bottles without adjusting the setup. For 7-8 oz, or 22 oz I adjust the spring and move the stop up or down. Most of the cp filling instructions I've seen or heard say to lower the pressure when foaming problems occur. I got to thinking about what might cause foaming, and I came up with this thought: the carbonated beer is under pressure - approx 15 lbs or so, depending on the carb level, and when the beer is transferred to the bottle, the combination of turbulence and pressure drop probably makes the CO2 want to come out of solution. If the beer was kept at or above the original pressure, the turbulence may not be enough to cause foaming. So, here she goes on her maiden voyage. Last night I bottled a pale ale which was carbonated to about 2.4 volumes, around 13 psi at 40F (numbers are approximate here), and I started at about 5 psi or so. I got some significant foaming, so I decided to RAISE the pressure as an experiment. I raised it to 10 psi, and the foaming was somewhat less. Then I raised it to 20 psi, and had virtually NO FOAM whatsoever. After about 6 oz of foam having run thru my vent tube on the first dozen bottles, the last 5 dozen produced only about 3 oz in my overflow glass (hey, no extra beer to drink while bottling!!). I bottled about 3 cases from 2 different kegs in 1 1/2 hours, including setup, sanitizing, & cleanup. Has anyone else tried raising the pressure? I'd be interested in hearing about your results. I imagine it would be hard to keep a traditional hand held cp filler in the bottle at 20 psi. I'm going to borrow a digital camera from a friend and put some pics on my club's web site in the next week or so. Feel free to use my design if it helps. BTW, great story from Charles on the Hop Farm. Hoppy brewing, all. Steve State of Franklin Homebrewers http://home.att.net/~stjones1 Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Sep 1998 06:50:25 -0700 From: "Michael O. Hanson" <mhanson at winternet.com> Subject: Guinness Replication Hello brewmasters, I have heard that Guinness Stout is brewed with 3% of the beer being acidified. It has occurred to me that one method of replicating this process could be to add lactic acid bacteria to about that same percentage of a 5-gallon batch, pasteurize the wort after acidification, and introduce it into the batch. Alternatively, lactic could be added directly to fermented stout until the pH and flavor of Guinness are reached. This assumes tat no other byproducts of a lactic acid fermentation are present in Guinness. An alternative would be to sour one or two bottles of Guinness and add it to the boil along with the hops. This would pasteurize it. I realize these methods are kind of quick ad dirty. I'm not sure if the mash is acidified to a certain point or if acidification is accomplished by adding lactic acid bacteria to the wort. I don't think bacteria are added to the beer directly. Does anyone know if these methods might work? Thanks in advance, Mike Hanson Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Sep 1998 09:50:13 -0400 From: "Eric R. Tepe" <erictepe at fuse.net> Subject: Vanilla Beans in Beer Brewing Collective, I am interested in using vanilla beans in a holiday ale. In browsing the list of previous searches on this topic, I found maybe 2-3 posts in using the bean. The HBD has a large response pool of brewers and I would like and appreciate some input from the brewers that have used vanilla beans. My idea is to use them in the secondary of a holiday porter. I was also wondering if the inside of the bean is sterile and if it is not how I would sanitize it. I do have a biology degree but I skipped out of the plant classes in favor of microbiology. Thanks in advance to all who respond. Private e-mail ok Eric R. Tepe Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Sep 1998 10:06:29 -0400 From: Gordon Strong <strongg at earthlink.net> Subject: dark mild, alt, dunkelweizen I'm making a dark mild soon and am considering priming with Lyle's golden syrup to increase the residual toffee character. Has anyone tried this? Comments? Also, any hints on how much syrup to add to prime a 5 gallon batch? I've enjoyed the altbier discussion and hope to make one when it gets a bit cooler. Thanks to Al K for sharing his recipe, but one question: how long and at what temperature do you cold condition? Ed Westemeier had previously recommended to me that a minimum of 8 weeks at no more than 40F was proper. I'm inclined to follow this, but am interested in more data points. Finally, if you look at Warner's recipe for dunkelweizen he suggests using half dark munich and half wheat malt in a double decoction mash. I think that's what I'll try on the next batch if I can find some Weyermann dark munich. I'll be needing some for the altbier, so it's worth the search. I think Warner's book is probably the best of the style series. Good stuff if you haven't read it. Gordon Strong Beavercreek, Ohio (about 3 hours south of Jeff Renner) strongg at earthlink.net Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Sep 1998 08:58:39 -0500 From: "John Lifer, jr" <jliferjr at misnet.com> Subject: RE: Weld Free keg connections Rich wrote that he needed method of weld free connections on his keg conversion.I have drilled, tapped and then put in 1/2" pipe fittings -Brass and Stainless Steel-not mildsteel, on a number of kegs and in most cases, a couple of rounds of teflon tape will prevent leaking. I've got one keg I'm to lazy to take back apart with nothing on it and all it does is drip once a minute or so. I use it on my sparge tank so all I'm losing is plain water. You can find bulkhead fittings but they are relatively expensive. Just my opinion. John - -- Cornelius Ball Lock Kegs for Sale http://www2.misnet.com/~jliferjr/Kegs/Default.htm Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Sep 1998 08:45:54 -0700 (PDT) From: Scott Murman <smurman at best.com> Subject: Re: I second that emotion! > I have to agree with Bill Coleman <MaltyDog at aol.com> and others when > they say that this Clinitest thread must die! > Brewers have been making fine quality beers for hundreds of years > with without the help of a urine glucose testing kit. While I'm as tired of hearing/reading about Clinitest as anyone, it is exactly the kind of topic that the HBD exists to discuss (IMO obviously). Homebrewing has always been about experimenting, questioning, and trying new things, as much as it's been about brewing beer. If folks can't discuss using urine glucose kits for testing fermentation in this forum, then where can they? Just roll your eyes and use the page down key if you don't like a subject. Or you could write a furious letter to the editor threatening not to renew your subscription. SM Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Sep 1998 11:19:58 -0500 (CDT) From: MrWES <killshot at enteract.com> Subject: Stepping up Starters I generally use a pint starter but thinking about stepping it up to a quart or even half gallon. Do I keeping the spent DME and water when I step up, or do I decant off and and just use the slurry? Thanks, Bill Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Sep 1998 13:08:05 -0700 From: "Michel J. Brown" <homemade at spiritone.com> Subject: HBD Pale Ale Experiment II -- die Alte weg auf dem bier Since the HBD PAE was such an interesting project (Thanks to John V.), perhaps, what with all the interest in Altbier, maybe our next project should be to create one. Having tasted Altbier in the Altstadt, and believe me, there's room for lots of creativity here, as the differences between Alts is as striking as for any other style IMHO. About all you can say is that it is a big, dark, malty, hoppy German Ale. Anything else becomes moot IMHO as the differences in interpretation from brewery to brewery is quite fascinating. So what's the consensus? Dr. Michel J. Brown, D.C. {Portland, OR} 2222 miles due west of Jeff Renner homemade at spiritone.com http://www.spiritone.com/~homemade/index.html "In the field of observation, chance favors only the prepared mind" L. Pasteur Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Sep 98 17:31:38 PDT From: bers at epix.net Subject: lye pain lye is a poison. I had gotten an old whitewash paint chip in my eye while working in the my barn once. In 5 minutes I on the ground tossing my cookies and in a great deal of pain. I had to go the hospital. the doc in the er unit said that the lye in the whitewash was a poison that was absorbed through the eye the with great speed. I was sick for 3 days. I'd never mess with that stuff again. - ------------------------------------- Name: Tony Maurer E-mail: bers at epix.net Date: 9/19/98 Time: 5:31:38 PM Brewing in Benton PA - ------------------------------------- Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Sep 1998 08:34:53 -0700 From: Jack Schmidling <arf at mc.net> Subject: Cleaning with lye, Weld-Free Keg Conversion "Wendy Steinkamp" <EnW_Steinkamp at email.msn.com> "Are there any problems associated with using lye (like the generic Drano in a can) diluted in water as a cleaner for various things like carboys and kegs? Lye is an excellent keg cleaner and I use it all the time. However, I would suggest you use lye not toilet cleaners that might contain something else. Lewis brand lye is available in most supermarkets and hardware stores. It is a bit expensive so if the other stuff is only lye and cheaper, there might be a point. I use a tablespoon of lye in about a quart of water in the bottom of a 10 gal keg and slosh this around every few minutes for some period of time depending on what else I am doing. It works as well as bleach and is far easier to rinse out. ............... Rich and Susy <cinnamon at erinet.com> "I'm making the leap to all-grain and doing the keg-to-brewpot conversion. Being cheap, I'd really like to avoid paying a welder. I've seen many references to weld-free conversions in the archives, and most mention fiber washers, but none mention the kind of 'fiber' or where to find it. I have a feeling that I started the "fiber washer" business and perpetuate it by including one with the EASYMASHER(tm). You can buy all you want from McMaster Carr and they are simply "hard fiber washers". However, the only reason I started using them was because the thread on the spigot we used did not go all the way to the shoulder and at times, it was difficult to get a tight fit on thin walled kettles. We now have the supplier custom thread them for us so it is no longer an issue but I can't get over bad habits. Washers are manifestly unnecessary to get a leak free joint if everything else is right. When squeezing a steel wall between two brass parts, a perfect seal will be achieved without any washers. The main problem to overcome in off the shelf solutions to no-weld fittings is the simple fact that pipe fittings have pipe threads which, by definition, are tapered and will never squeeze anything together. You solve this problem by rethreading to produce a straight thread which then will function just like a nut and bolt. There are also very sloppy nuts that can be used on pipe threads but I would not stake a lifetime guaranty on them. Check out our application notes for details on making this sort of device. js - -- Visit our WEB pages: http://user.mc.net/arf ASTROPHOTO OF THE WEEK..... New Every Monday Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 19 Sep 1998 20:00:28 -0500 (CDT) From: Richard Gardner <rgardner at monarch.papillion.ne.us> Subject: RE: Duvel recipe Jim Welsh <jwelsh at execpc.com> asked: >I am attempting to make a homebrewers version of Duvel. From what I >understand this is a difficult beer to "clone". Does anyone know the >IBU's for Duvel and/or have any tips to making this classic? Yeast ideas >are also appreciated. A great reference is "The Great Beers of Belgium" by (the) Michael Jackson, rarely available at a bookstore near you. My revision is 1994, but I think it has been reissued. ISBN 1-900131-35-8. Beautiful printing, 327 pages. No recipes, but a wealth of information nonetheless. I think it goes for around $35 regularly. Wyeast 1388, Belgian Strong Ale, is probably one of the Duvel strains. I made 1 batch with it, and it takes a long time to settle out, and gelatin did not help. However, the MJ book on Belgian beers says that Duvel uses TWO different yeast strains in a usual unique Belgian manner: the wort is separated into two batches of unequal size and fermented with the yeasts separately, being filtered and mixed at the end of fermentation. No one mentioned if both yeasts are in 1388 or not. In any case, primary fermentation occurs for 5-6 days (16-28C/60-82F) - what a large temperature range, then shifted to secondary (cold maturation vessels) and the temp lowered over 3 days to freezing for 3-4 weeks, then taken to -3C (26) to precipitate the yeast. After filtering and mixing, one of the yeasts is added back in along with some priming dextrose. Bottom line, not easy to do. Specs: #1388 Belgian Strong Ale Yeast -- apparent attenuation; 73-77% Robust flavor yeast with moderate to high alcohol tolerance. Fruity nose and palate, dry, tart finish, low flocculation. Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 20 Sep 1998 08:45:03 -0500 From: "Jay Krause" <krause at galis.com> Subject: Kegged Hefe Weizen In HBD #2824 Mike Piersimoni wrote that the fellow at the local Home-Brew shop said that "Germans do not keg weizen, only bottle." This person is mistaken, I can think of a number of weizens I've had on draft. Eichbaum, Schneider to name a few. Although it is not common to find weizen in kegs, it is done. Jay Krause Visit "Jay's Beer Lable of the Week" this week highlights the Oktoberfest http://members.tripod.com/~beerlable Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 20 Sep 1998 11:03:17 -0400 From: "David R. Burley" <Dave_Burley at compuserve.com> Subject: Lye, Brewsters: Wendy asks if there are problems with using lye as a cleaner. Yes, it is very dangerous and can dissolve your hair and skin and damage your eye tissue if acidentally splashed. There are many other alkaline cleaners on the market ( washing soda, for example) which will do a good job at loosening burnt carbon ( which is why I imagine you want to use lye) that the risk is not worth it. Lye solutions if left in soft glass ( i.e. like carboys) will be etched. Bleach is also a very alkaline agent which contains lye ( sodium hydroxide) as part of the solution. Care with this substance must also be used as it is also an oxidizer. - ------------------------------------ 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: Sun, 20 Sep 98 11:34:45 PDT From: "George De Piro" <gdepiro at fcc.net> Subject: Unibroue (again) Hi all, Doug wrote, in response to my original Unibroue post about the the use of clear bottles, etc.: "So please, don't make sweeping nasty statements about breweries that you do not know. Besides, if we are really honest, the last truly bad beer that we drank was probably one that WE made!" Nothing I said was nasty. I don't consider it a bad thing for a brewer to produce one beer that is meant to appeal to the uneducated masses and increase sales. I even said that I applaud such decisions. Also, I have been drinking their beers for years and got my info about why they are marketing a pilsner directly from the sales manager. Hardly an uneducated post. The last bad beer I had was an oxidized DeKonninck at a bar in Philly (just last night). Let's not insult everyone's homebrew! Some of it is very good. Also, "Trois Pistoles" means "three steeples," not "three pistols." That's why there is a picture of a church with 3 steeples on the label instead of a likeness of Josie Wales. Sometimes cognates aren't! Have fun! George de Piro (Nyack, NY) Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 20 Sep 1998 03:32:22 -0400 From: "bret.morrow" <bret.morrow at mci2000.com> Subject: Clinitest or SMBG? (not Dave Burley but) Greetings, Marshall George writes: "Dave, are you the president and head sales rep for Clinitest? Never have I seen someone so hooked on a product that others refute time and time again, unless they are a paid representative. ENOUGH ALREADY - you're using a product used in urine glucose measurements for diabetics, not brewing." Marshall (and Dave), Clinitest is an out of date product. The American Diabetes Association suggest that patients with diabetes who need to monitor glucose should use a self-monitoring BLOOD glucose monitor. I don't know about using a blood glucose monitor on beer--any word on that Dave? Bret Morrow, Johnson Brewing, Hamden CT PS I never used Clinitest to test for glucose in urine or pre-urine (beer). Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 20 Sep 1998 20:07:44 -0700 (PDT) From: Scott Murman <smurman at best.com> Subject: disposing of O2 cylinders Is there a preferred or mandatory way to dispose of those small O2 cylinders that many of us are using for oxygenating. Better yet, is there some method of recycling them? SM Return to table of contents
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