HOMEBREW Digest #3371 Fri 07 July 2000

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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

  GBBF (Brad McMahon)
  Adelaide Clubs (Brad McMahon)
  I'm Back / pH / Kunze / thermodynamics question ("Louis K. Bonham")
  Diabetics and Beer (Ant Hayes)
  Re: Bavarian helles (Epic8383)
  Re: Stroh's Signature (reformatted) (Anthony and Mary Ann Tantillo)
  RE: Rimmers ("Neitzke, Arnold")
  Helles Boil Schedule ("Philip J Wilcox")
  Re: Sour mashing (KMacneal)
  Great Taste of the Midwest (Steven Ensley)
  Acid Wit (Road Frog)
  Calomel (AJ)
  Wyeast 1332 - Yes! ("George, Marshall E.")
  Buckeye is Back (Bob Hall)
  pH measurements,bubble counter (Dave Burley)
  pH ("Pannicke, Glen A.")
  Re: Bavarian Helles (Jeff Renner)
  To the Publisher of Brewers Publications (Jeff Renner)
  Re: Big Beer/Small Beer Parti-gyle brewing (Spencer W Thomas)
  Re: Bubble Counter (stencil)
  electrodes/pH papers/wit pH/ acid malt/ ("Lynne O'Connor")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 06 Jul 2000 14:50:19 +0930 From: Brad McMahon <brad at sa.apana.org.au> Subject: GBBF Who here from the HBD will be attending the Great British Beer Festival? Thomas Hamann and myself will be there from Tuesday 1st August to Thursday the 3rd. We have volunteered our time to work there so you should be able to track us down. We will be wearing tags with HBD on them as well (kinda like a secret society innit?) so you can spot us. That is, if the khakhi safari/brew suits, slouch hats with corks, 12" combat knife in the crocodile belt and cries of "Whacko-the-diddly-o didgeridoo wombat, by crikey!" doesn't give it away. Which it wouldn't. We will also be at the Wednesday 12:30pm Championship Beer of Britain Tasting with Roger Protz and the Thursday 6:30pm Czech Beer Tasting with Michael Jackson if you can't find us amongst the general masses. Drop me and e-mail and see if we can't find a place to meet up! Cheers mate! Brad McMahon Aldgate, South Australia Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 06 Jul 2000 14:51:13 +0930 From: Brad McMahon <brad at sa.apana.org.au> Subject: Adelaide Clubs >Date: Tue, 4 Jul 2000 21:04:04 +0930 >From: "Peter Fitzsimons" <peterf at senet.com.au> >There seems to a be a lot of interest from people in Adelaide about Home >Brewing, but there seems to be a severe lack of clubs. Is anyone in Adelaide >interesting in fixing that (and no, I'm not volunteering for anything just >yet ...) I agree. The 2 major clubs (Adelaide and Blackwood) and the minor (Adelaide Hills) tend to concentrate on winemaking rather than beer brewing but there are strong enthusiasts in all of those clubs. The Adelaide Hills club began as a beer only club but the winemakers spread through the club like that mould I had in about three of my brews earlier this year <grin>. There is strong interest in getting another beer club up and running - catering mainly to the mash brewers but most certainly everyone with a brewing interest would be welcome. I hear about enquiries every few weeks about this. At the moment the people who are willing to help organise this are heavily involved in getting the SABSOSA competition, the Nationals and the NAWBS show up and running for this year. Two of us (Thomas Hamann & I) are off to Britain for the GBBF, then to Belgium and Germany for a couple of months. Combined with all the comps that are coming up I can't see much happening before Christmas. Drop past and see us at the Coopers Homebrew Show this weekend. We will be there from 10-2 at the Grumpy's Brewhaus stand. Lyndon Z will be around as well to give you tips on Lambic brewing! See ya round like a rissole! Brad Aldgate, SA Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 01:10:31 -0500 From: "Louis K. Bonham" <lkbonham at hypercon.com> Subject: I'm Back / pH / Kunze / thermodynamics question Hi folks: Hokay, I've finally managed to get a major case put to bed (it kept me from going to the NHC and damn near kept me from MCAB II), and so hopefuly can spend some quality time brewing, updating MCAB III stuff, going to Foam Ranger meetings, and doing a couple of articles for Zymurgy . . . and of course contributing to the HBD. =========== Regarding pH, Marc Sedam quibbles with Dave Burley on pH measurement methodology: >But I would say that he's a bit off as far >as how to measure the pH. If you have >an ATC meter, I say take the sample, >stick the probe in there, and go. No need >to cool the thing down...wastes valuable >time and there's no advantage to having >an ATC meter if you cool the sample below, >say, 140F (so I'm consistent). While I have a lot of respect from Marc's expertise, I've gotta agree with Dave on this one. The relevant ASBC methods (Wort 1 [sampling] and 8 [pH]) plainly call for the wort sample to be attempered to 5-8C and *then* tested. (This can be done very quickly by using a small ice water bath and a sample container made from a length of 1" copper pipe fitted with an end cap.) Regardless of how pH may be measured in other applications, this is the official brewing industry method, and thus I strongly suspect that it is the method used by most of the authors of serious brewing tracts. ================== Speaking of serious brewing tracts, I recently found an English version of Kunze's Technology Brewing and Malting. I can see why Steve A. quotes so much from this one -- it's truly an exceptional work. A must-have book for the craft brewer and the hard-core amateur. ==================== Finally, a thermo question for you engineers out there. I recently scored a large stainless double wall liquid nitrogen container for cheap at a surlus auction, and have had it retrofited with various fittings so that it can be used as a jacketed mash tun. The vessel is cyllindrical in shape, fabricated from what appears to be 1/16" thick 314 stainless, interior dimensions of 16" diameter by 29" high (total capacity: 95.5 liters (26.3 gallons)), and the exterior dimensions of 18" by 30" high -- i.e., about 1" clearance between the bottom and walls of the two containers (approximate volume of the shell: 23.6 liters (6.5 gallons)). I know that steam heating would be ideal, but as I don't have a steam generator I'm envisioning using a thermostatically controlled pump and a reservior of heated water, glycol, or oil to deliver the heat to the jacket for temperature boosts and temperature maintenance.. The question: Assume that the inner vessel is filled with 50 liters of water at 40C, and covered with an insulated lid. Assume that there are 20 liters of fluid (water, glycol, or oil) in the shell that can be maintained at a constant temperature by recirculating from a larger, heated reservior. Approximately how hot would the heating fluid have to be to be raise the temp of the 50 liters of water in the inner chamber to 70C in under 30 minutes? All the best -- Louis K. Bonham Houston, Texas Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 08:58:27 +0200 From: Ant Hayes <Ant.Hayes at FifthQuadrant.co.za> Subject: Diabetics and Beer Two or three digests ago, someone was asking about diabetics and the type of beer that they can drink. My brother has been a diabetic since 1981. His control is particularly good, and he does not restrict himself to any particular beer style, so I asked him whether he should do. His answer is below: >As beer is rich in carbohydrates and contains alcohol it is not ideally suited >to Diabetes. >In theory your blood sugar should go up immediately (kind of like eating >refined sugar) - so you should treat it as such - take short acting insulin but >as he is type II, I guess he would need to compensate for it by doing exercise >earlier on in the afternoon (increases the body's natural absorption of glucose >without putting any strain on the pancreas) >Alcohol suppresses the release of glucose into the blood sugar so at a later >stage his sugar levels will fall and then later when the alcohol has been >processed the sugar levels will rapidly rise. The timing of these events >changes depending on the amount of beer consumed and various other things >(what he has eaten, when he last did exercise etc.) The best advice is always >eat before he drinks and test at various times. >He should probably not drink at all (or keep it to one or two beers) until he >has got to grips with how to control his sugar levels. >Type I is easier in this respect as I can manipulate my sugar levels through >the use of insulin. I hope this helps - being a brewer and only able to drink one or two types of beer sounds like a torture straight from Hades. Cheers Ant Hayes Brewing where beer was invented. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 03:11:05 EDT From: Epic8383 at aol.com Subject: Re: Bavarian helles I just read BH as well and was questioning that same couple of paragraphs. It would seem to me that aroma hops go in at or just before shutting down the boil. I wouldn't want to let the wort sit for 15 min. before cooling, especially with a delicately balanced beer like a helles. I can smell the DMS just thinking about it. Gus Rappold Inwood, NY Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 06 Jul 2000 07:30:30 +0000 From: Anthony and Mary Ann Tantillo <amtantillo at earthlink.net> Subject: Re: Stroh's Signature (reformatted) Let's try this one more time in a readable format.:-) Jeff Renner wrote: > In Homebrew Digest #3365 (June 30, 2000), Bob Hall > <nap_aca_bh at nwoca.org> asks: > Can anyone out there give a > little background on Signature, history, clone, etc. > "AS I recall, it was a nice beer but still too tame for my tastes. > Maltier and richer than a standard American lager, > with nice flavoring hops, but nothing to write home about..." >From what I remember about Peter's talk, Signature still used corn as an adjunct. The real surprise was that replacing part of the six row barley with two row did not change the taste according to Stroh's tastetesters. > I can't remember exactly how Peter used the simile of "kissing your > sister" that Fred related, but I think it may have been more > regarding light beers than beers other than Stroh's. Someone else > who was there may remember better. My recollection too is that the "kissing your sister" quote referred to light beers.He also made the quote "..we turn water into beer not beer into water.."Does anyone remember exactly what context this quote was made? It had something to do with the light beer debate, I believe. > He certainly was an entertaining speaker, especially for those of > us interested in the history of beer. Agreed. Someone should write a book similar to "Glory of Their Times", but instead of old baseball players, old regional brewers would recount their experiences. Tony Tantillo amtantillo at earthlink.net Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 08:16:10 -0400 From: "Neitzke, Arnold" <Arnold.Neitzke at fanucrobotics.com> Subject: RE: Rimmers SO why can't I participate? :) Arnold J. Neitzke Brighton Mi > Date: Wed, 5 Jul 2000 21:48:50 -0400 > From: Dan Listermann <72723.1707 at compuserve.com> > Subject: Rimmers > > I need some info from you rimmers ( not Arnold J.). What > watt per sq inch > ratio do you use? What is your minimum flow rate and how > often does the > element need to be cleaned? Anyother advice regarding the use of > electrical heating elements would be appreciated. > > Dan Listermann 72723.1707 at compuserve.com dan at listermann.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 08:20:54 -0400 From: "Philip J Wilcox" <pjwilcox at cmsenergy.com> Subject: Helles Boil Schedule Chuck, I havn't read Horst's newest book yet, but I can tell you from what I know of German and Large scale brewing what He was getting at. Most large brewers (Micro and Pub too) perform some kind of whirlpool after the turn the heat off the boil. This is sometimes done in the kettle it's self, and in some breweries it is done in an entirely different vessel. The period of time varies, but is usually at least a half hour. This is done to coagulate the Hot break, and concentrate the break matter and the hops into the center of the vessel. The now "clean" wort is run off the sides of the vessel and through the chiller to the fermentation tanks. Temperatures do drop during the Whirlpool from 212F to about 190F depending on the system. Adding hops during this stage of brewing has become known as Whirlpool hopping. As a practice it has gained in popularity with pub brewing, especially amoung those breweries using the English/American-Peter Austin/Alan Pugsly systems. Whirlpool hopping and the use of a Hop Jack (or hop percolator) are how these breweries (like Full Sail) get such a huge hop character in thier beers. Now, using it in a helles is somewhat surprising since this is an Aroma hoping technique. Ill have to check my tasting notes, on my impression of Spaten while I was in germany, But I don't remember much hop presence at all. My Impression of Helles as a style is not hoppy at all, it Malt, Malt, Malty!!! Club Member Bill Saurbek brought a Helles from Hacker-Pshorr (Munich Edelhel) to the last Prison City Brewers meeting. It must have been Really Fresh off the boat because it was the best commercial example of a Helles I've had in this country. Yum!!!! The best in Germany, according to the Munichers, and I have to agree, is Andechs. A Kloister brewery in Herrsching, a train, a taxi and a short hike up a steep hill from Munich. Its a long way to go for great beer, but its the best there is--and that goes double for their Doppel! WOW!!! Phil Wilcox Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 08:36:02 EDT From: KMacneal at aol.com Subject: Re: Sour mashing In a message dated 7/6/2000 12:19:19 AM Eastern Daylight Time, Jim Layton <a0456830 at rtxmail1.rsc.raytheon.com> writes: << Give the sour mashing a try, Graham, and be sure to report back how it turns out. I may try it if it works for you. If not, I'll stick with what has worked for me in the past. >> I've used the sour mash technique several times -- in stouts, wits, and other Belgian styles. The sour mash does smell pretty bad when I mash it in, but the rank odor does not carry over to the finished product. Keith MacNeal Worcester, MA Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 08:28:05 -0500 (CDT) From: Steven Ensley <steve at globaldialog.com> Subject: Great Taste of the Midwest 2 things, First, If you havent got your tickets yet for the 14th Annual Great Taste of the Midwest coming up on August 12 at Olin Turville Park in Madison, WI, you better get them. More info at http://www.hbd.org/greattaste . Second, If your club or organization would like to send me some brochures, Ill make sure they are placed on our publications table for attendees to see. - -- Steve Ensley - -- "It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong" Voltaire Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 06:30:57 -0700 (PDT) From: Road Frog <road_frog_run at yahoo.com> Subject: Acid Wit Graham Sanders shouts: >Well I cant remember exactly where I heard it, but >the lactic mash was >memtioned as a technique to control the acid level >of Wits. >I could use Lactic acid as you suggest, But the >beers I have found that have >used it sort of taste like lactic acid has been used >out of a bottle. Just >a bit artificial. I want to go with some 'natural lactic >acid addition' so >that it tastes more authenthic. (i hope this makes >sense). How about acid malt? I have picked some up and used it at the rate of 1/2 lb per 5 gallons. Not having done a blinded by triangles test I could not tell a difference. I really need to do the Doc Pivo and brew one beer over and over changing 1 thing. But I never can decide, Wit, Rye Porter, Tripel??? Next time I'm using more! The malt has an acidic taste and (QDA) I think was used by the Germans to control PH while staying within the law. Anyone have any experience with acid malt? For anyone who remembers or cares, I plan on bottling the popcorn roasted barley stout next week. Glyn Crossno Estill Springs, TN PS. Stay away from acid, use the malt! __________________________________________________ Do You Yahoo!? Send instant messages & get email alerts with Yahoo! Messenger. http://im.yahoo.com/ Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 06 Jul 2000 10:20:10 -0400 From: AJ <ajdel at mindspring.com> Subject: Calomel WRT to the discussion of pH meters and calomel (mercuric chloride): calomel used to be very popular in the reference junctions of inexpensive pH electrodes but seems to be going the way of buggy whips and high button shoes. It _shouldn't_ find its way into your mash even if you electrode does contain it but it might and that's not a risk worth taking. Furthermore, it melts at mash temperatures and thus an electrode with a calomel reference used at mash temperatures can be ruined. This by itself is reason enough why electrodes should not be inerted into hot mash unless you are sure of their composition. As I have written here many times before, brewing is a demanding application for a pH meter electrode. Gums, sugars, proteins and mash solids all contribute to potential reference electrode junction fouling. Because of this I highly recommend double junction electrodes with renewable reference. Almost all of these use potassium chloride as the fill. A good clue that this is the case is when the electrode comes with a bottle of saturated KCl for refilling. KCl is, of course, quite harmless so that the potential hazards of calomel ekectrodes are not there when using a KCl filled electrode in the mash. Nevertheless I advise against putting an electrode directly in the mash because someday, somewhere, someone will find some way to hurt himself while doing this and I don't want to be held liable. When looking at electrodes watch out for those that use a fill containing silver ions. These are poisonous (though not very) but, of more importance, form precipitates with mash/wort/beer proteins which can clog the junction. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 09:45:26 -0500 From: "George, Marshall E." <MGeorge at bridge.com> Subject: Wyeast 1332 - Yes! > I used Wyeast 1332 a couple of months ago in an > American Brown Ale that I have done before with 1084 (Irish Ale). > Despite all claims that they WON'T TELL YOU...if 1332 isn't RedHook's > yeast it's awful damn close to it. The resulting beer I made was very good - > even my wife likes it and she's not into darker beers due to the > roasted / chocolate malt flavors. > > So...It would do very nicely in an Amber Ale. This was what I made: > > Bombs Away Brown Ale > > Grain Bill: > > 6# Briess 2-Row > 2# Munich (8L) > 1# Malted Wheat > 0.5# English Crystal 60L > 0.25# Belgian Special B > 0.25# Belgian Chocolate Malt > > Target OG: 1.054 (75%), I got 1.060 (oops) > > Mashed at 140 degrees for 15 min, 154 for 90 min, mashout at 170 for 15 min. > > Hops: > > 1 oz Northern Brewer, 6.7%AA, 60 min > 1 oz Willamette, 5.5%AA, 10 min > 1 oz Willamette, 5.5%AA, 3 min > > Wyeast 1332 (RedHook) > > This yeast ferments very well IMO, > and ferments hard if you make a good starter. > > Marshall George > Glen Carbon, IL Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 06 Jul 2000 11:07:28 -0700 From: Bob Hall <nap_aca_bh at nwoca.org> Subject: Buckeye is Back In line with the thread on "old" beers, the late night news on TV-11, Toledo, had a feature on the resurrection of Buckeye Beer, brewed in Toledo from 18?? to 1972. Seems that some fellows at a BOP in suburban Perrysburg decided to bring back the local brew. Apparently no recipes were available, so they gathered focus groups of former Buckeye drinkers and modified ingredients until, as one old fellow put it, the tasters had a "memory flash." Two hundred cases have been produced and are on sale at various outlets in the city including the Anderson's. Speaking of memory flashes, when I was young, married, and poor, we used to make the trip across the border to Farmer Jack's Supermarket in Adrian, MI, and buy Buckeye for 99 cents an eight pack. Of course, now that I'm simply married and poor, I make my own and appreciate any flash I can get. Bob Hall Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 11:44:33 -0400 From: Dave Burley <Dave_Burley at compuserve.com> Subject: pH measurements,bubble counter Brewsters: Marc Sedam, comments on my suggestion to remove the sample from the mash tun, measure the temperature while reading the pH with a temperature compensated probe. Read my comments again and note, please, Mark I did not suggest that the sample be cooled if you had a temperature compensating probe. As was explained by AJ so eloquently here, the ATC only compensates for the instrumentation (i.e. the probe thermal drift) NOT for the thermodynamic pH variation with temperature. That is why I suggested you measure the temperature even though you use an ATC probe. It is a good idea to cool it to preserve the probe, but it is <necessary> to know the temperature so you can correct it to standard conditions. An interesting experiment would be to measure the same wort at various temperatures and plot the pH. - -------------------------------------------------- Sandy Macmillan asks if he can use the opitcal diodes in his defunct mouse to make a bubble counter. Sandy, if your city in Saudi Arabi has a Radio Shack near you, stop in and buy one of the simpler books on the subject of optoelectronics, or perhaps you can order one through their website. Check the voltage being supplied to the chip on the mouse so you can modify any circuit designs as needed. More than likely these devices will not be satisfactory as they are often spaced such they don't have much room between the light emitter and receiver. There are other simpler devices described in these books which could be made to work. Light scatter may be a problem and you may have to provide some shielding, but I am sure to can be made to work. - -------------------------------------------------- Keep on Brewin' Dave Burley Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 06 Jul 2000 12:19:55 -0400 From: "Pannicke, Glen A." <glen_pannicke at merck.com> Subject: pH Marc Sedam wrote: >I used >to have (well still have a nonfunctioning version of) a >Piccolo Plus pH meter. Thing of beauty. Accuracy to 0.02 >units...small, useful, had ATC. I got to use the thing >*about* 5 times before the probe fried. Sorry to hear about the probe being fried. Yes, a real pH meter is a thing of beatuy in any techno-brewer's hands. As for sampling, it is better practice to remove a sample and take the pH. Caveat: In a well-mixed homogeneous solution. No mash is ever well-mixed and homogenous enough, IMHO. The best sample you might hope for would probably come from a RIMS column. It would be better to take a few samples from different portions of the mash to get a "good idea" of what the overall pH looks like. It would be best not to even care about such accuracy. Hey, I had to post SOMETHING - break up the buzz from these rowdy Australians ;-) Glen Pannicke http://www.pannicke.net Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 14:08:19 -0400 From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> Subject: Re: Bavarian Helles Chuck Mryglot <cmryglot at cisco.com> wrote about the new Bavarian Helles book >Looking at the hopping schedule it advises to add flavor hops at >shutdown and to add aroma hops 10 - 15 minutes after shutdown. ><snip> For me, 10 - 15 minutes >after shutdown is during the chilling phase and the wort is maybe 150 >degrees F at this point. Is it not a bad idea to add hops to >unfermented wort at such a low temperature for fear of contamination? I think that in a big brewery the wort would still be hotter than that - I think it is a whirlpool addition, like a hopback addition. But even 150F (66C) is probably still hot enough to kill bugs - barely. My guess is that this may have an effect similar to first wort hopping, which is done lauter temperatures, or ~170F (76C). >The book credits brewers from Spaten with a technical review. I think it must have been a cursory review based on the water chemistry section. See my post below that I've sent the publisher. Jeff -=-=-=-=- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, c/o nerenner at umich.edu "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 14:08:59 -0400 From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> Subject: To the Publisher of Brewers Publications To Toni Knapp, Publisher Brewers Publications Dear Ms. Knapp I've been looking forward to Bavarian Helles as this is a favorite style of mine, so I picked up a copy at the National Homebrew Conference last month. I haven't read the book thoroughly, but the section on water chemistry, specifically p. 70, is so full of errors that jumped out at me that my confidence in the authority of the rest of the book has been shaken. Specifically: "If you happen to have very hard water, your mash may benefit from the addition of gypsum (calcium sulfate, CaSO4) to your brewing liquor to lower mash acidity (that is, reduce alkalinity). It takes about 15 grams of gypsum ... to decrease the hardness of 5 gallons of brewing liquor by 250 ppm." This is simply wrong. Hardness is defined as the level of Ca++ and Mg+ (calcium and magnesium ions). The addition of gypsum will manifestly RAISE the Ca++ or hardness. Equating lower mash acidity with reduced alkalinity is also nonsensical. Acidity and alkalintiy are opposite of one another - if one is lowered, the other cannot be lowered as an effect. The addition of CaSO4 has no direct effect on alkalinity. It works by enabling malt enzymes that need Ca++ to lower mash pH by producing an acid. In the next line the author writes that CaCl2, calcium chloride, is "also known as rock salt." Not where I come from - here rock salt is coarse NaCl (common, table salt) as it is mined. See any dictionary. Then this strange passage (I'm not being too harsh here, am I?) about adding CaCO3 to the mash: "In the mash there is sufficient heat and aeration to keep calcium carbonate stable. Without heat and aeration, calcium carbonate would dissolve into constituent fractional components that are useless to the brewer." Where to start in commenting about this? If a salt (CaCO3 in this case) does not ionize (I think that's what the author means by "dissolve into constituent fractional components"), it would be useless as it would not participate in any reactions. And stable in the mash because of heat and aeration? What does this mean? My mash is hot but I hope it is not aerated. But this has nothing to do with stability of CaCO3. It will dissociate (ionize) more or less depending on the aciedity of the mash. CaCO3 is normally added to the mash of a DARK beer to raise the pH if the water is lacking in alkalinity to balance the acidity of the dark grains. I can think of no use for it in brewing a Helles. Then this: "Other commercial breweries raise their mash pH with an addition of slaked lime, technically known as calcium huydroxide (CaOH2), to their brewing water. Slaked lime causes calcium and bicarbonates to precipitate, which makes the water more alkaline." First, there is a set of parentheses missing - calcium hydroxide is Ca(OH)2. This treatment is done not to raise the mash pH, as stated, but to lower it by removing the bicarbonate alkalinity from the brewing water. And while the treated water does rise in pH, it is not more alkaline - while perhaps counterintuitive, it is less alkaline, since the bicarbonates precipitate out. This treatment allows the brewer to achieve a proper mash pH with all pale malt. On a related subject, I am surprised that the author did not mention the advances a century ago in the understanding of water chemistry and brewing water treatment that made possible the brewing of a pale beer with Munich's alkaline water. German trained master brewer Fred Scheer (who spoke at NHC2000) is the son and grandson of Munich brewers - his grandfather was brewing at the birth of Helles. Fred has mentioned this factor as key. The strong desire of many Munich brewers to compete with Pilsener had to wait for this understanding. Brewing water chemistry is a complicated subject and I think it is deserving of a book of its own. There is much contradictory and incorrect information in many texts. AJ DeLange would be an excellent author. He wrote an article on the subject for Brewing Techniques and frequently contributes knowledgebly and clearly to HomeBrew Digest. I think that Horst Dornbusch should have let someone like AJ DeLange write the section on water chemistry, or at least review it. It is apparent he does not have the necessary grasp of chemistry. He may brew fine beer, but here he is in over his head. I am surprised that these errors got past the people at Spaten he credits with reviewing his manuscript. Jeff Renner -=-=-=-=- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, c/o nerenner at umich.edu "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 06 Jul 2000 15:31:09 -0400 From: Spencer W Thomas <spencer at engin.umich.edu> Subject: Re: Big Beer/Small Beer Parti-gyle brewing My observation was that the gravity of the first runnings depends almost entirely on the "thickness" of the mash. A "thicker" mash (less water per grain) will produce first runnings of a higher gravity than a "thinner" mash. (Well, duh!) I'm including an old posting with some numbers. I don't talk about the "second runnings" beer, but assume that the "rest" of the extract can be removed as second runnings by sparging as usual. How much that "rest" is depends on your usual system efficiency. =S Date: Tue, 7 Jun 94 12:44:04 EDT From: Spencer.W.Thomas at med.umich.edu Subject: Attention Mathematicians! Here's a table I use to for making high gravity beers from first-runnings, only. I then sparge second runnings to make a weaker beer from the remaining extract. The method is this: mash with the specified water-grain ratio, then drain the bed dry. Use these "first runnings" for your strong beer. You can sparge as fast as it will go, because if your mash is properly mixed, the sugar in the liquor and in the grain are in equilibrium, so no extra sugars will be extracted by going slowly. How to read the table: the first column is quarts of water per pound of grain. The second is the specific gravity of the run-off in "points" (e.g. 105 means 1.105). The third column is quarts of run-off collected per pound. The final column is your extract efficiency in pt-lb/gallon. These are pre-boil figures, so if you boil down from 6 to 5 gallons, you'll get another 15% or so (e.g., 1.105 -> 1.120, which I actually got in my most recent "bombastic beer" attempt). qt/lb SG collect extract 1 105 .4 10 1.25 90 .65 15 1.5 80 .9 18 2 60 1.4 21 These numbers work for my system, and were determined by experiment. Your mileage may (will?) vary. I'm assuming that each pound of wet grain absorbs .6 quarts of water. A recent article in Brewing Techniques gave a figure of .4 qt/lb, which would obviously increase the amount of run-off (and would improve the efficiency). =S Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 06 Jul 2000 17:11:23 -0400 From: stencil <stencil at bcn.net> Subject: Re: Bubble Counter On Thu, 6 Jul 2000 00:11:49 -0400, Sandy Macmillan wrote: > [ ... ] >I was dismantling a mouse, electronic type!, and note that this contains >light emitting diode and receiver. Any genius out there can tell me how to >modify this mouse bit to count bubble at the fermentation lock? > Two-part problem: a. Getting the bubble action to interrupt the light path between the source and the detector, and b. Sensing and recording the changing current through the photosensor. a. If the LED and sensor are separate units and your airlock is the "floating hat" variety, fixing the components to the outer shell and giving the hat an opaque region (aluminum foil? electrician's tape?) near its top (dryer up there) may work. If the bubbler is a serpentine, you may want to dye the fluid (very strong iodophor solution?) so as to increase the visibility of the bubbles and so sense them directly. Otherwise, I visualize a cylinder of opaque floating material, massive enough not to adhere to the wall of the bubbler, in the last lap of the serpentine. If the photocell is the integrated type, basically a block with a slit within which a photochopper wheel turned, life gets more complicated... visualize a fin glued to the side of the hat, the photo unit attached to the inside of the outer cylinder.... too complicated for me. How about a microphone cemented to the bubbler and a highgain modular preamp with an agc-like detector (1N34, 47K, .001uf) at the output... b. ...Now you have a sequence of low-voltage pulses. The immediate notion would be to feed them to some sort of data logging device, possibly built around a Basic Stamp module or maybe fed into the serial port of a pc... I have seen references to some shareware utilities that permit you to communicate via the serial port but have never followed up... However... for $20 or so you can get (at Radio Shack or some hobby shops) a "wireless microphone" kit that's really a fleapower FM transmitter that can be picked up on a nearby receiver. If the real object of the exercise is to avoid having to go down to the root cellar every few hours, this might be the best bet. Not elegant, but it would keep the workbench free of an accumulating pile of mouse guts. Personally, I just wait 96 hours and rack to secondary. stencil sends RKBA! Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 6 Jul 2000 17:31:53 -0500 From: "Lynne O'Connor" <stpats at zoom.realtime.net> Subject: electrodes/pH papers/wit pH/ acid malt/ Based on my knowledge of Celis, I would suggest a pH of 5.2 (at room temperature) for wit beer at beginning of boil. Direct addition of lactic acid to kettle will work and is the method employed at Celis. I would suggest pH in the bottle of 4.2 which may require additional lactic acid at bottling. Note this bottle pH is about .2 -.3 below most beers. There are more traditional ways of dropping pH, one being acid malt. Acid malt is used in Germany to satisfy that purity business. It has a distinctive sour vinegary taste. I introduced acid malt to US when I first imported Weyermann a few years back. I no longer import Weyermann so recently I received some Weissheimer acid malt from another supplier. It ain't acid malt. I don't know if the sacks were simply mislabeled or what, but if you have this product simply taste it to see if its the real thing. Dave Burley's notes toxic stuff in electrodes is a concern. The refillable electrodes may be more of a concern but the gel-filled sealed electrodes can also pose a health risk if broken. There are electrodes available which do not contain toxic stuff but I haven't carried them because there were other shortcomings. there are lots of issues when choosing an electrode and it is not at all easy to get clear information as Marc Sedam noted. The one that frustrated me was the mfg selling a unit with ATC up to 100C but a standard probe good only to 80C. this 80C should not be confused with the operating range to 50C, which is the range the electronics can operate to and has nothing to do with the electrode limit of 80C. AJ expanded with details about why pH varies with temperature which brings us back to the orginal question about pH papers and temperature. I did a quick check with cheap and expensive pH papers and decided cheap ones are hopeless at high temperatures (I got a different answer every time). the expensive papers (not colorphast but some German ones) gave a lower pH reading at high temperature but the resolution (0.50) wasn't enough to know if it was accurate. I did a quick search on the web and couldn't find any info on temperature dependence of pH papers. Maybe someone else can find something? Lynne O'Connor St. Patrick's of Texas Brewers Supply 512-989-9727 www.stpats.com Return to table of contents
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