HOMEBREW Digest #3846 Wed 23 January 2002

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  NPT locknuts ("Neil K")
  Whirlygigs ("The Holders")
  Water analysis (AJ)
  Thermal Mass Calculation (nlkanous)
  New Orleans Brew Scene ("Lewis, Tim                 HS")
  green bottles ("Fred Scheer")
  RE:  beer, wine, light damage & brown bottles ("Houseman, David L")
  re: Headed to Flordia ("Chad Gould")
  RE: brewing techniques (jal)
  Re: brown malt stout (Jeff Renner)
  Re: CAP Report (Jeff Renner)
  Re: He who falls first must brew a Bud Light (Jeff Renner)
  Rotating Sparge Arm Whirlygigs ("John Zeller")
  To shake or not to shake, that is the question ("Pannicke, Glen A.")
  Belgian Beer styles ("David Craft")
  RE: To shake or not to shake, that is the question (I/T) - Eastman" <stjones at eastman.com>
  My First All-Grain Batch and a pH question (NM)" <MarkC.Lane at voicestream.com>
  Re: He who falls first... (james.vahsen-phx)
  RE: Thermal mash calculations (I/T) - Eastman" <stjones at eastman.com>
  Re: sparge arms ("Kurt Schweter")
  True Love Ale ("Philip Yates")
  Re: CAP Report ("Arnold Neitzke")
  Re: Dark Malt Additions (Wes Smith)
  Tired of All-Grain! (Dan Ippolito)
  Pilsener hopping ("Fred Scheer")
  Puerto Rico (kingkelly)
  Yeast profile questions, St. Patrick's Day Beer.. (Andy Woods)
  Pitchable Tubes & Harvesting (Mark Anderson)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 00:34:17 -0500 From: "Neil K" <neilk27 at hotmail.com> Subject: NPT locknuts A few days ago, Rob Dewhirst asked about a source for NPT nuts to secure bulkhead fittings, etc. Although I haven't ordered anything from them, I found them at www.plumbingsupply.com Go to the stainless steel section from the main menu and click on "stainless steel locknuts". The 1/2" NPT locknut is US$6.56. They also have them in brass for US$1.11. Hope this helps! Neil Kushnir in Montreal Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 21 Jan 2002 21:41:53 -0800 From: "The Holders" <zymie at charter.net> Subject: Whirlygigs Dan, the sparge arm man says: "Sparge arms make sure that there will be no boring of holes in the mash without the brewer giving the sparge almost constant attention. " Again, I think this is a crock. Back in my Zapap mashing days, I just had a hose from the HLT draining straight onto the grainbed. Did it disturb the grain a little? Yes it did. Did it matter? NO it didn't. The only attention that any sparging method should take is keeping the flow adjusted. Even if you do disturb the top of the grainbed, it won't make any difference. If you like watching your whirlygig spin around then go for it, but I have yet to see any data that supports the validity of sparge arms in homebrewing. Break free from the pack and repeat with me: "Whirlygigs are silly!" Now, what about lava lamps and brewing? Wayne Holder AKA Zymie Long Beach CA http://www.zymico.com Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 08:17:11 +0100 From: AJ <ajd at zai.com> Subject: Water analysis For Matt Dinges: At pH 7 approximately 80 percent of the carbo (carbo = CARBonic + biCARBOnate + CARBOnate) is bicarbonate, approximately 20% is carbonic and there is no carbonate to speak of. Alkalinity is a measure of how much acid is required to convert all the carbonate and bicarbonate to carbonic which, in the case of pH 7 is proportional to the amount of bicarbonate. Alkalinity expressed as ppm CaCO3 is 50 times the number of milliequivalents of acid required per liter. Thus alkalinity of 145 corresponds to 145/50 = 2.9 meq/L. The equivalent weight of bicarbonate ion is 61 so the bicarbonate in this water is about 2.9*61=177 mg/L. The residual alkalinity is a measure of the amount of alkalinity not neutralized when pale malt reacts with the calcium and magnesium in the water it is calculated as Alkalinity - (Calcium_Hardness + Magnesium_Hardness/2)/3.5 and can be in units of ppm as CaCO3 or meq/L. Since you only have a total hardness number we use 2/3 of that to get a rough answer. So RA = 145 - 2*190/3/3.5 = 102.77. A rule of thumb is to worry about residual alkalinity when it is greater than 50 as it clearly is here. RA is combatted either with extra calcium or with acid or a combination of both. As it takes 3.5 units of calcium hardness (and 7 of magnesium) to balance 1 unit of alkalinity there is a limit to how much you can do with extra calcium (or magnesium) besides which sulfate is at a pretty high level thus limiting the amount of gypsum (or epsom salt) you would want to add and you can't go too far with chloride either especially as you have appreciable sodium. Thus acid is the way to go unless you are doing a style that wants huge amounts of sulfate and can taste a little salty. Any mineral acid or any of several organic acids can be used for this purpose though each cation has a potential flavorf impact on the beer. For this reason it is best to use dark malt as the source of the acid. Another alternative to the overall problem is to decarbonate the water first by boiling or lime treatement the latter being more effective and consequently more difficult. A.J. Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 08:18:24 -0500 From: nlkanous at netscape.net Subject: Thermal Mass Calculation Thermal mass of my Sankey keg? Haven't a clue and don't really care. But, here's what works for me. Someone more inclined to pursue the mathematics may but I'm just not interested because I can hit my target reasonably well. Much of what I do is done because it's worked in the past, not because it's any more correct than what anyone else does, so take it all with a grain of barley. In a 10 gallon batch (or 5 for that matter), I prepare my strike water at 1.25 quarts per pound of malt. I know that the units suck but when I started brewing this is what I read and it's become repeatable for me. I heat the strike water in the Sanke keg to 10 deg F ABOVE my intended mash temp (yup, that awful measure of deg F). I dough in the malt and viola' I hit my mash temp (within reason, with some variability throughout the mash). So, 1.25 quarts per pound of malt heated in the mash tun to 10 deg F ABOVE my mash temp and I'm golden. Stop by some time for a pint and we'll see if this technique works okay. nathan in madison, wi - -- Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 08:37:52 -0500 From: "Lewis, Tim HS" <tim.lewis at hs.utc.com> Subject: New Orleans Brew Scene I am headed to New Orleans in April for a week. The reviews I read recently in Pubcrawler for Crescent City Brewhouse and some of the others weren't so good. Any recommendations for some good spots? Thanks. Tim Lewis Enfield, CT Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 07:42:51 -0600 From: "Fred Scheer" <fhopheads at msn.com> Subject: green bottles Hi all: Regarding the postings on green bottles, for those who remember the beginnings of Frankenmuth Brewery, we had our Pilsener in green bottles. Knowing how bad beer in green bottles from other countries taste, I had to work on my boss at the time, to change to brown bottles. Eitherway, the reflection of the glass is measured in nanometers, and the glass we had was less than 530 nm. Knowing that, I only could imagen, what reflection the German Beer bottles had when tasting them. I will investigate how much reflection the bottles have this days and will post the same on this forum. Fred M. Scheer (10 hour drive [almost] south of Renner) Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 08:42:59 -0500 From: "Houseman, David L" <David.Houseman at unisys.com> Subject: RE: beer, wine, light damage & brown bottles While I agree with the definition of skunking that Bill Tobler provided, I wonder if that's the whole story. Lightstruck or skunky describes a number of European beers imported into the US. It's hard to imagine opening a sealed case that these bottles were lightstruck unless the brewery does so intentionally prior to packaging to give the beer that "European flavor." Rather I suspect that the reaction is due to energy being imparted to the hops resins in the beer. Light is one way to provide that energy. But heat from a long transport at sea in a cargo container on the deck of ship may result in the same effect. These beers, packaged in green bottles, do not present skunk in Europe but they many of them do in the US. I believe the transportation is the problem but not light. Dave Houseman SE PA Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 08:51:26 -0500 From: "Chad Gould" <cgould11 at tampabay.rr.com> Subject: re: Headed to Flordia > uh.... is that a trick question, Phil? You ask about places to drag the > family, but I'm sure you're really asking about beer. I'm certainly not going > to tell you to drag the family to RatLand. Maybe Busch Gardens, but then > again, no. Maybe MOSI? Or the Dali museum for the art lovers in the family? Hmm. > Tampa Bay Brewing Co (in Ybor City area of Tampa) - 813-247-1422 You can actually make an "Ybor beer tour" very easily, hitting Barley Hoppers (in Central Ybor) http://www.barleyhoppers.cc/, New World, and maybe the two UK-area pubs (The Irish Pub and James Joyce). The beer selection in Ybor overall has gotten better over the years -- although there's still many with just standard swill, there are a few with surprising selections. TBBC is still your best food / beer bet. > Dunedin Brewery - in Dunedin, just N of Clearwater. try to hit this on Friday > nite. it's a micro-brewery with a small pub & great music but the pub's only > open Fri nite. www.dunedinbrewery.com 727-736-0606 Saturday nights as well now, last I heard. There's also a nearby sports bar in Dunedin, called Eddie's, with a decent amount of taps. But it is a sports bar, so not a good place for the kids during football season. :) Good bar food though. > Hopper's Brooker Creek Grille - don't have the contact info, but I think it's > on causeway between Clearwater & Tampa It's a bit different than that. The way I know to get there is to take McMullen Booth Road / East Lake Road north all the way up to the Brooker Creek area; its in a shopping mall with a Publix. Info?: (727) 375-2667 > World of Beer - a Great hole in the wall beer store, also on causeway between > Clearwater & Tampa This is the standard store for buying good beer in the area (it's on "the causeway", Gulf to Bay west of McMullen booth, next to a Greyhound station). One surprising beer store I've found is in St. Petersburg, called Sheps. It's on 4th street near downtown, very close to a good British restaurant / pub called Limey's. It looks like a standard 7-11 store from the distance but has a nice array of beers inside. Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 08:47:47 -0600 From: jal at novia.net Subject: RE: brewing techniques Robin Griller defends Steve Mallory and the situation with the demise of Brewing Techniques and shares some of the woes small business failure. I reply: Hear, Hear Thanks for articulating what I've thought every time someone whines about losing the remainder of his subscription (I'm out eight months' worth). Steve tried to do right by us by offering back issues, but it appears he found it logistically unfeasible. Now he has someone to handle that for him. I may try to get the Brewer's Market publications I asked for when Steve first made the compensation offer, but it isn't a high priority. Thanks again, Robin. And thank you Steve. Jim Larsen Omaha - -------------------------------------------------- Novia Web Mail Interface http://webmail.novia.net/ Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 10:08:59 -0500 From: Jeff Renner <JeffRenner at mediaone.net> Subject: Re: brown malt stout I wrote about brewing my brown malt stout >I used the six-row to make sure I had enough enzymes - might not bother >again. I used Crisp Maris Otter in yesterday's brew and no 6-row and got fine conversion, and even a little greater extract. I aim at a gravity (1.042 in this case) rather than volume and diluted near the 8 gallons (to fill a 7.75 gallon Sankey after racking.) It a good thing I got extra because **Stupid Brewer Trick Alert** When I was pumping out the wort from the boiler I just laid the hose across the top of the fermenter (a ten gallon stock pot aka hot liquor tun) so that the wort streamed down the inside of the fermenter. Then I went inside for something. Five minutes later when I came back to the garage, the hose had fallen onto the garage floor about 2-1/2 gallons of my beautiful stout wort had run onto the floor. Damn! Why hadn't I used the clamp that was right there? At least it was right at the door and I could use a snow shovel to push it out onto the driveway, where it was above freezing so I could wash if off. Ah well, it's happily fermenting this morning and smells great. As they say, a bad day brewing is better than a good day at work. Isn't that right, Drew? Jeff - -- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, JeffRenner at mediaone.net "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943 Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 10:21:42 -0500 From: Jeff Renner <JeffRenner at mediaone.net> Subject: Re: CAP Report "Drew Avis" <andrew_avis at hotmail.com> will have maybe wish he'd gone to work instead of brewing a CAP: >First time >doing a cereal mash - mixed 2 lbs of milled grain and 3 lbs of Unico >cornmeal / polenta, added the water, and put it on to cook while the main >mash rested at 140F. It was like porridge, and I discovered a lesson: if >you don't stir the cereal mash, that burnt smokey smell is the corn porridge >burning on the bottom. Crap. Stir stir stir, maybe it will be a RauchCAP. >Add the cereal mash to the main mash, rest, start the recirculation. Stuck >like a pig. That lesson probably needs to be repeated, but I hope you used more water than I seem to have suggested in my Zymurgy article. Probably as much as 1-1/2 quarts per pound. Actually, you don't need more than a 1/2 pound of malt for three pounds of cornmeal, but the extra didn't hurt. Did you rest it first for 20-30 minutes at a rest temp of 153 or so before boiling it? This really helps make it thinner and less of a scorching risk. It's fun to watch - you mash in the cereal mash to 153F and it's a little thick, then put it in a preheated oven for 20-30 minutes, and it comes out much thinner. Then you heat to a boil and as the starch swells it thickens again, then it gets thinner as it gelatinizes. It's certainly necessary to stir when applying heat until is settles down to a boil. Even then, I use a wire trivet between the electric burner on my stove and the pot. About the stuck mash - this puzzles me. I get lots of email about CAPs and I'd guess maybe one brewer in ten has this problem, and I don't know what the common variable is. That's enough to suggest that there is a problem, but I'm stumped. Some used flakes and some do a cereal mash. Over milling? If anything, I find that a 6-row and cereal mash to be an easier runoff than all malt. That is to say, it clarifies more quickly. Hope it turns out well in spite of everything. Please report back. How was the bird? Jeff - -- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, JeffRenner at mediaone.net "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943 Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 10:40:05 -0500 From: Jeff Renner <JeffRenner at mediaone.net> Subject: Re: He who falls first must brew a Bud Light "Bates, Floyd G" <BatesFG at bp.com> writes that he must brew >a clone of an American mega-swill. > >Could someone provide feedback on the following recipe? Is this close? > >Goal: >Beer must be totally devoid of color, flavor, body and any other redeeming >values. I brewed such a beer summer before last for my son's wedding reception (the CAP ran out way before despite all the young "Lite" drinkers). It was a fun challenge. I may have failed, however, in that it tasted way better than Bud Lite but still the Lite drinkers liked it. I suppose you could just brew a CAP and dilute part of it. I understand that Miller Lite is brewed at 16P and diluted. The neat beer supposedly tastes pretty much like a CAP. >Grist Profile: >20% - 6-row pilsner malt >50% - 2-row pilsner malt, Maris Otter >30% - Rice I can't think of any reason not to use all US 6-row. I like that stuff and it's what the big boys use (except Coors). 30% rice is a little low - how about 35% (although I did use 30% in mine). Do a cereal mash and make sure to stir! The rice should be coarsely ground - about 1 mm pieces. I use a Corona mill. Medium grain is better than long grain. 20 minutes cereal boil should be long enough. Too long can lead to runoff problems, at least theoretically. Bud has an OG of 1.044 and an FG of 1.009 (I believe). This high attenuation is key to the crispness. Lite beers are, of course, lower. You haven't mentioned hops. Yes, some hops really are used! If you can get Cluster, they are traditional and appropriate for the bittering (so-called). Otherwise any neutral bittering hop. Northern Brew might not be bad. Bud amazingly uses a large number of varieties. Can't imagine why. But I'd use Saaz for finishing. Aim for 10 - 12 IBU. >WYEAST 2035 or WLP810 (looking for the acetaldehyde flavor of green apples) Just before it's done fermenting (upper 40s to low 50s) check to see if it needs a diacetyl rest. >(Optional - 0.5 lb beechwood) Regular lagering should do it. >Mash Profile: >140 degrees F - 2.5 hours >158 degrees F - 0.5 hours Way longer first rest than is necessary. To get that crisp, dry taste, I'd suggest the first rest should be ~145. An hour should be pulenty. Use the time to conduct the cereal mash. >Adjust water profile as required for Pilsner, Kolsch, etc. That certainly is crucial. Low sulfate (although, again, Bud uses sulfuric acid to adjust St. Louis water) and low alkalinity are key to avoiding harsh bitterness. Good luck. Maybe you can please the wagerers and yourself with the result. I actually found my brew pleasant - better than regular mega-swill, to say nothing of mega-lite. Please report back. Jeff - -- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, JeffRenner at mediaone.net "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943 Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 07:42:49 -0800 From: "John Zeller" <jwz_sd at hotmail.com> Subject: Rotating Sparge Arm Whirlygigs Kirk Fleming (HBD #3844 and Zymie too in HBD #3842)) rant and rage about the evils of using a Listermann sparge arm. The sparger is designed to gently and evenly distribute hot water over the surface of the grain bed and it performs that task very well. The design is simple with only one moving part and required maintenance is near zero. As with all of Listermann's products, it carries Dan's unconditional guarantee. It works for me! "Me thinks thou dost protest too much!" I think it was Homer Simpson that said that, but I'm not sure. So, while I will agree that there are many ways that one can apply the sparge water, the silly Phil's Sparger ranks near the top with it's ability to annoy the competition. I suspect there is some Listermann envy going on here. What do ya'll think? Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 10:44:31 -0500 From: "Pannicke, Glen A." <glen_pannicke at merck.com> Subject: To shake or not to shake, that is the question Stefan wrote: >What is the best route to take? Do I over pressurize (30psi) and shake or do I pressurize normally and lit is sit for a week or two? I guess it all depends upon when you want to drink your beer. Overpressure and shake for a quick beer. Pressurize normally if you're patient. My method depends on what I currently have on hand. If I've got two or more carbonated brews already, I'll wait - because I'm more lazy than patient. If the supply is low, then I'll shake it and roll it around on the floor for a while. It may be worth the time & energy. Some claim that by overpressurizing and shaking you can have drinkable, fully-carbonated beer in 15 minutes. I have yet to produce a fully satisfactory beverage in that short timeframe. Not even in 20 minutes. After 30? I don't know becuase I've already cracked a frosty one from the reserves! I have found that 15 minutes of shaking a chilled, over-pressurized keg (30 psi) will get the beer close to the carbonation of a traditional English mild (not very carbonated). However, if I then leave the keg attached to the gas at the desired carbonation level, the beer is satisfactory by the next day. In addition, I believe that the carbonation rate might be faster if the keg is turned on it's side, exposing more surface area of the beer to the gas. How much faster? That's a question for our chemists. Can anyone confirm this? Carpe cerevisiae! Glen A. Pannicke glen at pannicke.net http://www.pannicke.net 75CE 0DED 59E1 55AB 830F 214D 17D7 192D 8384 00DD "I have made this letter longer than usual, because I lack the time to make it short." - Blaise Pascal Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 10:54:47 -0500 From: "David Craft" <David-Craft at craftinsurance.com> Subject: Belgian Beer styles Greetings, I recently made a Strong Belgian Ale. For various reasons I deviated from myb intended recipe. What I ended up with is smack between a Trippel/ Strong Pale Ale and a Dubbel/Strong Dark Ale in color and malt bill. I t has a SRM of 10 which would still fit the Strong Dark Ale category 18-D, but lacks the Munich malt. I used all pilsner with some Special B and Cara-Munich, candi sugar, aromatic, and dextrine malts....... I would like to enter this in the AHA and was thinking about category 19-E Belgian Specialty. This category is the catch all seems to ask for what beer you are replicating. I don't think I replicated anything that I have had. I would like to forward the ProMash recipe for advice. Please respond directly if you please. Regards, David B. Craft Battleground Brewers Homebrew Club Crow Hill Brewery and Meadery Greensboro, NC Apparent Rennarian 478.4,152........I Think! Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 11:33:38 -0500 From: "Jones, Steve (I/T) - Eastman" <stjones at eastman.com> Subject: RE: To shake or not to shake, that is the question Stefan Berggren, who is somewhere in this wide world, asks us to tell about our processes on force carbonating: > I have been going over and over in my head about shaking > kegs when force carbonating. What is the best route to > take? Do I over pressurize (30psi) and shake or do I > pressurize normally and lit is sit for a week or two? I > would love to hear peoples opinion on this subject and > methods to their kegging madness? Help an undecided > shaker out..... Well, here is my method, which is somewhat unconventional but works great for me. It is simple, fast, consistent, and reliable. Chill keg to 40F. Set CO2 regulator to 35 psi. Set a timer to 4 minutes (or use your watch). Lay the corny horizontally across your knees with the gas-in QD at the lowest point (use some insulation between corny and knees - it gets cold) . Connect the gas (with the hose looped above the keg if you don't have a check valve in the line) and start the timer. Rock the keg by swinging your knees left to right about 3-4 inches & back at a rate of about 60-80 times per minute. It is quite slow, like rocking a baby. You will hear the CO2 bubbling into the keg. When the timer goes off, shut off the gas cylinder and continue rocking. You will see the regulator pressure gauge start to drop, and it should bottom out at somewhere around 12-15 psi. If your serving system is balanced so that you can serve at that pressure, pour a glass to check the carbonation level. If not, bleed some pressure first. If you want higher carbonation, repeat the rocking process, estimating the amount of extra time based upon the current carb level. I had to experiment a little, and if your temps or pressures or rock frequency varies from mine then you will have to experiment to find the optimal times for you. For me, I use 3.5 minutes for an English Ale, 4 minutes for a European lager, 4.5 minutes for an American or Belgian Ale, and 5 minutes for a Hefeweizen. I rarely have to hook back up and adjust it anymore. Also, if I've had the keg setting in the cold box for a while, I'll gently transfer it to another keg before shaking - invariably there is a little sediment left in the original keg that would have been mixed up when I carbonated it. Steve Jones Johnson City, TN [421.8 mi, 168.5 deg] Apparent Rennerian http://users.chartertn.net/franklinbrew Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 08:50:14 -0800 From: "Lane, Mark C. (NM)" <MarkC.Lane at voicestream.com> Subject: My First All-Grain Batch and a pH question My first all-grain batch was quite an experience. I had only been brewing several months and had become bored with the kits and partial mashes. All the reading I was doing at the time had me jonesin' for the big step to all grain. I bought a Gott cooler and somehow managed to find the proper parts to replace the spigot with a 3/8" brass ball valve. That was an accomplishment in itself since I had absolutely no experience in the plumbing department. Heck, it took me a half hour to find the section at the megastore. But I shouldn't be admitting to that. I picked up a Phalse Bottom (too big) and a sparge arm (again, too big) and made them fit into the cooler in one way or another. Actually, the too-large Phalse Bottom worked very well against the inside fitting for my ball valve. The only problem I encountered was a decent warping of the Phalse Bottom after the mash. No biggie though - everything worked great. I did not have any grain getting through the ball valve or anything. I also bought a 9-gallon stainless steel kettle from Homebrew Heaven and that has been a great piece of equipment. I upgraded to have the ball valve fitted and everything. Yeah, I'm spoiled. My first batch was a Murphy's-style stout, with a little extra pale malt to increase the OG. Why call it a stout if it isn't in fact stout, right? Everything, to my surprise, went much better than expected. I supppose reading a ton of literature beforehand actually helped. My only problem - I didn't have a hot liquor tank. When I was about to start my sparge, I realized I had a great 9-gallon kettle with a cool ball valve to heat the water and a nifty sparge arm to spin about and sprinkle water over the grain bed, but no other vessel to collect the run-off. Wait, my old trusty 5-gallon kettle I used for my partial mashes should work. After fretting several moments, I pulled out the old standby, and everything progressed smoothly from there. Not even a stuck mash or anything. I was impressed, and quite hooked on this new hobby. Since then, only SWMBO has held me back from offering my entire paychecks to those wonderful online sellers of evil equipment. Since that fateful day (sometime in October, 2000), I have increased my equipment to a second Gott cooler for an HLT, one of those wonderful stainless steel conical fermenters with internal cooling from morebeer.com (brewing in the desert requires a good amount of temp control during the Spring through Fall - I've actually been able to drop the temp to 45 degrees F in 75 degrees ambient), a magnetic yeast stirrer, and a counterflow chiller from St. Pat's. I've pretty much gone off the deep end on the gadgets, but that's my nature. As far as equipment I wished I hadn't purchased - I would have to say everything I have purchased has served its purpose in one way or another. I could complain about buying a 5-gallon kettle; yet, without it, I would have had no vessel to collect the wort from my first all-grain batch. I could complain about the two 5-gallon carboys now sitting dormant in my garage, but I would then only have one fermenter and my brewing schedule would be completely reliant on the fermenting/conditioning time of my previous beer. I suppose the only thing I would sell back would be my immersion wort chiller(s). They never brought the wort temps down close enough to pitching temperatures. My counterflow chiller brought my last batch to 60 degrees F - I actually had to let it warm up before pitching. Great stuff! Ok, one little question - all of this talk about pH recently has started me wondering. After how long should the pH of the mash be stabilized, i.e., how long after dough-in should the mash be considered stable before beginning to add salts and/or acids? Mark Lane Albuquerque, NM (pretty far from Mr. Renner, about 210 degrees or so, estimated) Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 09:56:02 -0700 From: james.vahsen-phx at st.com Subject: Re: He who falls first... > Grist Profile: > 20% - 6-row pilsner malt > 50% - 2-row pilsner malt, Maris Otter > 30% - Rice > WYEAST 2035 or WLP810 > > Mash Profile: > 140 degrees F - 2.5 hours > 158 degrees F - 0.5 hours Floyd, 1. Yes, you must put SOME hops in. A 60+ minute addition of a neutral hop to get 9-12 IBUs, assuming SG of 1.036-1.040. 2. Add rice hulls to mash, or you will be in for a long day. Also, you will want to do a protein rest if you can. 3. 6-row is unnecessary unless you have it laying around. Mmmmmm. Tasteless beer. I seem to have similar experiences with drinking doublebock. Fortunately, triplebock tastes like soy sauce to me, so I stay away from that entirely... Hophead, Phoenix, AZ Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 12:13:06 -0500 From: "Jones, Steve (I/T) - Eastman" <stjones at eastman.com> Subject: RE: Thermal mash calculations Gene Collins asked about using thermal mass settings in Promash. This is a direct extract from the Promash help file: Mash Tun Themal Mass: The amount of heat (expressed from 0.0 to 1.0) the mash tun will absorb. If you heat your water in the mash tun, or pre-heat the mash tun itself then the thermal mass will be 0.0. If you infuse into a cold mash tun you will need to know the thermal mass. If you do not know the thermal mass of your mash tun, we suggest starting with a value of 0.30 and comparing results with actual strike temperatures hit to accurately determine the thermal tun of your mash. This elements default value can be set in the System Defaults, so the same thermal mass can be used over and over without resetting the element. I heat my water in the mash tun and use a thermal mass setting of 0. My strike water calculations are usually pretty accurate. As to the problem of overshooting your gravities, I think its safe to say we all wish we had that problem. ;^) Efficiency is a measure of the actual extract to the possible extract. You can calculate it yourself by adding all the gravity point potentials of your grains, dividing by your net volume, then dividing that into your actual gravity points. For example: 8 lbs pale malt at 37 pts per lb = 296 1/2 lb crystal 40 at 34 pts per lb = 17 1/2 lb carapils at 33 pts per lb = 16 1/4 lb chocolate at 30 pts per lb = 8 total 337 pts OG (after boil) of 5 gallons: 1.045, or 225 gravity points (5 * 45). Efficiency = 225/337 = 67% Adjust your efficiency setting in Promash to match what you are getting, then you can adjust your recipes to achieve your target gravity. Steve Jones Johnson City, TN [421.8 mi, 168.5 deg] Apparent Rennerian http://users.chartertn.net/franklinbrew Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 12:55:23 -0500 From: "Kurt Schweter" <KSchweter at smgfoodlb.com> Subject: Re: sparge arms Dan, please ---- absolutely necessary ???? some people may get the impression that in your own way you are telemarketing Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 23 Jan 2002 08:16:55 +1100 From: "Philip Yates" <yates at acenet.com.au> Subject: True Love Ale What's a bloke to do when he gets asked on short notice to provide a keg of his finest at someone's wedding. Along with the request comes all the usual crap. "You make the best beer we've ever tasted", "If only we could have a keg at our wedding, four weeks away". Four weeks away? Four weeks away?!!! I am averse to weddings at the best of times. And this being my mate's third go at it, I reckon he ought to just sneak off and do it in a registry office. Hell, Jill and I took off to the Caribbean when we got married, so as not to bother anyone. That was my first and it certainly is going to be my last. A bloke can't be foolish enough to do this more than once in a lifetime. Not unless you are Eric Fouch who just can't help himself. But getting back to the keg of beer they wanted. How am I expected to magically produce a keg of beautiful beer with four weeks notice? My fridges are occupied with an ale and a lager still in fermentation. "Couldn't we have one of those?" comes the shocking question. Don't these people understand that a brewer runs a production line tailored to his needs? You can't just pull a brew out and hand it to someone without creating a big hole in your own supply. The whole question has ruined my day, ruined my month in fact. But the ever resourceful brewer always finds a solution. Down at the bottle shop I bought two cases of "Old Kent", a cheap and nasty beer but just the colour I wanted. All 48 stubbies I poured into one of my kegs. To this I added a concentrated Styrian Goldings hop tea to give it some bite and help create that murky homebrew look. I gassed up the keg and tried a glass of it out on one of my brew mates. "This is disgusting!" was his comment. He was right. Off with the lid of the keg and in went six bottles of James Squire India Pale Ale. Now this is starting to get bloody expensive but I ain't parting with my own. "This is still disgusting!" was my brewing mates comment. Again he was right. Off with the lid again and in went two large bottles of Sheaf stout. "Why don't you add a bottle of vodka?" was my brewing mate's sarcastic comment. So I did. And I've named it "True Love Ale", cos I'm such a sentimental guy. I figure, at the wedding, if they don't think much of my True Love Ale, after two glasses they will all be unconscious and wake the next morning remembering nothing. What's more, the best part of the keg will be still in tact. I'll save it for the next function I get asked to take a keg to. The whole creation has cost me over $100 so I had better get some use out of it! Oh clever and resourceful brewer, I never cease to amaze myself. Cheers Phil ps will report how the wedding goes. Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 16:56:20 -0500 From: "Arnold Neitzke" <arnold_neitzke at ameritech.net> Subject: Re: CAP Report > Date: Mon, 21 Jan 2002 10:37:30 -0500 > From: "Drew Avis" <andrew_avis at hotmail.com> > Subject: CAP Report > > but still, crap. Start RauchCAP boiling, add specialty grains to mash for > porter, re-circ, sparge. Boil. Treat CAP pot with a few drops of > "anti-foam", and it proceeds to boil over. Crap. Maybe it needs a few more > drops? Add several drops to the porter, which then boils over. Crap. > Wonder - did I get "extra-foam" solution instead? Smokey CAP smell now > > This hobby is supposed to be relaxing and fun? > I am still laughing my a$$ off, this is the best of 2002 yet :) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 23 Jan 2002 11:08:45 +1100 From: Wes Smith <wsmith at acenet.com.au> Subject: Re: Dark Malt Additions Scotty wants some input on mashing dark malts so here we go - sorry this is bit late to follow the thread, but my original post had some non-ascii characters and was rejected at the HBD gates... Doug Hirst is indeed correct in his premise that there is extractable malt in all dark roasted malts. This varies from type to type and of course lessons the darker the roast becomes. It is also important to recognise the difference between roasted malt and roasted barley when discussing various makes of roasted grain. For instance, Bairds Roast Barley is just that - unmalted barley roasted to just short of the point of carbonisation. Typically with an EBC of 1300 minimum (500L), RB has an extract potential of around 60 - 65% (fine crush). Weyermann Carafa Special on the other hand is made from de-husked roasted malt and in its darkest form (Type 3) is 1200 - 1300 EBC (450 - 490L) with an extract potential of 70%. But there is much more to be got from these roasted grains other than extract and colour. Flavour and sometimes even aroma are equally important. Take a classic dry Irish stout - RB is the key constituent where the colour and more importantly the flavour come from the heavily roasted grain. This in turn is balanced by the aggressive hop bitterness to produce a balanced flavour/aroma. Or take the famous Schlenkerla Rauch beer from Bamberg, (home of the Weyermann Malting Company) which is brewed to around 50 EBC and the colour achieved with roasted malt with only minimal affect on the flavour profile. I have a sample of this in the fermenter as we speak, brewed from a recipe supplied by Thomas Weyermann after a recent visit to their maltings. It is also a fact that many heavily roasted grains can produce harsh off-flavours and aromas. This can be due in part to the barley strain and/or growing conditions in a particular location as much as the roasting process itself. It is no coincidence that the highest skilled job in a maltings is that of "Roastmaster". He is responsible for the selection of grain, moisture evaluation, determination of temperature rate and ramp, determination of end colour and finally the critical quenching point. It is much more than merely roasting to achieve a certain colour. Here in Australia our 2 local maltsters who have roasting capability have downtuned the colour rating of "RB" to about 800 - 900 EBC simply because to roast any darker will exacerbate the off-flavours. It seems our arid climate barleys do not take too kindly to roasting - maybe they get enough heat out in the sun! To the process of mashing roasted grains - most texts I have read recommend adding the high colour malts such as RB at some point after mashin but leaving enough time to get a 45 minute stand. My own experience has been that 45 minutes is the minimum - I would feel more comfortable with a 60 minute stand in a single step infusion mash of say 90 to 120 minutes to get all the colour and flavour present in the grains. That harshness in flavour several have mentioned can come from the tannins or from various reactions that occur in the roasting process. It can also be exacerbated in the mash tun and during sparging by incorrect pH. Water hardness will also play a part in drawing out bitter flavours so it is important to understand your water profile and adjust mash and sparge pH accordingly. The Scurrilous Aleman laments the unavailability of Weyermann Carafa Special malts in the UK. Tony, have you tried The Home Brew Shop - www.the-home-brew-shop.co.uk They certainly advertise many of the other Weyermann malts. If you have no luck, contact me off-line and I will see what I can find out from the good folks at Weyermann. Wes. Importing and distributing Bairds and Weyermann products in Australia. Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 17:09:21 -0800 (PST) From: Dan Ippolito <DCippy at homebrew.com> Subject: Tired of All-Grain! Hi all! First, in response to the worst buys thread -- carboys! They're awkward, hard to clean, and they scare the heck out of me. I've been using an all plastic setup for some time now and haven't noticed any ill effect from it...my brews don't usually need long fermentations, though. Anyway here's my question -- I'm tired of all-grain brewing! Lately I find myself more and more limited on time. I don't have the refined palate of a beer judge, but my beginning extract brews suited me just fine and I never got a single complaint from those I shared them with. But I do have the equipment for all-grain, so I want to compromise with a partial mash. What I'm looking for are suggestions on how to get the best beer possible out of a partial mash...Where to get quality LME, DME, or other ingredients to make my brew similar in quality to all-grain. Thanks to any who can help! Dan Ippolito Valdosta, GA "Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy" - -- Benajmin Franklin Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 19:25:44 -0600 From: "Fred Scheer" <fhopheads at msn.com> Subject: Pilsener hopping HI all: Regarding the hops used in Pilseners, Jeff Renner could answer that for American Pilsener. I used in my Pilseners Cluster Hops for Bittering, and Perle for Aroma. Lot's of my friends in Germany who went with me through DOEMENS using the same hops for their Pilseners. Good luck, Fred M. Scheer Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 21:11:05 -0500 From: kingkelly at juno.com Subject: Puerto Rico This one is tough. Headed to Puerto Rico in a couple of weeks, and looking for any recommendations of good beer spots. I know the island favorite is Medalla, and there isn't much in the way of microbreweries. Will be mainly on the eastern half of the island. Thanks for any inputs! Esther King President Star City Brewers Guild http://hbd.ord/starcity Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 22:16:55 -0500 From: Andy Woods <woods_a at ACADMN.MERCER.EDU> Subject: Yeast profile questions, St. Patrick's Day Beer.. To all, Recently I made a Oatmeal stout and split the batch with two different types of yeast, Wyeast Irish Ale (10840 and a American Ale clone (similiar to 1056). When I tasted both of these at racking time, both tasted good but I didn't notice any different between the two batches. I have read the yeast profiles of each, and I am wondering if anyone has failed to notice a difference between these two styles of yeast? Also.. Im looking to make a green beer for St. Patricks Day. What type of styles and what special ingredients are appropriate for this type of brew? Would you just add a large amount of food coloring at knockout during the boil? Any recipes out there (i checked Cats Meow and a few other sites to no avail.) Andy woods_a at acadmn.mercer.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 19:14:29 -0500 From: Mark Anderson <mjandrsn at w-link.net> Subject: Pitchable Tubes & Harvesting Greetings All: I've been lurking about this site for months, and have been enjoying all your posts. . I've had mixed results with the Wyeast pitchable tubes. My first batch with it finished way short, but when I groused about it at the local HB shop I was told that the customer response so far had been pretty good. Since then I tried an Irish Ale which, despite the 12 hour lag, finished out quite well despite the high og (1.070.) Which leads me to this question about harvesting the yeast. The stout I brewed had a stormly ferment. Just the best. I racked a fair amount of trub into the secondary and when the sediment settled I found it had graded into three distinct layers. The top layer is about 3/16 inch deep and has a dense, butter-like look in both color and texture. The second layer has more texture and darker color, and the bottom layer looks like something I'd rather not discuss. Both of these layers are about 1/2 inch thick. I was told that yeast tends to settle mid-layer, but I'll tell you, that top layer looks too good and too pure not be anything but a guest of honor at a fermentation party. Should I vacumn the bottom and remove as much of the gunk as possible and then pitch the remainder into the fermenter? Or is it just as well to pitch all three layers, trub and all? Best regards to all, Mark Anderson Seattle, WA Return to table of contents
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