HOMEBREW Digest #4066 Mon 14 October 2002

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  re: Good Eats ("Chad Gould")
  pub pictures (Paul Kerchefske)
  amber waves ("chad. . . .")
  Re: First Wort Hopping Query (blutick)
  How Dangerous is STEAM, really? (Bill & Kazuko Macher)
  RE:  Basic Stamp used for RIMS ("Lou King")
  Re: Hose length and foam (Dion Hollenbeck)
  Re: CIP Stuff... (Dion Hollenbeck)
  Frozen wort for starters? ("Beer Guy")
  10 gal Gott capacity (steve thomas)
  starch test using iodophor? (Fran Flynn)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sat, 12 Oct 2002 00:53:57 -0400 From: "Chad Gould" <cgould11 at tampabay.rr.com> Subject: re: Good Eats I have not seen the show, but: > minutes. I don't know if I would recommend that to a newbie brewer without > a few caveats though, for the same reasons you mentioned. Sanitizing in > bleach is sketchy, ?? I was under the impression that bleach was no more or less effective at sanitizing than other chemicals. > using 1/2 lb. speciality grain for an extract batch is > minimal, I would think this is okay for lighter styles like blonde ales or even pale ales. One mistake that has been pointed out elsewhere by others is he really didn't perform a mash, he simply steeped grains in water. In which case, 1/2lb 20L Crystal is plenty. He also apparantly boiled with the grains still inside, a procedure that potentially brings out astringency. Even in steeping you are supposed to only bring the water up to 170 degrees. It didn't sound too bad for a beginner, not concerned with the technical details. We can get picky, but only the better homebrew books (like Al K.'s or www.howtobrew.com) seem to cover a lot of the "beginner mistakes" that this show missed. Of course, if you had to start somewhere, starting with the detail will get you a better beer from the start. :) Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 12 Oct 2002 06:24:19 -0700 (PDT) From: Paul Kerchefske <wadworth6 at yahoo.com> Subject: pub pictures I am looking for some interior pictures of British pubs. I am planning on fixing my basement up am am thinking of doing a pub theme. If any one has some or knows a good place to find some any help would be appreciated. Thanks Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 12 Oct 2002 07:04:11 -0700 (PDT) From: "chad. . . ." <eclectic_solitaire at yahoo.com> Subject: amber waves the good eats show on the food network that featured homebrew will be rebroadcast (as per website data) sunday the 13th at six thirty pm eastern time on the food network cable channel. i too saw this episode and find some minor faults but agree with the post in that i couldnt do better myself in only thirty minutes. Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 12 Oct 2002 09:32:39 -0500 From: blutick at juno.com Subject: Re: First Wort Hopping Query Dave Towson asked about the effects of the physical form of the hop (whole, pellet, plug) and the effect on the result. I've been FWH'ing off and on since George Fix first mentioned it on HBD. I've never used plugged hops with this technique, so I won't speculate about how they behave. Whole hops have a tendency to float on the surface while the kettle is being filled. I don't see how they would have any significantly different effect than a regular hop addition at the beginning of the boil if they are left to float on the surface. I've always stirred them into the wort early during the kettle fill. Pellet hops break up in the wort and behave nicely until the wort approaches the boiling point. A large fraction of the hop particles are then carried up by the foam. Left alone, much of the hops will be deposited on the side of the kettle and are effectively removed from the wort. This may account for the often reported decrease in perceived bitterness from FWH as opposed to additions at the beginning of the boil. Personally, I stir the foam down and even scrape the hops on the side of the kettle back into the wort. In calculating bitterness, I assume that FWH hops give the same utilization as an addition at the start of the boil and I've been satisfied with the results. In my experience, using my procedures, FWH'ing works about the same with either pellet and whole hops. Nice hop flavor, but don't count on it to add a big hop aroma. Jim Layton Howe, TX Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 12 Oct 2002 12:56:21 -0400 From: Bill & Kazuko Macher <macher2 at attbi.com> Subject: How Dangerous is STEAM, really? Hi all, Steve Alexander asks about steam applied to a RIMS... I think the simple answer is that steam is a heat source just as an electrical heating element is. A RIMS is a RIMS, regardless of how you apply the heat. In my case, steam is injected in a small chamber, that is positioned physically in the same place in the system as a chamber with an electric element would be. Now my RIMS is manually controlled. Can a RIMS lack the automation of a PID controller and still be a RIMS? I would think so but will throw that question back at Steve. Steve also comments: "I'd strongly advise against amateur built pressurized steam systems." Which simply sounds like a CYA statement to me...and I really can't imagine Steve wanting to make such a blanket statement in any case. But that advice would certainly apply to the steam generator! Amateurs like most of us should NEVER consider building a steam pressure vessel. If you are thinking of doing so...follow this advice: DON'T DO IT! And you don't need to either. You can use a pressure cooker as a steam source for low pressure steam. Keep all the safeties in place and you should be fine. Now It is good advice to stay away from anything that can cause you harm. I am not sure the dangers of using low-pressure steam, supplied by an approved device such as a pressure cooker, with all its safeties in place, are great at all. Even super-heated low-pressure steam is probably not that much of an issue. Anyway, it is hard to imagine why one would even need super-heated steam for mashing purposes, at least on the homebrew level. Pressure cookers normally are set to operate at 15 psi. 15 psi is actually quite low. A car tire would be pressurized at something like 28 psi, or more. Your water pipes in your home could be as high as 80 psi. A bicycle tire on a racing bike maybe 100 psi. Just for reference, the hydraulic system on my tractor runs at 2,000 psi. Now THAT is something to be careful with! I guess I am not being very helpful to Steve here, but I must again take exception to his comment that he would "strongly advise against amateur built pressurized steam systems." At least with respect to how one might build one for home brewing purposes, using a pressure cooker as the steam source. If we feel the need to be ultra conservative in these things, then we really should advise against building anything that uses pressures above about 1 psi, voltages above 1 volt, and temperatures above 115 F, as well as heights above 3 feet, and on, and on, and on... Getting back to reality now, one certainly would not want to build his own pressurized steam generator. Even as a professional you better be sure of what you are doing when you do that! But using a professionally designed and commonly used item such as a pressure cooker for home brewing purposes is not the same thing as building your own steam-powered bomb. Using tubing and fittings that are designed for working pressures much higher than 15 psi should give an adequate safety factor. Frankly, the thought of that keg of scalding hot water, on the top tier of those three-tier home-made portable brewing stands some people use, puts more fear in my heart than my pressure cooker, or 15-psi steam-filled copper tubing does. By a long shot! Personally, I don't see the dangers of low-pressure steam, when supplied by a pressure cooker, with all its safeties intact, as being any greater than working with electricity, or large containers of boiling water. Just like anything else. If you don't understand what you are doing, don't do it. I do not think it was Steve's intention to scare anyone away from the possible use of steam in their home-brewing process. And it is not my intention to talk anyone into using steam either. Steam as a heat source is just another home brewing option. Like electricity, it can be as dangerous or as safe as you make it. Just like most things in life, if you become knowledgeable about them, and use your common sense, and keep safety foremost in your mind, you will be fine. Hope this perspective is of interest... Bill in Pgh, PA Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 13 Oct 2002 10:39:24 -0400 From: "Lou King" <lking at pobox.com> Subject: RE: Basic Stamp used for RIMS On the subject of PID controller vs. other temp controller, Kap'n Salty sez: "...You will want to implement a PID algorithm on the controlling micro - -- or maybe just a simple setpoint/deadband will work." I am in the process of pulling together a RIMS system so at this point I have more questions than answers. Regarding the controller I just bought the Ranco temperature controller (Beer Beer and More Beer part number FE610A) for $64, which I guess is a 'simple setpoint/deadband'. The BB&MB folks said this should work. - --> My question is, did I make a mistake or will this work 'just fine'? To get it to hit the right temperature without overshooting, is it simply fiddling with the deadband, or are there other factors involved which can't be dealt with easily unless the PID algorithm is used? (I think I asked this before in this forum but didn't get much feedback) <-- I did buy the Grainger 2E768 recommended by dion hollenbeck's web site(http://hbd.org/hollen/textdocs/heater-element). I will say it came with a bunch of crud on it that I think I'll have to remove with acetone, but that of course is a temporary setback. (I received this yesterday). Lou King Ijamsville, MD Return to table of contents
Date: 13 Oct 2002 08:16:36 -0700 From: Dion Hollenbeck <hollen at woodsprite.com> Subject: Re: Hose length and foam What I have found is that no matter what hose length or diameter you use, the first pint will always be too foamy. Have you ever been in a pub in the early afternoon and ask for the first pint from a particular faucet for several hours??? Just watch, the server will pour off a first pint of almost completely foam. A faucet will never settle down immediately after having sat for a while unless the lines are refrigerated. The small diameter of the line makes it a very good heat transfer mechanism. And as it warms, the CO2 comes out of solution and is in the hose. Until all that gaseous CO2 gets out of the faucet, you will have foaming. So, be sure to tune your system for how you drink. If you pour several pints in a row, make sure it works that way and expect the first pint to be all foam. If you only pour one a day, like I do, then make sure to tune your system for pouring the first pint. The two ways can lead to very different hose lengths. dion - -- Dion Hollenbeck Email: hollen at woodsprite.com Home Page: http://www.woodsprite.com Brewing Page: http://hbd.org/hollen Return to table of contents
Date: 13 Oct 2002 08:28:56 -0700 From: Dion Hollenbeck <hollen at woodsprite.com> Subject: Re: CIP Stuff... I am probably the person referred to as taking their system apart and brushing out the heater chamber in my RIMS. I purposely designed the system so that this would be easy. I can have my heater chamber disconnected from all wires and hoses and the elements out in about 2 minutes. It takes about another 2 minutes to clean off the elements and brush out the chamber. Then I hang it up to dry. I have never advocated that this method is better than CIP. We all have different ways, and this one works well for me. I wanted to minimize the amount of cleaning chemicals I had to dump down the drain into my septic tank, so I use none at all. I pump several gallons of 180F water through the whole system, drain it all, then brush out the heater chamber with running hot water, and use a scotchbrite pad and hot water on the heater elements. By doing this quickly, I can then hang up all the hoses and elements and heater chambers and they will air dry very quickly because they are at about 140F. In 8 years of using my RIMS system, I have never done more than rinse the hoses with hot water, and they are fine. I only have to brush and scrub the heater chamber. If you intend not to use CIP, then it behooves you to design your heater chambers so that it is easy to disassemble them for cleaning. Both methods work fine, but for both, you must design ahead for the choice you will make. However, if you design for disassembly, there is nothing stopping you from using CIP methods. dion - -- Dion Hollenbeck Email: hollen at woodsprite.com Home Page: http://www.woodsprite.com Brewing Page: http://hbd.org/hollen Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 13 Oct 2002 16:16:46 -0400 From: "Beer Guy" <beerguy at 1gallon.com> Subject: Frozen wort for starters? I was talking with my nephew about starters for a batch of steam beer that he was making (his wife is worried about infection, since it's their first batch ever, so I suggested making a starter and pitching tons of yeast, so her worries can subside). During the conversation, I suggested that he take a cup of the finished wort, before pitching, and freeze it in a baggie. Then, next batch, boil that up for a couple minutes in a measuring cup the day before brewing and pitch his yeast into that (putting it in one of his sanitized bottles with a airlock and stopper), then pitching the starter into his batch the next day. But I started to think (always a disaster) that this might not be a sanitary solution or that microwaving the wort to boil it (which was just to sanitize) might cause problems. Now am *I* being too paranoid? Is this technique sound? Henry in Portage, MI Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 13 Oct 2002 15:22:04 -0400 From: steve thomas <fabricus at hvi.net> Subject: 10 gal Gott capacity Brian asks how much grain a 10 gallon Gott cooler will hold. I have mashed 43 pounds of grain in mine, but I wouldn't reccomend much over 35 pounds. --Steve Thomas Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 13 Oct 2002 21:27:23 -0400 From: Fran Flynn <thurber at adelphia.net> Subject: starch test using iodophor? Since tincture of iodine seems to be rather hard to find, can iodophor be used to do a starch test when mashing? Tincture of iodine seems to be replaced by what I presume are some safer alternatives like Betadine for use as a disinfectant. Three different drug stores I looked in didn't have any iodine. Thanks Return to table of contents
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