HOMEBREW Digest #4410 Wed 26 November 2003

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  Tracking oxygen utilization ("Fredrik")
  Category 24 & Honey beers (Bev Blackwood II)
  re: carbonation measurement (John Schnupp)
  re: Request for Gott cooler data (John Schnupp)
  re: Fermenter seal (John Schnupp)
  Temperature Controllers,Unibroue and Belgian clones ("Dave Burley")
  RE: Fermenter Seal (Steve Jones)
  re:Fermenter seal  "pddey" ("Patricia Beckwith")
  RE: Wyeast Direct Pitch (David Thompson)
  Stainless conical fermenters ("Craig Wheeler")
  Re: Dry Hop -- How Long? ("Martin Brungard")
   ("Leonard, Phil")
  re: Fermenter seal (Art Beall)
  RE: $50 Temp controller ("Steve Jones")
  Happy Thanksgiving ("Mark Tumarkin")
  Re: Cleaning Stainless Steel (Kent Fletcher)
  Stirring a yeast starter before pitching ("Gary Smith")
  preventing boil-over in starter wort while boiling in Erlenmeyer flasks ("nephi polder")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 07:54:43 +0100 From: "Fredrik" <carlsbergerensis at hotmail.com> Subject: Tracking oxygen utilization Hello everyone, Does anyone have any ideas on this? Steve Alexander or anyone else? 1) Rough reduction rate of dissolved oxygen in wort (ie. no alcohol)? 2) Rough reduction rate of dissolved oxygen in beer? The above might provide some ballpark estimates as to the stability of dissolved oxygen in wort. I am trying to track down the oxygen that is added. The questions are many. One question are the regulation of which alternative pathways that utilize oxygen in yeast. Another is to what extent molecular oxygen is "used" external to the cell oxidizing beer and wort compounds. Also what possibly flavour impact does this alternative uses of oxygen have? Are there any possible good impacts? Alternative means all use that isn't essential biosynthesis for keeping the yeast grow. I would assume respiration is not relevent in the early fermentation. And it is the early part that is interesting since at the end I would assume the dissolved oxygen is 0 ppm unless some is added. Any ideas or data is appreciated. /Fredrik Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 07:44:01 -0600 From: Bev Blackwood II <bdb2 at bdb2.com> Subject: Category 24 & Honey beers I've been following this thread with interest the past few days and wanted to toss in my .02 regarding Category 24 and a particular peeve of mine when it comes to contest entries. I have to agree that 24 isn't completely "open" but then again, I don't see that as a problem. I can pretty much brew whatever I want and as long as I can provide a guideline to the judges as to my intent, it's up to them to see if I came close or was way off the mark. As a judge, category 24 is a favorite of mine to judge, simply because there's so much variety and creativity. I recall judging a "Colonial molasses beer" or something similar to it, which was an attempt to re-create the beers made here in the 1700's that used molasses as a substantial component of the wort, since malted barley was harder to come by. It had its own research attached so that the judges could understand exactly what they were shooting for. Not only drinkable, but educational as well! The peeve comes from 2 things, actually... The first is directly related to category 24, and that's when a brewer doesn't provide the required information regarding their stylistic goals. There's nothing like trying to judge something with no idea as to the brewer's intent. The second has to do with "Honey" beers. I think they are appropriate within category 24, but shouldn't be entered elsewhere. Hardly a competition goes by where I don't come across a "Honey brown" or a "Honey wheat" entered within the context of categories 10 or 3 (sometimes elsewhere.) If it's expressly stated in the person's entry materials and gets passed along to the judging table, then they have in essence told me the beer is not to style and I will score it accordingly. On the other hand, if they keep that information to themselves and I judge it as a straight brown or wheat, they likely get knocked for having some unexplained sweetness. I.E. They're damned if they do and they're damned if they don't. Do honey beers cause anyone else angst depending on where they're entered? Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 05:46:12 -0800 (PST) From: John Schnupp <johnschnupp at yahoo.com> Subject: re: carbonation measurement >On a similar note, you can make a cheap carbonation tester for about $35. >Buy a "Carbonator" tap at your LHBS for about $12. Pick up a keg >pressure tester from William's Brewing for $20. >Rack beer with priming sugar to a PET bottle, attach >Carbonator cap and hook up a pin-lock pressure tester to the top of it. >Watch the carbonation in the bottle go up as PSI. I think it is even cheaper than that. Why pay nearly $50 (by the time you include the S/H charges)? Make your own carbonation cap from a valve stem and the soda bottle cap. Measure the pressure with a tire pressure gauge. Just make sure you DO NOT use one of those pencil slider types, they are inaccurate as heck. Use one with an actual gauge. A gauge 0-60psi should work. You can find gauges that are 0-30psi and adapt them. Find out how to make your own carbonation cap here: http://www.home.earthlink.net/~johnschnupp/tapcap/tapcap.htm >I'm sure some enterprising soul can connect PSI to vol CO2...like at room >temperature it should get to about 30PSI to have full carbonation. It's already been done for you. Just take a carbonation table and use it in reverse. ===== John Schnupp, N3CNL ??? Hombrewery [560.2, 68.6] Rennerian Georgia, VT 95 XLH 1200, Bumblebee Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 05:56:01 -0800 (PST) From: John Schnupp <johnschnupp at yahoo.com> Subject: re: Request for Gott cooler data >the course of testing it for heat loss, I became sort of caught-up in the >project, and it grew well beyond my expectations, to include hours of >testing with various forms of insulation. <snip> >In my bucket masher experiments, the water temperature dropped >instantly to 195 degrees F due to having to heat the plastic bucket. With >the various insulation schemes I tested, the best temperature I could get >after one hour was 182, and I'd like to know how that compares with the >performance of a Gott/Igloo cooler. Why use boiling water? Other than the fact that it is basically a know temp. Personally, I'd think that it might be wiser to use something that was closer to the actual temp conditions that the vessel will be exposed to. That being said, part of that heat loss goes toward heating up things like false bottom/lauter manifold too. I think it is a good idea. Not sure that I've seen any data that this sort of test has been done on the various commercial coolers. I'd certainly be interested in knowing any results you find out. In fact I just may have to dust off my Gott and give it a try. How frequently did you take temp measurements? And for how long? Do you have some sort of data file (like say Excel) started? Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 06:07:18 -0800 (PST) From: John Schnupp <johnschnupp at yahoo.com> Subject: re: Fermenter seal >thinking I'll build an identical replacement lid but 1) try to create a seal >with a bucket-lid gasket around the perimeter of the keg opening, or 2) do a >more careful job with the silicone bead idea. Perhaps try a larger bead. > >Where can I find a bucket lid gasket or two? Other thoughts/suggestions? The orange "Homer" buckets from Home Depot have seals included. Might seem like a waste to buy a $5 bucket for only the seal/gasket, but then again if you are like me you can always find a use for a bucket. ===== John Schnupp, N3CNL ??? Hombrewery [560.2, 68.6] Rennerian Georgia, VT 95 XLH 1200, Bumblebee Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 09:22:08 -0500 From: "Dave Burley" <Dave_Burley at charter.net> Subject: Temperature Controllers,Unibroue and Belgian clones Brewsters, Bret Morrow asks about my expereince with the Brewer's Edge Temperature Controller from Williams Brewing. The Mark 1 version ( of which many appear to have been sold) is apparently a mechnical controller or at least not a very sophisticated controller. I bought two and they just would not function for me. My freezers would stick at about 40Fand go no lower, despite the temperature setting. Now, I use my freezers for many things - like chill proofing wine, reducing the wine acidity ( temps of 29F) and such as well as brewing, so being able to change the temperature reliably and avoid a 5 gallon winesickle and accurately control the fermentation temperature of my lagers is important. I also found that with the Mark 1 version the temperature on the freezers would drift to some extent with the mechanical controller. Had all kinds of problems. I began to suspect it was the frost free function on the freezer ( and it may have been) and lots of other possibilities. Changing over to the Brewer's Edge Mark II version of their controller solved the problem perfectly. I'd spend the extra $50 for the Mark II, just in case you need it and to avoid the problems I had. - --------------------- Kevin, Don't forget to try Unibroue's La Fin Du Monde and Maudite. I first tried La Fin Du Monde shortly after it's introduction during a fishing expedition about 8 hour's drive north of Montreal. And as good luck would have it, got back to Montreal in time for their Belgian Beer Festival. Look to the Belgian beers for guidance on making similar brews. See the "Classic Beer Style Series 6 Belgian Ale" by Pierre Rajotte Brewer's Publications - --------------------- Keep on Brewin' Dave Burley Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 10:38:33 -0500 From: Steve Jones <stjones1 at chartertn.net> Subject: RE: Fermenter Seal Paul in Cheyenne asks about Fermenter lid seals. I have an unmodified Sanke keg that I've used as a fermenter, but I'm skeptical of how clean I can get it, especially the underside of the top surface. I plan on modifying it to use as a fermenter by doing something very similar, including the capability of transferring under pressure, so I've put a lot of thought into the proposed design. First, allorings.com has silicone o-rings that may work. They have one that is 1/4" thick, 11.5" ID, 12" OD (dash number -452) for $8.11. They don't specifically say it is food grade, but i wouldn't hesitate to use Silicone in a food grade application. You could also try again to make your own. To get a uniform thickness bead, try coating another flat surface with vegetable oil or spray, then squeeze out a bead onto the edge of your lid. Set the lid very lightly on the oiled surface with the silicone bead facing down and let it cure. This should ensure that the mating surface is flat. You may also want to modify your clamp mechanism to distribute the pressure around the outside edge of the acrylic lid somehow. You could make a second slat (a bit shorter to fit inside the top skirt of the keg) attached to the first such that it makes a cross, then put eye-bolts down thru the two slats in four places near the edge of the acrylic lid. This would give you 4 clamp-down points and may help seal it better. These ideas are untested, and are just a suggestion that may help. Good luck, Steve Jones, Johnson City, TN State of Franklin Homebrewers (http://hbd.org/franklin) [421.8 mi, 168.5 deg] AR Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 09:48:37 -0600 From: "Patricia Beckwith" <beckwith at gwtc.net> Subject: re:Fermenter seal "pddey" I don't know if these would fit your needs or not, but they're easy to obtain. Pressure cooker gaskets come in different sizes. There are two major styles. One is flat and thin while the other is more of a " > " shape. They can be found in most places that supply canning goods. Patricia Beckwith Murdo, South Dakota [856.9, 283.1] Apparent Rennerian Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 10:15:20 -0600 From: David Thompson <david at dtphoto.com> Subject: RE: Wyeast Direct Pitch On Nov 24, 2003 Dave Burley wrote: >And speaking of yeasts, I recently was the unintentional recipient ( I thought >I ordered my normal mylar bop bag) of Wyeast direct yeast ( the squeeze tube >good for 5 gallons direct pitch). I have had problems and wonder if I am just >unlucky and the three tubes, one lager and two ales were somehow damaged by >poor handling during shipping ( despite a cool bag insert in the shipping >package I ordered) or what? > > > Admittedly the yeast were at the end of the manufacturer's recommended > period >(3 months for lagers and 4 for ales) , but still within the OK dates, as the >yeasts were labelled August 2003 and I tried to use them within the last two >weeks or so. The yeast in the tube were refrigerated all the time > >Anyone else experience problems? If I am going to have to make up a starter, >I'd rather have the bop bags as they seem to have a longer actual shelf life >and less chance of infection. > > >The London III took 48 hours to start without pitching ( I like six hours max) >and the Czech Pils starter never started in the freezer at 50 F nor when I >took it out and stored it at room temperature. Anyone else have problems? Yes, I have had same problems, with even fresher Wyeast tubes. One took longer than 48 hours, so I pitched some dry to help boost it. I'd figure on using starters when pitching these tubes. Same with the White Labs tubes. Long lag times. Thing is, on subsequent repitchings of the harvested yeast, start of activity was well within normal ranges. Dave "You can't be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline. It helps if you have some kind of football team or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least, you need a beer." - Frank Zappa Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 18:34:38 +0000 From: "Craig Wheeler" <craigwh69 at hotmail.com> Subject: Stainless conical fermenters Hi All, I'm interested in purchasing a stainless conical fermenter and I'm looking for recommendations. From what I've seen, I can either buy one that uses sanitary welds, or one that utilizes weldless connections (for the dump valve and sample port). I'd really like to hear from people who are using both types - what they like/dislike about them, etc. Thanks. - --Craig Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 13:58:43 -0500 From: "Martin Brungard" <Martin.Brungard at trow.com> Subject: Re: Dry Hop -- How Long? The questions posed by Ross Potter on a multitude of dry hopping issues are daunting. He has obviously thought long and hard about the issues and mechanics involved in the extraction of dry hop essences. I'm afraid that I can't offer advice on many of the contributing effects, but I can throw in my observations on dry hopping duration. I've dry hopped many beers over the years. Through their response to dry hopping, I've come to the following conclusion. There is a limit on how long dry hops should be in the beer. I've left dry hops on beer from one week to several months (threw them in the keg). I noticed a definite increase in grassiness when the hops were kept on the beer in excess of about a week. Most recently, I tied up my pellet hops in a grain bag and placed them into a corny of brown ale that I had made many times before, a moderately bittered (43 IBU) American Brown (1.060 SG). The hopping and dry hopping schedule was identical to the previous batches. I noticed that the grassiness increased over time, not terribly so, just perceptibly. I had also dry hopped previous batches of this beer for 1 or 2 weeks. The grassiness was noticeable at 2 weeks, but not at 1 week. My anecdotal evidence suggests that allowing dry hopping to continue for more than about a week may invite some less favorable flavors into the beer. Martin Brungard Tallahassee, FL Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 14:27:05 -0600 From: "Leonard, Phil" <Phil.Leonard at dsionline.com> Subject: On 11/17 Dave in ABQ said: "The "forced" delay of having the digest appear just once per day, in my view, helps foster the collegial tone that has made the HBD far and away the most valuable web resource on any subject I've ever encountered." This apparently isn't true for everyone since I have often times seen reply posts to questions appear immediately after the question which means the reply'er had access to individual messages or at least access to the "queue". I would prefer the choice of digest or non-digest Philip [612 251.4 AR] Overland Park, KS Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 12:49:08 -0800 (PST) From: Art Beall <arthurbeall at yahoo.com> Subject: re: Fermenter seal Paul, I am in the process of doing pretty much the same thing, except with SS lids instead of acrylic. Good idea, I'll have to look for some of that acrylic sheet. You can order pretty much any size o-ring available through Mcmaster Carr. Their web site can interactively let you choose the id, width, material. The buna-n has the most choices as far as id, width. Cheers, Art Beall Hudson, Ohio ===== Art Beall "Beer is the answer, what was the question?" Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 17:47:44 -0500 From: "Steve Jones" <stjones1 at chartertn.net> Subject: RE: $50 Temp controller Bret, I have the $50 mechanical controller (Johnson) and never had a problem at all. I wouldn't spend the extra $50 unless I needed the heat/cool capability of the Ranco electronic. I picked up a cheap digital in/out thermometer ($5), using the 'out' probe inside the fridge to monitor the actual temperature. It also has a min/max function to let you see the temp swing inside. So I've got a mechanical controller, and a digital readout (with min/max capability) for about $55. I'm totally happy with it. Steve Jones, Johnson City, TN State of Franklin Homebrewers (http://hbd.org/franklin) [421.8 mi, 168.5 deg] AR Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 17:53:37 -0500 From: "Mark Tumarkin" <mark_t at ix.netcom.com> Subject: Happy Thanksgiving Happy Thanksgiving! What beer(s) are you going to have at your table? click the following url to view hope y'all have a wonderful Turkey Day, Mark Tumarkin Hogtown Brewers Gainesville, FL Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 18:21:19 -0800 (PST) From: Kent Fletcher <fletcherhomebrew at yahoo.com> Subject: Re: Cleaning Stainless Steel Steve acquired some draft equipment, needs to clean it: (snippage) > The stainless on the taps looks like it was put > away dirty...years ago. It is not rusty, just > really dirty. Is there something I can soak them > in to get them clean, or am I stuck with elbow > grease? The parts are most likely chrome plated brass, not stainless, especially the fauecets. You could give them a soak in PBW, that should lossen up whatever's been caked on. Shouldn't take much elbow grease after that. Triple rinse everthying in hot water. Then run BLC or a sanitizer solution through it before using. Kent Fletcher Brewing in So Cal Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 21:20:38 -0600 From: "Gary Smith" <mandolinist at ameritech.net> Subject: Stirring a yeast starter before pitching How-D, Anyone have any knowledge about the speed to set a 1" stir bar to rotate at? I find that because of the convex inside of the Erlenmeyer, the bar raps hard on the glass as it spins. I'm wondering if all that whacking's going to be a problem with it killing the yeast? Thanks, Gary Gary Smith CQ DX de KA1J http://musician.dyndns.org/homebrew.html http://musician.dyndns,org.rims.html "Give a man a beer and he'll drink for five minutes. Teach him where the beer is, he'll drink for a lifetime and get it his own damn self". Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2003 19:43:26 -0800 From: "nephi polder" <nefipoda at hotmail.com> Subject: preventing boil-over in starter wort while boiling in Erlenmeyer flasks I like to boil my starter wort the day I want to proof my yeast, which is usually the day or two before I brew. I make 500 mL an approximately 1.040 wort in a 1 liter erlenmeyer flask, and boil it with some foil on top. I can never achieve a decent boil, since the foam that is produced quickly travells up the walls of the flask and spills out onto my oven range. I can only lightly simmer the wort, by turning the flame off and on again throughout cooking time. Does anyone know how to prevent this? I have tried boiling in a saucepan first. There is little danger of boilover here, but then I transfer the wort into the flask, and I want to boil again to sterilize the inside. Again, the boilover occurs. Help! Nephi Return to table of contents
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