HOMEBREW Digest #448 Wed 27 June 1990

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  re: starters & other novice questions (mikec)
  breaking glass (RUSSG)
  bleach in beer (cckweiss)
  quarter kegs? (Donald P Perley)
  Flash ferments, more mash experiments (Todd Enders - WD0BCI )
  Technique for straining wort into the fermenter (BAUGHMANKR)
  Queries (Michael Harlan Shea)
  cider, dry hopping (florianb)
  Re: Fastest Beer Judge (Chuck Cox)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 26 Jun 90 08:30:35 EDT From: mikec at sun03.niehs.nih.gov Subject: re: starters & other novice questions >Date: Mon, 25 Jun 90 11:29:23 EDT >From: Chris Shenton <chris at asylum.gsfc.nasa.gov> >Subject: Re: Starters >Len Reed writes: >> ... [lucid discussion elided] ... >> > >>You are using virile yeast. Let me guess that you are fermenting >> at a high temperature, maybe the 70s? In your case making a starter >> would indeed do nothing positive and is therefore unadvised. >Why (not)? >All the previous (elided) discussion supports -- nee, mandates -- using a >starter. Why should high temp fermentation preclude benefits of a starter? I've only just started brewing but I'll throw in my .02$ and a few questions of my own. I don't think high temp precludes the benefits of a starter, it only makes them less necessary. Fermentation proceeds at a faster rate at higher temps and therefore the lag time ( that a starter is attempting to shorten ) is already not as long so the chance of infection before the yeast gets cranking away is less already. Somebody correct me if I'm wrong! Date: Tue, 26 Jun 90 09:30 EST From: <R_GELINA%UNHH.BITNET at mitvma.mit.edu> (RUSSG) Subject: breaking glass Warning: Breaking a bottle while you are capping it is dangerous and messy. It happened to me last night: shards of glass all over, and beer on the floor. I was using a single handle capper. I wasn't using *alot* of force....all I can figure is that the bottle got cracked when I was washing it. Morale to the story: Check your bottles before you fill them (or buy a kegging system). RussG. - --- I've got fruit flies (my cellar has fruit flies). What's the best way - --- to get rid of them? Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 26 Jun 90 09:07:49 -0700 From: cckweiss at castor.ucdavis.edu Subject: bleach in beer Carter Stein writes: >As I finished pitching the yeast into the all grain wort that I made on >Saturday, I accidently dripped a small amount of clorox bleach from my >air lock into the 5 gals. of wort (arghh at #!*) (less than one teaspoon). I can offer some unsubstantiated anecdotal encouragement. I heard recently (maybe at the Rubicon tour?) about an experiment in which successive brews were made with more and more chlorine in the water. As I understood the story, the researcher was investigating the importance of water purity on the final beer. The results were that everything was fine, until the concentration of chlorine got high enought to kill the yeast and prevent fermentation. Apparently the bubbling action of fermentation was sufficient to drive off any residual chlorine taste or odor. Like I said, this is in the realm of unsubstantiated rumor, but it seems to make some sense. I know *I'm* a lot tougher than any puny little girly-man yeast cell. If you've got fermentation going, the concentration of bleach must be pretty low. I don't see any way you could hurt yourself drinking this stuff, and after a couple of weeks in the fermentor, I'll bet you don't taste it either. Then again, if we don't see any more postings from Carter, I guess we'll all know what happened... Ken Weiss krweiss at ucdavis.edu cckweiss at castor.ucdavis.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 26 Jun 90 14:47:26 EDT From: perley at glacier.crd.ge.com (Donald P Perley) Subject: quarter kegs? >> What I'd planned on >>doing was to cask my beer in 1/4 barrels and then use my >>existing home-draft-system (fridge/CO2/taps/etc) to draw it. >>I've located a source of the old Bud/Michelob 1/4 barrels that >>use the Golden Gate taps (gas on top, draw on the bottom). I >>beleive that these have wooden bungs on the side. I would say to try the cornelius soda kegs. You already have the expensive stuff, so you just need a few connectors and the keg itself. The soda kegs are a lot easier to clean and people have told me that the wood bungs are a pain to deal with. You can also work with 5 gallon batch sizes. Making 7.5 gallons would require either fermenting in odd size containers (as far as the homebrew equipment market is concerned) or more than one container. I have a bunch of carboys myself, but it is that much more expense when you are just starting. I won't say that no one in their right mind would ever use regular beer kegs, just that there are a lot of reason why the soda kegs are more popular for homebrew. >You'll want to have the bottling equipment anyway since you can't always >predict the exact amount of beer produced and you want to make sure you fill >the keg. You're likely to have some extra that you will want to bottle rather >than throw away (you keg types out there correct me if I'm wrong). If I am kegging, I usually don't want to deal with bottles at all, though I might fill one if there is extra. If you use 5 gallon carboys and 5 gallon kegs, you shouldn't have a problem with extra beer. If the batch comes up short of a kegfull, I just shoot in some CO2 to displace the air before I seal it. -don perley Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 26 Jun 90 15:09:13 -0500 From: Todd Enders - WD0BCI <enders at plains.NoDak.edu> Subject: Flash ferments, more mash experiments Well, it seems that I got one of my friends interested in brewing! However, he called me last night because his batch of porter stopped fermenting after 3 days. I told him the usual "relax, don't worry....", but since it was his very first batch, he worries excessively. So, I told him to take a hydrometer reading. Much to his supprise it was 1.010 (OG 1.045). He said "now what???" To which I replied, rack it into your secondary, let it settle a few days, prime and bottle. Now he thinks that the rapid fermentation was a result of rehydrating the dried yeast (Edme). He had followed the procedure that I had suggested, rehydrating in plain water at 90F for 15 mins. (Note: this has been suggested by others). I suspect that the temperature had something to do with it, as it has been 90+F during the time he was fermenting, and he leaves his a/c off while at work. On another note, I have been experimenting with roasting my own raw barley for use in stouts and brown ales. The first test of this procedure is fermenting now. For those interested, the recipe follows: Sort of Nut Brown Ale Ingredients for 2 gallon batch (scale accordingly) 2.4 lb. Pale Ale Malt 0.4 lb. 80L Crystal Malt 0.25 lb. Pan Roasted Barley (see below) 1/2C Dark Molasses 0.5 oz. 5.5% alpha Willamette Hops Wyeast #1028 (recultured) Mash in: 132F (mash in 5 qts. water) Mash pH: 5.2 Mash: 2 hrs at 152-153F Mash out: 5 mins. at 168F Sparge: 2.5 Gal. water at 165F Boil 90 mins. Hops: 1 addition, 30 mins. before end of boil. OG: 1.051 The raw, unmalted barley was purchased at the local health food emporium for about 60 cents per pound. The roasting procedure was to let the barley roast in a pan over medium heat until the outside was quite dark, but the inside was only tan, stirring every few minutes to avoid scorching. The grain so processed has a nice toasted character, with nutty overtones. The color potential is probably about 80-100L. The unfermented wort was delicious! The observant reader might note that this is similar to many stout recipies. That was the original intention, but I didn't roast the barley long enough to get the proper color. But, you never know, sometimes good things come from our mistakes :-) Todd Enders ARPA: enders at plains.nodak.edu Computer Center UUCP: ...!uunet!plains!enders Minot State University or: ...!hplabs!hp-lsd!plains!enders Minot, ND 58701 Bitnet: enders at plains.bitnet Comming Soon-------------------->AMPR: Todd at wd0bci.mot.nd.ampr.org [] Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 26 Jun 90 14:58 EST From: BAUGHMANKR at CONRAD.APPSTATE.EDU Subject: Technique for straining wort into the fermenter I'm new to the Homebrewer's Digest so I thought I would initiate my arrival here by passing along a technique for siphoning/straining wort into the fermenter. I think it's sound brewing practice to attempt to achieve as clear a run-off as possible when going from the boiler to the fermenter. For this reason I don't think it's ever a good idea to pour wort directly into the fermenter from the boiling kettle, even through a strainer. With that in mind, I pass along this technique that I recently worked up for siphoning into the BrewCap. You will need a copper wound pot scrubber (Chore Boy is a popular brand name), the foot from a pair of ladies nylon hose or a fine mesh hop bag, a couple of pieces of copper or stainless wire ties and a rubber band. Assuming you have a plastic or copper crooked-neck pick-up tube, (1) wrap the pot scrubber around the bottom (the end that sticks down into pot of wort or must of the pick-up tube. Secure it with one of the wire-ties. (2) Pull the nylon hose or fine-mesh hop bag over the pot scrubber, in effect putting it in a sack, and secure it with the other wire-tie. (3) Tie an overhand knot in the rubber band so that a small 3/8" loop is left in one end. Loop the big loop of the rubber band around and through itself onto the handle of the boiling kettle. (4) Stick the pick-up tube through the small loop of the rubber band and into the kettle, adjusting it so that the the pot scrubber dangles 1 to 2 inches above the trub in the bottom. Once the boil is finished, swirl the wort around in the kettle, creating a whirlpool action. The trub and sediment will gravitate to the center of the pot creating a cone of deposit. Let settle a few minutes. Siphon through a wort chiller into the carboy or proceed with a water or ice-bath to cool the wort. As the wort approaches the bottom of the pick-up tube, gently push the tube further through the loop on the rubber band until it just touches the bottom layer of trub. Tip the kettle over on its side until all the wort is siphoned out. As for which is better-nylon hose or the fine mesh hop bag-the hop bag is not as likely to clog up towards the end of the siphon. When I use the nylon hose, I begin the wort transfer with the bottom of the pick-up tube about 5 or 6 inches above the level of the trub. Please let me know if you have any questions. Kinney Baughman W Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 26 Jun 90 17:32:39 -0400 (EDT) From: Michael Harlan Shea <ms7i+ at andrew.cmu.edu> Subject: Queries Greetings, y'all. I just subscribed, and I've been brewing in a kind of step-and-fetch-it way for about 5 batches or so. The first worked perfectly, and I've no idea why, since all the successors were done identically to a drastically lesser quality result. (beginner's luck abounds...) I'd like suggestions on sone favorite methods of brewing -- I'm starting with hopped malt, and bottling. I've seen some posts on "starters" -- whatinhell are they?! May you brew as long as you drink and drink as long as you brew, Mike aka Haggis (I started brewing at a Scottish Highland games...) Return to table of contents
Date: 26 Jun 90 14:36:24 PDT (Tue) From: florianb at tekred.cna.tek.com Subject: cider, dry hopping Yesterday, Geoffrey Sherwood went into a lengthy inquiry about boiling hops to use in dry hopping, and also mentioned that he uses kegs. Well, Geoffrey, if you are using kegs, it's much easier to just wait until you get ready to rack your finished beer into the keg. Then, add a half- oz of your favorite cone hops in a cheesecloth bag (tied up with string at both ends). You don't have to worry about infection. Whatever is in hops at that point won't contaminate your finished beer. Just ask Mr. Maytag. Also, Geoffrey inquires about some slow fermenting cider. As nearly as I can tell, it should be going gangbusters. I would definitely stop stirring it. This is completely unnecessary and risks infection with acetobacter. I'd wager the problem is lack of yeast nutrient. Make up a solution of one cup water and one teaspoon of (wine) yeast nutrient (available at the local fermentation shop) and pour it into the carboy. Then wait a couple of more months. Check the sg from time to time to see if it's going down. If it doesn't, write me for a sure-fire cider recipe. Finally, Carter Stein is worried sick about dripping some chlorine bleach into the carboy full of brew. First, it isn't necessary to use pure chlorine bleach in the airlock. A solution of 1 tsp in one gallon of water for normal sanitizing procedures can also be used in the airlock (and will save your T-shirts). Or you could use pure water. I do it all the time. If it were my beer, I'd go ahead and brew it out. I don't see how it could be any worse than swimming at the local pool. But watch that the yeasties don't perish! Florian Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 26 Jun 90 14:59:34 EDT From: harley!chuck at uunet.UU.NET (Chuck Cox) Subject: Re: Fastest Beer Judge > Say, we haven't heard from Chuck Cox lately. I wonder if that's because > he's hanging his head in shame after losing his "fastest" title last > week in California. > > Suurb, the gossip monger Ok, I was actually trying to be modest, but that is against my nature... OFFICIAL RESULTS 1990 Homebrewer Gran Prix June 15 1990, Malibu Gran Prix - Oakland, CA place time driver club judge rank 1st 56.26 Chuck Cox Boston Wort Processors National 2nd 59.00 Chris Todd Houston Foam Rangers Certified As you can see, the original field of approx 15 homebrewers was significantly reduced by the time the race started. It seems that after three solid days of continuous homebrew consumption, driving on a fast, twisty course loses its appeal to some. In any case, we ran a total of 11 laps each, neither of us had run this course before. For reference, the club car time was 52.99 as I recall. So, the upshot is, I am not only america's fastest beer judge, but I am also america's fastest homebrewer. Chris is america's fastest certified judge. So there. I will be defending my titles at the next AHA national conference, here in the soon-to-be-sunny Boston area next June. - Chuck Cox - Hopped/Up Racing Team - america's fastest homebrewer - Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #448, 06/27/90 ************************************* -------
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