HOMEBREW Digest #485 Thu 30 August 1990

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  Keg relief valve... ("Gary F. Mason - Image Systems - MKO2-2/K03 - 603884[DTN264]-1503  29-Aug-1990 0819")
  commercial labels (ROSS)
  Big pots (olson)
  RE: Wort Kettles (was: Questions for All-grain brewers) (Mike Fertsch)
  excessive trub (mage!lou)
  Hops 'n Stuff ("John C. Post")
  Lagering and Thermostats ("John C. Post")
  Re: Kegs (bob)
  Request (DARROW)
  Listing ingredients (Tom Fitzgerald)
  brew pots big enough (florianb)
  soda pop (florianb)
  Re: Lagering and Thermostats (Greg Wageman)
  Wine and Brew by You (Algis R Korzonas +1 708 979 8583)
  Lagering and Thermostats ("Andy Wilcox")
  Pronunciations (Mark Bradakis)
  Brewkettles Redux (Martin A. Lodahl)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 05:21:36 PDT From: "Gary F. Mason - Image Systems - MKO2-2/K03 - 603884[DTN264]-1503 29-Aug-1990 0819" <mason at habs11.enet.dec.com> Subject: Keg relief valve... In answer to my own questions about the keg relief valve from Brewer's Warehouse, I offer the following (from a phone conversation with same) for anyone else who may be interested... There should have been an instruction sheet - they will send it with my new order for various replacement parts. Though advertised as having a range of from 2# to 10#, the source indicates that they have actually had the relief valve adjusted to 18# or so. Full in (shortest position) is highest pressure, as one might expect. They say it is shipped set for 10#, but mine was almost full out when it arrived, so something is amiss somewhere. In any event, a guage would seem to be in order if one wants to maintain a known pressure in the keg. Just for information's sake, the keg system I purchased had a Cornelius dual valve regulator on it. That does NOT have a check valve on it (mine had a stopcock and hose nipple attached). I promptly purchased a 5 keg manifold for it, which solves the check valve problem in addition to allowing multiple kegs - each outlet on the manifold is a check valve. Remove the stopcock; attach the manifold; Bob's your uncle. Unused outlets should be capped. Cheers...Gary Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 08:31 EDT From: ROSS at mscf.med.upenn.edu Subject: commercial labels Date sent: 29-AUG-1990 08:26:51 Concerning the discussion about putting the alcohol percentages on beer labels. If I recall correctly from my trip to Belgium a few years ago, their beer labels have the alcohol content on the labels. So it could actually reduce the cost of imports if we could just import them with the European labels and not have to have special US labels without the alcohol content. By the way, it didn't seem like much hassle for US distributors to ruin the "look and feel" of even the finest of brews by having to put that surgeon general's warning on the bottle. --- Andy Ross --- University of Pennsylvania Medical School Computer Facility ross at mscf.med.upenn.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 10:44:19 EDT From: olson at antares.cs.virginia.edu Subject: Big pots In #484 Greg Roody wrote: >I've wanted to get into all grain brewing, but my one remaining obstacle to >trying it is the lack of a pot big enough to boil 5-6 gallons of wort. I There's an outfit called The Home Brewery that sells an 8 gallon enamelled canning pot for on the order of 35$ plus shipping. You might be able to find such a thing locally as well. A canning pot won`t heat as evenly as a $120 restaurant-quality steel pot, but it will probably still work if you stir often enough. The only possible problem is that it's very wide, will overhang your burner on the sides a bit. Not optimal, but for the $ looks like a good deal. That's how I plan to start when I get my nerve up... The Home Brewery advertises in Zymurgy, has locations in Calif. and Missouri. They filled my first order promptly and completely, and their catalog is pretty comprehensive. Sorry I don't have the address here at work. - --Tom Olson (olson at virginia.edu) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 11:11 EDT From: Mike Fertsch <FERTSCH at adc1.adc.ray.com> Subject: RE: Wort Kettles (was: Questions for All-grain brewers) Greg Roody asks about availibility of wort kettles - > I've wanted to get into all grain brewing, but my one remaining obstacle to > trying it is the lack of a pot big enough to boil 5-6 gallons of wort. I > read in papazians book that he recommends an 8 gallon (32 Q!) pot, but alas, > the only ones I have been able to find are too expensive to justify > (~$120 u.s.). Part of the problem is that I don't want to use aluminum > because of the acid content of the wort. I use a 32 quart (8 gallon) enamelled stell (or is it enamelled aluminium?) wort kettle. These kettles are covered with speckeled black enamel, protecting the beer from the metal underneath. I bought mine from a hardware store (True Value) for under $30. I report no problems with it for up to 6+ gallon full wort boils. A agree, you want to avoid aluminum kettles. Interestingly, don't look for enamelled kettles at restaurant supply stores - enamel pots are not approved for restaurant use - they chip too easily. These stores sell only heavy aluminum pots ($100+) or stainless ($$$$) I have had good luck with my enamelled steel - I haven't chipped by pot yet - I just take care not to throw the thing around. Mike Fertsch Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 10:36:35 MDT From: hplabs!mage!lou Subject: excessive trub In HBD #484 Paul Kelly writes: >I recently made an IPA (basic recipe from Charlie P's CJOHB), and encountered >an incredible cold break. Previously I had ended up with, oh, about one and >a half to two inches of trub in the bottom of the carboy, but this time it >was spectacular! I would estimate that I had about a gallon of sediment. So >for the first time, I ended up racking the wort immediately after the cold >break, and I was faced with another problem -- not enough wort in the carboy >to blow off during early fermentation. So I added about a gallon of water to >the carboy ... >Fermentation lasted two weeks, and the beer lasted about a week once it was >ready to drink. All in all, a successful and happy brewing result. This has happened to me twice this summer. I got about 2 gallons of trub in my 7 gallon batches (my carboys are marked in gallons). However, this trub was not nearly as dense as it seemed. After a day in the carboy the trub settled down to the usual 1.5-2. inches. Let's hear it for active procrastination. Louis Clark mage!lou at ncar.ucar.edu Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 09:36 PDT From: "John C. Post" <POST at VAXA.llnl.gov> Subject: Hops 'n Stuff Just picked my first batch of hops, and I'm wondering.... Does anybody know of a quick and easy test for alpha acid content? I grow enough of the darn things that I'd be willing to pay somebody to test some samples, but I don't have the faintest idea of where to start... - -------------------------------------------------------------------------- | post@ vaxt.llnl.gov |"...It's only MY opinion...Not their's..."| | post@ lis.llnl.gov | | |John Post, Lawrence Livermore| ....I'm Relaxing...I'm Not Worrying.... | |National Labs |.......Just Wish I Had A HomeBrew...... | - -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 09:44 PDT From: "John C. Post" <POST at VAXA.llnl.gov> Subject: Lagering and Thermostats Somebody asked the questions about what it takes to convert a refridgerator for use as a controlled fermentation environment (I know thats not quite what was asked, but anyways). Having just done this, here's my two cents: The Grainger catalog (available at any compressor or power train supply shop) lists several replacement thermostats for commercial refridgerators. The one I got cost less than 20 bucks, and just plugs in where the original thermostat was in the fridge. The temperature range is about 25 degrees to 63 degrees, just right for anything you want to do. You might also want to play with the cold air diverter in the freezer section so that more if not all of the cold air is directed into the refridgerator side... Brew in the fridge side, lager in the freezer side...Works great! - -------------------------------------------------------------------------- | post@ vaxt.llnl.gov |"...It's only MY opinion...Not their's..."| | post@ lis.llnl.gov | | |John Post, Lawrence Livermore| ....I'm Relaxing...I'm Not Worrying.... | |National Labs |.......Just Wish I Had A HomeBrew...... | - -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Return to table of contents
Date: Wed Aug 29 12:47:36 1990 From: semantic!bob at uunet.UU.NET Subject: Re: Kegs Algis R Korzonas writes: > I ordered ... [three] 5 gallon "ball-lock" kegs (non-Coke) 1) Do these 'ball-lock' kegs use the same adapters as standard beer kegs? If so it would make me very happy! I have an old regulator and CO2 tank for tapping a standard keg. 2) Wouldn't these be hard to clean? Just wondering. - -- Robert A. Gorman (Bob) bob at rsi.com Watertown MA US -- - -- Relational Semantics, Inc. uunet!semantic!bob +1 617 926 0979 -- Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 09:28 EST From: <DARROW%IUBACS.BITNET at UICVM.uic.edu> Subject: Request Please add me to the distribution list Thanks! David Darrow Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 13:40:55 EDT From: Tom Fitzgerald <fitz at wang.COM> Subject: Listing ingredients Marc San Soucie sez: > Seems there ought to be a nice, simple little Federal law > requiring all beer, wine, and booze bottlers to put ingredients and alcohol > content on every bottle so we know what we're ingesting when we ingest. This has been tried a couple of times, and the big breweries have killed it every time. (Unfortunately it's often prohibitionist groups that are trying this, knowing that beer consumption would plummet if people knew what gunk was in their beer.) You can expect a long, hard fight if you want to try it again. A lab analysis of Miller showed that it contained preservatives, head- retention agents (this can be demonstrated by adding a drop of milk to the beer, and observing that the head survives, which it shouldn't), anti- oxidants, and something to prevent the formation of ice crystals. Remarkably, an analysis of Bud came up pretty pure. Even homebrews might look kinda queasy if ingredients were labelled, especially if people use finings: "Ingredients: water, malt, hops, yeast, ground sturgeon airbladder, seaweed, polyvinylpolypyrrolidine pellets, gypsum, chalk, gelatin, etc, etc". Big breweries have also resisted labelling alcohol content since then they'd have to reveal that their lite beers only have 2% to 3% alcohol, so people have to drink twice as much anyway to get a buzz on. - --- Tom Fitzgerald Wang Labs fitz at wang.com 1-508-967-5278 Lowell MA, USA ...!uunet!wang!fitz Return to table of contents
Date: 29 Aug 90 11:50:29 PDT (Wed) From: florianb at tekred.cna.tek.com Subject: brew pots big enough Greg Roody asks: >My question is: What do all grain brewers out there cook in? Is it possible >to use two smaller pots? Is there a sneaky substitute? I use a speckle-porcelain pot from William's Brewing (33 qt). It's a nice pot in that the cost is low (~$40) and it's big. It is sufficient to boil for an 8# all grain recipe. For larger recipes, the boil must be done over a longer period of time. I have found no problem with scorching or boilover when it is monitored well. These kettles are prone to chipping, but with a modicum of care you can avoid it. In any case, chipping is irrelevant to their function. I place it over two of the burners on our Jennaire range. It comes to boil in about 15 minutes. I also use the smaller speckle-porcelain kettle for stove-top mashing. This kettle can be obtained from just about any department store as it is used in canning. Florian Return to table of contents
Date: 29 Aug 90 12:00:39 PDT (Wed) From: florianb at tekred.cna.tek.com Subject: soda pop Timothy Phillips inquired about why the yeast doesn't ferment out all the sugar in soda pop and offers the following explanation: >The only explanation that I have been able to come up with >so far is that there are no yeast nutrients (surprise, surprise-- >no human nutrients either!) in the ingredients, so the yeast >use up their reserves and quit. Somehow this amount is just >enough to carbonate the bottle and no more. I posed this question about 1.5 years ago in the HBD and got as many different answers as people answering. However, you are most likely correct. The William's Brewing catalog contains a paragraph on this and they claim exactly what you have stated. From my experience in cider making (using apple juice) I am inclined to accept this explanation. It is sometimes the case that cider doesn't ferment to completion due to lack of nutrient. The addition of a small amount of yeast nutrient brings the yeast back for a second round. This hypothesis can easily be checked by making up a batch of soda pop, putting it in a carboy and letting it ferment out, then adding yeast nutrient. Of course one has to be careful, since adding too much nutrient would yield a pop of very high alcohol content. Florian Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 12:48:06 PDT From: greg at cemax.com (Greg Wageman) Subject: Re: Lagering and Thermostats dreger at seismo.gps.caltech.edu writes: > >I just got a used refrigerator to brew in and the warmest it gets is >41 F. Is this too cold to lager in? The most accurate answer to this is probably "it depends on the yeast". Probably too cold for the majority of home-brewing yeasts, since if 41F is the warmest it gets, the average temp. is probably closer to about 35F. Remember that the purpose of a refrigerator is the preservation of food and drink by the suppression of microbial growth! Temperatures this low will preserve your wort from fermentation, too. >Finally, is it possible to install a more sensitive thermostat >(with the range from 32 F to about 60 F). If so where can the thermostat >be obtained. You could replace the thermostat with one from a window air conditioner unit. These usually have a temperature range of about 55 to 80F, or so. If you want one that is new, there is a national distributor, the Grainger Company, that sells a wide variety of thermostats (amongst other things). Look in the phone book for the one nearest you. No doubt you could find an appropriate one; the question is, will it fit in place of the existing one? If you don't mind it hanging loose inside your 'fridge, any one with an adequate current rating (equal to, or greater than that printed on the one you remove) would do the job. However, before going to all that trouble, take a good look at the thermostat currently in the refrigerator. Chances are it has a pair of adjusting screws for the "cut-in" point and the "cut-out" point. The "cut-in" point adjusts the temp. at which the compressor kicks in; i.e. the highest temp. the refrigerator will obtain. The "cut-out" point is the temp. at which the thermostat shuts the compressor off; this is the coldest temp. it will reach. Ideally, there should be about a 10 degree swing between these two; too close, and the compressor will run too often (perhaps continually); too far apart, and the temperature swings may shock the yeast. When I got my brew 'fridge, I bought one of those indoor-outdoor thermometers with a probe at the end of a thin copper wire. I taped the thermometer to the outside of the 'fridge, put the probe inside and ran the copper wire out the corner of the door. When the temperature stabilized, I used the thermometer reading to adjust the thermostat to a reasonable range for lagering (average temp. about 55F). Good Lagering, Greg Wageman (sj.ate.slb.com!cemax!greg) Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 13:54:33 mdt From: hplabs!hp-lsd.cos.hp.com!ihlpl!korz (Algis R Korzonas +1 708 979 8583) Subject: Wine and Brew by You Hello. Two days ago, I posted a message describing my keg system purchase and implicitly recommended "Wine and Brew by You" in Miami, FL. Alas, I must take back my recommendation. I still whole-heartedly support Foxx Equipment Co., however. My order for three packages of Wyeast and three keg float systems came the other day, yet I did not want to open the box till yesterday to allow the yeast to reach cellar temperature gradually (avoiding temperature shock). When I did open the package, I found that all three packages of yeast had date codes of December 89. That would make this yeast nearly 9 months past the date code. Wyeast suggests the shelf life of their yeast is 6 months past the date code. I do not wish to risk $30 worth of malt and hops on old yeast. If the yeast has a longer lag time, of course there will be a greater risk of bacteria or wild yeast establishing itself in my wort. I called Wine and Brew by You, and spoke to the owner. I expressed my unwillingness to use this "old" yeast and asked to be reimbursed for the yeast. I was told that the yeast was "perfectly all right" and that I could send it back if I wish. He said that he will reimburse me for the order. If this is where the conversation would have ended, I would say, "okay, this guy is pretty cool," and may have bought from him again. However, this is where the call got ugly. He then said, "I know who you are... you're one of those guys from the brew network!" He refered to us as "a strange group of wierdos" and "cheapskate wierdos." He said that he has been brewing for 30 years, and knew more about brewing than anybody on the network. Strangely enough, he *asked* me to tell you to not order anything from him. [He is probably unaware that the Homebrew Digest membership is upwards of 4000. Now he knows, because he said he gets copies of the digest through A. E. Mossberg.] He repeatedly stressed that his was "a legitimate business" not "some guy working out of his bedroom." I would like to point out that I never said anything to incite this kind of reaction, was very polite as I asked for reimbursement, and even gave him several chances to apologize. He continued to flame about us digest members. I won't have any trouble not buying from him in the future -- my local store (which happens to be a guy working out of his basement) currently is selling Wyeast dated August 90 and was simply out of British Ale which is why I had W&BbY add the Wyeast to the order. He said that he will make a batch of beer with the yeast I return to him, he will use $50 (!) worth of malt, he will have Mr. Mossberg review the beer and post the review to the digest. Regarding the float system, I recommend that you make it yourself. The $3.50 float system consists of a plastic pill bottle with two hex nuts (yes, nickel plated, hardware store variety) in it, a length of vinyl hose (I don't mind my beer quickly running through a vinyl racking hose, but I don't want PVC soaking in my beer for 6 months!) and possibly a piece of fishing line to attach the pill bottle to the hose. Also, the crevices in the neck of the pill bottle may end up harboring bacteria so your design should keep that in mind. Finally, I would like to post a message to the owner of Wine and Brew by You [I apologize to the digest readership]. You sir, were obviously venting your anger (at some *other* person) in my direction. The homebrew digest membership includes a great number of college students, which often eat a whole month on the $50 you plan to spend on your next batch of beer. Cheapskates we are not. Strange wierdos, maybe, but certainly not in the context you meant. You are the first person that I have had the displeasure of "meeting" that could talk about homebrew with so much anger in your voice. I'll bet that the digest members that joined this week and have never brewed before, will brew better beer than you within six months. I also don't believe that you meant to ask me to ask the HB Digesters to not order from your store, but I for one will take your advice. In closing, I'm certain that all of us concur that you should: Relax, Don't Worry, Have a Homebrew! Al. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 17:56:08 EDT From: "Andy Wilcox" <andy at mosquito.cis.ufl.edu> Subject: Lagering and Thermostats I have a reverse problem with my refrigerator unit. Actually, it's just an upright freezer, and the warmest it gets is about 20F. I've seen talk of using a hunter energy monitor to convert a freezer to a frig, but looking at one in home depot certainly created more questions than it answered. If anybody knows how to proceed, I'd certainly appreciate a response. Thanks! -Andy Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 15:15:45 -0600 From: mjb at hoosier.utah.edu (Mark Bradakis) Subject: Pronunciations Okay, so we have a new batch of HP workstations, and guess who got to name them? What I am wondering is how other folks pronounce these two names: klages - Is it like klah-jess, klaggs, or ?? eroica - e-rosh-ah, err-oik-a, ?? I know I didn't use what one could describe as standard pronunciation guides from your handy dictionary, but close enough. mjb. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 9:14:09 PDT From: Martin A. Lodahl <pbmoss!malodah at PacBell.COM> Subject: Brewkettles Redux In HOMEBREW Digest #484, Greg Roody asked: > My question is: What do all grain brewers out there cook in? A 33-qt. enameled-steel canning kettle. They seem to average around $37 at homebrew stores, but I got mine at a hardware store for $34. They work GREAT! Mine's big enough to cover two burners on the stove, which makes a big difference in the time it takes to get the wort to boil. One caveat: it's advisable to use more care than you would with a stainless kettle, as the enamel can be chipped, and the bare metal may rust. On the other hand, my mash kettle was chipped & rusted whan I got it, which hasn't proven to be a problem. = Martin A. Lodahl Pac*Bell Minicomputer Operations Support Staff = = malodah at pbmoss.Pacbell.COM Sacramento, CA 916.972.4821 = = If it's good for ancient Druids, runnin' nekkid through the wuids, = = Drinkin' strange fermented fluids, it's good enough for me! 8-) = Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #485, 08/30/90 ************************************* -------
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