HOMEBREW Digest #4882 Mon 07 November 2005

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  Re: Batch size vs fermentation time (Bob Tower)
  long ferment (Vincent Dongarra)
  RE: Batch size vs fermentation time (Steven Parfitt)
  Re: Time to Brew (Terry Felton)
  re: Time to brew (Rama Roberts)
  A true honeymoon (lyona)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sun, 6 Nov 2005 23:52:41 -0800 From: Bob Tower <tower at cybermesa.com> Subject: Re: Batch size vs fermentation time Francisco Jones wonders if larger batch sizes take longer to ferment than smaller volumes. My opinion is that volume has no bearing. I should qualify that by assuming that the proper amount of yeast is pitched. I do 20 gallon batches and terminal gravity is usually reached in 3-5 days, the same as when I was doing 5 gallon batches. Bob Tower / Los Angeles, CA Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 7 Nov 2005 07:59:57 -0500 From: Vincent Dongarra <vdongarra at gmail.com> Subject: long ferment Hello all, I'm confronted with a five gallon batch of pale ale (OG = 1.060ish...I broke my hydrometer whilst making the starter) that is still bubbling away after slightly longer than a month. I pitched a half-gallon starter of WL 001 which had the wort going strong in slightly less than three hours, but then a cold front hit us and my temp went from 70F to 63F overnight and hovered around 65F for the next couple of weeks. This didn't bother me, as the fermentation went like gangbusters; I even had to attach a blowoff tube. I racked it into a secondary, and now find that I'm still seeing tiny bubbles and a bit of a head in the carboy after a month. It's only enough to lift the airlock every couple of minutes or so, but I don't usually bottle until there is no activity for fear of bottle bombs. Previous batches with this yeast fermented out in about a week. Temperatures are in the mid to high sixties, while I normally ferment in the low seventies. I was excited by the prospect of producing a clean tasting beer at these temperatures. It smells wonderful and I'm willing to let this hang out in the closet for another couple of months, but what will I have when this completes such a long fermentation? Can anyone offer a sugggestion? Should I innoculate with some Belgian mystery organism to beat any native bacteria to the punch? Help! Thanks, Vincent Dongarra - -- Montgomery Village, MD Bonum vinum laetificat cor hominis Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 7 Nov 2005 06:09:21 -0800 (PST) From: Steven Parfitt <thegimp98 at yahoo.com> Subject: RE: Batch size vs fermentation time Francisco Jones Ponders >Here's another one I have been wondering about. To >skip straight to the gist, do larger batches take >longer to ferment than smaller batches, with >all else (gravity, temp, yeast) being equal. .....snip.... >Francisco Jones >Kankakee, IL >[256 magnetic/196 nm] AR If it did, brewing and wine making would be impractical on a large scale. As long as pitching is scaled as well as all other variables in the process, there should be very little difference in fermentation time. Temp control is probably a bigger issue with large fermentrs due to yeast heat generation. Maintain the same temp in a big fermenter as a small batch and your fermentation time should be the same. If you are seeing longer fermentation times look at your pitching rate, oxygenation, etc. Steven, -75 XLCH- Ironhead Nano-Brewery http://thegimp.8k.com Johnson City, TN [422.7, 169.2] Rennerian "There is no such thing as gravity, the earth sucks." Wings Whiplash - 1968 Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 7 Nov 2005 12:03:50 -0500 From: Terry Felton <tdfelton at gmail.com> Subject: Re: Time to Brew Dave, Lagering in a cellarway works great for me. I live near Buffalo, and use my concrete cellarway under a steel Bilco door as a lagering room all Fall and Winter. I do add a few very inexpensive enhancements. First, buy a cheap indoor/outdoor digital thermometer (about $8 - $10) with an outdoor sensor on a long wire. I leave mine in the basement with the remote lead running under the door. I usually tape the sensor end to the side of the fermentor with a piece of duct tape. Then I can monitor the temp without opening the door too often. As far as controlling the temp, 2 things are critical, insulating the fermentor to reduce fast temp swings, and providing some extra heat to keep it from getting too cold. I solve the first with an old fiber filled winter coat. When zipped up it fits nicely right over the fermenter. I just stuff the arms and excess into the neck opening to cover the top. I add heat with a small heat pad under the fermentor connected to a tabletop lamp dimmer. The dimmer costs about $5 at any hardware. The photo tray heaters I use came from a surplus dealer years ago, and are about 15 Watts and pretty gentle. Since then, I have seen similar small heater pads in pet supply stores, sold as heaters for reptile tanks. They're also pretty cheap, about $10 - $20 if I remember correctly. It really takes very little heat inside the coat to keep the fermentor at 50 when the cellarway is in the low 30s. Just look in on the temp every few days and tweak the dimmer to adjust the temp. Oh yeah, if your dellarway gets below freezing - be sure to add some vodka to your airlocks! I have 2 heaters, so I can manage 2 different beers in primary at once. To minimize wear and tear on the heater, I place a piece of carpet under it to reduce the pressure from the hard fermenter bottom. Lots of luck - making your own lagers is just a bit more satisfying than those 'easy' ales. Terry Felton Holland, NY Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 7 Nov 2005 12:32:25 -0800 (PST) From: Rama Roberts <rama at Sun.COM> Subject: re: Time to brew > Now I know that there are a lot of you out there, as all of the postings > noting Rennarian coordinates bear out. Are you making any beer? Are you > having successes or failures? Tried anything new? Got a favorite recipe > to pass along? For myself, I have developed a fondness for coriander in my > witbeer to the point where I grow my own cilantro to harvest the seeds. I > let my hops go for a time when I can get them transplanted into a more weed > free area. Funny, I've relaxed my beer brewing schedule this past year when I ramped up on wine making October 2004. Now that the 2005 harvests are happily resting in carboys, I've been catching up on the HBD and also noticed how quiet things have become lately. (remember when your post might not make it until the following day's digest due to the digest length limits?) I feel like I've come full-circle on my beers. Got a bit bored with the standard stuff and started experimenting with adjuncts and such. Now I'm coming back to the classics. My beer brewing schedule has been as follows: July 05- Karmeliet clone (corriander, sweet orange peel- both were a bit too light, but I was afraid to OD on these. The corriander was homegrown for me too ;). Used WLP400 Belgian Wit yeast, along with a longish secondary. When it came time to bottle condition, I think the yeast gave up, and I ended up with a fairly flat product. Oct 05- dunkelweizen. Pretty standard affair. Dec 05- plan to whip up a 8-10% barleywine, and bottle a Dec 2003 barleywine still in the carboy (tertiary). The 2005 year was a wash for the hop vines this year too. Some squirrels took an interest in the younger rhizomes of one varietal, so only the Mt Hood survived- but interestingly didn't produce a single cone (despite being 3 years old, and producing the previous 2 years. Whats up with that?) BTW, I'm hoping more of you vintners join the HVD. Its really quiet there too: http://hbd.org/mailman/listinfo/hvd Rama SF bay area Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 07 Nov 2005 20:42:24 -0500 From: lyona at umich.edu Subject: A true honeymoon So, I'm getting married in July 2006 and my fiancee suggested I register for some homebrew equipment (I'm so glad I'm marrying her!). The only problem is that most/all homebrew stores don't seem to offer online registry options. It's not that surprising as most shops out there are mom and pop operations and their websites aren't always the most sophisticated, but I couldn't even set up a "wish list" that could be viewed by others on Beer, Beer, and More Beer's website! That was especially frustrating, as I would like to register for one of their stainless conical fermenters - maybe I'm just getting greedy! :) So, I'm wondering if the list has any ideas about how to electronically register for homebrew products in a way that is easiest for the gift giver? Suggestions on or off list are appreciated. Thanks! -Aaron Return to table of contents
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