HOMEBREW Digest #4924 Sun 01 January 2006

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  Dry yeast - one more chance (Greg Brewer)
  Re: Water Analysis (Paul Waters)
  Re: brewing software ("Greg 'groggy' Lehey")
  Refractometer calibration ("David Houseman")
  Happy New Year ("Pat Babcock")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Sat, 31 Dec 2005 14:16:58 -0600 From: Greg Brewer <gbrewer1 at gmail.com> Subject: Dry yeast - one more chance The only times I have used dry yeast were with my very first kit batch in 1996 (Muntons), then again a few years ago when I tried Nottingham in an ag ipa. Both those experiences left me unimpressed, which is why I have used liquid yeasts exclusively otherwise. However, I have seen some good reports regarding Safale US56 and am willing to give dry yeast another chance. I ordered a pack by mail and thought I'd try it in an upcoming AG imperial stout, and want to be sure I maximize my odds for favorable results. I am wondering what experience with this yeast others are willing to share, and how to best go about using it. Regarding dry yeast rehydration, the archives suggest that there is no obvious benefit to rehydrating, but if you are doing it use warm water, not wort, and pitch it within 30 minutes. As for starters, the consensus is they are not necessary with dry yeast, but I do not see why a starter could hurt given a relatively high OG (1.090) and I have some canned starter wort ready to use. Using two packs of yeast would certainly be easier but I only have one and big starters have always improved my results. So unless I am convinced to do otherwise, my plan is to prepare a well-aerated starter using rehydrated US56 the week before I brew and pitching that directly in my wort (no step up). Thoughts? Happy New Year! Greg Chicago Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 31 Dec 2005 13:06:19 -0800 (PST) From: Paul Waters <pwaters3 at yahoo.com> Subject: Re: Water Analysis Reading all the messages about water analysis it seems that all the water analyses seem to be lacking or the information is really not applicable for brewing. If I wanted to get a sample done specifically for homebrewing, does anybody know which lab would I want to send it to? Paul W Mad Cow Brewing Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 1 Jan 2006 13:46:39 +1030 From: "Greg 'groggy' Lehey" <grog at lemis.com> Subject: Re: brewing software On Sunday, 25 December 2005 at 0:56:14 -0800, Bob Tower wrote: > Ken Pendergrass asks about brewing software, specifically for Mac. > Well, I am a Mac-person, and I haven't found anything better than > ProMash. Unfortunately, it is not ported for Mac. However, if you get > the Windows emulater Virtual PC, ProMash will run flawlessly on your > Mac (I've heard other apps don't work quite so well, but all I use > the Virtual PC for is to run ProMash so I don't mind). It's worth the > trouble. There are a couple of open source packages that will probably work on Mac: Qbrew (http://www.usermode.org/code.html) Brewnix (http://brewnix.sourceforge.net/) Brewsta (http://sourceforge.net/projects/brewsta/) None of them are like ProMash, but you might have fun investigating them. Greg - -- Finger grog at lemis.com for PGP public key. See complete headers for address and phone numbers. Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 31 Dec 2005 23:02:10 -0500 From: "David Houseman" <david.houseman at verizon.net> Subject: Refractometer calibration Suspecting that perhaps I should check the calibration of my refractometer (RHB32-ATC) I compared it to a sugar water solution. While I don't have pure water, I do have a very soft (water softener) water. The refractometer read a little high with water while my hydrometer was dead on 1.000 at 60oF. Refractometer adjusted to read 0 with water at 20oC. With sugar water used on both, they were not aligned. Adjusted the refractometer set screw to match the hydrometer. Tested this over a range of sugar-water dilutions and they tracked until I got down to about 1.043 at which point the refractometer was off by 0.35. So my question is, should the readings be linear for the entire range of the hydrometer or only over some subset? I assume the hydrometer is the more accurate of the two instruments since the refractometer only cost me about $60. But then I probably only paid $6-9 for the hydrometer. Anyone use both and calibrate them together? Which to trust? Thanks, Dave Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 1 Jan 2006 00:59:52 -0500 From: "Pat Babcock" <pbabcock at hbd.org> Subject: Happy New Year Greetings, Beerlings! Take me to you lager... A most Happy New Year to y'all! Hope all your brews in 2006 are most satisfying! -p Return to table of contents
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