I figured reading a hot wet surface is even more problematic because of evaporative cooling at the surface.
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IR thermometers are really picky. To be accurate, you need a non-reflective, black surface.
When working at a chemical plant, we painted black spots on each tank to measure their temps with IR. The same could be done on your carboy. A few strips of electrical tape might do the trick.
I think it should be noted (for any people wanting to built their own tower in the future), you'll also need to cut 8 pieces w/ 45 degree angles to weld into the corners on the top. I don't know why I forgot about this in my plans, but it was simple enough to add in. My burners come in this week (hopefully). Getting excited to mount the banjo burners. I'm also going to paint the frame w/ high temp paint.
If you're not having problems, DON'T GO LOOKING FOR IT!
I can't count the number of people who were making good beer, read a bunch of stuff on the internet, overthought what they were doing, and drove themselves into the ditch.
This has been a Public Service Announcement.
Maybe the brewer was going for a weizen made with pickles, curry powder, tofu, and chocolate - and they nailed it in all of its disgusting glory. Is that a 50 point beer? No.
No one is arguing buffers don't exist, only that no one with a pH meter has ever seen "5.2 mash stabilizer" buffer a mash to a pH of 5.2.
Rule for judges: If it's on the BOS table, it should be eligible for BOS.
Rule for organizers: If you don't intend to pass it to the BOS table, it better say so in the competition rules.
If more judges and organizers followed these rules, then there would be fewer problems. Anything else is unethical. If you don't have a problem with accepting money for a mead and cider entry, then you shouldn't have a problem with giving them an equal shot at an award. If BOS judges aren't giving every style an equal opportunity, then you picked the wrong BOS judges. That's true whether it's mead, American Lite Lager, a specialty beer, or anything else someone at the table might not personally approve of.