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General Category => General Homebrew Discussion => Topic started by: jlowsho on November 18, 2010, 09:45:14 PM

Title: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: jlowsho on November 18, 2010, 09:45:14 PM
New to the board and ridiculously green to brewing. In fact this Xmas I plan on scooping up a home brewing kit, but some concerns are quickly floating to the top.

1. Which beginner kit out the AHA adovcate? Piece together myself or is there a literal kit available that experienced brewers approve of?

2. Materials that equipment is made out of. What's a fermentor supposed to be made out of? How about a carboy? How much of this comes into play when brewing?

If I am totally missing a beginners/total ignoramous portion of the forums I encourage you to point me towards it and I'll do my own reading. I'm not looking for any short cuts, but I'm not sure where to even start looking for the answers to these concerns or any others that might surface.


Thanks in advance,

Jake
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: morticaixavier on November 18, 2010, 09:49:31 PM
no stupid questions... gotta start somewhere. Find a local homebrew supply shop. either in the real world or online and they will ussually have a starter kit with a bucket, maybe a carboy, approriate tubing, racking stuff etc. a funnel. they don't usually come with a kettle but to start with if you are doing extract you can use a cheap canning kettle available at most hardware or kitchen stores. I like carboys but alot of other folks don't for good reason so you can start with a bucket. I might suggest getting one with a spigot but that's neither here for there. more experienced folks will fill in the holes I left behind I am sure.
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: bluesman on November 18, 2010, 09:55:48 PM
I would recommend getting some good books like "How to Brew" by John Palmer and Ray Daniels, "Designing Great Beers".
This along with joining us here at the AHA forum for questions and answers you'll be able to be determine the right path.
I would recommend starting out with an extract APA kit.

Welcome to the AHA forum

Good Luck!
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: garyg on November 18, 2010, 09:56:51 PM
Hi Jake,

Check out "Get Started" in the Let's Brew section of the AHA website: http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/pages/lets-brew/get-schooled/get-started.  You'll find info on equipment, ingredients, etc. Plus you can download a copy of Zymurgy: An Introduction To Homebrewing.

Welcome to the hobby!  If you are like most of us, it will quickly become an obsession.

Cheers!
Gary
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: jeffy on November 18, 2010, 10:00:59 PM
It is a very good idea to go to the homebrew store for the first kit, as mortx said.  Almost everyone of these stores has a couple of different levels of starter kit, you know, the basic kit, plus upgrades.  They should be able to advise you.  
Brew what you want to drink.
If there's a homebrew club in your area, check out their next meeting.  These folks are mostly harmless.
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: jlowsho on November 19, 2010, 12:22:37 AM
Thanks for the warm welcome and great advice. I will be sure to check out the suggested reading material ASAP. I'll also start googling for local brewers. We do have a brewing store (or used to..) so I assume they are around here somewhere.
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: Hokerer on November 19, 2010, 01:20:15 AM
Thanks for the warm welcome and great advice. I will be sure to check out the suggested reading material ASAP. I'll also start googling for local brewers. We do have a brewing store (or used to..) so I assume they are around here somewhere.

Along that vein, you might want to put your location in your profile.  Who knows who on here might be close by.
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: jlowsho on November 19, 2010, 02:07:28 PM
Good idea, about the location.

The magazine/website was a great suggestion and a very informative read.

One thing interesting I noticed was that there was an offhanded mention of there being different recipes for different fermenters. The article hints that the recipes it has are mention for a plastic fermenter rather than a glass carboy.

Anyone have any feedback specifically on glass vs. plastic fermenters? I read a review that claims it actually does something to the taste of the final product to ferment in plastic.
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: euge on November 19, 2010, 06:09:14 PM
That's potentially contentious but as long as the bucket is HDPE food grade it's perfectly fine. Use one like this:http://www.northernbrewer.com/brewing/brewing-equipment/fermenting-equipment/buckets/7-9-gal-fermenting-bucket.html (http://www.northernbrewer.com/brewing/brewing-equipment/fermenting-equipment/buckets/7-9-gal-fermenting-bucket.html)

Good luck welcome to the AHA. Ask questions. Lots.
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: corkybstewart on November 19, 2010, 06:24:33 PM
I've got glass, plastic and stainless steel fermenters and I challenge anyone to figure out which beer was fermented in each type. As long as you use acceptable equipement brewing is all about the brewer and his/her attention to detail. 
Plastic is great for short term fermentation, up to 5 or 6 weeks, and that's longer than 90% of the batches you brew will be in the fermenter.
Buckets are easy to clean, easy to store and if you drop one it will not shatter and cut your foot off.
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: euge on November 19, 2010, 06:32:00 PM
BTW who is this "Vertan"? Never seen him/her post before... ::)
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: tubercle on November 19, 2010, 06:36:17 PM
Ask the Tubercle any question you would like little grasshopper.

 Tubercle will give you the answer and the the experts will correct him with the right one :'(
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: theDarkSide on November 19, 2010, 06:37:59 PM
BTW who is this "Vertan"? Never seen him/her post before... ::)

Isn't he that robot made up of 5 other robots? Oh wait, that's Voltron :)

Good luck jlowsho with your new obsession!
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: bonjour on November 19, 2010, 06:58:48 PM
How to Brew is a MUST. 
If there is a club anywhere near you, join it.  They have made every mistake that you will ever think of. The best way to learn.  And don't be afraid to take your beer to them.
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: jlowsho on November 21, 2010, 01:07:57 AM
Checked out our local brew shop. The proprietor is going to secure a starter kit for me so I can support our local business. She walked myself and a buddy through the whole process and informed us that she grinds grains for free and said there is in fact a club here in town.

I now have my finger on the pulse of local home brewing. I'll will be sure to keep you all updated as this story developes.

Vertan is German for a whale's vagina. ( I hope Ron Burgandy's sense of humor is welcome)
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: oscarvan on November 23, 2010, 03:26:59 PM
Checked out our local brew shop. The proprietor is going to secure a starter kit for me so I can support our local business. She walked myself and a buddy through the whole process and informed us that she grinds grains for free and said there is in fact a club here in town.

I now have my finger on the pulse of local home brewing. I'll will be sure to keep you all updated as this story developes.

Vertan is German for a whale's vagina. ( I hope Ron Burgandy's sense of humor is welcome)

Good on you. I did the same thing. I could have saved some $$ buying off the internet, but spending my money locally is preferred. We have a booming little store here in Bethlehem (Keystone Homebrew Supply excuse the plug) and the people are very knowledgeable and very helpful. Plus, if something is amiss (like a bad thread on a tap) you run back and exchange it without two more shipping charges and another week. Plus, the yeast and hops come out of the fridge and are still cold when you put them in your fridge at home. Plus, they have tastings......yum. And they support the brew club which meets right next door, in fact, most of the people working in the store belong to the club..... and so on and so forth......

I'll order on line if I can save a LOT of money, or an item is not available....but I always try to spend my money in town first.
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: jeffy on November 23, 2010, 04:19:27 PM
Checked out our local brew shop. The proprietor is going to secure a starter kit for me so I can support our local business. She walked myself and a buddy through the whole process and informed us that she grinds grains for free and said there is in fact a club here in town.

I now have my finger on the pulse of local home brewing. I'll will be sure to keep you all updated as this story developes.

Vertan is German for a whale's vagina. ( I hope Ron Burgandy's sense of humor is welcome)



I'll order on line if I can save a LOT of money, or an item is not available....but I always try to spend my money in town first.

Words to live by.  Really.
Title: Re: Beginner's Post, Seeking Vertan's Advice
Post by: skyler on November 23, 2010, 07:53:49 PM
BTW who is this "Vertan"? Never seen him/her post before... ::)

You totally stole my idea. I was going to say, "Don't take Vertan's advice, he only brews martian beer."