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Messages - Robert

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1
Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold
« on: November 22, 2017, 02:42:18 PM »
All of GLB' s beers did take on a different character a few years ago when they went to 175bbl (I think) fermentors; yeast just behaves differently in a different environment (geometry, hydrostatic pressure etc.)  Can't help it.  (That's what happened to Pilsner Urquell after the late 1980s.) But I clearly recall that Dort used to be made from base malt and Munich and hopped with Hallertau and Tettnang.  Now their website says it's base malt and Caramel 60 with Cascade and Mt. Hood.  But you know, despite changes and having never in 30 years been very true to style on anything (they always have made things bigger, heavier, darker than you'd expect, and the lightening resulting from the new system hasn't totally erased that) GLB  still consistently makes some of the highest quality and tastiest brews of anybody out there. BTW if you are in their distribution area grab some Ohio City Oatmeal Stout while it lasts. Delicious. And surprisingly in style!

2
All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash ph and mouth feel
« on: November 21, 2017, 05:01:20 PM »
I haven't noticed differences in mouthfeel when mashing pH is above 5.2, but I've found that beer perception tends to be 'thin' if mashing pH is allowed to be less than 5.2. I'm guessing that the low pH is enhancing the degradation of body forming proteins and beta-glucans, but I'm not really sure of the mechanism or process.

I believe I notice the difference even just between the ends of the 5.2 to 5.5 range (outside of which I will not stray!) and I perceive it to be similar at the low end to adding or overdoing a low temperature rest, so I agree with you on the cause.  I'm sure I've read plenty on the possible mechanisms but can't pin it down now (bookshelf too far from couch. )  I take it as a rule of thumb that both lower temp and pH favor protein cleavage, but I also perceive a difference in malt flavor-- can't explain that.

3
Equipment and Software / Re: Acid cleaning draft lines
« on: November 18, 2017, 03:29:06 PM »
Okay, just an update from the OP. Too soon old and too late smart, I downloaded the BA' s Draught  Beer Quality Manual.  Anyone reading this thread with questions, start there! Everyone posting here has been a great help in clarifying things, and of course homebrewers will develop their own practical solutions -- but DBQM is a welcome addition to my "library."  http://www.draughtquality.org/

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Equipment and Software / Re: Pipette -need recommndations
« on: November 13, 2017, 03:26:46 PM »
For measuring very small amounts of lactic acid for liquor treatment, I went to the pharmacy and they gave me some 1ml syringes graduated in .01ml increments. The same are included for titration in water test kits so would probably be found through scientific suppliers, but the pharmacist was handy and generous.

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Equipment and Software / Re: Acid cleaning draft lines
« on: November 10, 2017, 04:12:39 PM »
For example, the homebrewer now has antimicrobial beer lines available to him (though some say it is a waste of money and prefer to simply swap out lines more frequently at around 1/3 of the cost or to stay on top of the cleaning process keg to keg - either way works, if you are happy with the results).

That's what I'm running now and have been pretty happy with it.

https://www.morebeer.com/products/ultra-barrier-silver-antimicrobial-pvc-free-beer-tubing-316-id-foot.html?site_id=5

I wasn't aware of this product.  I'll check it out.  It seems to me though that the line itself is less of a potential problem than the faucet and disconnect with their nooks and crannies; it's prudent to disassemble everything once in a while anyway so I can understand those who just replace lines more often.

But as I suggested early in this thread, I like having as many tools as possible in the kit, so to speak, and be adaptable to use what's most expedient in any given situation.  That's pretty much my philosophy in every aspect of brewing -- there's rarely just one way to proverbially de-pelt a feline!

Thanks for the tip and link.

6
Equipment and Software / Re: Acid cleaning draft lines
« on: November 08, 2017, 08:29:15 PM »
You know I just rejoined AHA after letting my membership lapse about 25 years ago (have I been lazy or just really busy brewing? )  Two things that didn't exist back then are online forums and any decent knowledge about cleaning and sanitation.   All great advancements come at the price of some aggravation, don't they? ;)

7
Equipment and Software / Re: Acid cleaning draft lines
« on: November 08, 2017, 07:13:28 PM »

I'm kind of betting that frequent cleaning has a similar effect over time to longer less frequent contact.

And wow, you and Stevie need to relax and have a caustic-free beer.

All of my home brews are poured from caustic free lines that were filled with an EXTREMELY DANGEROUS caustic solution for 2-10 days.  The caustic in the line could liquefy a corpse given enough time.  It would take a lot longer than 15 minutes at room temperature and pressure.  Just saying.   :)

Hey, glad to see a lighter tone developing here.  But on the subject of protecting forgetful selves or clueless guests, rather than removing a line, it occurs to me, why not just put a bag over the faucet?  Like the gas station does when a pump is out of order.  Seems simpler, and takes so little effort it hardly seems like a mark of paranoia!

8
Equipment and Software / Re: Acid cleaning draft lines
« on: November 08, 2017, 06:36:24 PM »

So would lye really work differently from BLC or just faster?  Is LLC already more concentrated than BLC?

They work the same way.  LLC is stronger and probably works faster.  BLC uses a blend of potassium and sodium hydroxide for the purpose of being less harmful to metals and it still cleans lines very well given enough contact time. 

Using BLC then LLC or a home mixed lye solution is a step that only the most obsessive line cleaners take.

But like I said before, if you only leave BLC in the line for 15 minutes and you brew a lot of hoppy beers, the line might not be super clean in that amount of time.

I'm kind of betting that frequent cleaning has a similar effect over time to longer less frequent contact.

And wow, you and Stevie need to relax and have a caustic-free beer.

9
Equipment and Software / Re: Acid cleaning draft lines
« on: November 07, 2017, 05:07:16 PM »
No idea if one is more concentrated than the other. I use LLC because that is what MoreBeer sells and I was placing an order with them.
Cool.  I use BLC because that's what my LHBS sells. And I just stocked up.  I can't imagine line cleaning is fundamentally different from, say, tank cleaning.  Alkaline followed by acid. Use what you've got access to.

10
Equipment and Software / Re: Acid cleaning draft lines
« on: November 07, 2017, 04:39:25 PM »
Five Star Liquid Line Cleaner is lye. Being a liquid makes it dissolve more easily than crystals. Always add lye to water and never the other way around.

I pulled up the MSDS sheets for LLC, BLC, StarSan, Saniclean, and various other acid cleaners and beerstone removers, and they all seem to have similar compositions: LLC is sodium  hydroxide and BLC potassium, and the acid products look like just different concentrations of the same acids.  So would lye really work differently from BLC or just faster? I can imagine that you could make up a higher concentration from lye crystals, because the liquid products contain surfactants that are hard to rinse if you go over the recommended dilution. But it would just be dangerous guesswork. Is LLC already more concentrated than BLC?

11
Equipment and Software / Re: Acid cleaning draft lines
« on: November 07, 2017, 06:40:35 AM »
I've found that BLC can sometimes be insufficient for removing biologic growth in lines. That's when I pull out the warm lye solution and let that sit in the line for a few hours. It always removes biofilms.

Specifics on said warm lye solution please? And is that followed with acid and water flushes?

12
Equipment and Software / Re: Acid cleaning draft lines
« on: November 06, 2017, 07:36:24 PM »
Quote from: Robert  link=topic=30550.msg39895
[/quote

Thanks for the great info!  The method of using BLC to test the line is good to know.  But leaving BLC standing for days--well I'd rather not go for days with beer unavailable!  Today I did my regular routine--recirc BLC and flush-- then let StarSan sit for an hour or 2 with several draws along the way.  I just drew a beer, and the way it poured, smells and tastes (perfect) tells me what I need to know for now!  If you think there's any problem with that procedure I hope you'll  advise. Now I'm going to finish my beer.

In that case, you can skip the line cleaning completely for 2-4 batches if the most important thing to you is minimal downtime.  Or maybe buy one more line than you have kegs and clean the dirty line until it pours clear after at least an hour of BLC in the line.

The line you poured beer from today is likely a dirty line.  Does it really matter if you like how the beer tastes?  That is a question only you can answer.   

It takes 2-4 days of alkaline soaking and draining for a line to pour clear from a hoppy batch.  Good beer gets poured from dirty lines globally every day.
Well, I know I won't go for batches, as I notice the difference if I go the two weeks, and adding the acid step showed me the drift in quality over time using only caustic.  And I'm happily stuck with my one-line keezer for reasons of space (so downtime is an issue but I won't trade off  quality -- I'm basically a Pilsner guy so it really shows).  I think your point on taste is the key and will be my best guide.  I'll gladly add all the tools I can to my kit (thanks forum members) and ramp up my cleaning routine as I see the need. 

13
Ingredients / Re: What makes a good bittering hop?
« on: November 06, 2017, 07:01:50 PM »
Some have shown the high cohomulone thing to be BS.

Yep.  I'm thinking more and more in that direction.

I have seen several reports that the cohumulone is more soluble, adnmore gets isomorized. The original report that started the whole thing didn’t check IBUs. A couple have claimed if the IBUs are the same, you don’t notice.

One result of a search I did turned up this, which was interesting.
https://www.homebrewhedonist.com/cohumulone-alpha-acid/

Well, that would be validating since I've always thought that cohumulone did matter.  I've read enough to the contrary to start questioning it, but never done my own tests.  Maybe I don't need to and I can just go back to my old thinking.

It matters, as it is more soluble, so more iso-humulones. Several things I have read say that if you take that in into account, adjust to get the same IBU, then it doesn’t taste more harsh. More IBUs make for a harsher beer. I the things I have read.
Yeah, I had bought the whole CoH matters, then the no-it-doesn't, all on what I read.  Then lately I reconsidered again, because I started bittering  with Simcoe, SUPER low CoH.  But now I'm  willing to believe that maybe these beers seem so smooth just because they really are less bitter, while I was thinking of much-bandied-about phrases like "less aggressive perception of bitterness."  So I guess the test to do is brew the same beer with a high CoH hop--but how do you make the conversion? I mean, is there a rule-of-thumb relation between change in %CoH and change in BU?

Oops,sorry, I should have read the link Hopfenundmalz gave above! Just did. That seems to cover it.

14
Equipment and Software / Re: Acid cleaning draft lines
« on: November 05, 2017, 07:01:30 PM »
One way to tell if you are good is to use your BLC.  Recirculate normally.  Dump the line.  Then let BLC sit still in the line for 3 hours.  Then pour an ounce of the line into a clear glass or white container.  Is it clear?  If yes, then you are better than good.

If not, then expose your line to BLC for longer than 15 recycled minutes.  I don't recirculate and let the BLC sit in the lines for 2-3 days with two purges a day before it drains clear. 

The acid cleaning can be a longer than usual contact with StarSan, but this has not been needed after a few days with BLC.

Thanks for the great info!  The method of using BLC to test the line is good to know.  But leaving BLC standing for days--well I'd rather not go for days with beer unavailable!  Today I did my regular routine--recirc BLC and flush-- then let StarSan sit for an hour or 2 with several draws along the way.  I just drew a beer, and the way it poured, smells and tastes (perfect) tells me what I need to know for now!  If you think there's any problem with that procedure I hope you'll  advise. Now I'm going to finish my beer.

15
Ingredients / Re: Briess Organic Brewer's Malt reviews? Pils malt reviews?
« on: November 04, 2017, 07:40:29 PM »
I use Breiss Pilsen malt. It is good, though not comparable to Weyermann's. It's half the price, though, and in my estimation, good enough. Most beer drinkers wouldn't notice the difference.

Sent from my Coolpad 3632A using Tapatalk
But most beer drinkers aren't  brewers and we're our own worst critics, right?

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