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Messages - Slowbrew

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1
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Chris White on sequencing yeast genomes
« on: February 18, 2017, 06:22:46 AM »
Interesting interview.  Thanks for sharing.

I'll admit I'm not up to a science journal article yet this morning.  I'll save that for later.   ::)

Paul

2
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Starting them young
« on: February 18, 2017, 06:02:37 AM »
It's fun when they want to help.  Kids pick up on everything which can be a blessing and a curse sometimes. 

My son, now an employed civil engineer, wasn't very interested in helping on brew days but learned an awful lot just being around the process.  In a freshman science class (high school) the teacher started a unit on yeast and asked the class if anyone knew what yeast was used for.  Mike said "brewing!" and gave a 10 minute improv on the mashing through bottling process.  The class eventually got around to things like bread and penicillin.  8^)

Keep that smile on her face as long as you can.  Memories last forever.

Paul

3
Kegging and Bottling / Re: New to kegging
« on: February 09, 2017, 10:29:12 AM »
I bought most of my kegs off e-bay many years ago.  No good current recommendations for retailers. 

Be careful buying CO2 tanks off e-bay.  I have one some CO2 places won't fill because it's tagged as belonging to Coke.  Kind of a pain.

You do not need 2 CO2 bottle to serve 2 beers.  One is plenty.  You may only need a splitter for the gas line if bother beers are served at the same dispensing pressure.  If you need two serving pressures you will need to add a ganged regulator connected to your main regulator.

I would recommend more than 2 kegs if you want to keep 2 on tap.  I'd probably get 4.  Two on tap, two being filled.  Otherwise you will have times with only one, or none, beers on tap.

There are many threads on kegging on the forum.  Do a little searching and I'm sure you will start getting ideas.

Welcome the party!!

Paul

4
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast Disasters
« on: February 09, 2017, 10:19:45 AM »
I was cutting it close with only a smack-pack, no starter. Had already begun the brew. Smacked the pack and half the contents went flying across the kitchen. WTF! It is a smack-pack after all! And, at 165 lbs, I'm not exactly Arnold Swartzenegger!

I gave up Wyeast for a while after that. Now I'm mostly all dry yeast anyway, so it isn't likely to happen again.

Some people take the word "smack" too literally!  ;)

Not always though.  Since wyeast changed there packaging I've had 2 packages fail.  For the record I don't "smack" them either.  I generally trap the bag in the package under my hand and apply enough steady pressure to pop it.  It's no fun when everything sprays out the side of the package when you've barely applied any pressure at all.

I've also pitched starters into the wrong beers on brew days.  At least once, I think one of the beers was better.  8^)

Right now I have an overflowing blow off bucket that I need to clean up (and keep forgetting to).  I decided to use a smaller container than usual which was apparently a mistake.

Sometimes yeast happens.

Paul

5
The Pub / Re: HELL YEAH!!!
« on: February 08, 2017, 11:51:08 AM »
I missed most of the game taking my daughter back to college.  I saw the 2 drives down field for TD+2 and decided I was tired and went to bed.  Football isn't really my thing most days.

I thought it stunk that Brady's jersey got stolen though.  Some people feel entitled to stuff that doesn't belong to them, I guess.

Glad to hear it was a good game this year.  The Super Bowl is usually the worst game of the year to actually watch, which is why I don't normally watch it.

And for the record, I'm not grumpy, just wasn't very interested.

Paul

6
If you purge the empty keg from the bottom with co2 there will be far less o2 than plain air. Purging with co2 by pushing out sanitizer is the best way, but not absolutely necessary. Racking beer into plain air, then venting the PRV with co2 would be the least effective because you already exposed the swirling beer to air during the racking.

Got it.  So volumes aside, is there more exposure to air by racking 5 gallons into an un-purged keg or by letting 5 gallons sit in a bottling bucket for 30 minutes while you fill and cap bottles??

The big difference between the two is, I believe, the yeast in the bottles scavenges the oxygen during carbonation.  Unless you prime your keg to naturally carbonate, you don't get that benefit.

I think I'm the only person here who does naturally carb all my kegs.  I tend to brew far enough ahead and really don't like "wasting" CO2 I've paid for that priming sugar and time work well for me.

I store my clean kegs under pressure so they are at least partially purge when I rack beer into them.  I add prepared priming sugar after I fill the keg.  Close it up and hit with a bit of pressure to seal the lid and stick it in my storage cabinet.  By the time I use it, it's good to go.

Paul

7
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Help! Wheat DME or normal DME
« on: February 05, 2017, 06:01:54 AM »
I believe Jim was pointing out the difference in volumes you would be adding.

1.5l of non-wheat DME would dilute the wheat level in main batch (slightly).  If you decanted, you would add mostly yeast very little of the starter beer.

Works either way and no one would notice which was done.

Paul

8
The Pub / Re: Recommend a mail-order beer store please
« on: February 03, 2017, 08:06:02 AM »
All I can offer is wishes of good luck with your endeavor. 

It sounds like a great idea but in Iowa the whole market is tightly controlled by the State.  Anything being shipped into the state is subject to all import duties, taxes and distribution regulations as the beer on your grocer's shelves.  Since you're already paying retail the taxes are calculated on that value.  It gets very expensive, very fast.

My wife and I looked at one of those wine-of-the-month things a few years back.  Seemed like a fun idea but at check out when you put in a Iowa address the monthly fee went from ~$50/mo to ~$115/mo.  It lost some of it's appeal at that point.   ::)

I hope you find a good source.

Paul

9
Same story as most when it comes to my first beer.  I made it 19 years ago and only vaguely remember anything about it.  I jumped right in with an "Advanced Extract Kit".   ;D  Which basically meant it included some crystal malt that was steeped for 30 minutes before boiling and liquid yeast.

It was good enough to get me to brew a second batch.  It took a few years to be willing to share my beer with people outside the house.  Many of the first batches were awful but they got better.  I think my all-grain batches must be decent now because I hear from people who tell me some mutual friend was raving about this or that beer.  That kind of thing can keep you going awhile.   :D

To be completely truthful here, I still bomb a batch now and then.  I kegged a Farmhouse Saison (new to me recipe) last night that will take some convincing to make me believe it's any good.  ::).  Who knows?  Someone may like it.

Welcome back to the obsession!

Paul
Paul

10
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Message to the forum. from me.
« on: January 30, 2017, 05:48:42 AM »
I'll try to be careful here.  I have a tendency to make sarcastic comments and derail conversations, not just here but everywhere I go.  I have typed many replies on this board that I deleted before posting because they didn't feel "right".  Welcome to my sociological world problems.   ???

That being said; I have watched the battle around LODO on this forum and chosen to stay out of it.  I haven't looked into the actual processes and do not have time to at this point in my life.  I have seen instances where our moderators have made some defensive/offensive statements and dropped the gauntlet seemingly because they personally disagree with the thread.

I ask that we all pause, and reread our own posts before hitting the 'post" button.  Kind of like reading to the wall in grade school.  Most offense can be avoided by just taking time to think about how what you say will be perceived.

I have thought many times lately "here we go, it's the NB Brew-ha-ha again".  Please don't let hurt feelings tear apart a great resource.  I came here after the NB Brewer forum blew up and most of the members with useful comments migrated elsewhere.

Let's all try to make this a place where differing opinions can be discussed, not fought about.

To the Mods, Thanks for all you do.

Paul

11
Equipment and Software / Re: Hard piped Propane burner issues.
« on: January 29, 2017, 10:30:13 AM »
From the rules and FAQs section of the forum.

https://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=20.0

Paul

12
All Grain Brewing / Re: All Grain Questions
« on: January 25, 2017, 03:14:50 PM »
Do the kettles (excluding the mash tun for now) have a pick-up tube that can pickup liquid from deeper in the vessel?  Without a pick tube you would leave quite a bit behind on each transfer.

In the mash tun, how does the drain piping connect to the screen?

Some pictures might help folks figure out if your numbers are "normal".

As Jim said, 16 gallon kettles may be a bit large for 5 gallon batches.  I have a 12 gallon stock pot for my boil kettle that gives me a ton of space, which is nice, but my evaporation rate is pretty high.  I use a cooler as my mash tun so my setup is completely different from yours and really can't compare much with the setup you have.

Paul

13
The Pub / Re: Songs you never want to hear again.
« on: January 20, 2017, 11:40:59 AM »
I can't believe no one has mentioned Air Supply.  Literally any song by Air Supply (mostly because they all sound alike).

I'm also sorry I decided to read thread while I ate lunch.  I'll claim was part of my weight loss program.  :o

When my kids asked me why all the male singers in the 80's were high tenors I told them because the record company contracts took their souls and their junk as the cost of fame.  If you wanted to keep your plumbing you went in to opera.  ;D

Paul

14
All Grain Brewing / Re: Hop Bag or no?
« on: January 18, 2017, 03:03:30 PM »
is it really necessary to do that though? It was my understanding that it may be good to have the break and hop material in the fermentor? or at least didn't matter enough that it wont change flavors.

I've always read that as "it's good to have SOME trub and hop material make it into the fermenter".  I would put all of it in.

That said I use a 5 gallon paint strainer bag and a hop spider type thing I built to keep the majority of the hops out the fermenter.  It make removing the hops so much easier and keeps most of the plant material out of my floor drains.  I haven't noticed any utilization issues but I am not a big fan of really hoppy beers so I may not notice.

For me, it is a convenience thing for the most part.

Paul

So whats the difference n having all or some? I have always just put basically all of what was in the kettle into my fermenter. Im not experienced wnough to say whether this has had a huge impact on my flavor but I haven't experienced anything I would say is an off flavor, or grassy. Not tryint o put you down, just trying to understand!

The biggest difference is the amount crud you need deal with when you rack out of the fermenter.  I have a valve on my boil kettle with a siphon pickup.  If I'm not careful I can suck all kinds of trub out of the kettle.  I stop transferring when basically all the clear wort is gone.  That leaves most of the gunk behind. 

I can't really say if it makes a difference because I have never dumped my kettle into the fermenter.  I've always minimized how much I transferred.

What I've seen in print has been "don't put all the trub in the fermenter but a small amount may be beneficial to yeast health".  I 've accepted it as fact I guess with no data to use to support it.

Paul

15
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: thermomoter broke
« on: January 18, 2017, 10:34:15 AM »
Check them with a magnet.  If they stick to the magnet they are made of steel (or at least something iron based) and they should not be an issue.

If they don't stick to the magnet they could be lead, but are not necessarily lead.  Many inert metals are not magnetic either.

I have broken a thermometer in a batch too.  I didn't worry about it too much and used the wort anyway.  (it's taking all I have not finish this with a  joke about lead poisoning symptoms making it hard to think.  8)

I know it isn't the best answer but it's all I've got right now.

Paul

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