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Messages - rbowers

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Uncovered an issue with my pump the last two brew days.  I have a chugger SS head pump (hope this threads ok, not a march pump?).  The pump has worked great for 5+ years but the last two runs it will periodically stop pumping fluid though I still hear the motor running.  It seems to go to a higher pitch when this happens.  I turn it off, give it a few minutes rest, and it works again- for awhile, until the same process happens again.  I have an electric single tier setup and continuously recirc thru the entire mash with a heat exchanger in the HLT.  I did do a hop stand at 190 x 30min the first brew day it malfunctioned.  Could cycling the extra high temps for so long have damaged it?  Figure it’s time to take it apart and see what’s potentially going on inside.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Belgian wit "orange peel stand"
« on: May 03, 2018, 04:12:43 PM »
All excellent suggestions.  This will be an annual spring brew so will do some experimenting.  May go with the steep after flameout this year.  Could also add some to vodka, steep, and add with a dropper to finished poured beer to judge the difference.  Thanks!

General Homebrew Discussion / Belgian wit "orange peel stand"
« on: May 02, 2018, 10:25:05 PM »
Brewing up a wit tomorrow.  Did the same recipe last year which includes additions of fresh citrus peel around 5 min left in boil.  Would it be better to consider doing a hop stand like rest around 180-190 for a period of time after the boil and add them then to extract citrus flavors with hope of retaining more aromatics and flavor in the finished beer.  Was very pleased with results last year, just always looking to try new things.

Yeast and Fermentation / Sulfur bomb
« on: April 27, 2018, 12:13:01 PM »
I brewed up a pale ale recipe about 10 days ago.  Fermented with WLP060 for 5 gal and cry havoc strain for the other 5 gal.  The WLP 060 was kept at 66F for 24hrs then 68 for 5 days and raised to 72 to finish out.  It attenuated well, going from 1.055 to 1.013 over ten days.  I took the gravity reading yesterday and it tastes strongly of sulfur, muddled hop flavor, and all around a little dull.  The yeast was a second generation, originally harvested and washed after a Kolsch recipe.  I harvested it about 2 weeks after brewing the Kolsch and used it within 5 days for the pale ale, using a small starter to get it going.   The WLP060 I understand is a blend that may contain a lager strain. I assume that's where the sulfur comes from.  Is this expected?  Is it possible the ratios of the yeast blend significantly tipped to the lager strain for the second generation pitch?  How can I get rid of the sulfur flavor/aroma?  Should I leave it on the yeast longer?  What about temp?  Never had this problem before and I'm hoping it'll clean up.  I haven't tried the cry havoc batch yet so hopefully that'll be different.  It's been fermenting at 62F and seems about done.  Haven't tried the Kolsch either as it is cold conditioning.  Thanks

General Homebrew Discussion / Hop stands and bitterring addition
« on: April 12, 2018, 04:11:30 PM »
When doing a hop stand say for 30min at 180-190F (held constant by electric element) you will likely get some AA isomerization from the hop stand hops added after the boil- or at least that is my understanding/assumption.  Will you continue to get isomerization from your 60 min addition bittering hops and if so, how much?  Going to brew an APA with a 60 min addition, 30min hop stand at 180 or so, and dry hop.  Accounting for just the 60 min bitterring charge I assume about 23 IBUs (1oz of pacific jade 14.3%AA in a 12 gal batch).  The hop stand hops are going to contribute about 15IBUs assuming about 10% utilization (what I have read is best estimate).  Looking to get around 37-38 IBU total.  Is there a chance continued isomerization of 60min addition during the hop stand will push it much higher?  How much higher?

Beer Recipes / Re: Southern Hemisphere Pale Recipe
« on: April 12, 2018, 02:20:59 PM »
Alright here is what I have come up with. Bring further suggestions.  Wanted to try a hop stand on this batch (never done before).  I have an electric set up so should be easy to maintain a temp.

12 gal batch
OG: 1.052
IBU ~37-38
SRM 6-7

92% American 2 Row
4% Carapils
4% Caramel 60

Pacific Jade 14.3% 1oz @ 60min (23.1 IBU)
1oz each amarillo 8.6%/galaxy 14% /nelson 12.5%/wakatu 7.1% for 30 min hopstand @ ??180F (assuming ~10% utilization maybe gets me ~15 IBUs??)
Dry Hop 5 day 1oz each of amarillo/nelson/pacific jade (0 IBU)

Going to split batch between 2nd gen of American Ale Blend (WLP060) sitting on a kolsch currently and cry havoc 1st gen (1.5L starter)

Water: Ca:110, Cl ~50, Mg 18, SO4 ~200, Na 16 or thereabouts

Curious about the hopstand and the temp.  Go longer or higher temp/lower temp?  Like I said, never did one before.

Beer Recipes / Re: Southern Hemisphere Pale Recipe
« on: April 08, 2018, 12:30:01 AM »
Malt bill will be something simple like:
95% American 2 row
5% crystal 40-60
Maybe throw in a little Vienna or Munich (5-10%) and reduce 2 row

Hop flavor/aroma likely to steer away from piney flavors, head more to tropical/fruit/citrusy.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Suddenly cloudy beer
« on: April 06, 2018, 11:02:15 PM »
I try to clean the lines between kegs.  The IPA is 2 months out since brew Day, the mild prob 3 months.  Would you not expect some flavor changes with infection?

General Homebrew Discussion / Suddenly cloudy beer
« on: April 06, 2018, 08:57:53 PM »
I have noticed I have two kegs (rye IPA and English mild) that have suddenly gone cloudy despite being brilliantly clear earlier.  The mild especially was very clear.  Both kegs are probably 75% empty.  They Taste about the same currently as they did before, the IPA perhaps a little fuller.  Both hold a nice head still.  They have not been moved out of the keezer since initial placement there.  The rye IPA was fined with gelatin, the mild was naturally clear with a high floc yeast.  Any ideas what could be going on?

Beer Recipes / Southern Hemisphere Pale Recipe
« on: March 29, 2018, 08:01:11 PM »
Trying to use up some random hops I have in the freezer that have accumulated for one reason or another.  I was thinking an American Pale Ale with mostly NZ/AU hops (it just so happens to be what I have on hand).  Have not used these much before or do not have firm recollections of their characteristics and how they may go together. 

2 oz Nelson Sauvin
1 oz Wakatu
1 oz Galaxy

Also have:
2oz of Amarillo
1oz citra (lupulin)
1oz mosaic (lupulin)
1oz cascade
1oz czech saaz whole hops

I have read amarillo can go well together with some of the NZ/AU hops above. 
Any recommendations on flavor/aroma combos?  Mix it all together and add at 15/5/Whirlpool and Dry Hop?  Will use whatever is left out for a 60 min addition. 

Will target 35-38 IBUs or so.  Simple malt base of 95% 2 row, 5% crystal 40 or so. 

No doubt going by the LHBS so could supplement other hops too if someone has a suggestion but trying to clear out the freezer a bit and use what I have.
Last thing- some of these hops are 2+yrs old but are in original vacuum package and in the chest freezer the whole time.  Any concern they may be suboptimal?  Thanks

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Smooth Bitterness in an IPA
« on: March 20, 2018, 02:56:30 PM »
Lots of good suggestions.  I have been trying the last several batches to dial in pH a bit more and also tinker with the water profile.  Since starting to do that I do not have a lot of IPA batches under my belt so probably start there.  I do not think I have ever brewed a beer with really high sulfate.  My tap water profile is really benign stuff, when I have had it tested there is almost no sulfate in it and I have never added large amounts (usually under 100ppm in the end). 

Interesting comments about pH though.  Most batches I remember being a little harsher were done without measuring pH.  So a pale beer with arbitrary amounts of gypsum added certainly could have been running high on pH.

I figure I will start with making sure pH is dialed in and also may keeping an even Cl and SO4 levels around 100-150ppm. 

The timing of hops may also be something to explore.  I brewed a pale ale last fall with no 60 min addition, a small FWP, and lots of late hops aiming for 30 IBUs.  That ended up on the other end of the spectrum really wishing it had a little more bitterness.  Maybe go with a small bittering charge and lots of late hops/Whirlpool.

Anyhow, more experiments warranted obviously.  Thanks for all the tips.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Beer gun and warm beer
« on: March 20, 2018, 02:09:58 AM »
Went ahead and gave it a try without the chill. Absolutely no foam problems.  Good to know for future batches.

General Homebrew Discussion / Beer gun and warm beer
« on: March 19, 2018, 02:11:28 PM »
Going to bottle a brett saison today for the first time using a beer gun.  The beer is not carbonated- I am choosing to add sugar (done this morning) and prime in the bottle.  The beer has been sitting in a keg, dry hops now removed, for the last week at ~68F.  It had some natural carbonation to it but for the last week I have been letting off gas a few times a day.  I assume it is relatively flat or maybe has a little natural carbonation to it at this time. 

My question is: If I bottle it warm with the beer gun am I going to have foam issues even if the beer is not really carbonated?  I wouldn't imagine there would be too much CO2 left to come out of carbonation and it has been sitting at room temp anyways so there is no differential to cause extra foaming, right?  If I do chill it do I need to worry about dropping residual yeast out of suspension or if it is cold for just a short time will there be plenty around to carb up the bottles?

General Homebrew Discussion / Smooth Bitterness in an IPA
« on: March 18, 2018, 02:33:11 PM »
Curious to hear if anyone has ideas on creating a smoother bitterness in an IPA.  My attempts in the past, which I like (my wife not so much), come out on the harsher end.  Beers from New Belgium and Lagunitas for example seem to carry an inherent recognizable smoothness to them which I'd like to know how what factors to consider to drive towards that may generate that result.  I have tried using hops described as "smooth" (Magnum) but it doesn't quite get the desired result.

Is it a function of:
- Cl-:SO4 ratios in mash?- will higher Cl levels smooth out the bitterness or just mute it entirely?
- Residual Sweetness from higher FG or crystal malts that balance the bitterness differently.  I have made a cloyingly sweet IPA with too much crystal and I know that is not what I am after.
- Hop type? - other suggestions for smooth bittering hops?
- Specific yeast type?

Would just be interested to know what levers to toy with to inch towards a very smooth and drinkable IPA.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Beer Gun and Brett Beers
« on: March 08, 2018, 11:27:34 PM »
Will give it a whirl.  I always thought that would be easier than dealing with all the foam in non-brett beers- just mix it all up and fill bottles with flat beer to bottle condition.  Of course I have never had a big need to bottle non-brett here I am.

Brett was pitched 4 and a half months ago (dregs from a bottle were cultured up several weeks in advance from a bottle of Haw River Farmhouse IPA).  I assume plenty of it should be around still to ferment out priming sugar, right?  Does brett bottle condition slower than normal yeast?  There could still be some French saison yeast floating around but not sure how viable it'll be this far out. 

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