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Messages - etbrew

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1
Equipment and Software / Re: Hot plate for boiling?
« on: June 22, 2016, 04:47:32 PM »
I've been using a cheap hot plate from Wally World to boil 1-gallon test batches. It takes a loooong time to reach a slightly rolling boil. I'm going to try my Coleman camp stove and white gas for my next test batch.

Yeah, that's what I was afraid of with a cheaper hot plate but was hoping a commercial version would be better.  Searching around nothing except for insanely expensive ones have enough wattage to provide enough power to boil 5-10 gallons.

 
Try heatsticks. Easy to make and easy to use.

Here is the website that I have used: http://www.cedarcreeknetworks.com/heatstick.htm

Googling for the website site I found several others, even youtube.

I use two 110v ones and have a raging boil. I have been using them since 2008. Jim Spencer in Basicbrewing even had a show on using one where it one was placed in the pot ontop of a stove.

Thanks for the link.  It's is an interesting and economical way to tackle it.  I haven't decided exactly what I'm going to do but when I do I'll post it here with some pics.

2
Equipment and Software / Re: Hot plate for boiling?
« on: June 07, 2016, 05:45:49 AM »
I don't know if that would give enough clearance for an element. Look at induction burners if your pot is capable.

I think you are right.  I would have to either fab my own false bottom or modify one to get the proper clearance. 

3
Equipment and Software / Re: Hot plate for boiling?
« on: June 06, 2016, 06:59:30 PM »
I was thinking something for my 10 gallon brew kettle.  I really need to go electric and was trying to do something on the cheap to get started.  Something like this: https://www.katom.com/516-LKR220.html Not sure if it is sturdy enough or if it is powerful enough.

I would say it's probably no to both. For the price of that burner you could very likely fully outfit an electric kettle and PID.

I was looking at the blichmann boil coil because I could still use my immersion chiller but it is pricy.  The heating elements sold at The Electric Brewery are much less expensive but I can't put my immersion chiller in the kettle...

Why not use this:

http://www.homebrewsupply.com/anvil-false-bottom-10.html?gclid=Cj0KEQjwvtS6BRC8pcKn8OXIg_wBEiQAqtpiz_fWelmzD2Agp_4HzApN3cugUAdba5DbWsZfm7pL0EMaAjsE8P8HAQ

It would serve double duty. Your IC could rest on it and it could serve to filter out some break material. The cost of outfitting your kettle with a 4.5 kW or 5.5kW element, fittings and controller should be < $150.

Yup, something like that would work perfectly.  Thanks.

4
Equipment and Software / Re: Hot plate for boiling?
« on: June 06, 2016, 06:39:53 PM »
I was thinking something for my 10 gallon brew kettle.  I really need to go electric and was trying to do something on the cheap to get started.  Something like this: https://www.katom.com/516-LKR220.html Not sure if it is sturdy enough or if it is powerful enough.

I would say it's probably no to both. For the price of that burner you could very likely fully outfit an electric kettle and PID.

I was looking at the blichmann boil coil because I could still use my immersion chiller but it is pricy.  The heating elements sold at The Electric Brewery are much less expensive but I can't put my immersion chiller in the kettle...   

5
Equipment and Software / Re: Hot plate for boiling?
« on: June 06, 2016, 06:16:32 PM »
I was thinking something for my 10 gallon brew kettle.  I really need to go electric and was trying to do something on the cheap to get started.  Something like this: https://www.katom.com/516-LKR220.html Not sure if it is sturdy enough or if it is powerful enough.

6
Equipment and Software / Hot plate for boiling?
« on: June 06, 2016, 05:33:17 PM »
Anyone ever use an electric hotplate to boil with and if so do you have a recommendation for a particular model? 

Thanks

7
All Grain Brewing / Re: Creating recipes
« on: January 17, 2015, 06:32:16 PM »
So much great info it's difficult to quote everything on my phone. Thanks for all the input and keep it coming. I found something useless in damn near every post.

I assume you meant to say useful... :D

Great advice here as always. 

Agree completely with the suggestions of Designing Great Beers and keeping it simple

I also suggest drinking a lot of beer ;D I drink many examples of every style I can find and take copious tasting notes.  At first I could not pick out many flavors but over time I learned.  I am no expert but that exercise really helped me learn what certain styles should taste like and when I brewed an example I could compare it to what I had tasted before.

8
All Grain Brewing / Re: How well do you clean your mash tun?
« on: January 17, 2015, 05:54:45 PM »
Hot water rinse, clean with a little dish soap and rinse.  Leave ball valve open and leave cover open until completely dry.


9
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Brewing for the New Year
« on: January 09, 2015, 05:33:08 PM »
My goal is to drink only my own beer this year...of course I say that with a Heady Topper in my hand.  I thought I had enough beer to keep me going and then the holiday's happened.  Kicked the keg of IPA filling growlers to bring to parties, keg of 60/- is just about kicked for the same reason, and gave away almost all my holiday ale.  That leaves me with just about nothing left :'(

I have a barley wine fermenting but that ain't gonna be ready too soon and a smoked porter that should be ready to keg this weekend but I will be out of town.

That said I do want to brew a sour of some sort this year and my first lager.

10
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Temperature during fermentation
« on: December 30, 2014, 04:29:49 AM »
That is exactly what the ambient temp is in the room I start most of my fermentation in. I find once fermentation is active the fermentation temp is closer to 65-66 and is right where I want it. I usually move the beer to a warmer spot in the house to bring the temp up to around 68 to finish up. 

Depending on the beer style and yeast strain I'll make adjustments to that general schedule but I think you'll be fine even if you can't get it any warmer.

I had the opposite problem when I first started brewing.  I was regularly fermenting in the low to mid 70s with poor results.  I used to drink my beer because I spent all that time making it but now I drink it because I like it  ;D

 

11
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast Viability
« on: December 26, 2014, 03:09:58 PM »
I second the advice to make a starter but half a cup in one pint is too strong. 100 grams to 1 liter/quart of water. you might well want to step it up again but if you do I would decant and pitch the slurry into at least 2 and preferably 4 liters of new starter wort (200 grams of DME in 2 liters water)

Good call.  You are correct. Should have been 1/2 cup per quart. 

12
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast Viability
« on: December 26, 2014, 12:25:14 PM »
The starting gravity on this beer is 1.070 and if I was brewing it I would make at least a 1 quart starter. 

Basically you need more yeast depending on the gravity of your wort and stepping up means essentially to make a bigger starter (bigger starter=more yeast).  In this case I would suggest letting the starter you have going now ferment so you know the yeast is healthy.  When done cold crash it in the fridge like I mentioned before and make another batch of the starter wort using with 1 cup dry malt extract to 1 quart of water and add the yeast from the first starter.

Wyeast has some instructions for making starters here: http://www.wyeastlab.com/hb_makingastarter.cfm






13
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast Viability
« on: December 26, 2014, 12:00:45 PM »
Assuming the yeast is good and it starts fermenting the starter wort I would give it a few days to ferment out completely so you are sure you have a bunch of fresh healthy yeast in there. Then I would put it in the fridge, at least over night, which will cause the bulk of the yeast to drop to the bottom of the growler.  I pour off most of the wort from the yeast leaving behind just enough to swirl around and get all the yeast off the bottom of the growler.  It then goes into the wort. 

Out of curiosity, is the kit a Heady Topper clone?  Never heard of VT Ale yeast...if it is a heady topper like beer you may need to step up the starter size to have enough yeast.

14
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast Viability
« on: December 26, 2014, 10:01:15 AM »
I would make a starter with it and see what happens.  Boil 1/2 cup dry malt extract with a pint of water, cool, and pitch the yeast into the starter wort.  I use sanitized growlers with and airlock on top to make starters but if you don't have an airlock you can cover loosely with foil.

15
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Reusing yeast
« on: December 14, 2014, 07:22:13 PM »
Do you just pour the slurry into a sanitized container and store in the fridge?  How long will it be viable?  Do you wash it? 

https://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=19850.0

Thanks! 

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