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Messages - BrewQwest

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1
Kegging and Bottling / Re: pin vs ball??
« on: March 19, 2013, 07:51:22 AM »
I also have both.. I like the pin locks because it is impossible to put the wrong fitting on the wrong post..If you have ever put a pin lock gas fitting on the liquid out fitting (or vice versa) it is a real PITA to get it off again... the good thing about the ball locks though, it the ease of releasing pressure in the keg via the pressure relief valve... none of my pin locks have a pressure relief valve in the cover so I have to remove the gas connector and push down on the poppet valve to relieve pressure... cheers!

2
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Wlp802 went fast
« on: February 20, 2013, 12:00:03 PM »
Quote from: BrewQwest
.....IMHO, your fermentation stage is only 61% completed from what you described so why would you want to do the D-rest this early? my math may be wrong and if so I apologize...cheers!!-
Man, I apologize... For some reason I computed your attenuation rate reached at point 1.020 which was (51-20)/51 = 60.7% instead of your completion percentage... And when plugging your starter size into yeastcalc it helps if I remember to put it in gallons instead of liters ...No wonder I had the cell count off by so much... doh!!!... Sorry again...

3
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Wlp802 went fast
« on: February 19, 2013, 10:00:40 PM »
First off....pitching your gallon starter is not really what you did...you made two of the one-half gallon starters which is not the same at all... did you use a stir plate? did you aerate with an aquarium pump? did you use oxygen? forgive me if I do not know your past posts, but many people coming to this forum would not know either unless you specified with more information......IMHO, your fermentation stage is only 61% completed from what you described so why would you want to do the D-rest this early? my math may be wrong and if so I apologize...cheers!!-

4
General Homebrew Discussion / Brewing Lagers
« on: February 19, 2013, 09:40:36 PM »
Though active on many other forums under various pseudonyms ( I like to lurk  ;) ) ....I always run into the very same scenario when it comes to brewing lagers....Many say they wait until winter to brew their lagers and many say by March it will be too warm to brew lagers any longer... ????????? .... I am sure there is a real world answer to this dilemma but I fail to recognize it right away.... Can some of you enlighten me??

5
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast for gallon sized fermentation
« on: February 19, 2013, 08:39:25 PM »
IMHO (in my humble opinion) a one gallon fermentor is only good for fermenting three-quarters of a gallon at most...my initial thought is for you to give it back and go buy something bigger...3/4 of a gallon, after fermentation and trub removal may give you a 6-pack of beer if you are lucky... jmho...(just my humble opinion)...Now if you were content on brewing a mead I would say differently, but that would involve honey, not barley....cheers!!

6
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Lager chamber
« on: February 19, 2013, 07:56:55 PM »
While it is true that the thermal mass of the carboy/bucket with liquid is much greater than the surrounding air and that their temperature should dominate, this is true only if you have good thermal contact between the probe and the carboy/bucket.  Unfortunately, unless you're using some sort of thermal grease or other goop between the probe head and the carboy, you don't have good thermal contact. I don't know why I never thought of using this information before.... I recently built an all-electric system with two 30 amp circuits feeding it in order to easily do back to back sessions or to reheat the HLT for hot rinse water while the boil continues...My SSR's use the very same thermal grease to thermally connect to the heat sink.. I don't know why I never drew the same correlation you just mentioned, prior to now... thank you!!! In my case, which is using the thermal sensor that came with my temperature controller, I have to try to get a hard cylinder (temp sensor) to make good contact with a curved hard surface (carboy).  Even in an ideal setting, that is a very tiny surface contact area, so thermal transfer needs to occur using the air trapped under the tape and/or through the tape itself. 

BrewQwest's observations make sense to me.  From a thermal engineering standpoint, you'd never attach a temperature probe to a surface unless you used some sort of thermal transfer material, like grease, along with it.  If you really want to know and control the temperature of the liquid in an absolute sense, you really need to use a thermowell or attach the probe better thermally.  I don't have a good feel for whether putting bubble wrap over the probe before taping it is better or not.  To me, making sure air cannot exchange between the ambient and below the tape is more important, and using bubble wrap in my opinion makes that much easier to achieve.

cheers!!--BrewQwest

7
I may have posted this in the wrong place before so I will post here ....

brewed up a 14 gallon batch of munich helles ..... inoculated one 5.5 gallon fermentor with wyeast munich lager yeast (appropriate starter) and the other with dry S-189 (appropriate sachets) rehydrated with go-ferm rehydration forumula....Pop quiz question: can anyone tell me what happened to the other 3 gallons????...the munich lager fermented at 50F and the S-189 fermented at 52F... the ambient temp in the fermentation chamber was as much as 3 degrees below the internal temp of the fermenting wort.... Had I went by ambient temp instead of internal temp, my fermentation temp would have been way too hot...see the lagering thread just below this one... cheers!!
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8
brewed up a 14 gallon batch of munich helles ..... inoculated one 5.5 gallon fermentor with wyeast munich lager yeast (appropriate starter) and the other with dry S-189 (appropriate sachets) rehydrated with go-ferm rehydration forumula....Pop quiz question: can anyone tell me what happened to the other 3 gallons????...the munich lager fermented at 50F and the S-189 fermented at 52F... the ambient temp in the fermentation chamber was as much as 3 degrees below the internal temp of the fermenting wort.... Had I went by ambient temp instead of internal temp, my fermentation temp would have been way too hot...see the lagering thread just below this one... cheers!!

9
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Lager chamber
« on: February 19, 2013, 06:42:52 PM »
So I ran the test- thermowell vs. probe attached to outside of carboy, insulated. The Johnson control probe is in my thermowell, and does not register decimal temp...just whole numbers(52f)My probe on outside of carboy runs decimals(51.5f). so the difference seems to be about 1 to max 1.5f ,as I would have expected.
Please pm me the particulars of your test....as a 1.5 degree temp swing (especially with a johnson controller) between actual and ambient, does not seem to follow the test curves plotted by many of the home brewers....especially since you just started a fermentation about a week ago and my posts are only a couple days old...thank you and cheers!!

10
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Lager chamber
« on: February 19, 2013, 06:39:07 PM »
..not as rigorous as your tests, but when I got my first conical, I tested the actual wort temperature versus the temp read by the probe velcro-ed to the side of the cone at various points during fermentation (i was seeing if it was worth it to get a thermowell), and even at high krausen the dead center of the wort was within a degree (as measured by my 24" SS thermocouple probe and Palmer Wahl reader) of the probe affixed to the side.  It was enough to make me forgo the thermowell - I always ferment on the lower side of the range anyway, so even if its 1df off, no biggie.

never tested ambient - figured it was irrelevant.

If you are using a conical.. all bets are off with my experience, as I have no experience with conicals only with fridges and other low-level fermentation chambers which the majority of home brewers have access to....If you are using pails or glass carboys then I suggest you best perform the tests yourself and I doubt there would be much difference in your findings...if there are I personally would doubt them after the many tests I have conducted on this matter... Yet, if there are, please pm me and let me know your particulars as I am preparing notes, experiences, to publish...thank you...

11
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Lager chamber
« on: February 19, 2013, 07:34:35 AM »

While it's true that ambient can be much warmer than actual wort temp, when you place your probe in contact with fermenter and insulate it, you're not measuring ambient - you're within no more than +/- 1 degree of the wort temp.

I used to think the same as your quote above, but I am one who questioned it the more I thought about it...So I performed an experiment placing three thermometers inside my fermentation chamber.  T1 was placed in a thermowell at the center of the glass carboy. T2 was taped to the outside of the glass carboy half way up its height and then insulated from the surrounding ambient air in the fermentation chamber. T3 was placed inside the chamber only to read ambient temps. Throughout the fermentation process all probes were within a degree of each other until the yeast activity began to really ramp up. At that time, T1 would follow the increase in yeast activity. T2 would lag behind a couple degrees and T3 would continue to read the ambient which was nearing 1.5 degrees lower than T2 which was 1.5-2 degrees lower than T1 which was reading the interior of the vessel. So at max yeast activity, there was a 3-3.5 degree spread between ambient and internal temps. Now if I want my yeast to ferment a lager at 52F, I want my yeast to ferment at 52F...not 55-55.5F...Ergo, the temp controller is hooked to the probe reading the internal vessel temp, not the other two... YMMV...If you have not performed this test on your own fermentations you may want to give it a try... cheers!!!

12
All Grain Brewing / Re: Overshot Mash PH
« on: February 17, 2013, 07:34:21 PM »
Um... Kai... anybody... this thread is hanging in limbo.... Kai, what were the results of you plugging in the info you wanted???? cheers!!

13
All Grain Brewing / Re: Looking for a good AG recipe book
« on: February 17, 2013, 06:55:50 PM »
I borrowed 80 Classic Brews and discovered most, if not all recipes are written for extract.

If you're talking about Brewing Classic Styles, the evolution of the book is that Palmer wanted to write a book for extract brewers and Zainasheff said he could give him a bunch of recipes, which is why the book is split into the (Zainasheff) recipe part and the (Palmer) technical part.  The recipes are all-grain recipes converted to extract versions and every recipe is given with the all-grain part at the end.  It really is an all-grain book because the all-grain recipes are given.  You have to make sure you take the reviews with a grain of salt.  Because of the way recipes convert between the two, I remember an Amazon reviewer was complaining that the recipes called for odd amounts of extract, such as needing 2.7 pounds of LME and he was complaining that he could only get LME in set amounts like cans of 3.3 pounds.  The reviewer was complaining that it is unreasonable for him to measure out less than 3.3 pounds (which is funny because when I make bread, I don't ding my recipe book because my recipe isn't broken down into using only 5 lb sacks of flour).  I'd have to see what some of the negative complaints you saw, but if we're talking about the same book then I would say the bad review missed the mark entirely.

Yup!!! BCS rocks!!! the very first recipe I made from this book tasted so good I entered it into competition and took a silver medal...what more can you ask for from a recipe book?? cheers!!

14
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Accurate thermometer
« on: February 17, 2013, 06:34:00 PM »
.. thanks for the link on the lollipop...I know some fellow brewing friends that will appreciate this...and cheers!!

15

I've been thinking about going no-boil for my starters, but there's always that nagging voice in the back of my head saying that you need to boil/sanitize everything that touches your beer. I'm assuming you've never had a contamination issue with your no boil starters?

My reasoning:  distilled water should already be safe from contamination...malta goya is already safe from contamination....when was the last time you had a contaminated soft drink beverage from either a bottle or a can?...malta goya is a barley malted beverage that comes in a bottle...As long as the flask is sanitized when you put the ingredients in there should be no worry of contamination and I have never had any...Same goes for the DME and the distilled water... when was the last time you had contaminated DME? cheers!!

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