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Messages - sambates

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1
All Grain Brewing / Re: Efficiency of Oats
« on: June 28, 2015, 01:13:18 PM »
I only used about 5-7 in both instances and both times were flaked. So maybe something else is going wrong, but I've only noticed it recently happening in those two batches with oats. Kinda weird...

2
All Grain Brewing / Efficiency of Oats
« on: June 16, 2015, 09:36:53 AM »
I have brewed two batches recently that contained Oats and I noticed that in both instances, my OG landed as if I did have them at all. Does anyone else have this issue? I know they won't contribute much to gravity, but if that's so, why does Beersmith calculate that into the total?

3
All Grain Brewing / Re: Using Mint
« on: June 16, 2015, 09:30:54 AM »
I agree with those saying the mint quality is definitely more of the herbal flavor from mint leaves and less of the tingle/mouth sensation we get from associations of mint.

I've used mint a few times and I've had the best results with using it in the secondary. Mint is very subtle and the aroma and flavor fades very quickly (I lose the majority of my mint quality in about 3 weeks). IMO, you will have no mint flavor or aroma left post-fermentation, if you add it in the boil. I would chop then muddle the mint in a secondary vessel or in a pint glass Transfer the beer on top of it and let it sit for a few days like a dry hop. Another way to do this would be chopping and muddling tons of mint in a mason jar and then filling it with vodka. Letting that soak and every time you lose the mint aroma or flavor, add more. Depends on your system and what you're looking for. Good luck!

4
All Grain Brewing / Re: Ipa water addition help
« on: February 19, 2015, 02:47:12 PM »
Alright did alittle playing in ezcalc,  my ph is alittle high at 5.6 but was thinking if I add some ph stabilizer could draw me down to the 5.2-5.4 range

Additions
Mash:
2.5g gypsum
3.75G calc. Chloride
2g epson salt
Sparge:
2.6 gypsum
4 calc. Chloride
2.1 Epsom

Water after:
Ca-92
Mg-11
Na-3
Cl-100
SO4-126

Chloride/sulfate ratio .80

Tht look good or what else should I adjust for the high pb

I have never used epsom salt and typically I play with a mixture of gypsum and CaCl or just one of them. If needed, I may also add some 88% lactic acid if I need to bring pH down and "reduce" alkalinity. My water is really hard, so I also blend portions of my water with distilled water to get closer to my pH without adding too many minerals (i.e., 30% tap, 70% distilled).

5
Beer Recipes / Re: Belgian Dubbel
« on: February 19, 2015, 11:54:44 AM »
My instinct tells me that the version with Munich malt could potentially have a more bready, malty, and melonoidin-rich flavor. It would also likely make your wort slightly less fermentable, as compared to the  recipe with the majority of pils malt. Honestly, Belgian beers are really characterized by their yeast, so that should play a very important role in how you want your final product to turn out. Good luck!

6
So would one say it is better to take the braid and loop it to make a circle? Or to connect it and leave it straight down the middle? Not sure if there's a better method because I've seen it done both ways.

7
Equipment and Software / Re: Glass thief
« on: January 20, 2015, 05:04:11 PM »
I would like to replace my current plastic sampling thief. Has anyone used the glass ones? Comments?

I use this one http://www.amazon.com/Glass-Wine-Thief-12-diameter/dp/B0064O9BYW and I like it. It's also nice because I can place it in my hydrometer jar with boiling water and can use it with both clean and bug beers. Pros are that it's good for both beers and has a nice little finger grip; cons are that I've stepped on and shattered one & the pulls are smaller, so you have to draw twice for a good taste

I have the leaky plastic one too. Pro is that you get more of a sample, con is that it's only useful for my clean beers.

8
Equipment and Software / Re: Chest Freezer (fermentation and keg storage)
« on: January 20, 2015, 01:03:31 PM »
I use a chest freezer mainly to keep my kegs for dispensing. I just use cobra taps and open it whenever I want a beer (no fancy frame or keezer here). I also use it to ferments lagers when necessary. I keep it at 38 degrees, but bump it up to 48 for lager ferments and back down to 38 for lagering. I've never had problems with off-flavors or mishaps during lager ferments and my kegged beers are not affected by the temporary bump in temp.

9
I'd guess mine is somewhere between 12-18".  I tried different lengths and that was the last one I tried, so I left it.  But shorter ones worked just as well.  The braid I use is Lasco brand (part number 10-0121 or 10-0321).  I think that may also have something to do with it.  I've used the same braid in my cooler for 17 years and 473 batches and never had a stuck runoff or collapsed braid, which I hear from people who use other braids.

Denny, is this the one you think is yours? http://www.amazon.com/LASCO-10-0421-2-Inch-20-Inch-Connector/dp/B003B6IY12/ref=sr_1_1?s=hi&ie=UTF8&qid=1421780932&sr=1-1&keywords=LASCO+water+supply+connector? Looks like it 1/2" and 20" length.

Do you use 1/2" stainless t-connector with barbs?

10
What's a good length then without being too long? I may have to test it out when I have time to put it together. Or make a second mash tun.

11
Wood/Casks / Killing off past microbes
« on: January 19, 2015, 12:06:57 PM »
I had a 6-gallon barrel that I used with clean beers 3 times and then aged a cider in it. This cider has potassium sorbate and did not ferment, so now my barrel smells like apple cider vinegar. I aged a lambic in it afterwards and it still smells like apple. How can I clean it out and kill that bacteria to get another sour in there? I was thinking of putting boiling water into it. Thought?

12
I had a few stuck sparges in a row and decided to adjust my mill gap to get bigger husks to assist in my sparge/lauter. Currently my mill gap is set at .045" and it's awesome in regards to lautering, but I've noticed my last 3 batches have all been about .10-.12 points short on my calculated OG. I know the standard gap on my barley crusher is .39", but I'm wondering how some of you set your gaps and whether you condition your malt (if you crush tight) and whether that's impacted your efficiency besides just your lautering process? Thanks!

I use a JSP adjustable mill and I have the gap set as tight as it will go.  I've never measured it becasue I just don't care what it measures.  It did indeed have a positive impact on efficiency.  I have never had a stuck runoff, do not use hulls or condition the grain before milling.  I think it has as much to do with your lautering system as the crush.

I constructed a copper manifold and also noticed that my slits on the pipe were closing up, so I also adjusted that aspect of my setup. Now that I'm back to lautering well, I know it's my mill gap.

two changes i made in order that raised my efficiency:  switched to batch sparge from fly sparge, and tightened gap on mill to .027. went from 60's-70's to mid to high 80's.

just play around with the crush, and find what your system will tolerate. 

EDIT: forgot about my mash-i also mash in on average about 1.75-2.00 qts/lb

I currently batch sparge as well and likely average about 1.25qt/lb. I found a lot of good info on Braukaiser's page about mill gap size and conditioning. I'll start by adjusting one area and finding what happens.

13
Equipment and Software / Correlation between Grain Crush and Efficiency
« on: January 19, 2015, 11:35:58 AM »
I had a few stuck sparges in a row and decided to adjust my mill gap to get bigger husks to assist in my sparge/lauter. Currently my mill gap is set at .045" and it's awesome in regards to lautering, but I've noticed my last 3 batches have all been about .10-.12 points short on my calculated OG. I know the standard gap on my barley crusher is .39", but I'm wondering how some of you set your gaps and whether you condition your malt (if you crush tight) and whether that's impacted your efficiency besides just your lautering process? Thanks!

14
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Lager yeast starter at 50 degrees
« on: December 10, 2014, 02:45:31 PM »
Like most have said, I make lager starters in a gallon jug at room temp. Once it's done, I cold crash and decant. This helps alleviate any worry of "off-flavors" from fermentation out of the temperature range.

Additionally, Wyeast 2206 Bavarian Lager & WLP 833 Bock Lager are my go to strains! I've also tasted amazing beers using Wyeast 2124 Bohemian Lager. Enjoy!

15
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Boil Length & Fermentability?
« on: November 19, 2014, 02:52:04 PM »
I know that a longer boil will give me a more potent wort and slightly raise my OG, but I was wondering if a longer boil also impacts the fermentability of my wort? I am wanting to use a 2 hour boil on a big SMaSH beer to give some more depth of character, but do not want it to finish high and be cloyingly sweet. Any input or experience here?

it won't affect your fermentability but it will affect your FG because what unfermentable sugars are there will be concentrated along with everything else. the mash, grist, etc. will set the likely Attenuation percentage and this percentage won't change due to a longer boil (it'll be 77% for example whether you start at 1.050 or you boil down to 1.075 but the 1.075 is going to have 50% more unfermentables so the FG might be 50% higher (1.018 instead of 1.012). Although I doubt it would be that significant or linear.

one other thing...

there is a speed method that is utilized in the famous 'skotrat's traquair house' recipe - you boil down the first gallon of first runnings to a quart and add that to the main boil - this definitely gives you some interesting flavor, and doesn't add much time.  just make sure you watch that small boil carefully... ;)

this is where I would go with it to deepen the character. or just lot's more malt. a Single malt beer can be very complex if it's north of 1.100

Yes, 100% MO or GP boiled for 4 hours to get to 1.115 will turn out to have a lot of malt character.

Maillard reactions will happen, darkening the wort and adding yummy malty flavors.

Is there an equation to figure how much of a higher gravity to expect over a longer boil? I'm doing a Barleywine with 100% ESB Malt and I do not see that BeerSmith really helps calculating the OG over a long boil time. Also, planning to mash low around 148-150? Shooting for 1.110-1.112 and possibly 1.020-1.022 FG.

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