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Messages - fyouberg

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Equipment and Software / Re: Chest freezer concern
« on: January 14, 2014, 07:04:11 PM »
Like to add that I built a shelf in each of my 7cu freezers so that the buckets are off the bottom and I don't have to bend over very far.
This is a good common sense suggestion. Thanks. I don't get the suggestions for an upright freezer. All the ones I've seen have the coils as integral parts of the shelves. No room to accommodate a 5 g carboy.  Upright refrigerators yes. Is there any reason to consider a freezer superior to a refrigerator? We don't actually ever take fermentation down to 0 degrees do we?

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Equipment and Software / Chest freezer concern
« on: January 14, 2014, 08:29:27 AM »
I am ready to take control of my fermentation temps. I am leaning toward a 5 or 7 cf chest freezer, but am concerned about lifting 40+ pounds of wort in and out over the top edge. How have others rigged it up so as to save their lower back?

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Correct volume for boil
« on: October 22, 2013, 05:11:17 AM »
Thanks all for your help and suggestions this morning.  Much appreciated.

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Correct volume for boil
« on: October 21, 2013, 09:20:09 AM »
I am going to brew a partial extract this morning. The recipe that I am following asks me to steep my grains and boil the extract and hops in 1 1/2 gallons of water and then add 2 gallons of chilled water to the glass carboy and then top up to 5 gallons. Is there anything magic about the 1 1/2 gallons for the steeping and the boil or could I just use 5 gallons since I have a wort chiller?

What I would do is steep in the 1.5 gallons for the designated time, add the additional 2 gallons for the boil and add approximately 1/3 of the extract at the start of the boil and follow the recipe's hop additions. Add the remainder of the extract at the end of the boil. Cool and rack to primary and then top off.

The split extract additions will help maintain a truer color to the beer and prevent some caramelization of the wort. The increased boil volume will also help minimize this as well as you will lose about a gallon to boil off over 60 minutes. If you wanted to do a full boil you would need to reduce the amount of hops due to better utilization in a full boil


I get it all except the part about having to cut back on the hops if doing a full boil. If you boil hops for say 60 minutes, isn't it the time of boil not the boil volume that dictates hops utilization?

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General Homebrew Discussion / Correct volume for boil
« on: October 21, 2013, 05:52:56 AM »
I am going to brew a partial extract this morning. The recipe that I am following asks me to steep my grains and boil the extract and hops in 1 1/2 gallons of water and then add 2 gallons of chilled water to the glass carboy and then top up to 5 gallons. Is there anything magic about the 1 1/2 gallons for the steeping and the boil or could I just use 5 gallons since I have a wort chiller?

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Calculating ABV
« on: October 07, 2013, 03:57:35 PM »
You are absolutely right.  I need to read a little bit more closely!  Having used Charlie's formula for ABW to calculate (incorrectly) my ABV, helps explain some of my friends comments like "Are you sure that this stuff is only x%!!"  Oh well, exceeding expectations is not a bad thing.  Thank you all once again.  What a cool community!

Drop the "1" from both OG and FG.  Then it's (OG-FG)*.132

(80-20)*.132 = 7.92

+1.  The formula from Papazian is for calculating alcohol by WEIGHT (ABW).  Denny's formula here is for ABV (Volume).  The two numbers are slightly different.  Homebrewers most often use ABV.  Commercial breweries I believe use ABW, or it depends on whatever the laws require at the moment as to how they label their bottles.

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General Homebrew Discussion / Calculating ABV
« on: October 07, 2013, 10:56:42 AM »
Apologies up front if there is already a thread addressing this, but I can't find it if there is.  What formula can I use to calculate ABV in my home brews?  The Joy of Home Brewing provides the following formula:
(OSG-FSG)105
For purposes of comparison, lets let OSG = 1.080 and FSG = 1.020
This formula yields a ABV of 6.3%
Another formula I've run across is:
((OSG-FSG)1.05)/FSG/.79
This formula yields an ABV of 7.8%
That seems like a pretty large difference between two formulas that are supposed to be calculating the same thing.  Is there any consensus out there about a good formula to use (that does not require an advanced degree in mathematics)? ;)

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A lifetime of poor choices! :-[

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General Homebrew Discussion / Cooling my all grain wort
« on: August 15, 2013, 09:47:30 AM »
After 8 batches of partial grain brews, I am anxious to try my hand at all grain brewing.  I have a big enough pot for a full boil.  My question has to do with cooling my wort.  In the past, with partial grain recipes, I have chilled by adding 1-2 gallons of chilled H2O to my carboy before adding the boiling wort and then using an ice bath to bring it down to the proper pitching temp.  I have been advised that with a full grain boil, however, a wort chiller will be necessary to bring the temp. down quickly.  Not that I'm a cheapskate or anything, but is that $50 - $100 really necessary?  What if during the last ten minutes of my boil, I kept a lid on the brew pot, turned off the heat and just let it sit until it cooled to the ambient temp. i.e. 70-80 degrees F?  Is there something else going on in a quick cool down that is important and that I would be missing?

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Is a blowoff tube worth the loss?
« on: July 29, 2013, 04:31:25 AM »
Definitely use a larger primary vessel and a blow off! A little lost beer is far better than blowing the lid/bung and having a huge sticky mess to clean up!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk 2

Thanks to all who took the time to share their experience.  I realize that my real, albeit unstated, question was whether or not kraeusen is really detrimental enough to the quality of the finished product to warrant the blowoff loss.  I guess it must be and so a larger carboy is now on my shopping list. Thanks again.

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General Homebrew Discussion / Is a blowoff tube worth the loss?
« on: July 28, 2013, 05:17:02 AM »
Since beginning to brew a year or so ago, I have religiously followed Charlie's advice and used a blowoff tube on the top of my five gallon glass carboy.  As a result, I routinely lose 5-6 bottles of finished product.  (1.5 of those bottles is lost to 3 checks of SG).  Should I just chill out and enjoy superior beer or am I needlessly losing good beer? 

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Cold crash or not?
« on: July 24, 2013, 03:39:28 AM »
Thank you all! Your experience is most welcome and appreciated.  Based on this discussion, I have decided to wait and try cold crashing on another batch where a clearer beer would be more desirable and noticeable.  For this one, ill just leave it in the primary until the SG levels off, rack it into my bottling bucket, prime it and bottle it.  This is now my eighth batch and I'm still havin' fun and learning something new with each one.   :)

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General Homebrew Discussion / Cold crash or not?
« on: July 23, 2013, 07:29:34 AM »
My partial extract oatmeal stout has been in the primary fermenter for ten days now and I'm begining to think about next steps.  From what I can discern from reading, cold crashing is done primarily to help clarify the beer.  Although I've never done it with any of my other ales, I'm thinking about experimenting with it with this batch.  OSG was 1.073.  SG today is 1.022.  I'm thinking about leaving it in the primary for another week and then racking into my 6 gallon secondary and then sticking it in the fridge (38 deg. F) for another two or three days prior to adding my priming sugar and bottling.  Will the be any benefit to doing this or am I just wasting time with the time in the fridge?  Will there still be enough viable yeast in solution to ensure carbonization?

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Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Does fermentation ever totally cease?
« on: March 06, 2013, 04:56:39 AM »
Hope I'm doing this reply thing right.  OK, my bubble vigil will end immediately.  It's time for the trusty hydrometer.  Thanks all for the help and advice.  I will also try DWHAHB.

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Yeast and Fermentation / Does fermentation ever totally cease?
« on: March 05, 2013, 07:45:46 PM »
That's my question.  Let's say you start with a relatively high OSG of .070.  If you ferment in a 5 gal. Glass carboy with a basic fermentation lock and steady temperature, will the bubbles of CO2 ever totally stop or do the just keep getting slower and slower.  My stouts been going for 10 days now and fermentation has slowed significantly (1 bubble/90 sec.).  I really don't want to open is up until I'm pretty sure that the SG has reached it's low point.  Is it basically done or should I wait longer?

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