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Messages - skynyrd

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Equipment and Software / Re: A Better Siphon
« on: August 15, 2010, 10:28:26 AM »
Hummm....  ok,  was wondering about that.  May have to try some copper testing / tasting.  Thanks for the re!
Someone needs to make a stainless steel one of these!

Equipment and Software / A Better Siphon
« on: August 15, 2010, 08:50:18 AM »

OK folks, I've found it. Will try it out again today. So far, I like it. Why havn't I heard of it before? Its the "Hopkins Siphon" Just dip the end of the tubing with the metal end attached, into the beer and shake it up and down a few times and there it goes. It takes off and siphons fast, quick and Easy! with nothing to break!  I found it at the link below.  You only need 1 but, you have to buy 3 of them, 19.95 + s/h.(unless you are a member)  Let me know what you think. BTW: the metal end is copper and it states that it is not for salt water or contaminating liquids. I can't see where contact with copper for a minute or 2 will harm my beer?

Not to promote any buisness but to inform the home-brewing world of a better product.

Equipment and Software / Re: Blichman top tier
« on: August 15, 2010, 08:28:37 AM »
I've had mine all summer now.  Love it.  My set up is:  burner on top (all the way up) for my HLT, then next down is a shelf that holds my 60 qt. cooler mash tuns' top right below the HLT valve then, a burner next down that holds my brew pots' top just below the MT valve.  = All gravity fed and get this.  It is high enough that it easily drains to a "Therminator" chiller with No pump!
I plumbed mine with SS braided hose in stead of the cast iron pipe.  Their burners are great!  Also got a big propane tank that I would recommend.

Equipment and Software / Re: Conical Fermenters
« on: May 22, 2010, 11:39:13 AM »
Thanks Blatz for the foam insulation as a thermowell.  I've tried it & like it!  1 thing less to clean and sanitize!

Equipment and Software / Re: Conical Fermenters
« on: May 19, 2010, 02:50:46 AM »
I've got both.  The anolog and the digital on the other freezer.  I also have 2 cordless indoor / outdoor thermometers to make sure of the temp in the freezers.  (a must for the anolog one)

Equipment and Software / Re: Conical Fermenters
« on: May 07, 2010, 09:56:24 PM »
Thanks Dave....  I've been searching for one everywhere.  Might just try the foam and tape deal first...  And thanks to blatz too.  There is info here!

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keg posts and poppits
« on: May 06, 2010, 02:37:56 PM »
I rub a small amount of keg lube on the inner lip of the keg where it is to seal with the oring (also lubed).
Another tip is with some old kegs and trying to get the poppit to seal.  I bought new poppets for one and it still leaked.  So I tweaked the 3 tabs of the poppet (bent them a little flatter) and they fit and sealed right up.  My .02

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast harvesting from conicals.
« on: May 06, 2010, 02:23:29 PM »
Thanks for the reply!! 
My pilsners that I've brewed with plastic fermenters usually ferment out in about 10 days but I usually like to let it sit on the yeast for another 3-4 days min. for the pilsner style yeast to clean up itself.  You are right to not set on a specific time!

When I harvest the slurry in my mason jar...and I plan on brewing in the next few days... would it be ok to put the jar of slurry in the fermentation freezer set at 50 deg. F instead of putting it in the frig?  Seems that moving it to 33 deg. for 1-2 days then back to 50 deg. for a day before pitching to the next batch would be stressing the yeast some? ?  (I pitch my pils yeast at 50 deg.)

Good idea to plan to rack from conicals to kegs while brewing the next batch that is to go into the conicals!  Its all about the planning!

I plan to pitch the yeast from and to identical brews or at least a light pilsner slurry to a darker lager type brew and not vise versa.
4th:  proper amount of yeast:  now why havn't I took this more seriously?  I know mr.malty. I will take him seriously from now on!
( I usually pitch 1 cup of slurry to ea. 5g. of ales and 1 1/2 to 2 cups of slurry to my lagers.  (When I use slurry from my local microbrewery)  Now where did I get that formula from?   don't really remember... read it somewhere..

Really liking this forum!

Equipment and Software / Re: Brewing Software
« on: May 06, 2010, 01:52:00 PM »
I use "BeerTools".  I use the online version and it has always seemed simple & easy to understand.

Equipment and Software / Re: Conical Fermenters
« on: May 06, 2010, 01:31:38 PM »
I have 2 - 7 gal. stainless steel conicals that are fermenting their 2nd batches.  After busting carboys and plastic bucket fermenters going bad (cracking and leaking from the bottom seams)(probably from extended use in lagering freezers)  Anyway, the conicals are the finishing touch to my equipment.  The 7g. ones are pretty easy to handle.  Lifting them in and out of the chest lagering freezer.  (Note: I did have to cut the legs of the stands so that they will fit in my chest freezer with out any freezer modifications.)  If you are buying a temp. controller... buy the digital one.  As soon as I can find some place with a "stopper thermowell" in stock where I can use the temp. controller probe to moniter the actual wort temp. (the digital one is the only one that will work with the "thermowell". 
I'm new to the yeast harvesting from the conicals... see my new post in this forum under yeast & fermentation...  waitin for replies.
BTW:  I found my ss conicals on ebay.  Less than 300.00 ea.  ....that make the decision easier?

Equipment and Software / Re: Chest Freezer for Fermentation
« on: May 06, 2010, 01:05:03 PM »
My expirence is:  buy a new freezer.  Used ones (likely old) may not stand up to the treatment of a controller.  (on & off more frequently)  and get the extended warrentee.  Also, buy the biggest one you can afford.  You can use the room for fermenting and lagering and storing kegs (if you keg).  Homebrewing is another habit that can keep you upgrading equipment.  Soon you may be like me and have 2 large freezers.  One for fermenting pilsners (50 deg.F) and the other to lager (33 deg. F) and store my 20 kegs.  My .02

Yeast and Fermentation / Yeast harvesting from conicals.
« on: May 06, 2010, 12:39:35 PM »
OK, I got the conicals... 2 - 7 gal. stainless steel.  Full and a fermenting away in the lagering freezer.  Was wondering if there is some special or "best" way to harvest the yeast from the conicals.  Is the first that comes out ok?  Should I keep it all, decant and make a starter?  Is yeast washing still nessasary?

Plan A:
ferment 14 days then drain yeast and put in lager freezer (at 50 deg. F), next day decant and make a starter and let it sit 3-4 days = brew again after 19-20 days and use same yeast?

Plan B:
ferment 14 days drain yeast and put in lager freezer. (50 deg. F)  Next day decant & pitch to new brew.
=  Brew again after 15 days and use same yeast.

Now fermenting German Pilsners with Wyeast 2278 Czech Pils yeast (slurry from local microbrewery)

All information appreciated!

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