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Messages - hoptomation

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Equipment and Software / Re: Quick disconnects
« on: September 27, 2010, 07:13:51 PM »
i've been eye balling the ones at

Ingredients / Re: Hiding Diacetyl via Dry Hopping
« on: September 24, 2010, 05:45:52 AM »
Thanks for the input all.  I'll give it a try!

Ingredients / Hiding Diacetyl via Dry Hopping
« on: September 23, 2010, 04:41:53 PM »
I have an american premium lager that ended up with a stronger than I care for diacetyl off-flavor.  Anyone ever try masking diacetyl with a late addition dry hopping in the keg?  I've got amarillo, cascade, chinook, tettnang, or willamette to choose from - any recommendations?

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: The Dreaded O Word
« on: August 22, 2010, 01:40:19 PM »
if you do isle shelving make sure there is enough space to walk up and down and pull things out.  think like an industrial engineer so label all shelving space with tape and its purpose or tape off spaces on the floor for larger pieces of equipment.  keep like/common process equipment together, helps keep things in manageable sizes of equipment lots.

heavy duty roughneck rubbermaid bins work great as well for smaller misc gear.  i have one for misc dry ingredients, scales, mill, storage, etc; another for cooking equip tools, thermometers, ph; another for bottling, carboy, sanitation, anything post fermentation.  i've doubled up on a few pieces of equipment to keep the organization clean, simple, true (like hydrometer for cooking and also for post fermentation storage) but it hasn't failed me yet.

Denny's pointer was great.  I've been using the forums for about 6 months now and hadn't gotten around to trying that out, thought it was relative to PMs.  Also, FWIW, the unread is on the top right for me and not the top left, in case you are having problems finding it.

The Pub / Re: Since we're talking books....
« on: August 04, 2010, 11:41:49 AM »
I read "The Road" last year and man did I need to read something lightweight, fluffy and fun after that.

"The Road" is a good read, but definitely does not give you warm fuzzies.

The Pub / Re: Since we're talking books....
« on: August 04, 2010, 10:47:09 AM »
Last year I was looking for something a little different so I tried Cormac McCarthy's Border Trilogy and Blood Meridian.  All four of them get a little slow at times but that is fitting for their western style.  In the end I found them all very enjoyable.

Pimp My System / Re: Building the Ultimate Brewhouse?
« on: August 03, 2010, 06:21:14 PM »
if there is ever the chance for the dishwasher or wetbar you might want to consider stubbing the lines in.  easier now than later, and little cost.

Equipment and Software / RTD Signal Conditioner
« on: July 21, 2010, 02:24:57 PM »
I was wondering if anyone had some first hand experience with a RTD signal conditioner that they could recommend.  I am looking at doing some equipment automation utilizing a PLC and would like to land the RTD on a 4-20mA analog input rather than buy a separate RTD input card.

I can find plenty of signal conditioners to choose from but am looking for something more in the typical homebrewer's price range ;) ,  similar to the pricing of the automation gear that can be found at

Pimp My System / Re: Building the Ultimate Brewhouse?
« on: July 20, 2010, 10:20:30 AM »
I put in an electric tank less water heater for my radiant floor heating and i believe some of the smallest models would run you only $200 or $300 (unit only, none of the other costs).  So far it seems like only some of the home centers carry the electric tank less models though.  I went with a hydro shark 3 model that I got at Menards.

Pimp My System / Re: Building the Ultimate Brewhouse?
« on: July 20, 2010, 09:29:01 AM »
best place to start for electric is firm up your desired batch size and then research what size element you want relative to an acceptable amount of time to heat up your water. 

although it seems that for most people electric systems and automation go hand-in-hand there is no reason you couldn't still have a simpler non/less-automated system

Pimp My System / Re: Building the Ultimate Brewhouse?
« on: July 20, 2010, 08:26:49 AM »
Would you consider switching over to electric?

General Homebrew Discussion / Hops Overshooting Trellis Options
« on: July 09, 2010, 12:22:08 PM »
A few of my 2nd years hops have already grown 8" to 12" taller than my trellis system (14') and I am looking for some ideas on what to do.  If I do nothing is their continued upward growth wasting nutrients that could be going into the other bines or cone production?  Is it possible to have them grow downward, if so does it require daily training?

Any ideas or insight would be appreciated.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Buying Draft Supplies
« on: July 08, 2010, 06:56:07 AM »
I've bought nearly all of my primary kegging gear from or  Both have always been competitive with their pricing and their customer service has been great!

The Pub / Re: What does “craft beer” mean to you?
« on: July 01, 2010, 06:27:43 AM »
Beer produced by the most rudimentary methods available(I may be stretching the definition here) . If there is a ton of automation and computers involved there is no craft. But if a brewer has a couple of pumps, a diverter panel, a bunch of hoses and vessels, and has to manually switch pumps, connections and heat on and off I would lean towards craft. If a brewer has an electric touch screen or mouse driven point and click system, not so much.  

If a home brewer uses automation are they no longer considered part of the craft movement?  IMO automation does not relate to the status of one being a craft brewer or not.

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