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Messages - sdevries42

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1
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: I think I'm becoming obsessed
« on: April 14, 2014, 07:12:04 PM »
This is reassuring. I was starting to worry about myself too....

2
Remember that beersmith is just software. It makes assumptions rusty maui not be correct. I have never once taken it's mash or sparge suggestions. It tends to default to a pretty thick mash. You still have to think about what you want to do. Then tell the software. It's just keeping notes for you

I had the same problem with beersmith. The recommended mash and sparge volumes were not close to what I actually needed.

3
Equipment and Software / Re: Recipe designer software
« on: April 10, 2014, 08:58:29 PM »
I gave Beersmith a try and really liked it. The data input seems to be more customizable as I can change the %alpha and beta of the hops based on what my LHBS supplies. I think not being able to correct for this is one of the problems I was having with brewmate.

4
Equipment and Software / Heating elements for fermentation
« on: April 09, 2014, 08:52:26 PM »
I am looking to find a heating element that I can hook up to a temperature controller and place in a chest freezer to maintain appropriate temperatures during fermentation. Anyone have recommendations on a good heat source?

5
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Dry hopping
« on: April 04, 2014, 10:16:03 AM »
I believe the more recent consensus is that it's most effective to dry hop after removing the beer from the yeast cake. My understanding is that any yeast left in suspension will bind with the hops compounds and pull them out of solution as it drops out.  I rarely secondary, so my procedure is to keg, then dry hop in the keg with enough pressure to seal. I pull the dry hops after the appropriate time and then carbonate the keg to desired pressure. If you bottle, of course that would necessitate a secondary.

IIRC, there is also some change in flavor of the hops addition when there is yeast present. Again, some chemical reaction that I don't understand, but have read about. Others may be able to shed more light on this.

I'm just starting to get into kegging now and am not very familiar with the process as of yet. When dry hopping in a keg, does the keg essentially act as a secondary fermenter until the hops are removed and CO2 is added? Just want to make sure I am understanding that right.

6
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: cold crashing process
« on: April 04, 2014, 10:12:44 AM »
Thanks for the info. I have been doing all 5 gallon batches so far and have not had a yeast starter greater than 5 gallons. Wasn't sure if I should be cold crashing or not.

Do you use mostly DME when making the starter? I read that your starter should match the sugar profile of the wort as the yeast adapt to the environment of the starter, and if these environments are not the same, this can inhibit fermentation. If so, how do you determine what to make the starter with?

7
Yeast and Fermentation / cold crashing process
« on: April 03, 2014, 08:28:19 PM »
Can someone please explain the process of cold crashing and decanting yeast starter and the reasons for it?

8
Yeast and Fermentation / Dry hopping
« on: April 03, 2014, 08:19:08 PM »
When dry hopping, is it important to transfer to a secondary fermenter and then add the hops? Or can you add hops while the beer is still in the primary fermenter with the layer of trub on the bottom?

9
Equipment and Software / Recipe designer software
« on: April 03, 2014, 07:21:59 PM »
I'm sure this topic has probably been discussed before, but I can't seem to find it. Anyone have recommendations for recipe designer software? I've been using brewmate but for some reason the numbers (mostly IBU) just don't  add up most of the time.

10
Kegging and Bottling / Re: What size CO2 tank is appropriate?
« on: April 01, 2014, 07:41:07 PM »
Would a 5 pound CO2 tank run 4 5 gallon kegs? I am working on a 4 draft kegerator system and plan on getting a bigger CO2 tank at some point down the road. Wondering if a 5 pound CO2 tank would get me by for now.

11
Equipment and Software / Filtration systems
« on: March 31, 2014, 07:40:42 AM »
Anyone have recommendations for good ways to filter hop and grain particles out of the wort after the boil prior to transfer to the primary fermenter? I have just been draining off the liquid so far which has left a lot of remaining sediment.

12
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keg Manufacturer Preference
« on: March 31, 2014, 07:28:49 AM »
Anyone familiar with Kegco? They are selling brand new 5 gallon kegs for around $100 a piece
I'm not, but I'm curious about them as well. I have 3 of the new AEB kegs. I like them. But it sucks the poppets aren't removeable. But, they can be removed with a needle nose pliers and replaced with universal poppets. I'm just about to retire an old finicky keg I think and get another new one.

I just ordered two of them. I'll let you know how they turn out.

13
Equipment and Software / Re: Sanitizing buckets
« on: March 31, 2014, 07:21:00 AM »
I usually put 1-2 gal of starsan solution in the fermenting bucket and use that to sanitize during the brew. When it comes time to rack into the primary fermenter, I roll and shake the bucket with the solution to make sure it comes into contact with all sides. Haven't had any problems with that as of yet.

14
Equipment and Software / Re: Intermediate Brewer Equipment Question
« on: March 31, 2014, 07:16:46 AM »
I have been using a 10 gal SS stockpot for 5-6 gal batches and that has been more than big enough so far. Obviously getting the 15 gal will give you more flexibility down the road if you want to brew bigger batches, but if you plan to stay in the 5-6 gal range, a 10 gal would be just fine. I do prefer copper IC as well.

15
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Drinking Only Homebrews
« on: March 30, 2014, 05:25:02 PM »
I am mostly a homebrew drinker at this point but do enjoy visiting local breweries and sampling.

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