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Messages - gmac

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Equipment and Software / Re: corny keg lid relief valve melted
« on: April 16, 2011, 06:05:05 AM »
I sprayed them with alcohol and flamed them. 

Not sure about the flaming but I've wondered in the past if Purel would work as a sanitizer in a pinch.  I was going to open a Wyeast pack the other day and didn't have any Star-San mixed up.  I wanted to sanitize the pack and scissors so I ended up wiping them down with bleach but I was curious if Purel (hand-sanitizer) would have worked.  Would be easier and probably safer.

Of course, I've also wondered how Purel and Coke would taste when I'm stuck in a work meeting (people at work are nuts with the Purel, it's everywhere).

As far as keg parts, here's who I use. 
Don't know if they have valves but they probably have used ones.  Stuff from here is ok but it's all used or reconditioned and will need a good cleaning.

Good luck finding replacements

The Pub / Re: Brew Your Own place
« on: April 15, 2011, 09:20:43 PM »
I'm not saying you couldn't make a decent beer at a BYO or BOP or whatever you prefer but I am saying you can't make a decent beer when 2/3 of the fermentables are glucose syrup.  I guess I was just expecting someone in that business to be a bit more "into" it.  I know it's a business and I should have mentioned that this was the owner, not an employee or anything.  I'm happy that I can get pale malt there despite the fact she had to check the catalog to see what "2-row" was.

I'm on a couple committees and one of our members wanted to go to one of these places to make beer for a fundraiser we were having and I was pretty much against it.  They did it anyway and they had lots left over.  Couldn't even fool the Coors Light drinkers into thinking it was good. 

I often tell people that if I was lost in a scorching, dusty desert, walking with nothing to drink for 3 days and I came upon a Coors Light I'd be very happy...because by then I'd need to wash my feet.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Wyeast 2112
« on: April 15, 2011, 09:07:06 PM »
Who do you like?  Justin Beiber?  The Jonas Bros?  Hannah Montanna?
Who? ;D  Never heard 'em before.  Why, are they on your I-Pod right now? ;)  Nope, never a Rush fan.  I was more into New Wave/Power pop/Pop-punk back in the day. Pretenders, Cheap Trick, Cars and that ilk.

Back to the question at hand, what temp are you at? I'm planning to ferment ~60oF

First to address the Rush issue.  I have a long-standing opinion that most women hate Rush.  I'll make the assumption that this applies in this case.  Personally, I love Rush and the fact that they are Canadian makes it even better.  Of course, so is Justin Beiber so there goes that logic out the window...

I am fermenting two batches right now, the first is in a water bath with a towel wrapped around it.  I'm not bothering with ice but the temp of the water is about 56-58 so the beer is likely about 60.  This second on is in a cold corner of the room without the water bath because I don't have another tub right now and it is probably 62 in the room so maybe 64 for the beer.  I actually wanted to see if there was any difference between the two given the temp.  My last one was done at 60 and turned out very good.

The Pub / Re: Exploding heart in 3, 2, 1...
« on: April 15, 2011, 09:20:01 AM », not sure where this ended up.  Are you going for a check up or not?

Good friend of mine (42) and very active just spent a week in ICU for his heart and only got out Tuesday.  Up to you but I think it's probably time I paid a visit to the family practioner.

Yeast and Fermentation / Wyeast 2112
« on: April 15, 2011, 09:10:39 AM »
Is this yeast slow to get going?  I pitched some about 18 hours ago and no activity that I can see.  Not worried yet but I just wondered if this is common for this yeast.
I pitched the yeast from a 3L starter that I prepared from a previous starter.  Visually it appeared to be a pretty good amount based on how much sediment I got when I made the original starter with the smack pack. 
For those of you who've used this yeast, how long would you expect to wait to see some activity?  Just want to know when I can start worrying.  I can't RDWHAHB - no HB on hand.

The Pub / Re: Brew Your Own place
« on: April 15, 2011, 07:17:33 AM »
What is a Brew Your Own place? A Canadian brew-pub?
I think Weazletoe summed it up fairly well.  Picture a place with a half dozen brew kettles.  You add your water, dump in a bit of malt extract and a lot of corn syrup and some hops.  Boil it and cool it and then you get to pitch the yeast so you can say you made beer.  It's sort of like being a father in the delivery room.  They let you cut the cord so you can say you helped but you really didn't do a hell of a lot.

The Pub / Re: Brew Your Own place
« on: April 14, 2011, 08:50:11 PM »
Weazeltoe - $110 Can for 48 L of "regular", $128 for 48 L of "premium"  10% discount if you're not wearing pants.

Denny - might not be the same place, Canada is a fair size but you never know.  I guess I shouldn't be surprised if cash is the driving factor over quality. 

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Using a keg as a secondary
« on: April 14, 2011, 08:46:21 PM »
Buy a wine thief when you're there to get samples out of your carboy.
Done - sort of.  I bought an auto siphon and I think I can sample with that.  As far as I or the guy in the store could tell was that a wine thief would allow me to put the sample back but I'm so paranoid of contamination that once something comes out, it never goes back in (too many GLP courses over the years).  So it shouldn't matter.

I bought two more 23L pails.  Brewed another cali common.  Only complaint (two actually but related) is that I can't get the damn plug to stay in the hole.  It doesn't have the little tight hole, it's just got one that fits a rubber stopper and since the stopper is wet with Star-San, it keeps coming out.  And if I drop the friggin lids one more time I'm gonna blow a gasket.  Other than that, they should be fine.

Equipment and Software / Re: Prepping a cooler
« on: April 14, 2011, 06:53:58 PM »
Just to bring some closer to my post, this time I added 20 quarts of 185 degree water to my cooler/mash tun.  Left it for 10 minutes and it was down to 171.  Added my grain (note to self - stir while adding next time...Holy grain balls!).
Had to add 2 quarts of cold water to bring it down to 156.  Also elevated the cooler off the floor.
After 1 hour, the mash was reading 154 so it only went down 2 degrees at most.  Clearly my problem was my procedure. Thanks everyone for the suggestions.

Equipment and Software / Re: Hops "Plants"
« on: April 14, 2011, 06:47:14 PM »
you'll need to closely monitor the water situation, and probably feed them.
Sort of like having kids then...

The Pub / Re: Brew Your Own place
« on: April 14, 2011, 04:06:08 PM »
Oh, I should also mention when I was trying to get 2-row, I asked if her supplier carried Maris Otter.  "What's that?"
This from a person who owns and runs a brew your own. 

The Pub / Brew Your Own place
« on: April 14, 2011, 02:33:47 PM »
I went into a local BYO place today because I was told that I might be able to order grain from them.  Turns out they were very willing to order grain for me from their supplier when they order LME and specialty grains so that was positive. Gotta wait a bit but at least I will get 25kg bags of 2-row without the 2 hour drive I was doing before.

But, we got talking about beer, brewing etc and I was so sadly  disappointed to see what they considered a "Recipe".  Basically, every recipe they showed me was:
X lbs LME
X time 2 glucose.
Probably 1/3 LME and 2/3 corn sugar in all of their recipes. They also only used dry yeast and all of the beer was fermented at 68 degrees regardless of whether it was a lager or an ale.  Just so sad.

I did see an interesting way to ferment though.  They had 50L plastic barrels with holes cut in them and then a plastic bag put into the barrel.  The beer was put in the bag and a twist-tie put on the bag.  That's it.  No fermentation lock or anything.  2 weeks in that, filtered and bottled for a week. and you have beer.   Or what they called beer.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Using a keg as a secondary
« on: April 14, 2011, 10:37:24 AM »
I have not used yeast nutrient but I know a lot of you do.  Would this help move things along on future batches?  I get a rapid krausen in the first 24 hours and then it seems to have a long, drawn out fermentation after this.  I don't yet have any way to oxygenate beyond shaking.  Would nutrient help?  I guess I  thought for all-grain that there was sufficient nutrient from the malt. 
Just wondering since I appear to be headed to my local wine shop (which has lousy homebrew stuff but it's all I've got unless I want to have pails sent to me via Canada Post which would cost about 3X what they were worth).

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Using a keg as a secondary
« on: April 14, 2011, 10:32:45 AM »
I have to admit, I don't know the FG.  I'm a bit afraid of contamination and I'm not sure how to get a sample out of the carboy without disturbing everything.  

OG was 1.058.  It hasn't dropped clear and still has some foam on top so it's probably still working away.  It's Wyeast London lll at about 64 degrees so it may be a bit cold.  I have a lager that has been fermenting at about 38 degrees for almost a month now and you can set your watch to the bubbles, about 1 every 30 seconds.  Now that it is finally starting to warm up a bit, maybe it will speed up but I'm planning on that one until May 24 (unofficial start of summer for most of Canada - first long weekend).

I'll give it a few more days and then I'll probably flame the mouth of the carboy and pour off some

I'm off to find some pails or something to brew into.  It's hard to have an obsession without enough stuff...

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Using a keg as a secondary
« on: April 14, 2011, 10:17:47 AM »
OK, I'll leave it alone.  Just itching to brew another beer and I'm out of carboys.  Finding it difficult to get ahead of consumption so I'm trying to brew at least once a week, usually on Fridays.  Probably need to go buy a few more buckets or something but my choices around here are pretty slim.
The beer I'm considering kegging has been on the yeast for 3 weeks now and it just doesn't seem to want to finish.  It's been bubbling away slowly, maybe once ever few minutes for almost a week now. 

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