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Messages - beersk

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1411
Ingredients / Re: Hop storage at the LHBS
« on: December 19, 2013, 06:39:40 AM »
I've never gotten onion/garlic from centennial or simcoe. That's interesting...
These were hops you bought that were sitting out on the shelf?

1412
Ingredients / Re: Hop storage at the LHBS
« on: December 18, 2013, 02:29:50 PM »
A drug store that carries some homebrewing supplies near me also has their hops unrefrigerated at room temp. It's not good. I don't buy from them. Just the random pound of specialty malt if I need it. They have their dry yeast out as well next to the hops. Also not good.

1413
Equipment and Software / Re: oxyclean
« on: December 18, 2013, 12:35:10 PM »
I make my own PBW with 70% Oxyclean and 30% TSP90.

Measured by weight or volume?
Measured by weight. Not sure how it works out, but like 2.8lbs of oxiclean and 1.2lbs of TSP90, or something like that to make up 4lbs. It's somewhere around there.

1414
Kegging and Bottling / Re: New or old Soda Kegs
« on: December 18, 2013, 12:31:22 PM »
Agreed. But you can get them for a reasonable price at Beverage Factory, brand new.
You're right. Damn, why are they cheaper than ball locks? Demand I guess.
Right, if they weren't purportedly such a pain the ass to clean, I'd switch.

1415
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Last brew day for 2013
« on: December 18, 2013, 12:29:36 PM »
Last Saturday might've been my last of the year. It put me at 36 batches for the year, I think. A lot of 3 and 4 gallon batches. I'd like to brew one more time, an IPA, but not sure I'll have the time/fermenter free. Got a pilsner going right now.

1416
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast starter life span.
« on: December 17, 2013, 09:22:22 AM »
Damn...well, oh well. Maybe, if anything, it'd keep from air getting sucked in. I don't know. Just theorizing. Perhaps I won't worry about it then. Thanks for your input.

well it will prevent air from coming in that's true. might make a difference. positive pressure and all that.
Roight. That was my thinking. Couldn't hurt, I suppose.

1417
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast starter life span.
« on: December 17, 2013, 08:41:26 AM »
Damn...well, oh well. Maybe, if anything, it'd keep from air getting sucked in. I don't know. Just theorizing. Perhaps I won't worry about it then. Thanks for your input.

1418
Ingredients / Re: Water Profile for Helles
« on: December 17, 2013, 08:19:33 AM »
You might want to add a little calcium chloride to that profile. 22ppm calcium is a bit low and you should bring it up to at least 40ppm. 50ppm would be ideal. I usually shoot for 50ppm calcium, 50-75ppm sulfate, and 50ppm chloride. I don't worry about the rest. I adjust mash pH with a couple ounces of acid malt. Pitch a ton of yeast, get the wort down to fermentation temp before pitching, aerate well, do a diacetyl rest if necessary, and you should be golden.

1419
Kegging and Bottling / Re: New or old Soda Kegs
« on: December 17, 2013, 08:13:21 AM »
Agreed. But you can get them for a reasonable price at Beverage Factory, brand new.

1420
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: oatmeal stout..breakfast anytime
« on: December 17, 2013, 08:10:52 AM »
Oatmeal stout is one of my favorite styles. I've been having a hard time getting it right. I think it's a water issue, still troubleshooting. Sammy Smith's is the benchmark. Don't trust anyone who says otherwise!

1421
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast starter life span.
« on: December 17, 2013, 07:08:37 AM »
Yup. plenty of time. particularly if you pop it in the fridge.

I generally get my starter all set up about 5-7 days before brew day. I don't have a stir plate so things take a little longer for me. After 3-4 days I usually see signs that it is winding down then I will pop it in the coldest part of the fridge and let it settle out for a day or two (or three).

I also generally pitch 12-24 hours after I finish brewing because I use my temp controlled fridge to get the wort temp down the 20 degrees or so. So I will often pull off a quart or so of the actual wort on brew day, chill it quickly in an ice bath (easy with just 1 quart) and decant and pitch the starter into that to give it an extra boost. This gets pitched into the full batch. I am quite lazy... err... pragmatic rather, and I only do this when I didn't quite have the starter size I should have in the first place.
I've done this with lagers, it works out nicely. For all my lagers, I usually chill the wort the rest of the way down 6-12 hours after brewing. Now that I'm fermenting in kegs, I can pressurize the keg with co2 so wild yeast can't have as much of a chance to take hold in that time.  Or am I just making that up? Could wild yeast still thrive just as easily if I didn't pressurize the keg?

1422
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Mangrove Jack's Dry Yeast
« on: December 17, 2013, 07:02:11 AM »
One package of dry yeast is about 220B cells if you believe Mr. Malty. Other sources say less (http://www.brewersfriend.com/yeast-pitch-rate-and-starter-calculator/#cells_per_gram)

220B is not enough for many lagers so you need more than 1 pack.  Mangrove Jack generically recommends 2 packs for a lager.

So you can pay $8 for 2 packs or $4 for 1 pack plus like $1 worth of DME in a starter. (Prices from rebelbrewer.com)

Anyway, I know that dry yeast is supposed to be convenient but I am wondering if some brewer's troubles with dry yeast in Lagers result from under pitching rather than the quality or strain of yeast.
Rebel Brewer has Wyeast for $4? You have to factor shipping into all of this as well. Wyeast is $6.25 at Northern Brewer. Still, I think it's better to build up a starter with a pack of liquid yeast over a week and a half and have the fresh, healthy yeast instead of a couple of packs of dry yeast that maybe aren't so healthy and ready to eat.
Besides, the Mangrove Jack's boh lager yeast takes about 3 days to get going. It's annoying.

1423
Kegging and Bottling / Re: New or old Soda Kegs
« on: December 17, 2013, 06:59:19 AM »
I bought two corny kegs in (I think) 2010 for $30 each. I frequently think about selling them back into the market at current prices since I don't have a keg set up yet.

It's going to start getting cheap enough to find used 1/6th barrel sanke kegs and buy sanke connectors over buying corny kegs. I've seen the 1/6ths on craigslist for as little as $25. 7.5 gallon sankes sometimes float around for $20-50. Corny kegs locally are $45-60. I hear there are going to be 7.5 gallon slim kegs showing up on the market that may replace the 1/6th kegs which could push those out onto the homebrewing market.
Except the hassle of cleaning them is keeping them out of the homebrewing market, for the most part. Right?

1424
Equipment and Software / Re: oxyclean
« on: December 16, 2013, 02:43:05 PM »
I sanitize my hands in the starsan usually. I don't dunk them, but I spray the outside of the tubing while the tube is filled with the sanitizer. So, I'm thinking my thumb is sanitized enough.

1425
Equipment and Software / Re: oxyclean
« on: December 16, 2013, 12:57:40 PM »
FWIW I rinsed with untreated well water for years with nary a single bad batch to show for it.

Although I generally don't any more, I've done the same with no negative consequences.  The this day, when I rack I sanitize the racking cane and tubing, then fill them with tap water from my well to get the siphon going.  Nothing I'd recommend to anyone, but also never a problems doing that hundreds of times.
You run the tap water filled in the tubes into the keg? I'll usually run it out till the tube is filled with beer, then cap with my thumb, then run that into the keg.

As far as cleaning goes, using anything other than water on your kettles and mashtuns is overkill. I just rinse those buggers out make sure they look clean. Fermenters, however, they get the sh*t cleaned out of them. I make my own PBW with 70% Oxyclean and 30% TSP90.

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