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Messages - dean_palmer

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I have had good luck buying used on Craigslist over the past decade, and $100 is about the max I've paid for some very nice units. Hard to say how someone has treated the units, but I have bought them looking almost new every time. They are recent units so the power usage is mostly irrelevant. Never had one fail.

I use the Ranco ETC111000 and have it set at a few degrees variance, and always attach the probe to the fermenter as that is what you want to control. The fact that you have the probe attached to the large volume of liquid removes the danger of short cycles as it takes a while for the temp to vary even for 5 gallon batches.

If you are using it for a kegerator keep the probe attached to a keg so your opening of the door doesn't instantly cause a cycle.

I'm guessing if more folks took some basic steps these fridges and freezers would last a lot longer for them. My current one was bought about 4 years ago and still going strong.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Time Crunch - What Would You Do?
« on: April 23, 2013, 04:57:12 PM »

At least as a consolation, i won a bunch of medals at the comp  ;D

Saw you listed for 4 medals in all in that comp, and you didn't mention the Best of Show! Congrats!

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Problems serving beer!! Help needed!
« on: April 19, 2013, 02:00:11 PM »
I know you say all the pieces are in the faucet but are you sure the restricter is in place? Doesn't make sense that it is coming out "way too fast" at 25psi

My first thought is if he was using a stout faucet at all, or if the restrictor plate was there.

5/16" tubing is wrong for serving in this case as someone else mentioned already.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Kegerator Issues - Dump Cup!
« on: April 04, 2013, 08:59:38 PM »
I have a True commercial kegerator with forced air cooling in the towers and I still dump a bit before serving, but only if it has been a day or more between uses. I can pour a good pint the first time no matter what, I just have a probably unfounded phobia about the beer that has sat in the lines and the faucet for a day or more :-)

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Why do YOU keg?
« on: April 04, 2013, 08:56:42 PM »
I have so many reasons for kegging, but most of the mechanical universals have been mentioned already. It's simply the best package for most styles. I still bottle (from the keg) for competition and gifting and such, but rarely, and have a Blichmann gun that makes that a decent process as well. I just hate dealing with bottles no matter how good I get at it and how many years I've been doing it.

I generally keep 4 beers on tap and like the ability to sample a little bit at a time and serve small samples to visitors without having to open a whole bottle when not needed. It's surprising how many times a visitor will drink less than 12oz and sample all the beers, and most of the time it's not because the beer sucks :-0

I also like that when we have gatherings, brew days, parties, etc, that people enjoy serving themselves beer from a faucet. I see that for many folks it's a fun novelty that we take for granted. For kids we sometimes carbonate some water and make sodas with syrups. Parties don't end up with bottles everywhere and broken.

Pimp My System / Re: 1 BBL garage system with automation
« on: April 01, 2013, 04:33:44 PM »
Awesome system! Thanks for sharing. Seeing this type of thing is inspirational :-)

Kegging and Bottling / Re: I tried the shaking method
« on: April 01, 2013, 04:27:59 PM »
If you want to follow the whole method and not drag it out so long or have to drive around with kegs and CO2 in your car, try the method listed here. It is accurate, and fast, only taking a few minutes to nearly perfect carbonation. To avoid a foam shower you'll still need to let it rest a bit after all the shaking ;-)

I may time it next time, but this is usually less than 10 minutes of work.

Beer Recipes / Re: Doppelbock recipes
« on: March 27, 2013, 04:12:32 AM »

With your new rig, how would you be measuring the decoctions?  If you are pumping from the mash tun to the ketttle, how do you control the liquid ratio?

My thought was to do it the old way, to scoop out to a kettle/pot on a side burner and boil it there.

Beer Recipes / Re: Doppelbock recipes
« on: March 26, 2013, 03:48:15 PM »
Jeff, do you feel the decoction is critical? If so what was the volume decocted at each step? I could use a calculation but wanted to know your volumes for reference.

I might try this on Saturday morning for the first run on electric.


Up and running after first boil test on electric.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Carbonation taking "hold"
« on: March 20, 2013, 06:12:40 PM »

That will get you pretty close, really quick.

Nobody told me there would be math!  ;)

I usually try and talk my way around it. With this many smart folks it can get way too detailed :-)

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: protein rest..why, why not, and when
« on: March 15, 2013, 07:41:18 PM »
Quote from "How to Brew" ...when using fully modified malts with a large proportion (>25%) of unmalted grain, e.g. flaked barley, wheat, rye, or oatmeal. Using this rest in a mash consisting mainly of fully modified malts would break up the proteins responsible for body and head retention and result in a thin, watery beer.

I cut out the part discussing the usual moderately modified malts as we know that already. If you have other things in the mash that can benefit fro the rest that's good, but if that is not the case, and you are using standard modern malts, it just doesn't make sense, and as above, may work to make your beer thin and watery. Depends on what you are shooting for :-)

I do a couple purges as the incoming CO2 mixes with the existing air in the keg simply giving a higher percentage of CO2 in the mix each time. There is no effective stratification just mixing, due to the way our CO2 generally enters the keg.

After a few fills and purges you'll be fine and will have effectively removed enough atmospheric air to be safe. After filling purge the headspace once again and you'll be double good :-).

Mixing gases follows the partial pressure principle so "fill and purge" is the most effective way to get rid of the percentage of atmospheric air (21% oxygen) along with using a decent pressure of CO2. Each time you are mixing in 99.999 pure CO2 with what previous mix of gases remains. If you did the math you'd probably find that three fills and purges does a great job.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mashing with Rye
« on: March 14, 2013, 03:12:25 PM »
+1 on the rice hulls once you pass 20% rye in the mash.

Also this is one of the times when getting to a really warm mashout temp can help the sparge. That rye really adds viscosity!

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