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Messages - dean_palmer

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All Grain Brewing / Re: HERMS vs RIMS
« on: November 29, 2012, 06:45:19 PM »
For what it's worth I like my RIMS better than the HERMS I built and played with in the past. For me it is less wort in process, the HLT stays separate and I can be heating water or doing other things instead of using it to maintain mash and sparge temps, and it is easy to control. Wort scorching just won't happen unless the flow stops for a very long time, and that is rare and can be eliminated with a sensor if you want. If your RIMS tube is on a controller it isn't going to instantly overheat if the flow stops as the controller will still shut it off at the setpoint. I'm absent minded and have been known to leave it cooking after stopping the flow or kicking off a pump :-) Yeah, I haven't dumb-proofed that on my system yet, but no issues.

I'm using the RIMS tube from Brewer's Hardware and a Ranco controller, running it on 120v at the moment. Later will be 240v when I fully automate and add electric to the kettle and HLT. I will still keep the propane burners for a backup, and when I need to do long, carmelizing boils that I hear electric breweries just don't get done properly.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Pests in brew house/ Need storage suggestions!
« on: November 29, 2012, 06:23:57 PM »
Vittles Vaults seem thinner than buckets and they are not going to stop a rodent that will chew plastic. Those crappy Gamma-Seal lids they use also don't seal like people want to think they do. If you do get the tiny seal in the spin-on lid to seal the one between the lid mount and the vessel will usually be leaky. Been there with these, and they are mostly hype. Unless you just have to have a square vessel to fit a certain space, buy buckets with o-ring lids (very common), or metal containers (for rodent issues) and use liners that you can seal. Trash bags work well actually for inside any larger bucket. You can buy a lot of good buckets for the price of a Vittles Vault.

Regular bucket lids with o-rings are much more reliable, cheaper and easier. I gave away two of the overpriced Vittles Vaults as I think they are of limited use, and still own one to remind me not to buy gimmicks again :-)

All Grain Brewing / Re: Kettle Mashing Question
« on: November 29, 2012, 06:15:44 PM »

Should I have the pump recirculating wort while I am stirring?


No reason to shut it off when you stir unless what you are doing affects the pumps. Mine work fine when stirring the mash.

As for clearing of the wort, that will happen with a few minutes or less of recirculation, so just don't stir near the end of the process.

There is really no downside to any normal (not excessive) stirring of the mash. In a non-heated setup where you lose heat by opening the lid, stirring and heat loss can be a concern, but for a heated mash system it isn't.

As for the right place to take the temp, there are lots of places you could measure, but what matters is the average temp of the mash itself. Don't obsess, but do take all the tips provided for insulation as that is your best chance to keep an even temp in a metal vessel. Go low-tech like a blanket or removable foam wrap. Don't attach anything, you'll regret it later, trust me, done a lot of ideas there. Just something you add after the mash and recirculation is stable, and something you can remove at the end of the mash session.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: These guys need to clean up their act
« on: November 29, 2012, 05:50:33 PM »
I frankly don't see how anyone would confuse the two businesses, and the dickhead with the homebrew shop would be better served to try and carry the brewery's product and not fight with them about a name that is only similar, not even the same. He'll never win in court anyway as the names are simply not the same, and there is no intent by the brewery to copy any part of that homebrew business.

It's not like the guy is calling his place "Mc Donald's Hamburgers" and putting a clown and golden arches on his building!

All Grain Brewing / Re: Kettle Mashing Question
« on: November 27, 2012, 02:52:54 PM »
My mash tun is also a direct-fire keggle with a RIMS tube and a false bottom. Mostly 10 gallon batch sizes. I do stir for a while as the temps stabilize, and a few times during the mash session to even them out. No matter what you do there will be temp differences, especially when the outside temps are cold, and there is nothing wrong with gentle stirring of the mash every 15 minutes. If you were using a well insulated vessel it would be even more stable, but with an uninsulated stainless vessel there will always be a bit of variation. Nothing wrong with some stirring, if there were, the pros wouldn't have mash rakes running. Chances are if you did nothing you would still get acceptable results due to the average temps in the main body of the mash.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Which regulator?
« on: November 27, 2012, 02:44:17 PM »
I have MicroMatic's offering with the large handwheel. Whatever brand you get, having the large knurled adjustment wheel that doesn't require a screwdriver is always nice, especially if you use it for different things like rapid force carb, or bottling, where you are tweaking the pressure. Other than that they are essentially the same and very simple devices.

If you are going to set it as the main regulator on a kegerator and never move it from your normal serving pressure, any of them will work.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keg poppets
« on: November 27, 2012, 02:40:33 PM »
I try and take them out each time as well. Even when running cleaner and sanitizer through them under pressure then taking them out I've found residuals in them.

Some of the ones that are really tight just need the feet squeezed together a bit to come out more easily. Most if not all sit on top of the dip tubes when snug, so no reason they need to be jammed up into the post itself.

I've got some disconnects that are really old and have had the plating on the threads completely eaten away by Star San I'm guessing. I'm sure I've forgotten them in the bucket a few times for hours or overnight, but because those threads don't contact the beer it doesn't really matter. I should take some pics. I'm just impressed they have lasted this long without me breaking them or something :-)

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Hop Pics
« on: March 12, 2010, 02:01:25 PM »
My Centennial have grown continually for a year now, cut back once to the ground, and are back to the top. The frost we got seems to have affected them, but it might be time to cut them all the way down and let them grow again.

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