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Messages - corkybstewart

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61
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Best ale yeast for lagers
« on: October 23, 2013, 12:13:08 PM »
I brew lager-ish beers with Nottingham in the mid to upper 50's.  Cheap, clean and dependable

62
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: combining old yeasts
« on: October 19, 2013, 07:15:56 AM »
It'll work.  Back in my poorer years I used to get the free vials of expired White Labs from a homebrew store.  Some would be 2 years old or older but still kept in the fridge(poor inventory management). I made starters with them and brewed great beer, but it took planning and a couple of weeks to build the starters.  Then they worked like any othervial of yeast.

63
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Lagering Freezer
« on: September 30, 2013, 12:45:29 PM »
It is hard to get a fridge with a flat bottom all the way to the back.  Sears has one (fridge only, no freezer) for about $600, but for an upright freezer with a flat bottom all the way to the back its only $400.

My brewing $$ is all but dried up since I just bought a conical, but the freezer is my next purchase.
I just took the veggie compartments out, built a base from 2 X 4's, and put an old fridge shelf on the base to make the whole floor level.  I can now put my wife's champagne bottles on the floor under the base to keep them cold.

64
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Lagering Freezer
« on: September 30, 2013, 12:42:28 PM »
Yeah my next purchase is an upright freezer that will fit the new conical I just received.  I'm running out of garage space!  The good news is that this is the last possible piece of brewing equipment I can envision buying.
You're obviously delusional.

65
Equipment and Software / Re: Stout Conical Review
« on: September 21, 2013, 08:59:50 PM »
I boil my dump and ball valve in water for 30 minutes while the wort is boiling. It sanitize inside and out.  I've only actually taken the ball valve apart twice in 10 years.  Both times the insides of the valve were spotless so I see no reason to take the valves apart every time.
The only time that makes sense to dump trub is within the first 12-18 hours, sooner doesn't let enough debris fall out, after that everything gets too compacted,
You still need to cool your fermenter, 67 ambient is too high for the first couple of days of active fermentation.

66
All Things Food / Re: Sausage
« on: September 14, 2013, 07:14:35 AM »
We're getting ready for Oktoberfest so me and my sausage team made 50 pounds of sausage last night:
22 pounds of pork sirloin
18 pounds brisket(fat from brisket ground very fine)
10 pounds pork fat ground very fine
In 2 bottles of Guinness ad seasonings:
12 tablespoons coarse Kosher salt
3 tablespoons fresh ground pepper
3 teaspoons nutmeg
2 tablespoons onion powder

Stuff into hog casings
The first sausage batch is always a fun party for me and the crew, lots of food, beer, wine, and laughter.

67
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Refrigerator or chest freezer?
« on: September 11, 2013, 04:17:10 PM »
I like my fermentation "closet" cooled by an a/c unit. Build it to size/fit what you want/need. I had the a/c unit, so it was wood and insulation and screws 30$ or so for mine.
That's what I did.  But I had the wood and everything else, I just had to buy a $100 AC.  Here's a picture of the inside of mine:
[URL=http://s362.photobucket.com/user/rocdoc1/media/my%20beer%20stuff/WeeHeavyOctober2009014.jpg.html]
Even though it's around 100F in my garage right now, I'm fermenting a smoked roggenbier at 54F internal temp(notice the temp probe wire going into the thermowell).  The AC probably runs less than 15 minutes per hour to keep the temp stable.

That is a really interesting setup. How stable does this closet method keep the temperature? I love working with my hands and not spending $400 or more on a fridge or freezer would be a huge plus.
I have the temp controller set to a 2 degree variance, so if it's set at 54F it won't get above 56 internal temp.  If I do this again I'll go to a used appliance store and get a dead upright freezer carcass to convert.  It would already be very well insulated and have a good door, something my box needs badly.

68
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Fermentation temp control
« on: September 05, 2013, 08:17:36 AM »
In San Diego I'd stick with the single stage, the likelihood you'll ever use the heater is nil.  I use a 2 stage here in NM, but in the winter my garage hovers around 30-40F so I do need the heater option occasionally.

69
Equipment and Software / Re: opinions on which conical is better solicited
« on: September 05, 2013, 08:15:06 AM »
My question is, all things being the same, why is temperature control a problem with a conical but not with a bucket?

I believe what the person who made that comment was referring to was the size and shape of the conical. It does not easily conform to the usual fridge/freezer options for temperature control. It does require more space and lifting it into or out of a freezer is not an option, and it is too tall for most fridges.  I have not noticed any difference in the temperature of the beer when fermenting side by side, a bucket and conical.
That's exactly the issue I meant to raise, not that it's more important for a conical, it's just more complicated.  You have lots of options for cooling buckets and carboys, but conicals are large and just don't fit inside many standard appliances or tubs of cool water.

70
Equipment and Software / Re: opinions on which conical is better solicited
« on: September 04, 2013, 03:44:46 PM »
The biggest problem with owning a conical is that temperature control just got complicated.  I had to build my fermentation chamber with a window AC mounted on an insulated plywood box the size of a fridge.  It works great, especially with a thermowell and digital temp controller, but it's a pretty big space waster if you don't have plenty of room.

71
The Pub / Re: Kitchen re-do
« on: August 30, 2013, 09:13:39 PM »
I'm probably a little late but here's my $.02 on wood floors in the kitchen.  We just remodeled our kitchen  including new wood floors, almost identical to what you're considering, but I would do it different next time.  The wood floors look magnificent, but every time I wash veggies or do dishes I spill a little water on the floor.  Whether it's justified or not I drop what I'm doing and mop up the spill.  When we had tile in the kitchen I never even gave a few drops of water a second thought.

72
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Why didn't anyone tell me?
« on: August 30, 2013, 09:43:52 AM »
I'll just echo what everybody else has said.  A member of the club I belong to won the Texas Bluebonnet competition with an extract brew.  I have a friend here who brews all grain but his beers generally are subpar because he racks to kegs in either 7 or 14 days depending on the OG of the beer and ferments everything at room temp(over 75F ambient) and he refuses to listen or read any recent brewing literature. 
In my opinion the most important aspects of brewing take place post boil so it really doesn't matter where you get the wort.
Like an earlier poster I brewed extract w/grains for several years until I quit my full time job and became a consultant.  I also had less money for a while but a whole lot more time to dedicate to brewing and drinking.  My first 6 years of all grain brewing were essentially wasted because I had no idea fermentation temp control made much difference.  That was the the concept that changed the quality of my beer, not how I produced the wort.

73
I brewed 3 consecutive beers without opening my conical: a low OG pale ale, a rye pale and eventually a porter, total time for the 3 beers was a little over 2 months.  On the lid around the opening for the therrmowell I found a quarter sized spot of mold, but it never got into the beer and all three beers turned out just great..  In fact I'm brewing a 1.050 pale ale right now to develop a yeast cake for a porter and then an imperial stout.

74
I read the thread title and thought, what hospital serves beer in the ER ?

I think I like the idea of a cash bar, serving craft beer, at places where a long wait is expected.  The DMV, Target and the grocery store checkout on a Saturday morning would be good choices
Lots of grocery stores in France have full service bars, it seems to make the wife shop faster.

75
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Refrigerator or chest freezer?
« on: August 17, 2013, 06:53:56 AM »
I like my fermentation "closet" cooled by an a/c unit. Build it to size/fit what you want/need. I had the a/c unit, so it was wood and insulation and screws 30$ or so for mine.
That's what I did.  But I had the wood and everything else, I just had to buy a $100 AC.  Here's a picture of the inside of mine:
[URL=http://s362.photobucket.com/user/rocdoc1/media/my%20beer%20stuff/WeeHeavyOctober2009014.jpg.html]
Even though it's around 100F in my garage right now, I'm fermenting a smoked roggenbier at 54F internal temp(notice the temp probe wire going into the thermowell).  The AC probably runs less than 15 minutes per hour to keep the temp stable.

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