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Messages - duboman

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Extract/Partial Mash Brewing / Re: She's Alive!
« on: February 15, 2014, 05:55:23 PM »

FYI typed that on my phone. Meant to say 70. That's temp of fermentation. If your room is at, say, 64 your ambient is "OK". Just remember to add 6-8 degrees to your ambient for the temp of fermentation - which generates its own heat. If you keep your house much warmer than 64 it's a bit too warm for most ale yeasts.
6-8 degrees? Wow, wasn't aware it was that much higher. I currently use a water bath which keeps it pretty tight. I'll check the surrounding water and use a UV gun to check the glass. Counting down the days until I get a wine cooler.
if you are using a water bath and swapping ice bottles to maintain temps, you should be okay and the ambient isn't such an issue, that's what I used to do prior to ferm chamber and found it did a really nice job maintaining a consistent temp.

Pimp My System / Re: Redbird Brewhouse - There's Always a Project
« on: February 15, 2014, 04:55:25 PM »
All I can say is WOW! And my wife thinks my brewery takes up space....


Just a thought Amanda,

It sounds as though the rig is garage kept and residual moisture freezes in the lines when not in use.

I don't have a single tier set up but thought perhaps if there was a way to blow the system out with compressed air after brewing it might help in keeping things from freezing up.

Glad to hear your day today went well!

Fortunately I have thought of that! :) Since it is (insulated) garage kept, I store it with all of the valves open, including the drain valve.

The freezing from a week or so ago was when the rig was in use, after I had to use the main drain valve, and when it was exposed to 8F temps.
cool, glad to hear it! Insulated garage is funny, mine too is insulated but this winter that hasn't really meant much;) I found that out with frozen hoses when I needed them so now I've been blowing them all out with air after use and it's been working well-Can't . Wait . For.  Spring!

Equipment and Software / Re: Bubbler Carboys
« on: February 15, 2014, 01:33:26 PM »
Looks to me like it is a better bottle just with a different name:) probably works just as well too!

Just a thought Amanda,

It sounds as though the rig is garage kept and residual moisture freezes in the lines when not in use.

I don't have a single tier set up but thought perhaps if there was a way to blow the system out with compressed air after brewing it might help in keeping things from freezing up.

Glad to hear your day today went well!

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Drop hopping and fermentation temp
« on: February 15, 2014, 08:45:30 AM »

Personally, I would lager it to get it nice and clear for however long you wanted, let it warm and then dry hop.
thanks, that's kind of my thought but wanted to see if there were others experiences with this

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Drop hopping and fermentation temp
« on: February 15, 2014, 08:34:01 AM »
Not to hijack but this thread raises a question I had:

I have my common fermenting now with wlp810 at 57. I was going to raise to 63 as it slows to finish and then lager it for a few weeks.

I also dry hop this beer with 2.5 oz of northern brewer for 5 days before packaging.

This is the first time I am planning on lagering it since I can now and was wondering if I should raise the temp prior or just dry hop it at the lager temp?

fWIW I know I don't have to lager this yeast but wanted to give it a try and compare it with my previous batches that weren't.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash Efficiency in Big Beers
« on: February 15, 2014, 08:22:21 AM »
Typically for my really huge beers I will calculate about a 5% drop in efficiency and it works out pretty well. I attribute it to the really large grain bill and ability to stir, mix and Lauter as I batch sparge.

Do you mill your own grain? If not, you may have gotten a better crush on your stout resulting in a better efficiency then calculated. The same may or may not hold true when doing your barley wine.

Just my initial thought...

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Using Lactobacillus in my Gose
« on: February 14, 2014, 02:48:49 PM »

Lot of misinformation here, not necessarily wrong but not techniques that should be trusted to produce consistent results.

If you are looking to use a cultured lacto vial, from WLP for instance, there are some things to consider:

1. You dont want to ferment with 100% cultured lacto at anything above 80F. The lacto culture from WLP is not designed for high ferment temps. I got this information direct from the supplier and can dig through my emails for a verbatim quote if so desired. I have fermented with it at 110F, 90F, 80F and 70F and have gotten by far the best results at the middle ground of 70F-80F max.

2. You want to limit, if not eliminate O2. This is still an anaerobic fermentation process, you dont want to just cover your mash with plastic wrap. This will allow entero bacteria to grow easier and the lacto will throw off weird flavors (sometimes cheese like, sometimes creamed corn like, sometimes approaching stale bar and potentially vomit and dirty baby diaper). In small amounts some O2 is good as it helps with growth and I find a subtle bit of a funky cheese/corn like aroma adds a bit of complexity.

3. Boiling is not really advisable pre lacto ferment. From everything I have researched there are some interesting chemical reactions that occur that make things more difficult for lacto and in addition can create some weird off flavors. I have only tried to boil pre lacto ferment once and I did not care for the results. This is in no way statistically significant and is more an anecdote. Take this with a grain of salt (especially if it is a gose  ;D)

Finally, it is a much taken approach to sour mash to "just throw in some grains". To which I say is nonsense. This will not give you reproducible results, and is taking a big chance with your beer. If you want that risk and potential chance for more complexity in flavor (both good and bad!) then go for it.

So, with all that in mind here is my recommended method to properly mash souring your beer:

1. Mash as normal.
2. Lauter/Sparge into your boil kettle as normal
3. Bring the wort to 170F and hold for approximately 5 minutes. This will ensure that you kill all bacteria and yeast present on the grain and in the wort.
4. Cool wort to 70-80F and transfer to a fermentor. I use a dedicated sour PET fermentor.
5. Pitch pure lacto culture. No starter required. I have done starter and sans starter methods, neither sour the beer much quicker than just pitching a straight lacto vial in the wort. Again, personal preference on lacto starter.
6. Sour for 1-3 days depending on taste and if you have a pH meter, the pH. Personally, I find the sweet spot around 36-48 hours. I dont use a pH meter. If going by taste be sure you take into account the relative sourness as the wort is still very sweet. It is going to taste more sour post yeast fermentation.
7. Transfer the soured wort back to your boil kettle and proceed as normal.

That method has produced, time and time again, great sour beers. If I may brag a little, I brought a maibock I soured this way to NHC 2013 and actually received compliments from Dick Cantwell of Elysian on the beer.

Anyway, like anything in homebrewing and in life, take it for what it is worth. or dont.

Thank you! When I am ready to brew this I will take all these posts into account. Appreciate everyone's advice

Extract/Partial Mash Brewing / Re: She's Alive!
« on: February 14, 2014, 10:52:24 AM »
Just needs more time....

When I bottle they'll sit at 70-75 for at least 10-14 days, a few days in the fridge and they're good to go, lower temps mean slower process to carbonate.

Also note that higher gravity beers may take longer due to the higher alcohol content. I've had some 8-10% beers take over a month

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Fastest ferment yet - Wyeast 1768
« on: February 14, 2014, 10:47:31 AM »
Yup, with good healthy yeast, proper pitch rate and good temp control most of my beers finish within a week easy, even some of the higher gravity beers.

I still leave them for at least another week though to drop bright before packaging.
Many of my beers goes grain to glass from 14-21 days

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Ambient vs Actual (sort of)
« on: February 13, 2014, 08:52:11 AM »
The first time I ran my probe for ambient I found a lot of fluctuation in the the readings and things were usually running a little too cold. I started strapping the probe against the primary with some wadded up insulation to protect it and found temps became much more exact with where I wanted them to be regardless of how many vessels I have in there. I have the stick on strips on all my vessels and they would all read +/- 1 degree within the probed vessel even at varying stages of fermentation.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: why whirlpool
« on: February 13, 2014, 06:59:04 AM »

I think it's the souls of brewers past.

Edit to add more than just humor...

Of course I'm no expert, but having read Palmer's book and listened to him discuss it. I think you're both right. The foam just before boil is hot break, and so is the stuff swirling around once that foam falls. My understanding is that at boiling the pH drops due to calcium precipitation, plus you have heat and motion. This combines to cause proteins and tannins to collide and combine into big masses. Then at chilling they sink to the bottom along with all the other particulates, like hops and whatnot.

Whirlpooling sets the contents of your pot into a circular motion, the outside is moving faster than the center. When you stop whirlpooling (as long as you don't disturb it) the stuff tends to settle near the center where it was moving slowly. In my kettle I whirlpool through the whole boil and chill, then cut the whirlpool. I then take a hydrometer sample. Once the break in my sample has settled enough to get a reading, I gently run off to the fermentor. That's generally about 15 minutes.

Or its the souls of dead brewers.
i like the ghosts idea:)

Basically you did a better job of summing up my understanding from my readings as well but, like you, I'm no expert either.......

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: why whirlpool
« on: February 12, 2014, 06:44:35 PM »

Hot break is all that foam stuff that forms at the beginning of the boil and you want that to happen.

Not exactly right.   Hot break is the egg drop soup looking stuff in the wort after it has been boiling for a little while.
well, right, but isn't all that just the coagulated break material that is the foam that drops out once the boil gets rolling?
No, because you can skim off all of that foam as it forms and still get the hot break later.
hmmm,,you know I've never been a skimmer.

So then what exactly is the hot break comprised of if it's not from the foam that forms?

Equipment and Software / Re: Ditching the glass carboy...
« on: February 12, 2014, 05:46:14 PM »

Spigots are fine if you use the right ones. And keep them clean just like everything else. I trust my processes. It's not like we are doing abdominal surgery; and the surgeons only sanitize the patient with a topical application.

Good on ya for getting rid of the glass. I'll take one anecdotal injury over 10 "never had a problem" type statements.
My spigot just unscrews and pops apart into two easily cleanable pieces.

As well, I've read enough horror stories of broken glass car boys and emergency room visits to keep me away from them, kids in the house and everything else it's just not worth it to me

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