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Messages - davidgzach

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1486
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: how to re use yeast
« on: November 21, 2011, 09:31:17 AM »
or do you just put the next beer right on top of the last beer old hop debris and all.

Sometimes, yes.  You can do this and the typical approach is to go from lighter/weaker to darker/stronger beers (e.g. brew a light lager, use the yeast cake for a dopplebock).

Or, you can pour the yeast cake into a sanitized container and wash the yeast as mentioned above.

Or, you can pour it out and use only a portion of the total cake for your next batch which minimizes concerns about over-pitching.

There are several ways to go about it.  Find out which works best for you and go with that.

+1.  If you are really worried about the amount of trub, then the wash is the best way.  I have found that it really doesn't make a difference.  I typically fill 2 1L containers half-way and just pitch one entire slurry in my next brew.  If you want to pitch on top of the cake, that's fine, but like Joe said, make sure it's to a much higher gravity beer.

1487
All Grain Brewing / Re: decoction mash
« on: November 21, 2011, 06:29:04 AM »
It seems, based on the discussion here, that doing a decoction at all is somewhat controversial.  I have never done one.  I generally do single infusions and batch sparge.  It was recommended in this discussion to check out the YouTube decoction video, which I did.  He, the German guy, said that decoctions were better when you have "less modified" malts such as munich.  Do you all agree?  Does it really make a difference? 

Agree 100%.

1488
All Grain Brewing / Re: Help! I've brewed a watery mess
« on: November 21, 2011, 06:27:44 AM »
thanks for all the advice.  I buy my grain from my LHBS; I'll check the grind next time I buy some.  I'll also pay closer attention to my volume levels.  Always seem to forget to measure, somewhere along the line. 

+1 to checking the thermometer.  Is it a digital or dial?  That could make all the difference right there. 

If you keep breaking hydrometers, look in to a refractometer.  Sounds like you are 60% at the cost already.....

Lastly for me is to check your mash PH.  The strips are cheap and will let you know if you are far off or not. 

Dave 

1489
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: When is a starter done?
« on: November 21, 2011, 06:21:48 AM »
You don't have to pitch it today.

 I alyways let mine sit over night in the converted freezer because I can't get my wort down to temp with my well water. It won't hurt anything as long as its covered.

+1, I'm generally a "next day pitcher" myself

I ended up taking the starter out at 10:00PM, decanted, warmed and pitched at around 11:00PM.  Activity was present Sunday morning and it's now percolating away and about to come through the blow off tube!  Got a good 2 inches of foam on top with a nice Krausen forming.  WIll remember to give big starters more time in the future.......but RDWAHAHB worked again!

1490
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: how to re use yeast
« on: November 21, 2011, 06:17:25 AM »
How do you re use yeast that has a lot of O.T.Y......other than yeast....I have a lager still in the primary but it has all kinds of hop debris on the bottom of the 15 gal fermentor. ......How do you separate the yeast from the trash or do you just put the next beer right on top of the last beer old hop debris and all.

There's a lot of info about yeast washing on the internet.  You need a few mason jars or the equivalent (I use 1L Powerade bottles) sterilized.  After racking leave a layer of beer on top.  Pour in 1-2 cups of boiled and cooled water, swirl it up to a nice slurry and pour in to your sterilized jars.  I usually take an alcohol swab and clean around the top of the fermenter where it will be poured. Place the jars in the fridge and wait 20-30 minutes.  You will see the slurry separate to trub on the bottom, yeast in the middle and the water on top.  Pour the water and yeast in to another jar and you have your first wash. 

1491
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: When is a starter done?
« on: November 19, 2011, 11:33:32 AM »
Also plan to steep covered after boil for 30 minutes and then let settle after aeration for 30 minutes.  Buys me another hour.  Good plan?

1492
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: When is a starter done?
« on: November 19, 2011, 11:24:40 AM »
You could try to cold crash it right now and get some S-33 as a backup, if it doesn't go.

I haven't tried that yeast, but I try to have some US-05 and S-04 on hand for those occasions when my planning didn't allow for a good yeast crash and decant.  I agree with Denny that if the yeast isn't ready, then you are really not ready to brew, but with the dry yeasts that are out there, I never have a problem anymore with yeast planning.  And FWIW, I prefer some of the dry yeasts to the liquid counterparts.

 :P


Made the executive decicion about 30 minutes ago to crash it.  It may be an hour or two after I place in to primary before I can pitch it, but I think it will be OK.  Next big beer I give it a couple more days......Thanks for the advice all!
Nex




1493
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: When is a starter done?
« on: November 19, 2011, 09:44:39 AM »
Meant boil the wort down another gallon and pitch the entire starter.  Will raise the OG from 1.073 to 1.080, but it is a Chimay....

1494
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: When is a starter done?
« on: November 19, 2011, 09:37:09 AM »
Dumb question, but back to the title.  If there are CO2 bubbles still coming up, is it safe to assume the starter is not fermented out yet?

Not necessarily...it only shows you have CO2 coming out of solution for some reason.  But given the size of your starter and the short time it's been working, it could very well still be fermenting.  FWIW, I would have given that starter at least 5 days.

Wow.  Yeah, I do not make a lot of high gravity beers.  In that case, I should definitely boil it down and pitch it all, no?

1495
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: When is a starter done?
« on: November 19, 2011, 09:18:17 AM »
Dumb question, but back to the title.  If there are CO2 bubbles still coming up, is it safe to assume the starter is not fermented out yet?

1496
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: When is a starter done?
« on: November 19, 2011, 08:35:54 AM »
assuming 5gal batch 5 x75 = 375 + 1x40 is 415 divided by 6 is final gravity of 1.069. i would say this is tolerable.  you could also check your gravity during boil and boil off a half gallon more than normal to compensate, this would bring it a little closer to 1075.  i would probably just follow your normal plan and throw in the whole starter. 

I like it!  Thanks! 
Mash in at 146 on the dot, dex rest at 158 to follow.
This brew has some SERIOUS potential!
 :)
Dave

1497
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: When is a starter done?
« on: November 19, 2011, 08:00:06 AM »
Not starting to boil, starting to mash.  It will be 4 hours until pitching time.  OG of the starter was 1.040, OG of beer will be ~1.075.  Same thoughts?

1498
Yeast and Fermentation / When is a starter done?
« on: November 19, 2011, 07:37:29 AM »
I made a 1G starter for a Chimay Clone at about 5:00PM last night.  It's been on the stir plate and still has bubbles coming from the bottom so I guess it's not done fermenting.  Should I:
Cool now so I can decant when the brew is done?  I'm sure I've made a bunch of yeast.  Water heating as I write.
Let it go until (when would you say you know it's done?)
Just pitch the whole starter and give the Chimay a nice kicker?

Thanks for the advice in advance!

Dave

1499
Wood/Casks / Re: Restoring a very old barrel -- feasible?
« on: November 17, 2011, 01:46:34 PM »
I'm in the go for it camp!  A great project, story and what if you just happen to make some seriously good beer when it's all said and done!  Meh, I like a good success story..... ;)

1500
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Suddenly Chill Haze
« on: November 17, 2011, 01:42:36 PM »
I have well water that is pretty consistent.  I've had it tested by Ward a few times.  I make water adjustments to achieve proper pH using our friend Martin's Bru'n water spreadsheet.

My gelatin techniche is to boil water then allow it the water to cool down to the 160 -170 range BEFORE adding the gelatin.  Allow this to disolve then add to chilled beer and allow to settle for 5 days.  I am using 1/2 pack of knox in 1 cup of water.

Another thing that could be at play here is my chiller.  I used to use a whirlpool immersion chiller but last year I purchased a therminator.  One of the downside of the therminator is that it transfers all of that break material into the fermenter.  Perhaps this is introducing some haze and I just didn't notice.  In looking back at my brew logs I had filtered the first few beers I did using the plate chiller since they were very light so chill haze could have gone unnoticed.

How are you pumping through the Therminator?  Before I bought my IC, I was using an ice bath and swirling the beer as soon as I put it in the tub.  I was getting hot-side aeration which was causing the beer to be hazy.  If you are aerating somehow above 95F, you run this risk and it could be the culprit.  My 2 cents......

I have never heard of hot side aeration causing haze.  Are you sure that was the cause?  The jury is even out on whether it causes premature staling, but I avoid it anyway.

Yep, at least that is what my research told me when I couldn't figure out why it was happening.  I waited until the wort got below 95 before aerating and no more haze.  Now I have the IC so not an issue....

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