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Messages - Rhoobarb

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: The Decline of Homebrewing
« on: September 23, 2016, 09:05:12 PM »
Wait a few years.  I'm part of that tail end of baby-boomers, born in 1958-1960. When I retire in a few more years, I'll have a lot more time for brewing and, if I'm lucky, still have a enough years and money to do it. I know I can't be the only one. As an anecdotal side note, our club has seen a real uptick in the number of younger (under 35) members just this year. Less grey hair at meetings than there used to be, which we like!

Sounds really tasty.  I have some 6-row that I'll be picking up at our next club meeting tomorrow night and I already have some speckled white grits from a local granary. I prefer doing a cereal mash with their grits than using flaked. More work, but it makes a real flavor difference, IMO. Just need to get the C malts and rye. I think I'm going to try this very soon.  Thanks for sharing! 

Equipment and Software / Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« on: September 09, 2016, 03:59:09 PM »
I heard about the Catalyst on one of the homewbrewing podcasts and checked it out on a whim.  That was a mistake - now I want one.

I have no need for it, I just think it would be cool to have one - or two.  Not as pricey as SS and a couple would fit into my retrofitted chest freezer/fermentation chamber. They are in their Kickstarter phase. And no, I have no affilation.

I have one Better Bottle, which I really like, and all the rest (5) are glass.  I am trying to get rid of all my glass and transition over to plastic.  After 19 years of homebrewing I'm tired of the heavy lifting and potential for injury from breakage. Not to mention the lost beer. I've been lucky all of these years.

Beer Recipes / Re: How much victory is too much?
« on: August 04, 2016, 09:55:31 PM »
I've never terrified wheat.  Does it scare easily?

Pimp My System / Re: Finished My Brew Stand
« on: August 04, 2016, 09:45:27 PM »
...FWIW: close than damper a bit to eliminate the yellow flame and you won't have to clean soot off the bottom of that kettle. ....

Yeah, I had it open only so it would show up in the picture! :)

Pimp My System / Re: Finally Updated My Kegerator
« on: August 04, 2016, 09:42:27 PM »
Thanks, everyone. I may finally get a chance to brew again this weekend and get some beer into those taps.  June and July have been too busy with either vacation or gusts visiting. Right now I only have have a keg of Schwarzbier on tap and a Scotch Ale our homebrew club, the Chicken City Ale Raisers, brewed as a group.

Equipment and Software / Re: Favorite type of wort chiller ?
« on: July 19, 2016, 04:21:31 PM »
I recently started using the JaDeD Hydra as well and really love it.

The Pub / Re: Farewell for now
« on: June 20, 2016, 07:04:10 PM »
Good luck!  My sister lives in Jax.  Now that I'm in Atlanta, I can get there more often. Post when you open!

Brewed up another Strong Bitter (ESB) today. Trying to hone in on a good recipe for this style as the last one I made I did not think was great.
Just brewed one last week.  Split the 10 gallons into two carboys. One has WLP007 Dry English, the other WY1275 Thames Valley that I got for free. I want to see which I prefer.

Sunday I'm taking my first stab at a Berliner Weiss.  Using WLP630 Berliner Weiss Blend to start, which was another freebie, then will add WY5335 Lactobacillus after 3 or 4 days.

I think I'd go with my current go-to.  Pollyanna Lexical Gap.  I've been stocking up wheneer I go to Chicago or whenever freinds or family from there come to visit.

Pimp My System / Re: Finished My Brew Stand
« on: June 16, 2016, 09:03:13 PM »
I really like the use of aluminum and bolts you have here.  Seems like the components might be a little close together (the cooler next to the burner), but it'll be adjustable as you grow into it.  Nice job!
Thanks. I was afraid the cooler would be too close, but there were no issues.  Still, l plan to install a heat sheiled there, just to be safe.

The first batch went well, but the alumium across the tops on the right and left that support the pots is staring to warp from heat.  I was afraid this might happen.  So the plan now is to repurpose the two frames I have from my old Bayou Classic SQ14's.  I measured them and it looks like they will just slide into place after I cut their legs off. Will bolt them with supports to the aluminum frame and, hopefuly, will have soved the problem.  I also plan to add some kind of wind sheild around the burners. Probably just some flashing.

Pimp My System / Re: Finally Updated My Kegerator
« on: June 08, 2016, 04:17:26 PM »

Pimp My System / Finished My Brew Stand
« on: June 08, 2016, 04:15:31 PM »
It took ~28 hours of work and a lot of 6160 aluminum, button head cap screws, lockwashers and nuts but I finished my new brew stand and took it on a test run last night. I had the natural gas line extended to the patio when we finished the basement. Goodbye propane.

Here is what I have been using for the past 11 years:

And here is the upgrade:

I didn't want to have to hassle with any pumps.  I've seen too many issues with pumps on others' systems - maybe I'm a jinx on them - so I decided, "No thanks". Sticking to gravity feed. It ain't the prettiest and still needs some tweaks.  I plan to add a couple of shelves and hooks to hang my mash paddle, spoon, hoses, etc. 

I cant wait to brew on it!

All Grain Brewing / Re: How do I start all grain brewing
« on: June 07, 2016, 02:27:10 PM »
I read the how to at when I did my first AG batch in August of 2005!

Pimp My System / Re: Finally Updated My Kegerator
« on: June 06, 2016, 07:56:30 PM »
Perfect. Right in the kitchen where it'll get the attention it deserves :)
It is actually in the basement.  We just had it finished and the main room has a beer-centric theme. It is a walk-out basement. The sink is large and deep for cleaning kegs and carboys. The drawers hold brewing equipment and the brewing will be done on the patio, right outside (to the right of where this pic was taken).
Cool and very creative.  It looks like you are using the same fridge with decorative cabinet doors in front.  Does the top just lift off for access?
Yes, it is the same chest freezer/kegerator in the "before" picture. The cabinet maker built a false front to hide the chest freezer, but left enough room for circulation. The false front slides out in case I need to pull out the entire kegerator. The "coffin" portion can be moved if I just want to take a peek in. The entire top comes off and can be slid onto the countertop next to it when I need to change kegs.

The side-by-side fridge/freezer is dedicated, too.  The fridge is full of commercial beer, packs of yeast, and my wife's cheesmaking stuff and the freezer is full of hops.

The brewstand is nearly complete. If I can finish it up tonight, I'll have pics tomorrow.

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