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Messages - BrewArk

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Equipment and Software / Re: ph Meters
« on: August 11, 2010, 08:17:56 PM »
$60 isn't a bad price on a new/spare electrode.  If it were me, I'd probably buy the new electrode as a spare but would try to recondition the old one with a good acid wash.

General Homebrew Discussion / Should the AHA Keep TechTalk?
« on: August 11, 2010, 08:10:24 PM »
AHA TechTalk is sent to over 15,000 homebrewers daily.  TechTalk is available to members of the American Homebrewer's Association as a discussion group specifically dedicated to the art and science of homebrewing.

Do not trash it until you've tasted it.  You haven't added that much bleach.  The best you've done is given yourself an excuse for why the batch doesn't taste perfect ;).

The Pub / Re: The Demise of TechTalk
« on: August 05, 2010, 01:54:59 PM »
I immediately adopted the forum when I learned of it back in November.

I can also see the side of the TT advocates.  The point that it is limited to brewing tech questions is a good one.  There are a lot of things here on the forum that I consider "puffery" and don't read/respond to.

I definitely spend more time on the forum than I spend or used to spend on TechTalk.  The question for me is "Is that good or bad?"

Ingredients / Re: My water report
« on: August 04, 2010, 07:27:34 PM »
I thought my local water company wasn't very good.  But this is bad.

To a degree I agree with you.  On a hot summer's day when I come in from yard work or working on the car a lighter beer can be refreshing.  I've been known to have a 12 pack of Hamm's, Schafer, or Pabst on hand from time to time in the hot season.

But recently, after a party, when I had an extra case of Coors Light to dispose of, I noticed that no matter how many I drank, I was never satisfied by it.

If you have a friend that'll do a good job for beer, that's best.  I'm not a welder, but I've been told that ss is difficult to weld.  That said, the guy that did mine did a great job for a case of homebrew.

Most of the postings I've seen for the weldless fittings have been positive, so if your friend is a novice with stainless, do it youself & have a beer afterward! :)

CA / Newark - Brewark Mead Day
« on: August 03, 2010, 08:41:16 PM »
If you want to be there, give me a call or leave a message (925) 425-6680.  Brewing starts at 10:00. ;D

Beer Travel / Re: Road trip! (Beer in KS, CO, UT, CA, NV)
« on: July 30, 2010, 10:03:35 AM »
In CA check out Beverages & More.  They should stock the Maui Coconut Porter in four packs of cans.  MMMMM!

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Longest Brewday? Latest Brewday?
« on: July 29, 2010, 01:15:16 PM »
Great thread, had to share w/SWMBO to show how efficient I am. ;D

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Some Brewing Questions
« on: July 28, 2010, 02:50:43 PM »
I've been hanging around a brewer at a brewery lately, and he's been helping me a lot. But I still have some questions about things he's told me, and just some general questions.

1) He said he ferments his ale's at 32F, so that when you pour the beer and the people drink it at higher then 32F you don't get precipitation. I'm trying to figure out how to clarify my beer, and I know I can use..."something"...I can't  recall the name of the product you can use in the kettle to coagulate the proteins so they sink to the bottom.
That's awfully cold for fermentation.  Maybe after fermentation he might store it that cold to get precipitation before bottling.  There are multiple things to add to aid clarification.  Try some Irish Moss at the end of your boil.

2) If you are making a 5 gallon batch of beer, how to you calculate how much water you should use? Or do you just start with 2 gallons, boil your wort, then add cool water to the wort until it reaches desired gravity/Plato? Where can I find a Plato meter to purchase online? It's generally preferred to put as much of your water in the boil as possible.  I loose about a gallon/hr so 6 gallons in the kettle for 5 in the fermenter.  While you're starting out, stick to gravity (remember it changes with temperature).

3) Plato vs. Gravity. Which is better, I'm told Plato is more like working with metric (ie: C), it is more precise then gravity. Again stick with gravity.  On the net there's plenty to read about Plato - & that'll be what he uses in a brewery, but at home, it's much simpler to take a gravity.

4) How do I control the thickness of the head on the beer? I'm finding my beer's carbonation has big, round bubbles, and I would like finer bubbles, and a thicker head on the beer. How do I manipulate this? There are several discussions on foam/head retention, read up on those.  My advice is focus on cleanliness and temperature control.

...I think that's it for now ;)


Equipment and Software / Re: Counterflow chiller - slow throughput
« on: July 28, 2010, 01:24:53 PM »
How much of a height advantage do you have? I'd say you want the kettle 2-3' above the chiller and the chiller 2-3' above the fermenter to get decent flow.
I'd agree.  I think you need the height advantage.  How small is the tubing you're going through?  There's a limit to how much flow you can get just using gravity.

My old system has 1/4" tubing inside a garden hose and takes quite a while to move through the line but I consider that time to water the garden and to get some good aeration before pitching.  (I did drill my kettle, and for the price of a case of homebrew got a pretty darn good welding job on the valve)

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Membership Levels?
« on: July 19, 2010, 10:03:23 AM »
Membership levels are like the hood ornament on a car.  To some people it's not important. To others it is.

I remember that AMC eventually put a hood ornament on the Pacer.   ;D

I plan on driving up to the OBF from CA.  While staying w/friends in Salem, we are hoping to get to Rogue's farm (about half way down):

Maybe we'll see you there. :)

The Pub / Re: Martini's
« on: July 05, 2010, 11:52:45 AM »
Two oz (cold) Bombay Sapphire.  Wave the vermouth bottle over the top.  Add an olive or two.

That is a Martini!

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