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Messages - Pi

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All Grain Brewing / Re: am I wasting my time?
« on: August 24, 2011, 05:56:17 AM »
... I want Mild Malt but that is not available to me in an organic brand.
I have tried several commercially brewed "organic" beers and found them all to be rather thin; lacking any heal head retention. What's up wit-dat?

All Grain Brewing / Re: Adding Dark Malts at Vorlauf?
« on: August 18, 2011, 03:23:02 PM »
I was wondering the same thing. To add to your question, do you crush the grain or add whole?

Ingredients / Re: Got my water report-- Now what?
« on: August 18, 2011, 01:09:20 PM »
Damn good water excepting you didn't post the iron content.  If the plumbing fixtures will be stained red if you didn't have the softener, then the well water may not be usable.  The taste threshold for iron is really low. 

If a rotten egg aroma is noted from the tap, running out your brewing water supply into the kettle the day before will help dissipate the hydrogen sulfide.  Activated carbon filtration can also strip that gas.  Flow at 1 gpm or less if you're using a typical 10" undersink filter.

Don't bother using the softened water.  You'll just add more sodium to the beer and remove the calcium that you actually want in your beer.  If iron is a problem, then the softened water is ideal feed water for a RO unit.

Thanks for your help Martin. Wont the carbon filter strip out the Iron?

Ingredients / Got my water report-- Now what?
« on: August 18, 2011, 12:12:46 PM »
All you water chemists sharpen yer pencils:
pH: 7.7
Total Hardness (CaCO3):128
NO3-N: 0.1
Total Alkalinity, CaCO3: 113
That's straight from my well, and thru a carbon filter (to remove the Iron which is pretty high). We have a "softener"  (i guess that's what it is- bags of salt etc.) but the water tested came straight from the well/carbon filter. Do you think the water softener water would be better, should I get that tested, or stick to using bottled/spring water? I have noticed sometimes the filtered well water has a slight rotten egg smell. I live in Davidsonville MD. Is treating it an option, or beyond hope for brewing with? what should I do?????

Equipment and Software / Re: Question for conical users?
« on: August 18, 2011, 10:02:47 AM »
I am using glass carboys for fermenting and I dont pay much attention to the amount of trub going into my fermentor. Should I be?

First question:
I have a RIMS and I am trying to figure out what the correct water to grist ratio should be. Lets say I am using 10lbs. of grain. If the recipe calls for 1qt. per lb., I figure 10 qts. plus an additional 6 quarts to make up the dead space under the false bottom and RIMS plumbing. So, my water to grist ratio would be 1.6 quarts PPPG. Thus, 20 lbs. grain would be (20x1)+6=26qts or1.3qts. PPPG. Am I figuring this correctly? And if so do I use the corrected ratio (in this case 1.6 or 1.3 respectivly) for determining my strike temp?

Second question:
I am using a grain absorption rate of .13 gallon per lb. of grain. Is this a static amount? And since I am brewing 5-10 gallon batches, do the above rates change enough to require alteration?

Thank you for your help. Pi

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Wyeast 2206 Bavarian Lager Seems sluggish
« on: August 18, 2011, 07:39:01 AM »

Just got word I have to leave town for the weekend. I got a swollen smack pack (Lager) kept at ~48. Should I Do the 1.5L starter and leave till Sunday (on the stir plate), or wait and start my starter on sunday?

Classifieds / Re: Wanted: Wet Hops
« on: August 18, 2011, 05:35:24 AM »
Pi - just wanted to make sure you realize, you need to use 4-5x the same amount of dryhops when using wet/fresh - so if you bought 4oz off of someone, they'd equate to about .80-1.0 oz.
Doh! Guess I'll see about scoring a pound (hops, that is). Just sayin'...

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Wyeast 2206 Bavarian Lager Seems sluggish
« on: August 18, 2011, 05:01:06 AM »
I checked out mrmalty (excellent resource btw) and for 6 gallons of 1.062 Lager wort, with a stir plate, it says to use 2 packs/vials of culture to make 2.7L. of starter. Is it ok to use 1 pack and ramp up? Also when should I add the additional wort? Finally, is it OK to use a drop of fermcap in a gallon of starter wort?

Yeast and Fermentation / Mash first; starter second?
« on: August 17, 2011, 03:07:21 PM »
I was thinking instead of making a starter using DME, what if I mashed an extra gallon, and used it to make the starter. Maybe chill the (Pale Ale 1.058) wort until yeast is ready to pitch, than bring the wort up to room temp.? Is infection a concern?

Equipment and Software / Hannah PH testor all dried up?
« on: August 17, 2011, 02:51:25 PM »
I got this from a friend. Still in the box but was wondering if the bulb is toast. If I buy the calibration solution(s) do you think it is still ok?

Classifieds / Wanted: Wet Hops
« on: August 17, 2011, 02:45:04 PM »
Interested in buying some wet hops. If you got in on the recent sale by-the-pound, I can take a few ounces off your hands.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Wyeast 2206 Bavarian Lager Seems sluggish
« on: August 17, 2011, 02:01:36 PM »
Just read the thread on "just how important is a starter". I have always had better results when pitching a starter. I have been using Hefe from a local brewery for the past year or so; getting excellent results every time. this last batch, the brewer was out of town so I went with a smack pack. Didnt even wait for it to swell.  Now it's been about 48 hours and I'm getting barely a couple bubbles. I feel like social services is gonna come knock on my door any minute and charge me with yeast abuse. Those poor little guys.
Thank you Denny and Paul for your help and insight. I picked up a stir plate today and some WLP001. Do you treat Ale starters the same way (make in advance; put in the fridge etc.)? What's a good gravity for starters? Never used a stir plate either. Anything I should know?
There's probably already discussion about this on this forum, just that I dont know where to look. or I'm just plain lazy I guess.
Also wanted to know if it's ok to use fermcap in my starter?

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Wyeast 2206 Bavarian Lager Seems sluggish
« on: August 17, 2011, 07:50:40 AM »
Thanks Paul, Experience is what you get right after you needed it. When doing a starter lager, Wyeast suggests smacking the pack at 75f and pitching after fermentation starts. Denny says he likes to pitch at lager temp. so next time i do a lager starter should i keep the starter at wha temp?

General Homebrew Discussion / Cleaning Glass vessles?
« on: August 17, 2011, 06:54:30 AM »
I have noticed my Erlingmeyer flasks are starting to get kind of hazy. Is there something i can use on the to get them to sparkel again?

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