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Messages - erockrph

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The Pub / Re: Windows 10
« on: October 07, 2015, 02:55:13 PM »
I never had Windows 8/8.1, just skipped from Windows 7 to 10 when we bought a new laptop. It's alright. Just getting used to it. This touchscreen thing is screwing with me though. I have Win7 at work, and I'd be lying if I said I haven't touched the toolbar on the non-touch-screen to bring up a program.  ;D
I'm sure I'll be doing that on my home PC once my Surface is on Win 10 and I get used to that interface.  ;D

The Pub / Windows 10
« on: October 07, 2015, 02:15:46 AM »
Anyone else upgrade yet? I just upgraded my PC from Win 7 to Win 10 today. The new Start Menu will take a little getting used to, but we have Win 8.1 on our Surface so I'm a little familiar with it. I loved Windows 7, but I wanted to try out 10 for a bit before upgrading the Surface so I can walk my wife through it.

So far, my PC does seem a bit more responsive. My PC is getting a bit old (Core i7 860, 8GB DDR3-1600 RAM), and my Win 7 install was starting to get a bit sluggish. I've heard that Win 10 was lighter on the resources and my experience so far seems to match that.

Anyone have any pros or cons based on their own upgrade experience?

The Pub / Re: New wireless router...
« on: October 07, 2015, 02:01:17 AM »
Every router I have ever owned or used for long periods of time has needed a restart from time to time. I considered setting up an arduino to send a ping every 60 seconds or so and have it reset the power to the modem and router if the response wasn't speedy enough. Never got around to it.

My current router and modem combo is stable, but still needs a restart every couple of weeks.
That sounds reasonable but this one was stable, stable, stable for something like 2-3 years (a Cisco n-type router) and then started taking coffee breaks once a week or so. 
I  was in a similar boat. My router/modem would need a reboot every month or so, but nothing obtrusive. Over the past 6 months or so it was becoming an every-other-day or so issue and a real PITA. Especially because neither my router or modem had a physical on/off switch so I had to unplug them each time.

I've probably tripled my number of devices running WiFi in the past year or two, and I think that was probably contributing. I was having other issues with certain devices randomly having connection issues when other devices were working just fine. I'm not sure what the connection limit for my old router was (an older Netgear that had worked well for years), but I'm guessing that I was pushing it.

Since my cable company was starting to get aggressive in pushing us to upgrade to a DOCSIS 3.0 modem, I figured I'd splurge for a new router as well. My old router didn't support Gigabit Ethernet, either, so I'm getting a bit of a boost in performance in my wired connections as well.

I totally disagree that yeast rinsing is an unacceptable practice.  If done properly it saves the time and cost of a new yeast pack and making a starter.  I have evolved my process and routinely use yeast 4 times.  When rack off primary I remove most ot the green beer and add about 1/2 gallon of preboiled water that has added calcium to get to 50 - 100 ppm and lactic acid to drop the pH to about 5.  I then shake and swirl and dump into a 1 gallon jug.  Fill to 85% and tighten the lid and shake vigourously.  Then allow to separate and capture the middle or top 1/2 gallon by pouring into a 1/2 gallon mason jar.  Use in one week.  This yields 4 to 8 oz of clean yeast.  One can also "jump start" the yeast by chilling 1 qt of wort after 20 min boiling and put on a starter.
This works just as well (if not better) if you skip the rinsing steps and just store the slurry under a bit of the finished beer. The yeast has already created a protective environment for itself, might as well use it.

The Pub / Re: New wireless router...
« on: October 06, 2015, 04:31:53 AM »
I just upgraded to a Netgear R6400 (AC1750), which I think is a small step down from the Nighthawk, and I love it. My dead spots and connection issues have virtually disappeared in my house. And streaming video is insanely fast. Previously, it would take a while for movies to buffer on Amazon video or VUDU on my smart TV, and it would be a few minutes before you were caught up and watching in HD. Now 1080P HD starts almost instantly.

Also gone are the connection issues as more and more devices connect to the WiFi. Having a dual channel router is a nice plus in that aspect as well.

The router app (Netgear Genie) has some nice features, too. I especially like the network map, where I can see which devices are currently connected and name them. I also get a popup on my PC whenever a new device connects.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Northern Brewer Customer Service
« on: October 06, 2015, 12:25:31 AM »
I've had the same results from not only NB, but every major online homebrew retailer. I've had to contact customer service from NB. Midwest, Austin Homebrew Supply, Rebel Brewer and Yakima Valley Hops for one matter or another over the years, and every single interaction has exceeded my expectations. I'm happy to say that the major players in the homebrew industry all seem to "get it" when it comes to customer service.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Pliny the Elder Dry Hopping
« on: October 06, 2015, 12:21:39 AM »
I dry-hop at fermentation temps, and I routinely get hop haze from it. To me, it seems related more to the amount of hops more than anything else. Once you go over 0.5oz/gallon you're almost sure to see some.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Winter/Garage Brewing
« on: October 06, 2015, 12:18:23 AM »
Carbon monoxide should be your concern, not condensation.

A colorless, odorless gas?  No problem.  It's not like that can KILL you or anything.  Oh, wait...... it CAN kill you.   :o  Oh, okay.
+1 - I ran my generator inside the garage with the door half open when we lost power in a storm a few years back. Despite having the door from the garage to the house closed it still managed to set off all the CO detectors in the house in short order. That was enough to scare me straight. I'll never run anything in the garage again...

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« on: October 04, 2015, 02:49:10 AM »
I've been hitting a number of different bottle shops to find some good locals for Toby. I don't usually think about it much but wow do we have a lot of locals.

Bottling this weekend and hoping to ship next week. Still not 100% on what going in.
I'm in a similar boat, except I don't drink a heck of a lot of commercial brews. We've had quite a few locals appear on the scene recently, but I have to admit that I'm not familiar with a lot of it. I'm going to need to do some homework before I ship to Jim. Tough work, I suppose  ;D

I'm probably not going to be able to ship for a few more weeks. I have a few things in the pipeline that I'm waiting on, but I have some solid backups if they're not ready for primetime.

  I recently made a 100% RedX beer (well, 100% base malt along with some british crystal and Special B) and I probably should have mashed it lower than 150 because it's very malty and it doesn't finish quite as dry as I would like.
First off, I would implicate the British Crystal and Special B as the likely culprits for your beer not finishing as dry as you'd like.

I recently brewed a mainly Red X hoppy lager that finished very crisp and dry. Since Red X has a similar diastatic power to Munich malt, it will convert itself, but I like to include a small amount of Pilsner malt to boost the enzyme content (since I BIAB, my mash is pretty thin - this may not be necessary on everyone else's system). I mashed at 149F, which is a few degrees lower than my usual 153F, but not as low as I go for Belgian ales or really big barleywines. I targeted 120PPM of sulfate, which is noticable but not crazy high. IBU's were probably in the 40-45 range (I made some last-minute substitutions, so I don't recall the exact amount).

Anyways, sorry for the rambling respone to your rambling question  ;D Basically, mash temp was just a small portion of the steps I took to ensure that my beer finished as dry as I wanted. Grist is probably the biggest factor, but mash time/temp (and knowing how that works in relation to your system), water treatment, and hop selection and usage all come into play. You can pick any one of these factors to adjust if you want to help dry out your recipes. Depending on your system, mash temp doesn't necessarily need to be the first choice.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Farnum Hill "Dooryard" cider (Batch 1502)
« on: October 02, 2015, 05:10:50 PM »
Eric, is it only sold in NH?
I've only ever seen it in the state liquor/wine outlets up there. I'm not sure if they distribute out of state.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: kegging for twerps
« on: October 02, 2015, 05:09:52 PM »
If you wanted to use personal lubricant, you might be better off with a silicone-based lube rather than water.

Are you saying I need to go back to that supermarket?  :-[
You should walk right up to the counter and ask to exchange it for a different type. Do it very loudly so everyone in the store knows about it, too  ;)

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: US-05 at low temp
« on: October 02, 2015, 05:06:30 PM »
I have never had a beer made with US-05 that I actually liked.
To me, it's the same thing as US 2-row and Cascade/Centennial hops. It's just fine. I like the beers it makes. But I can go to the store and pick up literally hundreds of other beers that taste similar.

It's a great "emergency yeast" for impromptu brewdays, but if I'm going to brew for myself I'd much rather choose something that's different than the majority of craft beer out there.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: kegging for twerps
« on: October 02, 2015, 04:51:22 PM »
I'm pretty sure KY isn't going to help as it is water based and will evaporate rather quickly.

I use the same goop that I use to lube the O-rings on my home water filter. It's a bit thicker/stickier than vaseline, but it is silicone-based. Regular vaseline is petroleum based and is probably a bad idea as well, as it may weaken your o-rings over time.

If you wanted to use personal lubricant, you might be better off with a silicone-based lube rather than water.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Farnum Hill "Dooryard" cider (Batch 1502)
« on: October 02, 2015, 03:48:48 AM »
It's not often that I have a cider that really blows me away the way a top-notch beer does, but this cider is quite remarkable. Farnum Hill makes some great ciders, but this batch of Dooryard is a standout, even for them.

What really stands out with this cider for me, is that for all the complexity the apple character is always at the forefront. A big turnoff for a lot of dry ciders I've tried is that they seem more like a dry wine first, without much apple behind it. This is definitely apple-first and something I want to put down in quantity

The nose is clean apple, with bright citrus and background notes of pear and floral aromas. On the palate, you get off-dry sweetness with moderate tannins and bright acidity. The acidity is clean citrus, yet soft, and well-balanced by tannin. It almost reminds me of a softer gueuze, minus the funk.

The apple flavor never disappears from beginning to end, with notes of lemonade, passionfruit and SweetTarts coming in and out. The body is fairly thin, but the tannins and prickly carbonation keep it from being watery. The finish is drying, with lingering acidity and apple skin.

I think this batch is in pretty short supply, but if you see this in a NH state liquor store I would snap it up right away. Great stuff!

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