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Topics - DrewG

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Ingredients / Low gravity ideas....
« on: May 21, 2012, 05:51:32 PM »
Brewing tonight, but again this weekend and I don't have anything planned for that one. Thinking low abv, english or maybe something west coast and really hoppy. I've got a lot of simcoe, amarillo and citra as well as some zythos laying around. Did Kelsey McNairs session ale a while back and loved that.

edit: should have posted this in recipes, my bad

Equipment and Software / Tired of crappy therm and hydrometer
« on: May 21, 2012, 03:45:23 PM »
Calced all my stuff yesterday, and only one thermometer was correct, and it's my floater which takes 3 weeks to get a temp. Bought one digital that had to be sent back because it wouldnt calibrate, and my metal therm was off 3 degrees. Hydrometer read 1.003 at 60f in tapwater. Not surprising considering they came in my original kit, and none of that was really quality stuff.

Anyway, can anyone recommend some quality stuff?

Kegging and Bottling / conditioning time in keg
« on: May 14, 2012, 04:45:49 PM »
Before now, I typically fermented 4 days or so until things slowed up, raised temp incrementally for 3 or 4 days to do a diacetyl rest, then returned to ferm temp for a few more days to finish conditioning, then cold crashed and bottled.

Now that I have a keg system, I'm wondering if I can cut some of that time in the carboy out, as I'm planning on letting it carb up under low c02 pressure in the keg (I think typically a week?)


Thanks in advance.

General Homebrew Discussion / pleasant surprise
« on: May 10, 2012, 10:17:11 AM »
My scottish 80 scored a 39.5 last weekend, good for a bronze. It was my first all grain beer and my first contest. Got dinged on mouthfeel for a dry finish, which i agreed with. I drove the temp up to finish the fermentation out, and i think it attenuated a bit too well.

All Grain Brewing / Hitting the numbers
« on: April 19, 2012, 04:24:02 PM »
I feel like I've got pretty good control and processes on the cold side of things. Pitching rates, ferm temps, sanatization, etc.  Now I'd like to really be able to dial in hitting my gravity numbers. I'm looking at getting a refractometer, and I'm going to re-read some stuff on adjusting with water and dme.

What kind of things do you do, adjust, what are your processes, etc when trying to hit your gravity?

General Homebrew Discussion / Entered my first beer
« on: April 19, 2012, 04:12:15 PM »
Well, I just entered my scottish 80/- in a local BJCP event. Very interested in the feedback. It was my very first all grain beer, but I think it's the best beer I've brewed to date. Used Jamils recipe, it fermented like a champ, and my numbers were where they should've been. I tried to find a commercial example but was unable to do so locally. I think it tastes good, but then I have no idea what a real 80 schilling should taste like.

Oh yeah, best in show wins an all expenses paid trip to SN beer camp.

Ingredients / Zythos?
« on: April 13, 2012, 03:56:32 PM »
Anyone brewed with this hop? I've got 6 ounces of it laying around.

General Homebrew Discussion / Blow off
« on: April 03, 2012, 06:52:41 PM »
Has anyone noticed an increased likelihood of blowoff (5.5 gallon batches in a 6.5 gallon carboy) relative to the amount of hops in a recipe? The last 2 hoppy beers I've done have ended up needing a blowoff setup (the 2nd I caught barely in time this morning. I pulled the top of the 3 piece airlock and it sounded like opening the biggest bottle of angry beer you've ever seen)  ?

I thought originally it had more to do with higher gravity beers. The 1st was an IPA at 1.65, but this one is a session beer, just 1.041. It does however have a pile of hops in it. All the other low gravity beers I've done have fermented like perfect gentlemen.

So, whaddyatinkabootdat?

Equipment and Software / Meh
« on: April 02, 2012, 02:40:19 PM »
So I bought this: thermometer last week so I could get a quicker read on mash temps etc, seemed decent for the price. It has a "self calibrating" feature. You immerse it in the standard crushed ice solution in a glass, wait a couple of seconds and press the calibrate button and you're good to go. This is what i did, and it was off by a good margin. 35.7 degrees. Great, I'll calibrate it and be on my way. Wrong. If the reading is outside the range of 30-34 degrees you get the code "Err" and it will not calibrate itself.

So I'm wondering if I should just return this thing, or try fooling it by getting a reading off a bag of frozen peas or something to "trick" it into it's calibration range.


General Homebrew Discussion / Math help
« on: April 01, 2012, 02:15:07 PM »
Not sure how to figure this one, so I thought I'd ask:

5 gallons of a 1.052 wort with 3 quarts water added = ? gravity


Beer Recipes / Kelsey Mcnairs West Coast Bitter
« on: March 30, 2012, 04:15:37 PM »
Saw this recipe here a few weeks ago and I'm brewing it tomorrow. Has anyone else brewed it? Any advice, etc appreciated.

Here's the Beersmith brewsheet:

Recipe Specifications
Boil Size: 7.00 gal
Post Boil Volume: 5.50 gal
Batch Size (fermenter): 5.50 gal   
Bottling Volume: 5.00 gal
Estimated OG: 1.047 SG
Estimated Color: 7.5 SRM
Estimated IBU: 55.1 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 72.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 78.5 %
Boil Time: 90 Minutes

Amt                   Name                                     Type          #        %/IBU         
8 lbs 12.0 oz         Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM)           Grain         1        87.1 %       
8.0 oz                Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM)             Grain         2        5.0 %         
8.0 oz                Crystal Dark - 77L (Crisp) (75.0 SRM)    Grain         3        5.0 %         
3.2 oz                Honey Malt (25.0 SRM)                    Grain         4        2.0 %         
1.6 oz                Caravienne Malt (22.0 SRM)               Grain         5        1.0 %         
0.71 oz               Warrior [15.00 %] - Boil 60.0 min        Hop           6        36.5 IBUs     
0.25 oz               Columbus (Tomahawk) [14.00 %] - Boil 30. Hop           7        9.2 IBUs     
0.35 oz               Amarillo Gold [8.50 %] - Boil 10.0 min   Hop           8        3.7 IBUs     
0.35 oz               Simcoe [13.00 %] - Boil 10.0 min         Hop           9        5.7 IBUs     
1.00 oz               Amarillo Gold [8.50 %] - Boil 0.0 min    Hop           10       0.0 IBUs     
1.00 oz               Chinook [13.00 %] - Boil 0.0 min         Hop           11       0.0 IBUs     
1.00 oz               Citra [12.00 %] - Boil 0.0 min           Hop           12       0.0 IBUs     
1.00 oz               Columbus (Tomahawk) [14.00 %] - Boil 0.0 Hop           13       0.0 IBUs     
1.00 oz               Simcoe [13.00 %] - Boil 0.0 min          Hop           14       0.0 IBUs     
1.0 pkg               California Ale (White Labs #WLP001) [35. Yeast         15       -             
1.00 oz               Amarillo Gold [8.50 %] - Dry Hop 7.0 Day Hop           16       0.0 IBUs     
1.00 oz               Chinook [13.00 %] - Dry Hop 7.0 Days     Hop           17       0.0 IBUs     
1.00 oz               Citra [12.00 %] - Dry Hop 7.0 Days       Hop           18       0.0 IBUs     
1.00 oz               Columbus (Tomahawk) [14.00 %] - Dry Hop  Hop           19       0.0 IBUs     
1.00 oz               Simcoe [13.00 %] - Dry Hop 7.0 Days      Hop           20       0.0 IBUs     

Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Medium Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 10 lbs 0.8 oz
Name              Description                             Step Temperat Step Time     
Mash In           Add 18.27 qt of water at 166.6 F        158.0 F       60 min       

Sparge: Batch sparge with 2 steps (0.54gal, 3.90gal) of 168.0 F water

Homebrew Clubs / Grand Rapids, MI
« on: March 21, 2012, 11:29:55 PM »
Anyone active in a GR club?

All Grain Brewing / Preheated MLT strike water calcs
« on: March 19, 2012, 06:31:02 PM »
I'm trying to nail down what my strike water temps need to be on my system to get my desired mash temp. I'm using the dreaded not blue 10 gallon gott MLT. Did my 1st AG brew following along "How to Brew", and it got me pretty close but surprisingly I don't find a graph for calculating strike temps for a preheated tun. I have beersmith, and there is a place to set mashtun temp, but I have no idea what to enter after I add 2 gallons of boiling water and let it rest 10 minutes per HTB. I kept good records, and know I lost 8 degrees after stirring in the mash and about 4 degrees over the 60 min sacc rest. Is it just a matter of repetition and getting to know my system or is there a chart somewhere I can use to get close? Should I skip the preheat and just use beersmith with a roomtemp mashtun setting?


Equipment and Software / Ranco 2 stage settings
« on: March 15, 2012, 06:41:41 PM »
I wasn't planning on having to ferment in my fridge, let alone battle mosquitoes during mid-march, but evidently high 70's and low 80's are here to stay for a while in Michigan.

I have a ranco 2 stage and a ferm wrap, and my 80/- is getting warmer than I wanted, although it is conveniently at day 5 and  while i was planning on a diacetly rest I don't want it going above 69 or 70 (65 is the desired ferm temp for this recipe, i was going to bump it to 68 for the d-rest) So...I need to chuck the whole works in the fridge and I'm unsure what I need to set my heat, cool and buffer numbers at to hold at 68. Thanks in advance

Equipment and Software / Hop Rocket
« on: March 15, 2012, 04:58:55 PM »
Does anyone have a Blichmann Hop Rocket? If so, are you happy with it, and do I need a pump to use it or can you use it inline from kettle to fermentor with gravity? I wrote Blichmann but haven't heard back yet and there isn't much information on the website. Thanks

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