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Messages - mabrungard

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From what I've seen in new construction, virtually all homes now include PEX tubing for their water supply. Having worked with PEX for a couple of years now, I can vouch for it as a great material. While most PEX fittings are brass, if you are piping up a RO system, using plastic fittings may be wise. Just recognize that those plastic fittings cannot have any strain on them.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Gypsum or CaCl in a yeast starter
« on: May 05, 2014, 05:43:26 AM »
You are actually better off with about 10 to 20 ppm Mg in the starter water than any calcium addition. Zymurgy readers will get the full story in the Jul/Aug 2014 issue. Epsom Salt is OK.

Homebrew Clubs / Re: Homebrew Club Meeting Location
« on: May 04, 2014, 04:38:17 PM »
In my opinion, meeting in a public place is a necessity for any club looking to grow. I can think of few things more frightening than going to someone's house (that you don't know) to see if you are interested in joining their club. A public meeting space provides a bit more cover for the first time visitor to see if this is a group that meshes with their ideals. I realize that it is very difficult to find an adequate public meeting space, but it is something that every club should try and achieve. A noisy restaurant is not ideal since its tough to have the group conversations that make a meeting like this worthwhile.

Sure, if there are rules against homebrew at that public space, have another monthly meeting at a home or somewhere else so that the true focus of the club (homebrewing) can be exhibited. But providing that public meeting space is an important way to encourage new members to check your club out.

Wow! You have to wonder if the water salesmen even tested your water? I'm assuming they just quoted numbers that would alarm anyone and let you have them. I'm assuming our brewing knowledge set off the bull-sh*t meter and that iron level fell out as a blatant lie.

i guess we always have to be wary when the seller is working on commission. 

Equipment and Software / Re: Thermapen or MW101 PH meter?
« on: May 01, 2014, 06:04:18 AM »
Keith, are you rounding those values or do you have a meter that only reports to the nearest tenth? That is a curious result. The only thing I can assume is that the 'room-temp' that you are cooling too, is higher in the afternoon.

Equipment and Software / Re: Thermapen or MW101 PH meter?
« on: April 29, 2014, 05:49:45 AM »
There is no way I would spend the $$ on a Therapen when they make the RT600c. I have two of the RTs and they are nice. Now I need an extra one for other duties.

I agree that a pH meter is a PITA and that there are programs that help get your mash pH pretty close, but I do want to check that stuff.

Temperature and pH are important factors. Get the very worthwhile RT600 and when your funds permit, get the MW-101 along with all the other stuff like storage and calibration solutions. My MW has been rock solid. I can't say the same for other compact pH meters. I think it has something to do with the MW-101 using an industry standard probe.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Sulfur Smell from 1 Month Old Beer
« on: April 26, 2014, 05:48:56 AM »
How much copper is in your brewing system? If there is no wort contact with copper, the wort may be copper-deficient. Copper complexes with sulfurous compounds and drops them out of solution. One of my clubmates put a piece on copper tube in a problematic beer for a few minutes and he said it cleared out his sulfur problem.

Ingredients / Re: Sasion Water Profile?
« on: April 25, 2014, 04:25:39 AM »
Eric, sulfate has little to do with a style that is not hop forward. We need to lose the mantra that sulfate makes beer doesn't. Sulfate makes beer finish dry. In a bittered beer, that allows the hop character and bittering to exhibit. But it didn't make the beer more bitter.

In a malty beer, excessive dryness could become counter-productive to leaving the drinker with that desired perception of malt in the finish. Using sulfate to dial up or down the dryness of the finish is a pretty handy tool in the brewer's tool kit.

Ingredients / Re: Sasion Water Profile?
« on: April 24, 2014, 06:24:34 PM »
Sulfate is presented as such a bad guy by some folks. Its not really that bad a component to have in water. Even in a malty beer, a low level of sulfate can help dry the finish. I would not go much above 100 ppm in a malty beer though. If the finish is too dry, it will diminish the malt perception.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Commercial examples of 60 shilling?
« on: April 24, 2014, 01:18:38 PM »
+1 on the recommendation to avoid peated malt in this style. With a proper ferment, the scottish yeast does through a hint of smokey phenol. I would have to say that a better work around than peated is to use a small percentage of brown malt. It has a hint of smokiness.

Ingredients / Re: Azacca Single hop IPA tasting notes
« on: April 23, 2014, 04:39:38 AM »
5.4 is fine for hop focused beers and that is what I aim for when brewing PAs and IPAs. The problem is that if I don't add a bit of lime to my water (its RO too), the mash pH will be too low and that echos into the kettle pH.

Malt focused beers might be mashed at slightly lower pH (say 5.2) to help accentuate their crispness and also reduce those hop contributed flavors or bitterness that we clearly are not interested in these styles.

Ingredients / Re: Azacca Single hop IPA tasting notes
« on: April 22, 2014, 10:26:16 AM »
Remember, low wort pH can reduce the extraction of bittering compounds from the hops and the bittering expression in the beer. If brewing with RO and you are boosting the calcium content to provide sulfate, you probably need a little alkalinity in the mashing water to avoid a low pH. A little pickling lime or baking soda may be a necessary thing!

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Question for chemist types
« on: April 21, 2014, 06:34:53 PM »
Yes, Chlorine is named what it is, because it is a greenish yellow gas in its pure form.

I dont think you can reach a desirable sulfate level if you limit the Ca to 50 ppm. Ive brewed my std pale ale with 100 ppm sulfate and it was tasty, but it didnt have the pop or dryness I prefer. I like 300 ppm.

Beer Recipes / Re: Ralph's Summer Wheat
« on: April 20, 2014, 03:25:53 PM »
You will have to report back. Its always good to find out about all these new hops.

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