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Messages - dmtaylor

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Full Boil Impact
« on: March 11, 2016, 07:01:16 PM »
Electrical Design Engineer here.

I never know what to tell people.  I'm in Design Eng as well, in the Configuration Management group.  We're essentially the scummy janitors of stuff no one else in Engineering wants to do.  They also call me the paint guy.  I've been the Coatings Engineer for 17 years.  I also know a bit about EQ, and I'm also a CAPCO / Corrective Action nerd.  Yeah, I pretty much do everything that no one else wants to do.  But anyway, we digress.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Full Boil Impact
« on: March 11, 2016, 04:53:05 PM »
Your a nuke! Me too. I've got an outage coming up as well.

Hey, another one!  It's surprising how a disproportionate number of nuclear workers are into homebrewing.  Engineers and IT guys especially.  Don't know why, just seems true the world over, not just here but everywhere.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Full Boil Impact
« on: March 11, 2016, 03:27:17 PM »
2 kids and a full time job makes you try to save time where you can!

Try 3 kids and 60-hour weeks!  I've got that going for the next month or so.  Unfortunately, enriched uranium-235 only has a useful life of a few years, after which we just set it in a pool or in a bunker outside to cool the rest of the way over the next 10,000 years.   ;D

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Full Boil Impact
« on: March 11, 2016, 03:02:06 PM »
If I do a 30 minute vigorous boil instead, my batch sparge water drops low enough that I would probably just add it to mash-out.  What efficiency drop would I expect from 'no sparge' and from short boil?

With a low gravity beer in the 1.036-1.038ish range I'm planning on 2.25-2.5 qts./lb. which is way thinner than the 1.25-1.5 qts./lb. I normally do.  I've read that once a mash gets 'too thin' the required mash time goes up; is a 40minute mash possible at 2.5 qts./lb.?

There has been quite a few posts on shortening brewing steps lately that really has me desiring shortening what I can.  Especially since moving to these hop-steeps long ago which have great results, but also add time.  Especially when brewing in the evening and finding myself pitching at midnight or later sometimes.

No-sparge brewing will reduce your efficiency substantially.  I would say it's down to about 55% for a regular strength beer, and maybe a bit better around 60-65% for a small beer around 1.038.

2.5 qts/lb is no big deal at all.  You'll still get sufficient conversion, efficiency & attenuation, mashing at that ratio for just 40 minutes in my experience.

Glad to hear I'm not the only one anymore interested in saving time.  Cheers!

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Full Boil Impact
« on: March 11, 2016, 02:58:18 PM »

I did not do the 40 minute mash this past weekend and defaulted to 60.

Next go round I am committing to 45 minute mash and 25 minute vigorous boil.

Sweet.  I bet it turns out great.  Just consider knocking ~5% efficiency off from whatever you normally get, to ensure you hit your OG target due to sparging less to get your required pre-boil volume, i.e., collecting less sugars from the malts.

Ingredients / Re: When should I add lactose...
« on: March 11, 2016, 02:53:00 PM »
The OP refers to a cream stout not a cream ale.

This thread was resurrected from four years ago.  The highjacker said only "cream ale".  My more recent response was to him, not to the OP.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Full Boil Impact
« on: March 11, 2016, 01:30:59 PM »
"The kettle boil is also a source of wort and beer color, and again the Maillard reaction is responsible because heat drives the reaction between sugars and amino acids.  The effect is, however, rather small in modern short-time boils."

I'm not sure what the authors consider to be a modern, short-time boil.

In the old days (100 years ago or more) it was common to boil for 2 hours or longer.  The current standard of 60 minutes was established in more modern times.  And I think the standard will become even shorter in the next 5-10 years when people realize they don't need to waste so much time and energy by defaulting to 60 or 90 (for pilsner malt beers).

Ingredients / Re: When should I add lactose...
« on: March 11, 2016, 01:04:53 PM »
First off, never heard of adding lactose to a cream ale. Bad idea IMO. Cream ale is a style that is well attenuated and has a light drinkability. Lactose does the opposite - it makes beer full bodied and sweet. It's basically the 'sweet' in a sweet stout.

Good advice.  Lactose isn't needed in a traditional cream ale.  It's called "cream ale" meaning like it's the "best ale" or "cream of the crop ale", not because it has actual milk sugar in it.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Full Boil Impact
« on: March 11, 2016, 11:25:44 AM »
The one downside I can see to a shorter boil is that my efficiency will go down since I will collect less wort.  A shorter boil won't give me time to boiloff a larger volume.

*thinks to self - 'and he thinks that's a bad thing?'*

I'd thought of that as well.  But do I need to get back into my higher efficiency = lesser malt flavor theory again?  ;)

Granted, yes, folks will lose a couple points of efficiency from boiling less.  Keep it in mind.  Probably not huge, but slightly.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Full Boil Impact
« on: March 11, 2016, 10:19:44 AM »
If you boil hard & short, then it really just becomes a balancing act between time vs. hop bitterness.  I might go so far as to round all my hop additions to the nearest half-ounce or whatever, then calculate how many minutes I need to boil to get the IBUs that I want.  So, if I want 30 IBUs and I need to boil for exactly 38 minutes with a half-ounce of hops to get that many IBUs, then by golly I might just do it that way.  As a small-batch brewer, this will make storage of leftover hops easier for me.  But for you big batch guys, round to whole ounces and do the same thing if you want.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Full Boil Impact
« on: March 11, 2016, 10:01:30 AM »
I mash for 40, not boil, at least not usually.  But I'm heading there.

Personally I'm of the opinion that boil vigor is way more important than boil time.  You need that wort to be practically jumping out of the kettle to get the best clarity and hop utilization, oh and I'm sure it doesn't hurt either getting the DMS precursor out of there.  If you only simmer the kettle or do a weak rolling boil, it's not going to be as effective as the leaping geyser type effects.  I learned this from the guy I know who makes the best homebrews of most my other buddies -- he says don't dick around with adjusting heat, just friggin crank 'er up, as long as your kettle is big enough to hold it anyway.  Make sure your kettle and your heat source are big enough for jumping and bouncing and leaping of vigorously boiling wort.  If you can do that, then I see no reason why 20-30 minute boils shouldn't work.  I'm heading in that direction, already tried 45 minutes on a few batches and it didn't hurt anything.  And yes I boil very vigorously, have for years.

I change my batch volumes a lot.  Those of us who do that and who use old software with %/hour boiloff rates just have to memorize the percentages for each size.  To keep it easy, I know that for me, my boiloff percentages jump around approximately in multiples of 4.  For 5 gallons, I just have to remember boiloff rate is around 16%.  For 2.5-3 gallons, it's about 24%.  For 2 gallons, 28%.  And for my smallest batch size of 1.7 gallons, it's 32%.  This isn't exact but gets me close enough, and the numbers are easier for me to remember this way.

I'm starting to think 2 gallons might become my new normal.  1.7 gallons wasn't quite cutting it.  But I'm not sure yet.  So I've actually been bouncing back and forth between 1.7 and 2 gallons.  If I start brewing more often again then I'll need to adjust down to 1.7 gallons.  But anyway, I digress.

You can brew most styles to a lower original gravity (say a maximum of 1.035-1.040) and combine this with the use of a low attenuating yeast such as Windsor ale yeast to give a low strength, low alcohol beer that still has body and flavor.  Windsor yeast is well suited to most British and American beer styles.  Other yeasts can turn the beer more watery.  Saison is another option but you might want to keep the original gravity even lower, maybe 1.030-1.035 since it could finish about 1.000 if you use Belle Saison or Wyeast 3711 yeast, but even with that low of a gravity it will still give you 4 to 4.5% ABV.  Alcohol has a lot of calories too, not just the residual sugars.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: WY3787 Attenuation
« on: March 10, 2016, 04:40:21 AM »
Yep, that'll make a difference.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: WY3787 Attenuation
« on: March 09, 2016, 08:03:52 PM »
It could happen I suppose.  But my experience has been closer to 76%.  Did you use a lot of simple sugars in the recipe??  That could do it.

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