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Messages - Joe Sr.

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1171
All Things Food / Re: Kitchen Knives
« on: December 13, 2012, 08:56:27 AM »
On the bread knife though I would say save some money and get a cheap stamped blade. They are a pain to sharpen anyway and with the serations you dont' really need to for a very long time. I have a $15 henckly stamped blade bread knife that works just fine

Did you look at that sammich knife?  That's more than just a bread knife.

It reminds me of the knife the old guy used to make sammiches at the Berghoff stand-up bar back when they were open.  Awesome lunch line they had there, and the sandwhich guy really knew how to use his knife.  He was like an artist carving the meat, slicing the bread, slapping it all together using only the knife.  And, of course, you could get some Berghoff beer fresh from the tap.

1172
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keg Virgin Questions
« on: December 13, 2012, 08:24:15 AM »
I suppose if you are buying it all new, the cost comes out the same.  Certainly, $50 for convenience is not out of hand.  FWIW, however, you can usually find a deal on a mini-fridge on Craigslist and that would save potentially $150 off your cost.  Craigslist can be incredibly inconvenient, however, so I totally understand if you don't go that route.

For me, multiple kegs is less about the quantity you drink than having variety.  For example, I don't necessarily want to drink 5 gallons of wheat beer although I have a keg of wheat on tap.  It's nice to open the fridge and have that second keg as an option.  I will also swap kegs out before they are empty if I get tired of them or just want something else.  But it's a PITA to want variety and then to have to wait 24 hours or so for the new keg to settle and cool to serving temp.

Finally, the keg shouldn't spoil unless you have an infection.  I've got some beers that have been kegged for over a year with no problems.

1173
All Things Food / Re: Kitchen Knives
« on: December 13, 2012, 07:43:43 AM »
But I like my Chinese-made $8 chef's knife bought at the local grocery store! Virtually indistinguishable from my Henckles Fine-edge Pro sontoku in blade construction, forging and quality for a fifth of the price. The steel is marginally different- slightly softer but can hold a very sharp edge. I hand-sharpen all my knives and suggest avoiding anything cheap with a "ground-edge" BTW.

I figure they're probably made in the same place. Twenty years ago a cheap knife was exactly that.

slightly softer as in having lead in the alloy? :o

He did say "Chinese-made."  Just like all the kids toys, chances are it has lead.

1174
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keg Virgin Questions
« on: December 13, 2012, 07:42:08 AM »
I got my Sanyo mini-fridge on Craigslist for $100.  It holds two cornies and someday I'll put a tap tower on it (I have the tower, just not the time).

$450 for the Magic Chef is a steep price to pay for something that will only hold two kegs.  A Sanyo 4912 is essentially the same thing IMO and much much more affordable if you're willing to do the work to put the tower on top.  Also, if you remove the shelving on the door supposedly you can fit three kegs.  I use that shelving for yeast and bottles, however.

1175
Ingredients / Re: Storing HOP Pellets
« on: December 13, 2012, 07:36:51 AM »
I almost fell off the catwalk on the Jack Daniels tour when I leaned out over the fermenting vats and took a big whiff.

When you have to go, there are worse ways than falling into a vat of whiskey.

1176
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keg Virgin Questions
« on: December 12, 2012, 12:46:01 PM »
$25?!? Score! I would have bought many at that price.

Give it a good soak.  Scrub the interior.  I have a dedicated toilet brush. 

If you have a tiny brush you can scrub the dip-tube.  Pressurize it while it is soaking and then depress the poppet to get some cleaner in to the tube.  Do the same when rinsing and again when sanitizing.

When you first seal the keg after filling, hit it with 20 or 30 lbs of pressure to get a good seal on the lid, then you can dial back down to your carbing pressure.  Also, keep a spray bottle of starsan handy to check the lid and poppets for leaks.

I've found that warming up the lid o-ring can help getting it to seal well.  Warm water or even putting it in the microwave in a bowl of water will soften it up.

1177
Kegging and Bottling / Re: oxygen absorbing caps
« on: December 12, 2012, 08:01:34 AM »
Used to use them years ago, but changed to whatever the cheapest caps I could get were at the time.  I never really noticed any difference.  I have some beers that are probably six old at this point.  If I can find them, I'll crack one open to see how it is.  But I have no idea what cap I would have used.

I've gone back to the O2 caps now when I'm bottling from the keg just for the extra insurance.

I have always sterilized my caps and never heard of anyone who didn't until just now.

1178
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: What are you tappin'?
« on: December 12, 2012, 07:55:06 AM »

1179
Kegging and Bottling / Re: bottling small amount from full batch
« on: December 11, 2012, 04:00:03 PM »
I've found the Munton's to leave weird white plasticy solid particles in my beer.  Supposedly they corrected this but not in my experience.

I've had good luck with the Coopers.  I've also had inconsistencies.  The inconsistencies may have actually been with Brewer's Best or some other brand.

Overall, it's a mixed bag in my opinion but they all work.

1180
Extract/Partial Mash Brewing / Re: IPA time
« on: December 11, 2012, 03:31:31 PM »
Sugar (table sugar) sub.  If I am using 8 lbs of dry extract...how much should I sub with sugar?

I wouldn't do more than 1 lb of sugar.  That would replace somewhat more than 1 lb of extract.  I'm lazy and use Beersmith, so I can't recall how much extract you would need to replace.

In regards to first wort hopping with extract.  Would I just steep the hops while I steep the crystal?  Or do I hop it until roughly 160 degrees? All I know about first wort hopping is done with all grain.  Sorry for the noob question. 

That sounds like mash hopping.  FWH would be putting the hops in after taking the grains out and before the wort is boiling.  Since you've only got 1 lb of crystal, I don't know how much benefit you'll get from FWH but you could give it a try.  It can't hurt, right?

hmmmm...never used gypsum.  I will be using regular old tap water (it is actually really good based on the report), so I will do some research on gypsum and figure out how to utilize it in this recipe.

I'm not too clear on how to adjust water when you're using extract.  I thought the general rule of thumb was that it's not really necessary since you don't know what minerals were in the mash that produced the extract.

If you decide to give it a try, I'd go light.

1181
Extract/Partial Mash Brewing / Re: IPA time
« on: December 11, 2012, 01:39:10 PM »
FWIW, I only use the absolute lightest DME I can get.  Amber, dark, whatever can be achieved with your grains and you have much better control.

If you are using LME there are also some pretty good suppliers that make Maris Otter, rye and other extracts that you could use for a specific style of beer.  As long as their turn-over is good and you use it relatively quickly you shouldn't have to worry about staleness and "twang."

1182
Ingredients / Re: Storing HOP Pellets
« on: December 11, 2012, 12:09:18 PM »
The O2 in your headspace is effectively gone - some of it will get pushed out due to vigorous fermentation, some of it will dissolve into the beer as the O2 in the beer is taken up by the yeast, and whatever is left is not enough to worry about.

but what about racking into a keg?

Unless you've filled it with liquid and pushed that out with CO2 (ala Mort), there is oxygen in the keg.  If you've flushed it in this fashion you probably want to rack under pressure as opening the keg would defeat the purpose of flushing it, though I'm sure the flush is still beneficial.

If you have not flushed in Morts fashion, the O2 obviously gets displaced by the beer.  The remaining amount in the headspace is minimized by purging it with CO2 several times, but not entirely eliminated.

I've never worried too much about this.  Never really had an issue.

1183
Ingredients / Re: Storing HOP Pellets
« on: December 11, 2012, 07:45:32 AM »
so then what are we doing when we purge kegs prior to filling, and then purge the headspace after sealing?  Is this not worth it?

See Jeff's post above:

Here is a way to get all (all for practical purposes) of the O2 out. A pet bottle used for soda should hold a high pressure, you might start with 20 PSI, 30 would be better and this link says it would be OK, but I would use precautions.
http://waterrocket.uh-lab.de/lr010101_bursttest.htm

There is about 21% O2 in the air in the container, or about 1 part in 5. Fill the containter to 30 PSI, and you have added 2 atmospheres, so you now have 1 part in 15. Vent the CO2, fill again. Repeat 2 or 3 times more and the amount is a very small part. If someone want to do that math, I will leave it to the motivated brewer.

You are essentially diluting the mixture to the point that (hopefully) the oxygen is minimized. Better to do so than not.

The only way to eliminate the oxygen entirely would be to transfer under pressure to a keg prefilled with co2.  Even then, you probably have some minimal amount of oxygen in the keg.

1184
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Quick Hop Aroma and Flavor Loss
« on: December 10, 2012, 03:11:22 PM »
If you're over pressurizing the keg to quick carb, then venting it before you serve, you're probably purging out a ton of hop aroma. Better to rack to the keg, toss in the dry hops, set it to serving pressure and wait a week.

Another good suggestion.

Even if you're not venting, I've noticed that when my beers are over-carbed/over foamy I will get a strong hop flavor/aroma in the head that is not there in the beer.  Like all the hops got blasted out.

1185
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Infection Because of Chamber Mold?
« on: December 10, 2012, 12:56:25 PM »
All I do is run sanitizer through the hoses before and after each use.  I can't recall the last time they were replaced, but it's definitely been a couple years.

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