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Messages - a10t2

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All Grain Brewing / Re: Why has my efficiency gone to crap?
« on: July 30, 2011, 07:22:34 PM »
Actually if you ever look at a bag of malt, there are all sorts of lab result info for that "batch"

Which only vary by a few percent from one lot to the next, is my point.

Beer Recipes / Re: Wheat, Octoberfest, Ale?
« on: July 30, 2011, 12:24:08 PM »
Can we all, please, agree that it's acceptable to brew something this time of year without calling it an Oktoberfest? Please?

Haha! Just kidding! I'm off to mash in on my Imperial Rye Oktoberfest, fermented with Chimay yeast and dry-hopped with Citra.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Sanitizers
« on: July 30, 2011, 07:44:46 AM »
That would be me to a T.  I can't use B-T-F Iodophor  anymore as I can taste it in the  proper concentration.

You mean you can taste the residue left behind after sanitizing and draining a fermenter or bottle? No offense, but are you sure? Have you tried it blind? Even if there were 1 fl oz of 12.5 ppm iodine left behind in a fermenter, diluting that with 5 gal of beer would reduce the iodine concentration to 19.5 ppb. Google is telling me that ionic iodine has a taste threshold of 0.2-5 ppm depending on the source.

I wonder if you could be allergic to povidone. Have you ever had a reaction when having your skin swabbed prior to an injection or something like that?

Edit: Found references to a lower taste threshold.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Why has my efficiency gone to crap?
« on: July 30, 2011, 07:32:17 AM »
but remember that its an agricultural product maybe a bad season, or bad field?

When buying from a reputable maltster that simply shouldn't happen. They do an ungodly amount of testing and blending in order to produce the most consistent product they can.

gmac, are you using the actual lot analysis to determine efficiency, or just making an assumption? 15% would be a pretty significant variation in potential extract for base malts (72-84%), but not impossible, especially if the variation is in the same direction as your hydrometer error. How close is "pretty close" to 1.000?

Beer Recipes / Re: Smoking malt
« on: July 29, 2011, 10:18:36 PM »
I let the smoked malt sit a couple of weeks in a paper bag, then used one third of it in Helles bock.  I did the same with apple wood and will be serving the second keg of each beer at Oktoberfest.

Just let me know where and when. ;)

Beer Recipes / Re: Sorachi Ace Saison, feedback time!
« on: July 29, 2011, 04:24:07 PM »
I'm not entirely sure what the term cohumulone means but i'm off to research that cause you got me thinking and curious.

Cohumulone is supposedly the "harshest" of the alpha acids. Many brewers will bitter with so-called "lo-co" hops when they want a smoother bitterness. I don't know that it's a 100% reliable indicator, but it certainly does seem to hold up if you compare something like Magnum (24-28% cohumulone per HopUnion) to Galena (38-42%).

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Sanitizers
« on: July 29, 2011, 10:35:22 AM »
The taste is rather medicinal with a metallic type edge to it.

Things I would check, in order of descending likelihood:
1. Under-pitching and/or pitching and fermenting too warm. Easy fix.
2. Using a bleach-bearing cleanser without a thorough hot water rinse. Easy fix.
3. Water composition, with chlorine/chloramines being most likely. Chlorine can be removed by boiling the liquor or leaving it out overnight; either can be removed using sodium/potassium metabisulfite (Campden).
4. A persistent low-level contamination. Have him replace all plastics and pasteurize everything else (15 min at >180°F).

Here's what HTB has to say:
These flavors are often described as mediciney, Band-Aid™ like, or can be spicy like cloves. The cause are various phenols which are initially produced by the yeast. Chlorophenols result from the reaction of chlorine-based sanitizers (bleach) with phenol compounds and have very low taste thresholds. Rinsing with boiled water after sanitizing is the best way to prevent these flavors.

Metallic flavors are usually caused by unprotected metals dissolving into the wort but can also be caused by the hydrolysis of lipids in poorly stored malts. Iron and aluminum can cause metallic flavors leaching into the wort during the boil. The small amount could be considered to be nutritional if it weren't for the bad taste. Nicks and cracks ceramic coated steel pots are a common cause as are high iron levels in well water. Stainless steel pots will not contribute any metallic flavors. Aluminum pots usually won't cause metallic flavors unless the brewing water is alkaline with a pH level greater than 9. Shiny new aluminum pots will sometimes turn black when boiling water due to chlorine and carbonates in the water.

Beer Recipes / Re: Purple Haze?
« on: July 29, 2011, 08:09:34 AM »
You could also just add it as the appropriate amount of sugar and all the calculations would work out.

Beer Recipes / Re: Smoking malt
« on: July 29, 2011, 08:08:45 AM »
How do I smoke a bit of malt and how much do you suggest for a 5 gal batch so that it is present and supporting but not overpowering?  Doesn't have to be perfect but I need a starting point to fine-tune from later.

I've never smoked my own malts, but there was an article (in BYO IIRC) a couple years ago about doing small amounts by joining two pie plates together to make a chamber. It may not be on their website, but google did turn up this:

When using commercial smoked malts, I'd go with anywhere from 20-40% of the grist for a subtle, background smoke character. In a porter you may want to tend closer to the high end of that range. I just brewed a smoked Vienna Lager for our next seasonal and it's subtle but unmistakable at 16%.

Briess has a new cherrywood smoked malt out that I haven't tried yet, but I'll be doing a smoked porter with it this fall.

The Pub / Re: trojan asteroid
« on: July 29, 2011, 07:57:26 AM »
Trojans are asteroids that orbit a massive object (the Sun), but have been attracted to the Lagrange points of a less massive object (the Earth). I think it's L4 in this case, but don't quote me on that. Essentially, what's happening is that if the asteroid "fell behind" in its orbit, the Earth's gravity would tend to speed it up, and if it "got ahead" the Sun's gravity would tend to slow it down.

Edit: After looking at the animation, it appears that's it's actually orbiting our L5.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Sanitizers
« on: July 29, 2011, 07:52:21 AM »
Checking the pH of your friend's water doesn't eliminate it as a possibility. The pH of the tap water has essentially no impact on the beer. Is he brewing extract or all-grain? Can you describe the off-flavor?

Star San can be kept as long as its pH is <3. If you mix it with distilled water, or your tap water is very soft, that can be weeks. With hard water, it's only a couple days. I don't know if cloudiness is a reliable indicator or not, and I don't know that I'd chance it. A $5 pack of pH test strips would be all you'd need.

Equipment and Software / Re: Mash Tun insulation
« on: July 28, 2011, 06:04:49 PM »
What do you use for a mash tun? That will at least give people an idea what your options are.

The price tag alone made me do a double-take, but then I saw this:

You need to have a source of 220v power (and the ability to adapt the European plug to North American 220v, we recommend a certified electrician). If you have that then using electricity can become an advantage. Because of size constraints of the mash tub the largest starting gravity beer you can brew is around 1.057. You can always add DME to the boil for an occasional big beer brew.

I'd say do it yourself, save two grand, and get more features at the same time.

Equipment and Software / Re: Controlling fermentation temperatures
« on: July 26, 2011, 11:57:34 AM »
Interesting idea--I've never heard of that before. 
Will the moisture and condensation in the fridge cause problems with the hair dryer (i.e., rust) over time?
Is there any potential for electric shock if the whole $9 hairdryer is slightly damp?

I couldn't really say since I don't have it in a fridge. I only have to heat, not cool, my fermentations. It's a cheap plastic POS though - there's almost no metal in it to rust.

A GFCI outlet would be a must if there's going to be any condensation, but I don't think you'd need to take any precautions beyond that. If you had to touch it while it was running you could always just unplug it first.

The Pub / Re: what not to name your brewery
« on: July 26, 2011, 09:56:03 AM »
I meant back in the day. I'm so ugly now even dark bars wouldn't help.

There are always blind chicks...

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