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Messages - Jimmy K

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Kegging and Bottling / Re: Portable Kegerator
« on: February 02, 2012, 09:58:41 AM »

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Temperature control settings
« on: February 02, 2012, 09:58:03 AM »
I had thought about sticking the probe in liquid. I think I'm going to try sticking it in a small block of foam insulation. The idea would be the same, slow the rate at which an air temperature change reaches the probe and turns on the compressor. This way I don't have to worry about a little vial of liquid in there.

Equipment and Software / Re: Brewpots
« on: February 02, 2012, 08:01:54 AM »
On my 7.5 gallon kettle, a gallon of volume is 2 inches of vertical space.  When I start at 6.5 gallons it seems really close to the top. Now I have a 15 gallon kettle. Much better.

Kegging and Bottling / Temperature control settings
« on: February 02, 2012, 07:59:40 AM »
I have a Johnson digital temperature controller hooked up to my new converted freezer kegerator. I'm wondering what controller settings people use. Mostly, I noticed that you can change the temperature differential which I guess is the range from when it shuts off cooling and turns it on again.  The default is 5 degrees, which seems like a wide swing?

Extract/Partial Mash Brewing / Re: How long till serious bubbling occurs?
« on: January 31, 2012, 05:37:10 PM »
It could be done in four days, and if there was a leaky seal in your fermenter you'd never see any bubbling.

Equipment and Software / Re: Installing Taps in Fridge Door...Parts?
« on: January 31, 2012, 02:34:32 PM »
Kegs under continuous pressure will equilibriate a predictable carbonation level according to temperature and pressure.

See here
12lb at 38F is suitable for most beers it seems.

I'm just setting up my own kegerator, but I'm sure that a 10' beer line does not need 20lb serving pressure. Line ID matters too, 10' would be for 3/16" ID line. 1/4" line would require much more because there is less resistance.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Moving Back to Bottling (sometimes)
« on: January 31, 2012, 11:57:12 AM »
The priming rate charts account for CO2 still dissolved in the beer from fermentation. It will lose CO2 when warmed and that CO2 won't go back in just because the beer cools down.You'd likely need more sugar if you warm it before crashing.

Other Fermentables / Re: Gonna do my first cider Saturday.
« on: January 31, 2012, 11:50:38 AM »
I use regular beer bottles too.

I have powdered sulfite so I'm not sure, but I think campden tablets is 1 tab/gallon crushed. Sorbate is added at 1/2 tsp/gallon. Potassium sorbate is also sold labeled as 'wine stabilizer'.

And yes, rack off the yeast first. I rack into the keg, add sulfite, sorbate, and sugar, then stir and carbonate.

Other Fermentables / Re: Gonna do my first cider Saturday.
« on: January 31, 2012, 08:59:40 AM »
By the way, I'd back sweeten first before adding tannin. Cider often finishes with a gravity of 0.998 - absolutely bone dry. Sweetening it to just 1.002-1.005 will bring out apple flavors/aromas in a surprising way and that gravity is still considered 'dry'. Most people will taste it and think there is no sugar left, though there is.

Edit: I'd start with 1 cup of sugar (or equivalent) per 5 gallons.

Equipment and Software / Re: Installing Taps in Fridge Door...Parts?
« on: January 31, 2012, 08:50:54 AM »
I bought parts from Their prices seemed good. They have individual parts along with many options to buy a complete setup for homebrew or commercial kegs.

Other Fermentables / Re: 60 gallons of cider
« on: January 30, 2012, 08:57:00 PM »
We split it up yesterday - 12 carboys/kegs of cider. We kept 4 and 8 went off to their forever homes.

Other Fermentables / Re: Gonna do my first cider Saturday.
« on: January 30, 2012, 08:55:17 PM »
I think campden tablets will kill the yeast for you.  Then you can back sweeten.

But I've not done this, so wait for more authoritative advice.

Nope. Campden tablets (sulfites) will stop the yeast temporarily, but not permenently.  Cultured yeasts are more resistant to sulfites than wild yeasts and bacteria. Sorbate will prevent renewed fermentation, but won't stop active yeast very well - so you must use both - sulfites to stop the yeast and sorbate to keep it stopped.

By the way, another reason to use both is that lactic acid bacteria, which are likely present in your cider in small amounts, will metabolize sorbate to produce geranium flavors/aromas unless sulfite is added.

Maybe somebody should start a petition to the Tavern League. It should be somebody who lives in Wisconsin.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Can sunlight affect wort?
« on: January 30, 2012, 09:08:19 AM »
The skunking compounds are not present until fermentation. It's a combination of certain compounds in the hop oils and B vitamins produced by the yeast that cause the skunking from light. wort is safe.

Good to know. I've always wondered why people can brew outside in direct sunlight with no problems. This explains that.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Yes, we have no bananas......
« on: January 30, 2012, 07:04:57 AM »
Banana tincture - chopped bananas in vodka for a week, strain through coffee filters. Put in freezer and strain again for more clarity.

But why?

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