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Topics - tygo

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Equipment and Software / ATC Refractometers
« on: May 24, 2010, 01:26:00 AM »
Just picked one of these up and the directions say that the automatic temperature correction will handle samples up to 50F - 86F.  Obviously a sample pulled right from the kettle is going to be higher than that.  So how is that handled?  Should I let it cool a little before dropping it on the prism?

It wouldn't take long for a little bit of wort to cool down to below 86 but my impression when reading people describe using these things is that I could take the sample directly out and drop it on.

Yeast and Fermentation / Starter Batch
« on: April 03, 2010, 01:20:39 AM »
I'm planning on brewing a 5 gallon batch of Scottish 70/- as a starter for a Wee Heavy.  My primary goal is to have a good yeast cake to pitch the biggun onto but I'm also planning on drinking the starter and am hoping its a decent beer on its own.  What's the best way of going about this?

Ferment the starter in the primary for two weeks then bottle?  If I go this route should I cold crash the beer to flocc the yeast out?  Ferment until primary is done then rack to a secondary?

General Homebrew Discussion / Amarillo APA
« on: March 31, 2010, 01:49:37 AM »
Sipping on the first bottle of my first all Amarillo APA.  Wanted to keep this one to just one hop variety to try it out.  Absolutely delicious.

Beer Recipes / Wee Heavy Recipe Check
« on: March 21, 2010, 05:59:19 PM »
I'm planning on doing a Wee Heavy in the next month or so and I'm working up the recipe.  Here's what I have so far:

Recipe: The Burial Chair
Brewer: Tygo
Asst Brewer:
Style: Strong Scotch Ale
TYPE: All Grain
Taste: (35.0)

Recipe Specifications
Batch Size: 4.50 gal      
Boil Size: 8.00 gal
Estimated OG: 1.118 SG
Estimated Color: 18.9 SRM
Estimated IBU: 29.0 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: 65.00 %
Boil Time: 90 Minutes

Amount        Item                                      Type         % or IBU      
18.00 lb      Pale Malt, Maris Otter (4.0 SRM)          Grain        80.90 %      
4.00 lb       Munich Malt (9.0 SRM)                     Grain        17.98 %      
0.25 lb       Roasted Barley (300.0 SRM)                Grain        1.12 %        
1.50 oz       Fuggles [4.50 %]  (90 min)                Hops         23.8 IBU      
0.50 oz       Goldings, East Kent [4.50 %]  (25 min)    Hops         5.2 IBU      
0.50 gm       Salt (Boil 15.0 min)                      Misc                      
0.50 tsp      Yeast Nutrient (Boil 15.0 min)            Misc                      
1.00 items    Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 min)          Misc                      
2.00 gm       Baking Soda (Mash 60.0 min)               Misc                      
4.00 gm       Chalk (Mash 60.0 min)                     Misc                      
1 Pkgs        Scottish Ale (Wyeast Labs #1728)          Yeast-Ale                  

Mash Schedule: Batch Sparge Mash
Total Grain Weight: 22.25 lb

Step Time     Name               Description                         Step Temp    
60 min        Mash In            Add 28.00 qt of water at 187.6 F    154.0 F      
0 min         Temperature Adjust Add 4.35 qt of water at 154.0 F     154.0 F      
0 min         Sparge             Add 18.00 qt of water at 175.7 F    160.0 F      

I'm going to pull a gallon of the first runnings off and boil it down and then add it back into the boil.  

I was reading through the chapter in Designing Great Beers on Scotch and Scottish Ales and Daniels recommends a mash temp of 156 or higher.  I'm a little leery going that high with a beer this big.  He states that one of his better Strong Scotch Ales had an OG of 1.090 and a FG of 1.040 which is a way higher FG than what I think I'm going for.  I'm thinking of shooting for more in the range of 1.030 as a FG and the OG of this one is a good bit higher than 1.090.

I'm planning on pitching this on top of the yeast cake from a  5 gallon batch of 70/- I'm making as a starter beer for this and holding the fermentation temp down around 60F.

Any thoughts or suggestions would be appreciated.

All Grain Brewing / Campden Addtions
« on: February 22, 2010, 03:31:37 AM »
When you add a campden tablet to water to eliminate the chloramine what are you adding to the water on a net basis?  Just looking around on the web it looks like adding one campden tablet to 10 gallons of water would add 6.7 ppm sulfur dioxide but that supposedly goes away as it reacts with chlorine and chloramine.  So does that mean that the addition of the tablet adds nothing on a net basis or are there some residual mineral additions that should be taken into account when building your water?

I know that the common convention is that one tablet should be added to 20 gallons of water.  Is there enough of an impact that only half a tablet should be added to 10 gallons? 

The Pub / Beer in the News
« on: January 21, 2010, 07:43:19 PM »

Equipment and Software / Sanitzing SS Diffusion Stone
« on: January 17, 2010, 02:46:40 AM »
I have an Oxygenator that I'm using for the first time tonight.  The instructions recommend boiling the stone and letting cool and sanitizing the hose separately.  Is that right?  Before I read that I was going to drop the stone into the Star San along with the hose.

Equipment and Software / Pump question
« on: January 12, 2010, 03:10:08 AM »
So after my last sub-freezing brewing experience with using garden hoses and my IC outside to chill I decided to build a simple system to chill using water recirculated via a pump through the IC into a cooler.  Found a cheap aquarium pump on Amazon and not knowing what I was doing bought it.  Attached hose fittings to two lengths of 1/2" ID clear tubing and fired it up.  No surprise, it didn't have the juice to move the water.

So I went out and got one of these:

Now I'm not sure if I went overboard or not.  There's no question this will move the water through the system but I'm worried it's got too much power for the 1/2" tubing and the chiller coil.  I don't want to either 1) burn out the pump motor, or 2) rupture something somewhere else.

Anyone have an opinion they'd care to share or experience with this pump?

General Homebrew Discussion / Nice find
« on: January 04, 2010, 07:44:59 PM »
Was getting ready to bottle today, first time in the new house and was going through the taped up boxes that I was under the assumption contained my bottles.  Well, it did, in addition to 5 RyePAs that I brewed almost 3 years ago today and which I didn't realize I had.  Guess I have some homebrews to drink while bottling today after all.  They still taste pretty good.  No real hop aroma left and they're showing their age a bit but still a really nice brew to enjoy while doing homebrewing activities  ;D

Ingredients / Mineral additions for stout
« on: December 24, 2009, 01:45:49 AM »
Going to brew a 5 gallon batch of stout using these grains:

8.00 lb       Marris Otter Pale Malt (UK) (4.6 SRM)     Grain        72.72 %       
2.00 lb       Barley, Flaked (1.7 SRM)                  Grain        18.18 %       
1.00 lb       Roasted Barley (300.0 SRM)                Grain        9.10 %       

My water profile is:

Na 22
Ca 46
Mg 11
SO4 21
Cl  23
HCO3 121

I was thinking of adding 2.5g of chalk and 1g of gypsum to bring the water up to:

Ca 111
SO4 51
HCO3 200

Am I going overboard on the mineral additions?

Beer Recipes / Belgian Strong Golden Recipe
« on: December 21, 2009, 06:36:47 PM »
I'm going to be brewing this one over the extended New Years weekend.  I've already got the starter going.  Shooting for a pitch rate of approximately 320B cells (2 qts, decant, 2 more quarts).  This is what I've come up with so far.  Any comments would be appreciated.  On the mash schedule I was thinking of mashing this at 149 to get a little better attenuation.  That a good idea or should I stick with a more normal 152 or so?

BeerSmith Recipe Printout -
Recipe: Belgian Strong Golden Ale
Asst Brewer:
Style: Belgian Golden Strong Ale
TYPE: All Grain

Recipe Specifications
Batch Size: 5.00 gal     
Boil Size: 7.44 gal
Estimated OG: 1.089 SG
Estimated Color: 5.4 SRM
Estimated IBU: 30.6 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: 65.00 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Amount        Item                                      Type         % or IBU     
12.50 lb      Pilsner (2 Row) Bel (2.0 SRM)             Grain        72.46 %       
2.00 lb       Wheat Malt, Bel (2.0 SRM)                 Grain        11.59 %       
1.00 lb       Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM)              Grain        5.80 %       
1.50 oz       Hallertauer Mittelfrueh [4.00 %]  (60 min)Hops         20.8 IBU     
0.50 oz       Saaz [4.00 %]  (20 min)                   Hops         4.2 IBU       
0.50 oz       Hallertauer Mittelfrueh [4.00 %]  (20 min)Hops         4.2 IBU       
0.50 oz       Saaz [4.00 %]  (5 min)                    Hops         1.4 IBU                 
1.75 lb       Sugar, Table (Sucrose) (1.0 SRM)          Sugar        10.14 %             
1 Pkgs        Trappist High Gravity (Wyeast Labs #3787) Yeast-Wheat               

Total Grain Weight: 15.50 lb
Clint's Batch Sparge Mash
Step Time     Name               Description                         Step Temp     
60 min        Mash In            Add 23.25 qt of water at 165.5 F    149.0 F       
0 min         Sparge             Add 12.76 qt of water at 185.2 F    160.0 F       

Kegging and Bottling / Force Carb in Mini-Keg?
« on: December 16, 2009, 03:16:26 AM »
So due to unfortunate timing the ESB I just brewed will not be ready in time for NYE.  I could rush it into the bottle but the most I could hope for, assuming I don't secondary it and it clears in the primary in two weeks from the brew date, would be to have it in the bottle for a week.  That's doable I know, but is a little more rushed than I would have hoped for, and one week in the bottle in my experience isn't really going to result in reliable carbonation.

I was wondering if it would be possible to force carb in a mini-keg.  I have a couple of the five liter stainless steel mini-kegs with a hand held CO2 injector.  I do not have a regulator or any other kegging equipment as of yet so there's no way I could measure the pressure. 

Also, I do not have any way to simply pressurize the keg and have it sealed.  What I have is the dispenser that came with the mini-keg kit and that will have to be in the keg when I pressurize it.

Soooo.....the more I think through this the more I think this would not be all that successful.  But does anyone have experience with this?  Could I just put it in the fridge and pressurize it with as much as it will take with the handheld CO2 injector, maybe slosh it around a bit once it's pressurized, for a couple of days and get at least an acceptable, if low, amount of carbonation into the beer.

I'd only be filling one mini-keg from the 5 gallon batch so I'd have some to sample on NYE.  So if it doesn't work it wouldn't be a total loss.

General Homebrew Discussion / Oops, missed
« on: December 11, 2009, 06:12:54 PM »
So this ESB I just brewed today was my first all grain attempt and also my first beer in a few years.  So I planned conservatively.  I was shooting for 5 gallons at 1.058.  And I ended up with 3.5 gallons at 1.088.  Oops.  Guess my efficiency was okay.  It's in the fermenter but I haven't pitched the yeast yet.  I knew I wasn't going to get it perfect but that's a little far outside what I was shooting for.  I'm okay with the lower volume but that gravity is pretty high.  Not that I'm afraid drinking a Whoops Imperial ESB but I'm a little worried my dinky 2 qt starter might not have the best performance.  The bitterness will probably be okay since I underplanned them a little and the utilization was down but so was the volume.

So what should I do?  Pitch the yeast and see what happens?  Go down to the store and get a gallon or so of spring water and mix it in?  Thoughts?

The Pub / CNN iReport - Seven Brides
« on: December 07, 2009, 08:53:04 PM »
CNN iReport on Seven Brides Brewing Company in Oregon.

General Homebrew Discussion / Another Water Report
« on: December 01, 2009, 02:55:11 AM »
Yeah, I know there have been a lot of these posted recently so I appreciate your patience but I just received my Ward Lab report this evening as well.  I got the complete test on two samples:

First Sample:  Tap Water

Na               22
Potassium     3
Ca               46
Mg              11
Nitrate         0.7
SO4            21
Cl               23
CO3            <1
HCO3         121
Total Alkalinity, CaCO3         99
Total, Hardness CaCO3       161
F               1.22 (no bearing on the beer, I know, I was just curious)
Fe              <0.01 (just curious)

Second Sample:  Tap Water run through a Brita Filter

Na               25
Potassium    18
Ca                 8
Mg                4
Nitrate         0.3
SO4            19
Cl               23
CO3            <1
HCO3          16
Total Alkalinity, CaCO3         13
Total, Hardness CaCO3         37
F               1.18
Fe              <0.01

So based on reading the advice in other threads on the subject I think I'm okay just to go with my tap water and adjust as necessary.  Correct me if I'm wrong but my most important adjustments would be to Ca, SO4, and HCO3.

I'm going to be brewing an ESB and just as an exercise I popped these values (for the tap water) into Beersmith and compared it to London water.  If I added a gram each of Gypsum, Table Salt, Epsom Salt, and Baking soda it would get me very close to that water profile with the exception of Sodium which would still be 41 ppm lower than that water profile. 

Also I've seen many recommendations to add Campden tablets to the water to eliminate Cloromides (sp?).  Does this have an impact on any of these numbers?

Any thoughts on the profile and my assumptions (actually wild ass guesses) would be appreciated.

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