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Messages - redzim

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All Grain Brewing / adding sulfate to my SNPA clone
« on: February 25, 2013, 03:04:31 PM »
My water profile, which I've used for Pale Ale in the past, is as follows (all ppm): 56 Ca, 10 Mg, 15 Na, 7 SO4-S, 28 Cl, 172 bicarbonate, 141 Alkalinity.

I'm thinking about looking to get a little more sulfate crispness in there.  How about adding a few grams of gypsum to the  mash, which would get me 89 Ca, and 99 Sulfate (according to Kai's worksheet), while leaving everything else alone (of course it will reduce the RA a bit)...

Sound like a good idea, or not?

Also, would this be a good idea for an IPA and/or Rye IPA?


Events / NHC entry registration - how fast does it fill up?
« on: February 23, 2013, 01:31:53 PM »
this may have been asked/answered elsewhere but I can't find it....   how fast do the slots fill up when the bell rings at 3pm EST next Tuesday?  do i have a day, or 6 hours, or only 1 hour???

FYI, I live in NY so would have to register in the NYC area?  or can I ship to say, Ohio or Atlanta if NYC fills up?


All Grain Brewing / Re: where do you take mash pH?
« on: February 12, 2013, 01:51:33 PM »
So better than taking a sample out of the drain, would be to dip into the main mash?

All Grain Brewing / where do you take mash pH?
« on: February 12, 2013, 01:12:21 PM »
Just suddenly wondering where you guys get the mash sample that you are taking the pH of....  do you scoop off the top, or run some cloudy liquid out of the drain of your mash tun, or what?  And does it make a difference? 

FWIW I take a cloudy sample out of the mash drain about 10 minutes into the mash, and I have lately been getting within +/- .2 pH pts of what Martin's and Kai's worksheets predict....  but of course I always like to second-guess my SOP.


Equipment and Software / Re: chilling a 30-gal batch
« on: January 29, 2013, 02:56:09 PM »
dean, do you have any clogging issue recirculating through the therminator when sanitizing?  how do you manage hops going through the plate chiller?

I am also wondering that... anyone using a plate chiller that can share filtering tips for pellet hops?


Equipment and Software / Re: chilling a 30-gal batch
« on: January 25, 2013, 12:42:32 PM »
I brew 60-75 gallon batches and chill with a single therminator.  I recirculate until the output is at pitching temp, then run it to the fermenter.

What kind of pump? Basic March 809 or...?

Equipment and Software / chilling a 30-gal batch
« on: January 25, 2013, 03:06:27 AM »
Anyone here brew 1-bbl batches?  If so, how do you chill the wort...  large immersion chiller, or some kind of plate chiller?

If IC, what length and diameter is the coil? 

If plate chiller, any info on make, model, # of plates, and what pumps (if any) you use, would be appreciated.


Going Pro / Re: vendors / manufacturers
« on: January 20, 2013, 06:52:02 PM »
stout tanks? they have most of what you listed.

Anyone have first-hand experience with Stout's fermenters and brite tanks in the 1-bbl to 3-bbl range (or in any size, actually)? Their pricing (at least based on quotes I've been getting back from a few companies) is extremely competitive and attractive... does that means they are cutting corners???


Ingredients / Re: boil volume question
« on: January 14, 2013, 06:07:42 PM »
That's what I plan to do.  Distilled water should work for being "as pure as possible", right?


That is the best, but going with RO is close enough.

It's actually easier for me to get distilled than RO.... so we're good...

Ingredients / Re: boil volume question
« on: January 14, 2013, 03:42:52 PM »

You have a unique case because of the excessive boil-off rate.  It sounds like you are mashing and sparging now with appropriate water volumes for normal brewing conditions and then adding water with low mineralization to make up for that high boil-off loss.  That makes sense, if I've understood this procedure properly. 

Yes you've understood exactly.

In your case, I would only add minerals based on the 'normal' mashing and sparging water volumes.  Those ions will be depleted or condensed based on whatever processes occur in the mashing.  I would add as pure a water as possible without any added minerals to the kettle to make up for those boil-off losses in excess of the more typical ~1 gal/hr rate that many homebrewers experience. 

That should get you somewhere back to par for the course. 


That's what I plan to do.  Distilled water should work for being "as pure as possible", right?


Ingredients / boil volume question
« on: January 13, 2013, 06:39:42 PM »
OK from this previous thread ( I am realizing that my processes are a little abnormal compared to the average homebrewer. To recap, the main issue is my large kettle which has a huge (30-40%) boil off rate, which caused me (up until my most recent brew yesterday, Maibock) to oversparge... that is, collect 16-17gals to boil down to 11gal.  This caused astringency in many beers even though I got great efficiency.  Then the astringency from oversparging got further concentrated by the boil.

So based on suggestions from this forum, I sparged only until I collected 12gal (which would put me in the ballpark of other 10gal brewers, I guess), then I added 5 gallons water to the kettle before starting the boil (for various reasons it is basically impossible to reduce my boil off rate, in case you're wondering). (I also acidified my sparge water with lactic acid for the first time, getting in from ~7.5 down to ~5.7, which will help astringency also)

Now I use Kaiser and Martin's water spreadsheets heavily. What I did yesterday was add minerals to the "dilution" water (which I added to the kettle pre-boil) in the same proportions that I did to the mash and sparge water.  Thinking about it more, I think this may be wrong?  If I enter data into those spreadsheets as if I'm collecting 12gal pre-boil, that obviously makes my mash pH and everything work out, as well as setting the flavor profile.  So if I add more minerals preboil, I am now thinking, that screws everything up and sort of "concentrates" my minerals. Perhaps what I should be doing is adding distilled water as my dilution, so the minerals don't get played with... because the only reason I'm adding water to the boil is so I have enough wort to ferment after the boil.... so it just be be distilled that evaporates off... correct assumption? Or am I off here?  (previously, I entered data in the water spreadsheets as if I was collecting 16-17gal, and they nicely gave me lots of stuff to add to my sparge water, which again got concentrated in the boil...  if Martin or Kai could clarify how their sheets work it would help here... I guess they assume most people have a "normal" boil off rate)

So that got me thinking further: I bet I'm messing with my hop utilization by having such a big preboil volume....  so maybe instead of adding 4 or 5 gallons right at the start of the boil, I should add it a half gallon at a time during the boil, so I never have more than maybe 12-13 gal in the kettle...  this would then let me mimic the average homebrewer who boils from 12 gal down to 10.5, or so... 

any thoughts?

Going Pro / Re: vendors / manufacturers
« on: January 11, 2013, 09:31:22 PM »
manual canning line

...Sounds interesting... care to share a link or manufacturer info?

Going Pro / Re: vendors / manufacturers
« on: January 10, 2013, 12:42:52 PM »
Thinking of a big step up, Red?

Dreaming (me and some other folks).....  thanks for the leads, that is enough to get me going for now....


Going Pro / vendors / manufacturers
« on: January 09, 2013, 04:23:18 PM »
Just kind of blowing smoke out my ear at this point but where would I start looking to get a quote on equipment for a 7bbl or 10bbl brew house, that would include MLT system, mill & auger, wort chilling system, and 2-5 (or more) tanks for fermenting, lagering, and serving,and anything else I have forgotten?

I am looking for both:

1) manufacturers of new equipment

2) forums where I could keep tabs on used stuff being sold


All Grain Brewing / Re: astringency
« on: January 05, 2013, 02:13:23 PM »
Try a lid, it will cut down a lot on your evaporation.

The lid idea is today's (or tomorrow's) test!

Well boiling with a lid didn't cut down on evaporation much, even with about 85% covered I reduced it from 5gal/hr to 3.5gal/hr...   So what does anyone think about these questions I posed yesterday:


But if that doesn't work, how does my logic sound on this:
-collect ~6-7 gal first runnings as usual
-instead of collecting 9 gal sparge to make my 16 gal pre-boil for 60 min boils (or collecting 12 gals sparge for my 90 min boils) collect say 6 more gallons to get ~12 total pre-boil
-at the start of the boil, add whatever additional water I need to get up to 16 (or 19) gallons and boil as usual (although based on my tests, I could probably get away with only 14-15 gal preboil if I reduce the boil rate as I tried yesterday)

A few questions:   Would I calculate out the added minerals using Kai's spreadsheet based on the total preboil  volume? Which would sort of concentrate the minerals in the mash but they would be diluted in the boil.... 

Or would I add calculate minerals just based on how much sparge water I am actually using? And in that case, should I add proportional amounts of minerals to the water I'm diluting the boil with, in other words use the same "water  recipe" for everything? To me, that makes the most sense....


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