I'm not one to talk about myself, so here goes:
Who Are You (please include a picture): Lance Harbison (I'm not internet savvy so I can't upload a picture, however, I'm a cross of Roy Scheider (Jaws) and Matthew Broderick (Ferris Beuhler).
Home Town (City, State): Born and raised in Saxonburg, PA (home of John Roebling, of the Brooklyn Bridge Fame). Currently living in Gibsonia, PA
Homebrew Club: Three Rivers Underground Brewers
I've been a homebrewer since: My first job out of college in 1991 I met some good friends who brewed and turned me onto it. I brewed six extract batches and switched to all-grain. This forced me to build my first piece of equipment - a fully adjustable grain mill.
Do you have a homebrewing disaster you'd like to share? In 2004 I read in Zymurgy the recipe for Fat Tire. Having never drank it I brewed it and it came out lemony. I emailed Dana Johnson, the author, about the lemony and it wasn't expected. I soon made another batch which took on a vinagary flavor which turned out to be beer stone harboring acetobacter in my fermenter. Since both were 20 gallon batches that was $100 down the drain (in the days before high hop prices).
What style(s) will you never brew? I'll probably never brew Belgians (other than Wits) cause I can't see myself drinking 15 or 20 gallons of a style I really don't care much for.
What was the first beer you ever brewed? My first beer was an amber kit from the Whip and Spoon in Portland, Maine. How did it turn out? Must not have been too bad since I'm still brewing 20 years later.
Do you have a favorite homebrew trick or gadget that you've found to make your beer better/brewing easier, etc? I have been fortunate to have 4 gadgets published in various Zymurgy gadget issues: Sparge Ring and CIP Ring in the 2nd edition, Conical Valve Unsticker in the 3rd edition, Chill From Within in the 5th edition. I should have filed for a patent for the Sparge Ring as at least one major internet supplier was selling them the next year.
Describe your brew system. I was formerly the metallurgist and welding engineer for a nuclear fabricator. I therefore had an unlimited supply of stainless and the best welders in the nuclear industry which allowed me to build a 25 gallon system including conical, HLT, MT, and boiler.
How frequently do you brew (times/month or /year)? I brew whenever I have 3 or 4 kegs empty.
What haven't we asked that you would really like to answer? What is my pet peeve? Being a metallurgist I have etched dozens of stainless samples with oxalic acid; It drives me crazy when someone writes that Bar-Keepers-Friend will passivate stainless since it has oxalic acid in it. The ONLY way that oxalic acid will passivate or etch stainless is electrolytically.