Author Topic: Let's talk hop-bags!  (Read 2052 times)

Offline euge

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Let's talk hop-bags!
« on: July 01, 2010, 11:03:44 AM »
I've used them before but they were fine-mesh. Always floating... I tried weighing them down but still they floated. Wondered if there was any sort of decent extraction? The brew didn't seem very hoppy to me. :-\

Considering coarse mesh or might even make some out of surgical sponges. Also have some "Leggs" knee-high stockings but they float too.

Is there a method and approach that is more successful that others?
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline richardt

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2010, 11:29:29 AM »
No hop bags in the boil kettle.

I use pellet hops and just strain the whole thing through my SS china cap bullion strainer on the output side.

I get great utilization and no issues with clogs as the 10 inch china cap has a large surface area. 
I also have very little wort loss as I can give the china cap a few shakes to release the wort and the hops basically coalesce into a big ball of thick green putty.

You can use the hop bag the same way--just drape it over the large plastic funnel and run your spigot with or without a hose attached right into the pre-sanitized bag and funnel (I use StarSan).  You can even "tie up" the hose with the hop mesh bag.

I often do this when transferring from primary to secondary or from secondary to bottling bucket to strain the dry hops, the only difference is that I keep the bag submerged in the beer to minimize O2 pickup.  I keep it from floating by putting it over the transfer hose or racking cane like a loose sock and tie it tight and sanitize the whole thing before use.

Offline denny

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2010, 11:49:19 AM »
In the kettle, I use reusable nylon (?) bags.  The mesh isn't particularly large, but after a couple minutes in the kettle they get saturated and submerse just fine.  For dry hopping, I use muslin bags that I dispose of after use.
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Offline tygo

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2010, 11:59:02 AM »
In the kettle, I use reusable nylon (?) bags.  The mesh isn't particularly large, but after a couple minutes in the kettle they get saturated and submerse just fine.  For dry hopping, I use muslin bags that I dispose of after use.

Same here for me in the boil.  Dry hopping in the secondary I just throw them in there.  Sometimes I'll throw one or two of the additions additions into the boil without the bag.  My objective is just to keep the amount of wet hops in the bottom of the kettle relatively low so it doesn't interfere too much with draining to the fermenter. 
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Offline pyrite

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2010, 12:01:47 PM »
I like the Tea-bag method...  :P I use this jumbo stainless steel tea-bag.  I only fill it up half-way for a better extraction rate and doing so It can hold 4oz of hops.  I use it for dry hop-ing, coriander, orange peel additions. $5 at the local Japanese tea store.

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Offline weithman5

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2010, 02:13:04 PM »
i know this is a little off but has anyone made a press for making their homegrown hops into plugs or pellets.  i have seen it once on some now forgotten web site, but i would like to be able to so i can store longer and not have to deal with whole hops and as much clogging.  my thought was my hydraulic jack and a 2 inch diameter capped pipe to press them into.
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Offline kgs

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2010, 02:27:00 PM »
For the kettle, I bought a humongous fine strainer at a restaurant store for $12 that works really well if I'm using some whole hops (which end up acting like a filter). I strain into a bucket and then into the fermenter.

For fermentation, after trying pantyhose and whatnot, I have started filtering post-fermentation, when racking to the bottling bucket, using a sanitized copper Chore Boy wrapped around the end of my autosiphon with a (sanitized) rubber-band. It's one-time use on the Chore Boy, but if you do enough grocery shopping, these show up on sale now and then. It's amazing to see how much gets filtered out.
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Offline Jo Diesel

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #7 on: July 04, 2010, 03:57:58 AM »
I use a 5 gal paint strainer. Floats around fine and lets the hops move.

Offline vista

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #8 on: July 04, 2010, 06:34:26 AM »
do people sanitize the muslin bags before throwing them in with dry hops?
Take it easy...

Offline bluesman

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #9 on: July 04, 2010, 08:39:49 AM »
do people sanitize the muslin bags before throwing them in with dry hops?

Yes, I boil them in the microwave for a minute before dry hopping.
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #10 on: July 04, 2010, 08:48:27 AM »
hop bags are for losers.
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Offline bluesman

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #11 on: July 04, 2010, 08:53:09 AM »
Ron Price

Offline bonjour

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #12 on: July 05, 2010, 06:14:35 AM »
I go both ways,  depends on my mood. ;)

I'm trying to use bags more so I can just dump my wort when cool and not worry about all the hops in the boil, but after years of jest tossing them I forget

or is that just an age thing?
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Offline denny

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #13 on: July 05, 2010, 08:38:22 AM »
I go both ways,  depends on my mood. ;)

I'm trying to use bags more so I can just dump my wort when cool and not worry about all the hops in the boil, but after years of jest tossing them I forget

or is that just an age thing?

They say the mind is the second thing to go....;)
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Offline dean

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Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« Reply #14 on: July 05, 2010, 09:43:29 AM »
Jmo, you need a hop bag or hop ball when using pellets, otherwise I just toss whole hops straight into the boil.  But I have a dip tube with a screen on the end so the loose hops act like a filter somewhat when I drain the kettle.  I tried putting pellets straight in the kettle boil and it plugged my screen... won't do that again anytime soon!   >:(  :D