HOMEBREW Digest #3517 Sat 30 December 2000

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  120VAC RIMS: How to brew the lower power way... ("Dave Howell")
  Aussie Insults (Tony Barnsley)
  Fridges in cold ambients (fridgeguy)
  Summertime musings ("Thomas P. Smit")
  pitching practices ("Gregg Stearns")
  Re: Welcome Back Jeff Renner (Jeff Renner)
  Re: Time to brew a stout... (Jeff Renner)
  Samichlaus Recipe (Alan Monaghan)
  flow question for john palmer and back mixing ("Czerpak, Pete")
  Re: High-tech homebrewing in orbit ("Pete Calinski")
  electric HLT (The Freemans)
  RE: electric HLT (LaBorde, Ronald)
  Re. Rusty Nail Oatmeal Stout (John Palmer)
  electric HLT, chilling in space (EdgeAle)
  Re: cooling [beer] in space (Teutonic Brewer)
  Soapy beer - revisited (Beaverplt)
  HLT (Mjbrewit)
  Water Supply, Mash Screen, Cleaning Chillers ("Keith Christian")
  Michael Jackson's The Chiller ("Dave Howell")
  first batch question (Rogers Michael B)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 28 Dec 2000 20:50:41 -0700 From: "Dave Howell" <djhowell at qwest.net> Subject: 120VAC RIMS: How to brew the lower power way... All: After two brews with the new RIMS, and several replies from my earlier post on how well do people do with 120VAC heaters for their RIMS, I have found the answer. INSULATE! Actually, this was most people's response. Thanks to all who responded. My setup is with Sanke kegs. Just adding an uninsulated lid to the mashtun probably gained me back 0.2 degF/min on temp boosts. This puts me in the 1.2 degF/min range (with a 5-gallon batch). I'll be insulating the rest of the setup except for the vinyl return line with 1/2" polyethylene foam and hook-and-loop strips for closures. This should get me closer to the max theoretical rate. The other big-bang-for-the-buck answer is to pre-heat the strike water on my propane burner. Lesser effect suggestions are to keep the return manifold under the level of wort (do NOT get started on HSA, people), and the mash thick (1.25-1.33 qts/lb) to reduce the thermal mass that must be heated. I'll still probably upgrade to 220VAC someday, though, but I've spent enough $$$$ for a while. My last brew of the millenium will be tomorrow, 15 gal of a boh. pilsner. I'll be doing decoctions (what! with a RIMS? WHY?) to make the temp boosts short on 22 lbs of grain and 30 qts of water. Amazing how fast one can go through 50 lbs of grain in 3 large brews, isn't it? Dave Howell Brewing in the warm, sunny Sonoran Desert, where I visited the driving range in short pants and a tee shirt today. But, I'm glad to hear the center of the brewing universe is now precisely located. Costello: You know I'm a catcher too. Abbott: So they tell me. Costello: I get behind the plate to do some fancy catching, Tomorrow's pitching on my team and a heavy hitter gets up. Now the heavy hitter bunts the ball. When he bunts the ball, me, being a good catcher, I'm gonna throw the guy out at first. So I pick up the ball and throw it to who? Abbott: Now that's the first thing you've said right. Costello: I don't even know what I'm talking about! Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 11:09:27 -0000 From: Tony Barnsley <tony.barnsley at blackpool.gov.uk> Subject: Aussie Insults Phil Yates Wrote > even to that pomme blighter Tony Barnsley Now just one cotton pickin' minute! If you keep flinging slander like that around you will end up in court milord! Lets get this right please! I am NO POMME!! I'm welsh through and through (And yes I know that creates a whole load of other problems!! :> ) Is it true that most of the Australian transportees were sent over because they were bad brewers? Or is that a scurrilous rumour? ;-'> - -- Wassail! The Scurrilous Aleman (ICQ 46254361) Schwarzbad Lager Brauerei, Blackpool, Lancs, UK UK HOMEBREW - A Forum on Home Brewing in the UK Managed by home brewers for home brewers To Subscribe send blank email to uk-homebrew-subscribe at smartgroups.com Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 07:30:11 -0500 From: fridgeguy at voyager.net Subject: Fridges in cold ambients Greetings folks, In HBD #3516, Pete Calinski asked what problems might result from trying to run a fridge compressor when it is colder than the fridge or freezer interior. Here's a clip from a previous post... One last thing... If a fridge or freezer is used in a situation where the ambient temperature is more than a few degrees cooler than the cabinet temperature, do not attempt to run the compressor until it has warmed above the cabinet temperature for at least 12 hours. The reason for this is that the refrigerant will tend to accumulate in the coolest part of the system. If the compressor is cooler than the cabinet, refrigerant may collect in the compressor crankcase. Refrigerant is an excellent solvent and will dilute the oil. When the compressor is started, the pressure in the crankcase quickly drops, and the refrigerant will flash into vapor as it is drawn into the compression chamber/s. There are two problems with this. The refrigerant will carry the oil with it, leaving the compressor without lubrication, or even worse, the compressor will try to compress a liquid slug of oil/refrigerant, which will quickly destroy the compressor. Compressor crankcase heaters are available for situations where a compressor must be located in a cold location. Hope this helps! - ---------------------------------------- Forrest Duddles - FridgeGuy in Kalamazoo fridgeguy at voyager.net Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 23:07:27 +0930 From: "Thomas P. Smit" <lunica at ozemail.com.au> Subject: Summertime musings Hi all, As I sat to my dinner of tomato soup for the second day in a row, followed by grilled fish and tomato salad, thinking about the pasta & tomato bake planned for tomorrow and fortfying myself with homebrew (Sarah Hughes Ruby Mild, thought originally it tasted too soft but since I had twentyfive bottles of the stuff that I didn't want to waste I did acquire a taste for it in the end) my mind turned idly and tipsily to, ta ra, *tomato* beer! I must explain that summer being here and several plants of at least half a dozen different types of tomatoes each producing prolifically tomatoes are on the menu and on my mind. But tomato beer offers several advantages over, say rice lagers and peach beers. For example, adding tomatoes to the mash solves the problem of bringing the mash pH down to 5.2 or so. No need to run out and buy some gypsum or lactic acid! Of course, tomatoes are a hearty sort of a fruit so a pansy wheat beer wouldn't do-you'd need something a bit more robust, like an IPA or Russian Imperial Stout, might be more in the right direcction. Semiseriously, anyone tried to make a tomato beer? Hic. Tom Smit PS: for the sake of fellow antipodean brewers not as well read as myself, colour used to be spelled as 'color' in England until in a bout of snobbishness the language was frenchified and 'color' (harbor, etc) was changed to 'colour' (etc) and 'fall' changed to 'autumn'. So there, the yanks actually have it right. TS Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 08:05:59 -0600 From: "Gregg Stearns" <gregg at ispi.net> Subject: pitching practices I just started brewing beer again after a year long break. The last few batches turned out bad, all because I didn't take the right steps (mostly, not enough stirring to aerate the wort prior to pitching). I did everything right this time though, but I'm wondering if I should've prepped the yeast better. My question is: What do all of you do? 1. just add the dry yeast to the fermenter and that's it 2. proof the yeast and then add it 3. make a starter and then pitch that when it's taken off I'll watch the list for replies, but feel free to send a copy of your response to gregg at ispi.net as well. - -- Gregg Stearns http://members.nbci.com/Malcor/ ICQ# 3190139 Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 09:09:23 -0500 From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> Subject: Re: Welcome Back Jeff Renner Thanks to Phil for the welcome back. I have now caught up on the HBD and can see that it goes all to hell when I'm not around to maintain high standards. Regarding Graham's observations of cultural differences and "taking the piss out of someone." I think he's on to something there, but some of us Yanks participate as well, although not on as general a basis as you Aussies. My brief visit to the Buradoo train station might qualify. I was in a great pub in Essex a couple of years ago and was appreciatively sampling a real ale, when the landlord, a real character who calls himself the Cypriot bastard, bawled for the whole bar to hear, "Oh gawd! Not another looker and sniffer! Just drink the bloody beer!" Fortunately, I was on to him, and realized he was jerking my string (not, I think, pushing my buttons, which I think implies malicious intent), and I quickly replied, "I'm just making sure you're not trying to poison me." This broke the ice and he roared appreciatively, and we got on great after that. I think it's important to give as good as you get in this. It is too bad that the internet doesn't allow the nuances that make this more successful. I'm pretty sure that we'd get along a lot better over a beer or 243 at the Hilton, and find that most of us liked one another pretty well, even those who have locked horns on HBD. At least that has been my experience at conferences like MCAB, although every once in a while there's a jerk. I hope we get a report on the brew session with Doc et al, and in February on the results. Will Marilyn be participating? Jeff - -- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, c/o nerenner at umich.edu "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943 Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 10:08:00 -0500 From: Jeff Renner <nerenner at umich.edu> Subject: Re: Time to brew a stout... Jeff Greenly <greenlyj at rcbhsc.wvu.edu> wrote from the mountains of West Virginia: >I have decided to brew a stout, and as this will be my first serious attempt >at a stout, I'd like to make it memorable. Here's what I've got so far... > >Rusty Nail Outmeal Stout >Water >1 tsp gypsum >Extracts >3.3 lbs John Bull Dark Extract >3 lbs Munton's Amber DME >Steeping Grains >1 lb roasted barley > .5 lb black patent malt > .5 lb 120L Crystal Malt >1 lb oatmeal Here are a few thoughts. First, you probably don't need the gypsum unless your water is very soft, and maybe not even then. Gypsum provides calcium necessary when mashing grain, which you are not doing. It also provides sulfate, which makes the hop bitterness sharper. This is not necessarily desirable in oatmeal stout, where you want more of a rich roastiness than bitterness. Secondly, that's an awful lot of dark grains, especially since you're already using dark extract. I happen to not like the burnt charcoal flavor of black patent malt when used at that level. But that's maybe just me. But I think it will make for a sharp tasting beer rather than the mellowness you might want in an oatmeal stout. You could increase the crystal malt to get more color and caramel richness, and maybe use chocolate malt instead of black patent. Now for the oatmeal. It contains starch that is unfermentable. It might still make a contribution, and starch haze is no bog problem in stout (although it can invite bacterial growth). But how about adding a pound of two row malt to your steeping grains and making it a mini-mash? This will convert the starches in the oatmeal and give you additional extract. Without converting the oatmeal, you'll probably come up short on your target OG. Of course, the two row will add fermentable extract, too. You might want to cut the amber a little bit. Or not. >I'd like the benefits of experience here. I'm thinking about adding some >unsulphured molasses and some licorice. Should I also be adding >malto-dextrin or lactose, or is this overkill with the oatmeal? It's a matter of preference. Subliminal amounts of molasses and licorice can be nice, but they should play supporting roles, not starring roles. The sugars might give some richness, but I like to keep it simple. Depends on how sweet you want the final beer to be. >My targets for this beer (if I'm doing the math right) are: >OG: 1.056 >TG: 1.017 >ABV: 4.5% With steeping grains and minimashes, this is always a crap shoot, but I think you won't get that much extract from the steeping grains without a minimash. The malt extract alone should give you about 1.046. >Hops >2 oz Northern Brewer at 8.5 (60") >1 oz East Kent Goldings at 5.0 (30") >1 oz East Kent Goldings at 5.0 (10") >IBU: 25 <=====figuring this always confuses me! Looks like it. Lets see if I can make it clear as mud. One IBU represents one ppm isomerized alpha acid in solution. Your Northern Brewer hops contain 8.5% alpha acid, but you can't ever get all of that into the wort. But in a one hour boil, you might typically get as much as 30% of it if you are using pellets, or 25% if you are using whole hops. I'm guessing that you're using pellets. So, if you multiply your utilization of 0.30 times the amount of alpha acid in your hops (0.085*2 ounces), you'll find that you have about 1/2 ounce of alpha acid in five gallons of wort. So divide by five gallons, and you will get the concentration of alpha acid in solution. A little math will convert it to ppm. It's easier to use a Hop-Go-Round circular slide rule on an online calculator like Glenn Tinseth's hop bitterness calculator http://realbeer.com/hops/IBU.html. From the latter, we get 55.6 IBU for your first addition. Way too bitter for the style, and more bitter than your target. You'll get 12.6 from your second addition and 5.9 for your third addition, for a total of 74.1. Looks like you could cut your hops by 2/3s and be about right. >SRM: 40 >I'm figuring about a week in the primary, 2 weeks in the secondary, and >bottle conditioning (w/light DME) about 2-3 weeks. Am I in the ball park? Should be good, but longer than necessary. If you make a good starter, you should finish the primary more quickly, and you needn't keep it two weeks in the primary. Try racking it to the secondary with a packet of gelatin heated in a cup of water or the green beer. That will settle it out quickly. And corn sugar will fine for priming. Good luck. Jeff - -- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, c/o nerenner at umich.edu "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943 Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 10:07:37 -0500 From: Alan Monaghan <AlanM at Gardnerweb.com> Subject: Samichlaus Recipe Having just found out that this wonderful beer is being made again, I don't have to be quite as careful with how I share and enjoy it. My problem comes in that I really, really like this beer but I have absolutely no idea how to start on the road to replicating the beer itself. In looking thru the archives and out on the net, there is very little to start with. I was hoping that someone out there may have had some luck with one of their recipes or even better, some type of discussion on a starting point with the malt bill and the hopping. As a side note, I just finished up my house beer (an IPA) and am not too thrilled with it this time. It has a lot of mossy flavor in it and I was wondering if that could be because I used pellets in the 2ndary versus the whole hops I usually use or if there is some type of ratio or some such that would explain such a change in the beer itself? Happy holidays from Cincy Ohio!!! Be like water my friend ... Alan G. Monaghan, MCSE+I Gardner Publications, Inc. Internet Administrator * Phone 1-513-527-8867 * Fax 1-513-527-8801 * Cell 1-513-520-6866 * E-mail AlanM at Gardnerweb.com <mailto:AlanM at Gardnerweb.com> Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 10:24:14 -0500 From: "Czerpak, Pete" <Pete.Czerpak at siigroup.com> Subject: flow question for john palmer and back mixing RE: Homebrew Digest #3489 (November 28, 2000) John palmer: Just taking a look through some old HBD that I hadn't deleted yet. You make some conclusions based on your experiments with the corn and piped manifolds as well as false bottoms. #4 conclsuion for false bottoms has to do with too high a lautering rate and bed compaction with a false bottom. Do you also see this to the same degree with a proper manifold design. Since the bed is probably not compacting to the same degree in the volume surrounding the manifold compared to the bed volume surrounding the false bottom? Which would have a more negative impact on extraction or stuck drainage - false bottom or manifold? I would think that the higher drainage surface area of the false bottom would allow better extraction but perhaps its infact worse since a larger part of the grain bed may be compacted? Don't know but perhaps your dye experiments could identify this at high rates. Have you ever thought about generating a residence time distribution based on color/adsorbance of the liquor threough the bed for different lautering rates to determine how much back mixing is going on to effect the simplistic modelling of the bed as plug flow? Just a pre-New years technical question. Thanks, pete czerpak albany, NY Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 11:02:33 -0500 From: "Pete Calinski" <pjcalinski at adelphia.net> Subject: Re: High-tech homebrewing in orbit Frank Russo >Why would one want to build a cooling unit for use in space that operates / >functions the same as a cooling unit here on the ground? It seems to me >with the void / cold of space just outside the shell of the craft there >would be someway of using that 3 Deg K to cool the beer. If you shut the >heaters off in the craft the craft would freeze. So why is it not possible >to build a heat exchanger type of apparatus with the external cold and use >it to do the cooling? This is instead of compressors which are high energy >users. Someone with a little knowledge out there care to increase my >knowledge? We weren't allowed to ask that question. We got into the project very late. Before they came to us, others had started with a "faster, better, cheaper" refrigerator from a Recreational vehicle. Then, the Safety people stepped in and said the R12 coolant used could saturate the scrubbers that remove the CO2 from the air. They had to change to another coolant. This coolant was less efficient and so impacted the energy usage. It was also a smaller molecule and as a result leaked through the seals faster. In addition, we had to meet a spec. that said that the unit had to maintain temperature with a 40 watt (I may be wrong on the wattage) light bulb burning inside. Even your home refrigerator can't do that. In use, nothing in the refridigerator would generate heat. Everything would just have its residual heat that had to be removed. Like urine samples. Start out near 98.6F and cool in minutes to refrigerator temperature. That was the lemon we were given to make lemonade with. I can take a crack at your original question. First of all, it had to function from before launch until after landing and until the contents could be unloaded. Second, I would say that anything that penetrates the shell of the orbiter is going to get more attention than a turd in a punch bowl. Don't forget that the entire surface is covered with special tiles to keep the orbiter cool during reentry. Any kind of protrusion is a real problem. Also, this refrigerator was to be used in the Space Lab which was a module that fit in the cargo bay of the orbiter. Unless the cargo doors are open, the outer surface is not exposed to "space". Thus, the "outdoors" ambient is unreliable. Also note, some space craft have a "barbecue" mode where in they rotate continuously to keep the "sun" side from getting too hot. Just a shot at answering your question. Pete Calinski East Amherst NY Near Buffalo NY 0^42'13.1" North, 4^49'34.5" East of Jeff Renner (using his 12/28/00 Lat/Long). This signature file is automatically attached to my emails. Note my new email address is: pjcalinski at adelphia.net The service via my old address at iname.com had become unreliable. Sometimes email was delayed as much as 36 hours. Some never came through. iname.com is a part of mail.com. Repeated emails about the problem to their service address have gone unanswered. If you know anyone that uses either iname.com or mail.com, you should consider telling them that they may have a problem also. Sorry for the inconvenience. Pete Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 10:10:22 -0600 From: The Freemans <potsus at Bellsouth.net> Subject: electric HLT A single 220 element running on 110 volts is just not sufficient to raise an appreciable amount of water (10-15 gallons) to proper brewing temp. Think how long it takes an electric stove to accomplish the same thing - and an electric range is running on 220 volts. "the perfesser" has 2-4000 watt water heater elements running on 220 volts. This amout of heat input is sufficient to raise 14 gallons of water at 60 degrees to a strike temp of, say, 140 degrees in around 15-18 minutes. What you have is barely enough BTUs to maintain temp once the HLT contents are brought to the required temp. That required temp is best reached in your system by the method you outlined - heating in the mash tun and pumping to the HLT. Heat changes in "the perfesser's" mash tun for step mashes are gotten by running the HLT at a constant 170 degrees and recirculating that water through one side of a heat exchanger. Natural convection is sufficient to keep the whole thing uniform. "the perfesser" can be found at: http://www.brewrats.org/HWB/er/ Hope this helps, Bill Freeman aka Elder Rat K P Brewery - home of "the perfesser" Birmingham, AL Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 11:15:41 -0600 From: rlabor at lsuhsc.edu (LaBorde, Ronald) Subject: RE: electric HLT From: "steve lane" <tbirdusa at hotmail.com> >I have a HLT w/ 240 volt element running on 110 house current. Oh Steve, I have bad news for you. I am afraid your 240 volt element is not running, it's crawling on 110 volts. If the element is rated at 4500 watts, then it will only draw 1/4 of that at 110 volts. With my 4500 watt element running on 240 volts, it will take about 15-20 minutes to bring 10 gallons of room temp water to a boil. So all you can expect is 4 times this long under the best conditions. Check around, you may have 240 volts available. Look at the wires coming to your power meter. If you see three conductors, you probably do have 240 available. Ron La Borde Ronald La Borde - Metairie, Louisiana - rlabor at lsuhsc.edu http://hbd.org/rlaborde Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 10:46:27 -0800 From: John Palmer <jjpalmer at gte.net> Subject: Re. Rusty Nail Oatmeal Stout Jeff asks for comments on his extract based Oatmeal Stout recipe in Digest #3516: A couple details were omitted like batch size and boil volume but I will make a couple educated guesses from the recipe and assume that it is a 5 gallon recipe and his boil volume is 3 gallons. First I verified his OG calculation and came up with 1.056 too. But the IBUs are way off from what I get. From the volumes above, I get a boil gravity of 1.093 and the hop additions come out like this: 2 oz Northern Brewer at 8.5 (60") 40 IBUs 1 oz East Kent Goldings at 5.0 (30") 9 IBUs 1 oz East Kent Goldings at 5.0 (10") 4 IBUs for a total of 53. Here is what I would suggest: 1. You are already using Dark Extract, so the Black Patent is definitely redundant. In fact a pound of Roast Barley is redundant to a degree, but that is the backbone of Stout flavor, so I would cut it back to a half pound. If you have never used Black Patent before, it has a real acrid edge to it. I would not use it. When I do use it, I use it with an all-grain recipe where I don't have other dark malts. If I have other dark malts (like chocolate) I use only a quarter pound. 2. Don't go overboard with adjuncts. After the first few batches, everyone wants to ferment everything under the sun for complexity. Hey, I did. My advice is restraint. Don't screw the girl on the first date. Wait until you get to know her a bit better. Try brewing a more basic stout first to see where the flavors come from. Of course if you never intend to brew another stout after this, go for it. ;-) I really wouldn't add the molasses. You get a molasses character - fusel alcoholic sweetness that detracts. Turns a quaffing beer into a sipping beer. Licorice - if you like it, fine. But go easy on it. I can't recommend an amount unfortunately. You want a background flavor. You might add a quarter pound of maltodextrin powder for body. I don't think you need lactose with the Crystal 120 and the extracts - you will have residual sweetness from those. 3. Unfortunately Oatmeal needs to be mashed. Even Quaker Instant oatmeal. Otherwise you just get a lot of starch added to the wort, which will give you beer farts. I would suggest ordering Oatmeal Extract from Williams Brewing or another mail order supplier or taking a stab with a mini-mash (see my book for help). 4. On your IBUs: 53 is a bit much. Given the high about of roast malts, I would recommend dropping the first hop addition from 2 oz to 1 oz for a total of 33 IBUs. That would be a bit more balanced for a stout. Dang. Makes me hungry for a stout... Cheers! John - -- John Palmer Palmer House Brewery and Smithy http://www.realbeer.com/jjpalmer How To Brew - the online book http://www.howtobrew.com Let there be Peace on Earth. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 14:10:36 EST From: EdgeAle at cs.com Subject: electric HLT, chilling in space Steve Lane asks about increasing electric HLT heating rate, I have an electric HLT with lots of convection (stirrer motor). The convection increases the heating rate somewhat but it still took a long time to heat. Here's what I now do: 1) Use a second heating element. This cuts the heating time in half. However, a second element also doubles the current required and probably will require to be run off a separate circuit than the first to avoid tripping the breaker. 2) Use elements sized to just avoid tripping the breaker. i.e. a 6500W 240V element will be 1625W at 120V and draw 13.5 amps which is good for a 15 amp circuit. Of course, this requires you to have nothing else on the circuit or it will trip. Depending on your current element size, this could gain you a little but not much, i.e. if you have a 4500W at 240V = 1500W at 120V , the increase would be 1625/1500= 8.3%. 3) use a timer: I have a timer hooked up in my circuit so the HLT can start heating before I get up. This way it doesn't matter how long it takes. The water is ready when I am, Drawbacks include: a) you have to plan in advance to brew and stick to it. b) leaving the cold water in the HLT overnight can lead to rusting of the element base (i now use a timer to fill the HLT just before the heater timer turns on to avoid this). 4) Don't forget to use a stirrer in addition to the above to get the maximum heat rates. 5) Insulate the HLT to cut heat losses and thus increase the temperature increase rate. I hope this helps. One thing I should mention is that it still takes longer to heat a HLT with 2 elements than it does with a propane burner but the above should dramatically decrease your heating times PS: I actually plasn to switch to your method (heat in another vessel then pump up & use element to maintain temp) shortly but this has little to do with heating time. The cost of electricity has increased by a factor of 10 over the past year in San Diego due to deregulation and poor state planning! - ----------------------------- Pete Calinski asks about chilling beer in the void of space One problem with this is the vacuum. Without contact with molecules there is no conductive or convective heat losses, only radiative which is the most inefficient. In fact, I have heard that (at least for some space craft/satelites) the problem can be getting rid of excess heat from the electronics etc. Of cource as this is hearsay I could be completely wrong. Of couce with 3K ambient temp, inefficient cooling is probably required to avoid frezzing the beer in aeven a short coil. Dana - ------------------------------------------ Dana Edgell Edge Ale Brewery, Oceanside CA http://ourworld.cs.com/EdgeAle Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 13:15:40 -0700 From: Teutonic Brewer <claassen at swcp.com> Subject: Re: cooling [beer] in space Hello all in homebrew land. If you have an aversion to detailed (vaguely beer related) mechanical and technological issues, please page down NOW. Frank Russo talks about chilling beer in space: >Well, there is a second problem. Chilling the beer. > > This conversation has been very interesting. I find it curious how those >involved with space programs are striving to make things work in space >environments just the same as they would here on mother earth. Well, I >guess you have to start somewhere and you start with what you already know. > > Why would one want to build a cooling unit for use in space that operates / >functions the same as a cooling unit here on the ground? It seems to me >with the void / cold of space just outside the shell of the craft there >would be someway of using that 3 Deg K to cool the beer. If you shut the >heaters off in the craft the craft would freeze. So why is it not possible >to build a heat exchanger type of apparatus with the external cold and use >it to do the cooling? This is instead of compressors which are high energy >users. Someone with a little knowledge out there care to increase my >knowledge? FWIW, I'm an electrical engineer with 13 years experience in the satellite sensor field. Although I'm not a refridgerator-in-space expert, maybe I can satisfy your curiosity. Yes, you can cool things using the 2.7 Kelvin (minus 454.8 Fahrenheit) temperature of deep space with a passive or radiative cooler. A large, metal, flat black, radiator surface faces toward deep space and radiates energy away. A heavy metal bar or strap conducts heat from the desired object (like an infrared sensor in my case) to the radiator surface. Ammonia filled "heat pipes" can be used to conduct large quantitites of heat from an object or structure to the radiator surface. A problem arises with, for example, the International Space Station (ISS). Half the time the ISS is in the shadow of the earth, and it's relatively easy to point a radiator toward deep space. The other half the time, the sun is baking one side of the station, and the earth, which radiates at about 300 Kelvin (27 Celsius), is on the other side of the station. This requires that the radiation surface be pointed *sideways* to the sun-earth axis and also be shielded with reflective mylar from both heat sources. It can be a challenge to keep that radiator pointed correctly. Interplanetary space probes, the Next Generation Space Telescope and the Chandra X-ray telescope that spend all or most of their time far from the earth have a much easier job of keeping a radiator pointed toward deep space. It also takes quite a large radiator surface to get much cooling power. Mechanical motors and compressors for cooling in space are a challenge. Lubrication is a problem since grease doesn't flow well in zero gravity. Some kind of lubrication reservoir such as a large piece of felt impregnated with grease must be provided for long term operation. If the compressor gets really cold (-40C or even lower), like in the time between launch and when you first fire it up, the grease will be so viscous you can't start it. Exotic molydenum sulfide coated bearings are sometimes used to ammeliorate the lubrication problem. Furthermore, the compressor seals must be extremely tight to prevent loss of refridgerant, and vacuum tends to desiccate and crack normal seals in a hurry. Mechanical compressors of various types are used in space, but they always have long term reliability issues. You can also regulate the temperature of a metal box by attaching it to the warm metal spacecraft surface on one side and adjusting the amount and number of layers of reflective, mylar covering on the exterior box faces. Electrical heaters glued to inside of the box walls are used to adjust the temperature as necessary. So how can beer be kept cold on the ISS? Some kind of mechanical refridgeration system would be the most likely method. The ISS has the volume and power necessary to support a heavy and relatively inefficient motor driven compressor. The waste heat from the refridgeration unit can be sunk into the space station's metal structure and help keep the interior warm. Alternatively, an insulated cold box could be constructed using heat pipes to suck heat from the box and maintain your optimum 7C (45F) serving temperature. I would worry about how you might consume the carbonated beer. You could put your mouth on a dispensing nipple and squirt the beer into your mouth, but the carbonation would come out of the beer in all directions (there being no "up" in space), and you'd have a mouthful of foam. Then, if you tried to burp the gas up, I think you'd burp the beer along with the carbon dioxide. To illustrate the difficulty, try hanging upside down and burping some CO2 up without the beer coming out your nose at the same time. As to how you would mash, sparge, boil, chill, ferment, and separate the yeast from the beer in zero gravity in the first place, you would have to use a sealed system with filters, pumps and compressible bladders to move the liquid around and separate the wort from the mash solids and the beer from the yeast and so forth. That would be a heck of an engineering challenge, but remember that necessity (or rather, great thirst) is the mother of invention... Any home brewing NASA thermal-mechanical engineers out there want to chip in or correct me on any points? Paul Claassen Albuquerque, New Mexico Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 12:49:53 -0800 (PST) From: Beaverplt <beaverplt at yahoo.com> Subject: Soapy beer - revisited You all may recall that a couple of months ago I opened my first bottle of an oatmeal stout that was my first try at grain/extract and found it tasted soapy. My assumption was that is was soap and that I hadn't rinsed very well. A few wise ones amongst the group cautioned me not to dump the batch out quite yet because it may not be soap, but rather that it hadn't aged enough yet and the taste might be not soap but the hops in an immature beer. It's been 2 months now so I just tried another bottle last night and found the soap taste is gone. At least it is in that bottle. What I also discovered was the flavor is a little weak. It appears my extraction was not very good. All in all, I'd say I learned quite a bit from this one batch. Thanks to everyone who helped and encouraged me. I'm ready for trying an all grain recipe. SWMBO gave me a new 15 gallon brewpot for Christmas along with a request for a cherry beer. I found a recipe in "Joy" called Cherries in the Snow. Has anyone tried it? In a previous digest I saw the question >What's a fair dinkum? Actually "Fair Dinkum" hails from the civil war era of US history. If you remember that the uneducated slaves hailed their new found freedom by thanking "Mr Linkum". Well Fair Dinkum was Mr Linkums younger and less famous brother. He left the US in ignominity, which is a sailing ship not unlike a surfboard and landed in Queensland where he pretends to be both a government employee like his brother and a craftbrewer which we know is impossible anywhere where the drains swirl in the wrong direction. Hoppy Brew Year Beaver Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 17:27:55 EST From: Mjbrewit at aol.com Subject: HLT You don't say how big your system is or how many watts your element puts out. I use two 110 volt 1500 watt electric elements for my 10 gallon system ($7 bucks each), and it gets my water to 180 in roughly an hour, give or take a few minutes. No thermocoupler, no controller or anything fancy. Being 110 volts all I do is put them on a standard cheapo timer, which starts the heating prior to my waking, so the strike water is ready to go when I step out of bed. I use the dial on the timer as an on off switch for a manual control switch. I also use the HLT to heat my sparge water during the main mash (usually 60 to 90 minutes anyway), so I find this more than sufficient. I guess my recommendation without knowing more details, is to try a timer. I can also tell you my HLT is a sanke keg wrapped in water heater insulation. I also usually cover it with a lid and put a towel on that. Hope that gives you some ideas. Sometimes simple is better. Date: Thu, 28 Dec 2000 09:27:58 -0600 From: "steve lane" <tbirdusa at hotmail.com> Subject: electric HLT I have a HLT w/ 240 volt element running on 110 house current. Element is at the base above the welded rim and opposite that is the thermocoupler, J type. This is hooked to a Watlow PID controller. My question is, what do others do to get their HLT water up to temp. in a hurry. I don't seem to get near enough power to get to 180 in a reasonable time. I have been heating my water in the mash tun, as it has a burner under it, and then pumping up to the HLT but this is a real hassle. The element is used to just hold the water at the correct temp. in this arrangement. I have run the controller up to, say, 400 to keep the element turned on but even then, it takes forever to get the water up to temp. Is there enough convection in the tank to not require stirring? I have been stirring now and then so that the thermocoupler sees more of the fluid. Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 09:54:31 -0800 From: "Keith Christian" <kchris1 at lausd.k12.ca.us> Subject: Water Supply, Mash Screen, Cleaning Chillers HBDers, A few questions for you all. I have upgraded my system to include half inch tubing and fittings. Something that would work very well with my set up is the Ss braided water supply line that are available from hardware stores. The half inch fittings on the ends are perfect! I am told they have tethlon tubing inside, which I recall is high temp tubing, but I am not sure. What do you think of using it to move mash or boiling liquids? I removed the Ss braiding from a section of a water supply line and recrimped it on to a compression sleeve. It looks similar to the SS mesh used in the Easy Masher TM type setup but the tubing makes a complete circle around the bottom of the kegs. Has anyone done this? Have you used it during the mash and/or the boiler? Did you use a pump? I am concerned that the braiding will get clogged or possibly promote channeling where the braiding lays. My chiller was left out in the back yard for a few months. It is a very dark brown. If I clean it with vinegar or B-brite, how long should it sit before using it? Would letting it sit in clean water be of any use? Or just let it drip dry and put back in plastic? Since my son was born 4 months ago, I have not had a chance to read HBD. If you have any comments to make regarding my questions, please CC a copy to my email address: { HYPERLINK mailto:kchris1 at lausd.k12.ca.us }kchris1 at lausd.k12.ca.us TIA Keith Christian Chatsworth, CA Maltose Falcons Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 20:04:01 -0700 From: "Dave Howell" <djhowell at qwest.net> Subject: Michael Jackson's The Chiller All: I just finished my third brew on the RIMS, a 10 gal boh. pilsner. Everything was way ahead of schedule, all times right on the nose, looked to be a four-hour brew session, including cleanup, when disaster struck: my CF chiller, cleaned just minutes before with hot lye then hot phos. acid, clogged. I must have broken something loose in there... just like a Dodge Dart w/slant-6: never put oil in them, 'cos you'll only break out the lubricating sludge built onto the bearings, then the motor will fail... So, I had to resort to resourcefulness, break out the raw material stash, and with 15 feet (3m) of 3/8 copper and my CF chiller aquarium pump (the hose/cold water temp in Arizona is usually 76 degF to over 90 degF, so I use a small pump and ice: lotsa ice) I built... an IMMERSION CHILLER. Now, Dr. Pivo and Jack Schmidling aside, I hate the idea of immersion chillers. It took me almost 1 1/2 hours to chill this behemoth of a bohemian below basically balmy blood/bathwater (how's that for consonance?) temps. If I had had about 50'(16m) more of the stuff, I might have cooled it faster. As it was, I was shaking and swirling it like crazy. If I have an infected batch, I will be sorry as hell, but I won't be surprised (be a pessimist, that way you only get pleasant surprises). It looks like another trip to the HW store for 3/8 copper tube for a new counterflow. The obstruction is at least 10 feet (3m) into the tube, is defeating 1/8 steel cable being poked in there, and I've been itching to build a new CF chiller anyway. Of course, this will have to wait for many moons as the Christmas bills will be rolling in. Besides, I now have 10 gal of Renner's Father's Moustache (as opposed to his father's Egg Nog), 10 gal of APA, and now, 10 gal of Boh. Pilsner (maybe I'll call it Millenium Rhapsody, or perhaps Take Two Pilzn Call Me in the Morning, or maybe something even punnier). I should not need to brew until some evil deciever tricks me into thinking I can enter, nay, even win, a competetion. Should be around March. Coincidentally, I'll probably be running dry around then... On the other hand, I went to the driving range yesterday, and in the four months since I've swung a club, I seem to have forgotton how to hit anything taller than a sand wedge... Dave Howell In sunny Arizona, to where approximately 2.7 million people from Michigan moved since the last Census. The rest are from Minnesota. Costello: You know I'm a catcher too. Abbott: So they tell me. Costello: I get behind the plate to do some fancy catching, Tomorrow's pitching on my team and a heavy hitter gets up. Now the heavy hitter bunts the ball. When he bunts the ball, me, being a good catcher, I'm gonna throw the guy out at first. So I pick up the ball and throw it to who? Abbott: Now that's the first thing you've said right. Costello: I don't even know what I'm talking about! Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2000 23:36:44 -0500 From: Rogers Michael B <avatar at hemc.net> Subject: first batch question My father and I just brewed our first batch. We were trying to approximate the Dortmunder label. We used Cooper's pilsner hopped malt extract and Glenbrew light malt extract (per the homebrew store owner's reccomendations). What we ended up with was ALMOST 5 gal. with a SG of 1.56 (1.056?). Question is: Do I need to adjust the SG in any way to make this beer better? Can I do it without oxygenating the beer to the point of being better off not doing it in the first place? Further note: Considering the ruckus that's been going on in the HBD, I immediately turned my Australian can of Coopers upside-down in anti-Aussie sentiment (never mind that's how you're supposed to open it.) Cheers! Ben Rogers Return to table of contents
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