HOMEBREW Digest #4102 Mon 25 November 2002

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  Update on Beer Pouches ("Jeff Stith")
  RE: Bazooka Screen ("Wayne Holder")
  Re: Re: Water Softener Using Potassium Chloride (Teresa Knezek)
  Water analysis for Pickerington Ohio? (FRASERJ)
  Ranco controller (Pete)
  Short Mash? ("jeff preston")
  Apparent Rennerian ("Don Scholl")
  beer engine! (Teresa Knezek)
  controller for light bulb. (LJ Vitt)
  (no subject) ("A. J. delange")
  Disposable aeration. (Wendy & Reuben Filsell)
  The Trouble With Trub ("John Gubbins")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Fri, 22 Nov 2002 22:35:26 -0600 From: "Jeff Stith" <jstith at kc.rr.com> Subject: Update on Beer Pouches I brought home the Backpacker Magazine from work today so I could provide more info. I still have not heard directly from the company and the email I sent to them but here's the short article... "Packin' Pilsner" by Melissa DeVaughn Backpacker magazine October, 2002 Hike up mountain. Pitch camp. Chill beer in snow bank. Now that's backpacking. Okay, we confess. We've lugged a few brews into the backcountry. What better way to celebrate a tough day on the trail than with your favorite ale chilled in a mountain stream? Only one problem: Transporting cans and glass bottles. The former tend to explode. The latter are just plain heavy. Now there's a better way. After watching his daughter sip from a Capri Sun fruit drink pouch, Anchorage brewer Kevin Tubbs came up with the idea for Incan Brew Beer-In-A-Bag pouches. "Alaska has the most microbreweries per capita of anywhere in the country, and I wanted the little guys to have an inexpensive way to package their beers without investing in a bottle line," Tubbs expalins. To his surprise, the pack friendly pouches caught on almost immediately with Alaska hikers. Light, strong and reusable, the foil pouches come in 16, 22 and 64 ounce sizes. With no exposure to light or air and a taste barrier that won't deteriorate, the Incan's contents should last indefinitely. We sampled a pale ale from Great Bear Brewing Company and it tasted as good as any beer from a bottle. How do you get your beer-in-a-bag? Contact one of 80 breweries in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest that use the bags or buy the beer in local stores. Contact: Yukon Spirits, (907) 569-3800 or visit http://incanpouch.tripod.com. My though is that if they'll sell to microbreweries, they'd surely be able to sell to the casual or obsessed home brewer also. Like I said, my email to them from yesterday hasn't been answered yet. If anyone else tries to contact them and gets an answer/prices, please let me know. I got more info from their Web site than just from this article. Jeff Stith Lee's Summit, Missouri "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." -Edmund Burke Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Nov 2002 20:57:50 -0800 From: "Wayne Holder" <zymie at charter.net> Subject: RE: Bazooka Screen Tom Asks: "I bought a bazooka screen for my brew pot. I've found that the screen is longer than the diameter of my kettle. Is it OK to bend the screen to make it fit? " Go for it Tom, or get a larger kettle ;^). Wayne Holder AKA Zymie Long Beach CA http://www.zymico.com Return to table of contents
Date: Fri, 22 Nov 2002 21:10:51 -0900 From: Teresa Knezek <teresa at mivox.com> Subject: Re: Re: Water Softener Using Potassium Chloride On or thereabout 11/23/02, John & Joy Vaughn spoke thusly: At 12:26 AM -0500 11/23/02, Request Address Only - No Articles wrote: >The softener has removed the iron . Todd Snyder suggested >(off-line) that I aerate the water, pre-softener, to oxidize the iron and >decant off the water. I think my well water (near Fairbanks, AK) has the same "clear water iron" problem you describe. I believe it is caused by "iron bacteria" which take the iron in the water, and metabolise/oxidize it somehow. (I researched this online, and can find the links again, if you like). If you drain the water out of your hot water heater, does the water from the bottom of the heater tank come out orange? Does the inside of the toilet tank grow an orange "slimy" coating on the porcelain? That's what our water does. I understand that this problem can be solved with an ultraviolet anti-bacterial water filter system (a few hundred dollars), or -- for brewing purposes -- the local homebrew shop recommended boiling my brewing water the night before, and letting it settle overnight. If you boil 5.5 to 6 gallons of water, you can pour off 5 gallons of clean water the next day, and leave the rusty-looking sediment behind. If you have the same problem I do, the hot water will kill the bacteria, and the sediment in the pot ought to look rusty... same reason the water at the bottom of my hot water heater comes out orange. - -- :: Teresa :: http://rant.mivox.com/ "The real universe is always one step beyond logic." -- Frank Herbert, Dune Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 23 Nov 2002 08:06:29 -0500 From: FRASERJ at Nationwide.com Subject: Water analysis for Pickerington Ohio? D'oh! Brewing this weekend, moved into new house last weekend, new county, new water supplier and failed to get the water analysis during the week! Any brewmeisters out there have the analysis for Pickerington Ohio? Thanks! John M. Fraser http://rims-brewing.tripod.com Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 23 Nov 2002 10:34:46 -0600 From: Pete <pfahle at charter.net> Subject: Ranco controller Hi all This is my first post so hope everything goes ok. In response to Bill Tobler's post the Ranco dual controller is available at Grainger at a greatly reduced price , it is Grainger Part# 3zp82. I am not connected with Grainger in any way. Pete Fahle St. Charles , Mo 682.3 34.4 Rennerian Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 23 Nov 2002 10:32:17 -0800 From: "jeff preston" <brewingales at msn.com> Subject: Short Mash? Chris, I talked to a lab tech. who works at a barley research lab who says they get complete conversion in as little as 15 min. Maybe under a lab condition it works, but in my experience a 90 min rest produces a much better tasting and stable beer. They also mill the grain quite fine compared to homebrewing standards. Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 23 Nov 2002 15:13:25 -0500 From: "Don Scholl" <dws at engineeringdimensions.com> Subject: Apparent Rennerian How do I go about figuring this out? I live in Muskegon, MI. Thanks, Don Scholl Muskegon, Michigan Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 23 Nov 2002 11:16:28 -0900 From: Teresa Knezek <teresa at mivox.com> Subject: beer engine! Hooray! Just won a lovely beer engine from N. Yorkshire on ebay... and a mini keg is in the mail now. If I decide to pay for airmail shipping on the engine, I may be able to test the mini-keg/beer-engine system with the amber ale I'm racking to secondary this weekend! Now, to find an inexpensive tap for the mini-keg... (I'm considering modifying a philtap in the future, but that beer engine is going to wipe out my spending money for a while...) Anyone got a mini-keg tap they're not using? ;-) - -- :: Teresa :: http://www.mivox.com/ A computer without Windows is like a dog without bricks tied to its head. Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 23 Nov 2002 15:26:48 -0800 (PST) From: LJ Vitt <lvitt4 at yahoo.com> Subject: controller for light bulb. John wanted more information about controllers for turning on/off a light bulb. The one I have was built by a brewing buddy who is an electrical engineer. It has a transformer, a switch and a house thermostat. The transformer and switch are inside the wodden box with the light bulb. The top of the box has holes to let heat out. Near the bottom on the side of the box is a biscuit fan. I would suggest looking for a controller off the shelf. I can easily find one's for refrigurators that turn on the power if it is too warm. The one John needs would turn on power if it is too cold. JOhn want to use it for lagering - I cannot set the temp lower than 50F - OK for fermentation but not lagering. John said it is for lagering. I cannot set the temp lower than 50 ===== Leo Vitt Rochester MN Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 24 Nov 2002 00:18:59 +0000 From: "A. J. delange" <ajdel at mindspring.com> Subject: (no subject) For John: Yes, I am now here (just back from a harrowing week in which I slept more nights on airplanes (3) than I did in hotel rooms (2)). I think Jeff has hit most of the important points WRT to your water i.e. I don't really have anything to add but perhaps a slightly different perspective will shed a bit more light. As I understant it the water is reasonalbly hard, reasonably alkaline well water with a low pH i.e. pretty normal well water except for high clear water iron levels. I think everyone agrees that the normal home water softener (which uses sodium chloride and exchanges sodium for iron, calcium and magnesium) is a disaster for brewing not so much because it raises sodium levels but because it removes calcium and magnesium which would otherwise offset the alkalinity (bicarbonates) in the mashtun. The softened water will, thus, have a higher residual alkalinity (calculate by dividing the sum of the calcium hardness and half the magnesium hardness by 3.5 and subtracting from the alkalinity) approximately equal to the raw water's alkalinity since the softener has nearly zeroed the calcium and magensium hardnesses. If the water is really hard sodium levels will be proportionately high (approximately one milliequivalent of sodium for each milliequivalent of magnesium, calcium and iron in the raw water). When sodium was thought to be responsible for hypertension, the industry responded with softeners using potassium chloride rather than sodium choride (and middle aged men used "cosalt" i.e. potassium chloride) on their food. The chemistry is the same except that each milliequivalent of exchanged metal is replaced with a milliequivalent of potassium. The problem with high residual alkalinity is still there. Sodium and potassium are generall "don't care" ions unless their concentrations are high enough that the water (and beer brewed from it) taste salty and a salty taste is undesireable in the style you are brewing. In general, thus, water softeners (of the home type) are not very good for brewing. If the main goal is to get rid of iron then an iron treatment installation is preferrable (from the brewing viewpoint that is; the spouse may have issues with the dishwasher, shower heads etc.). These work by oxidizing clearwataer (ferrous) iron to the Fe(III) state where, at high pH, it will form Fe(OH)3, the ugly brown gel, which can be filtered out. One can buy iron removing "filters" which oxidize either by aeration or by the use of permanganate. In the latter case a base is also used where the pH is low. In the aeration case, the aeration itself allows cabon dioxide to escape the water with a resuting increase in pH. The filtration medium is often "greensand", a mineral found only in Delaware which seems to catalyze the oxidation reaction. The ferric hydroxide is flushed when the filter medium is back washed. The local water treatment supplier should have a couple of options for you to consider in an iron removal unit or you can buy either type from Grainger. For brewing voulumes you can get rid of iron using the same chemistry as the filters. Aerate the water vigorously. Eventually this should get the pH to around 8 and the water should turn grey, yellow or even brown (depending on the amount of iron). Filter it though a tight filter (a couple of inches of fine "play" sand (intended for kids' sanboxes) will do. When finished, wash the sand to flush away the iron so you can use it again. Once the iron is gone, you can then use any of the other techniques for tailoring water (decarbonation by boiling or lime, dilution with distilled water etc.). Another potential solution for the overall problem is a reverse osmosis unit. These are now available for around $100 from places like Home Depot. As for lab tests: it's tough to get a lab to run what you want as a brewer because most people don't care that much about minerals other than the hardness ones. The major concerns for "normal" people is organics. That's why I used to offer an analysis service (and I hope to be able to do so again soon - the "lab" over the new garage is nearing completion). If you can get it you want calcium and magnesium hardnesses (separate if possible), sodium, potassium, iron, manganese, copper, alakalinity, pH and chloride. A.J. Return to table of contents
Date: Sat, 23 Nov 2002 19:03:14 +0800 From: Wendy & Reuben Filsell <filsell at myplace.net.au> Subject: Disposable aeration. > From: homebrew-request@hbd.org (Request Address Only - No Articles) > Reply-To: homebrew at hbd.org (Posting Address Only - No Requests) > Date: Sat, 23 Nov 2002 00:30:45 -0500 > To: homebrew at hbd.org > Subject: Homebrew Digest #4101 (November 23, 2002) > > Now the beauty is, when I'm done, I don't clean it at all. > I just throw it away Tom Karnowski Knoxville TN Sorry Tom nothing beautiful about that. Reuben. Return to table of contents
Date: Sun, 24 Nov 2002 10:41:50 -0700 From: "John Gubbins" <n0vse at idcomm.com> Subject: The Trouble With Trub Happy Thanksgiving. I hope everybody has their Thanksgiving brews ready! Trub. Most people don't dwell on this nasty stuff much but lately I've had problems with it. I have a big old concrete double laundry sink in the basement that I use for laundry and brewing. It is a wonderful place to wash out bottles, kegs, carboys and whatever else there may be that needs washing. Each sink has a common drain that goes to a pipe under the sink which then runs horizontally until it meets the vertical sewer about a yard away. Trub clogs this pipe somewhere. When I rinse out a carboy, all the trub goes down the drain. Usually the next day the drains are plugged. Nothing will touch this stuff. Liquid Plummer, Drano, and similar products are useless. I can rinse the sinks till I'm blue in the face and it will still plug. I do have a solution, but it is not easy. I disconnect the pipe under the sink and snake a tube as far as it will go into the pipe. Then I use a carboy stopper to seal the tube and pipe. I then run hot high pressure water through it. This blows the pipe clear. If anybody has any theories on why the trub continues to grow and plug the pipe, I'd like to know. I'm also curious if anybody has the same problem. John Gubbins Littleton, Co - --- Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free. Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com). Version: 6.0.419 / Virus Database: 235 - Release Date: 11/13/2002 Return to table of contents
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