HOMEBREW Digest #4516 Thu 08 April 2004

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  "tun to toilet" (was grain to brain) (Chris.Pittock)
  Re: Curious Yeast Behaviour ("Greg 'groggy' Lehey")
  Re: Cheap Refrigerator Temperature Controller (Kent Fletcher)
  Nat HB Bourbon Stout (K.M.)" <kmuell18@visteon.com>
  Re: Where in the World? (Greg Smith)
  Re: Curious Yeast Behavior (Robert Sandefer)
  Re: Curious Yeast Behaviour (Jeff Renner)
  re: post your location ("Richard S. Sloan")
  fermenting in corny question ("River Bound Brewing")
  vid of flat convection wort chiller in action ("swamp")
  Britsh Homebrewing, Homebrewed Temperature controllers ("Dave Burley")
  re: Cheap Refrigerator Temperature Controller (Ken Meyer)
  The BrewMasters Open (Craig Sikes)
  Re: Dry hopping problem ("Martin Brungard")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 8 Apr 2004 13:29:32 +1000 From: Chris.Pittock at dpi.vic.gov.au Subject: "tun to toilet" (was grain to brain) Hi Folks, Can't help myself... The brief thread on quick beers leads to me recall the then brewer (Richard Pass) at the Wig and Pen brewpub in Canberra (The Australian National Capital) describing his process as "tun to toilet in a week". Opened my eyes a bit (as a bottler in those days)! But in his situation he used DE filtration rather than flocculation or fining like many of us mortals... Perhaps 'tun to toilet' is a uniquely forthcoming Aussie description?! Beers, ChrisP Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 8 Apr 2004 13:38:15 +0930 From: "Greg 'groggy' Lehey" <grog at lemis.com> Subject: Re: Curious Yeast Behaviour On Wednesday, 7 April 2004 at 6:21:41 -0400, William Erskine wrote: > Hi All, > > I am curious about the behaviour of my most recent > batch of beer which is currently on day 8 of a primary > fermentation. It's an all grain pale ale OG 1.048. > I pitched a White Labs WLP002 English Ale > Yeast (pitchable tube). Currently, it is down to about > a bubble every 45 secs or so. But there is something > very unusual, little white pieces of something (crud) > are being shot off the bottom of the carboy like rockets. > They travel very quickly about half way up and then float > back to the bottom. It's very weird to watch, and one lifts > off about every 3 - 6 seconds. > > Can someone explain what this is, and is it safe to rack > into the secondary? I am assuming it is and plan to do it > tomorrow night, but I am curious about this phenomenon. I've seen it before, but I've never paid much attention. > Also, is there anywhere online that I can go to see what people's > experience with a particular yeast is? I don't know of a centralized place. The archives for this list are a good start, as are the archives for the Australian Craftbrewers (http://oz.craftbrewer.org/Digest/messages/; irritatingly, it's not the URL that displays if you go there from the home page). > For example, I am interested in this latest Yeast I've used. I was > looking on the White Labs Website and it's description for the yeast > seems off so far. It describes a very strong flocculation, and I am > seeing the opposite. It doesn't seem to be flocculating well at > all. You can't exactly expect that while it's still fermenting :-) > And I am not referring to the little rocket ships. The sediment > doesn't seem well formed or compacted at all. It is clearing, just > not with the characteristics that I expect. I haven't tasted it > yet. That'll be the important test. An equally interesting one would be to know what the current specific gravity is. Maybe it's just completing slowly. > Has anyone used this strain before? How did you like it? I > understand that it is perhaps the Fuller's ESB Strain? Should be > good. Looking forward to it. I don't know this yeast, but I looked on the White Labs site and finally found it (it didn't show up when I searched for English Bitter). It says: English Ale (WLP002) A classic ESB strain from one of England's largest independent breweries. This yeast is best suited for English style ales including milds, bitters, porters, and English style stouts. This yeast will leave a beer very clear, and will leave some residual sweetness. Attenuation: 63-70; Flocculation: Very High; Optimum Ferm. Temp: 65-68 Hmm. That's quite a low attenuation. It also doesn't seem to match the one I've been using, from Wyeast (http://www.wyeastlab.com/beprlist.htm): 1275 Thames Valley Ale Yeast. Produces classic British bitters, rich complex flavor profile, clean, light malt character, low fruitiness, low esters, well balanced. Flocculation - medium; apparent attenuation 72-76%. (62-72? F, 16-22? C) Nevertheless, I'm seeing a very similar problem with this yeast. It seems to take forever to finish fermentation (I've waited up to 10 days), and I bottled a brew over a month ago which still hasn't cleared, though others made much later with the same yeast have cleared. I've been discussing the issue on the Australian Craftbrewers (URL above) in the past 24 hours. So far opinion has been inconclusive, but some suspect that it might be insufficient aeration. I've gone to particular trouble to aerate this yeast, though I've had no problems with others; possibly it's particularly demanding, but equally possibly it might be something else. For example, it might be that I got a bad batch: the smack pack was several months old when I bought it, and it took it a long while to swell up. Greg - -- Note: I discard all HTML mail unseen. Finger grog at lemis.com for PGP public key. See complete headers for address and phone numbers. Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 7 Apr 2004 21:32:54 -0700 (PDT) From: Kent Fletcher <fletcherhomebrew at yahoo.com> Subject: Re: Cheap Refrigerator Temperature Controller Spencer asked about making his own fridge temperature control: > (snip) A company called Rainbow Kits (see link below) > has several kits for measuring temperature and > controlling temperature,(snip) Spencer, you'd have to start with their "Temperature Genie" kit AND their Relay kit. Then you would have to get another relay to actually switch the fridge, as their relay kit current limit is 3 amps. So you you're at about $24 with shipping, add $5 to $10 for a wall wart poewr supply, another $10 to $15 for the necessary relay, and now you're close to $40 or more for a controller with no display and only a trim pot to adjust your setpoint with. OTOH, you could get an A19 type (mechanical) temp control with adjustable differential for less than that, if you shop around. If you're still into the idea of making your own, check out Ken Schwartz' piece on homebrewed thermometers and fridge control, it's in the Brewery.org library at http://hbd.org/mtippin/thermometer.html#Homebrewed%20Thermometers (or Library sub Equipment, sub Carboys ...). I believe you could build his for about $25, including a digital display, if you get the parts from a good electronic surplus house, like All Electronics (NAYY), as Ken mentions. Kent Fletcher Brewing in So Cal Kent Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 8 Apr 2004 08:00:00 -0400 From: "Mueller, Kevin (K.M.)" <kmuell18 at visteon.com> Subject: Nat HB Bourbon Stout I've still got the commemorative stout from last summers AHA convention in my basement beer fridge (drank the mead for my twin's birthday on January 1. It was great!) I'll probably be cracking it open soon. Any tasting notes on what to expect? Its been in the fridge since I got home from Chicago. I remember reading that there was a sanitation issue and it may be infected. What's the word on that? Thanks, Kevin Canton, MI Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 8 Apr 2004 09:31:18 -0400 (GMT-04:00) From: Greg Smith <barnbrew at earthlink.net> Subject: Re: Where in the World? Jeff Renner requests: > It's time for my semi-annual request that posters tell us their name > and location. BarnBrew Brewing Co. checking from Pompano Beach, FL: 1114.8, 168.1 Apparent Rennerian, methinks. Cheers, Greg Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 08 Apr 2004 09:36:08 -0400 From: Robert Sandefer <melamor at vzavenue.net> Subject: Re: Curious Yeast Behavior I can't say I noticed any yeast roller coaster when I used this strain, but I did the primary in an opaque bucket. I imagine the clumps are flocculated yeast being suspended by carbon dioxide bubbles. I used this strain in my latest porter and I can say that I am underwhelmed. I really had no expectations but WLP002/English provided a general fruitiness and not much else. Not bad but nothing special. Robert Sandefer Currently in Arlington, VA, but soon I'll be moving to SF Bay area (San Rafael most likely) Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 8 Apr 2004 10:39:02 -0400 From: Jeff Renner <jeffrenner at comcast.net> Subject: Re: Curious Yeast Behaviour From: "William Erskine" <werskin at sympatico.ca> writes from London, Ontario >I pitched a White Labs WLP002 English Ale Yeast (pitchable tube). >... little white pieces of something (crud) are being shot off the >bottom of the carboy like rockets. They travel very quickly about >half way up and then float back to the bottom. It's very weird to >watch, and one lifts off about every 3 - 6 seconds. > >Can someone explain what this is ... ? I haven't used this yeast in a while, and I don't ferment ales in carboys anymore, BUT, I don't think this is unusual behavio(u)r at all. It seems to me that it happens all the time, but probably with some yests more than others. What is happening is that the yeast is flocculent enough to stick together, and little bubbles of CO2 are sticking to globules of yeast and pulling them off the bottom. When the globules get going fast enough, about half way up the carboy in your case, they get pulled off the bubble and drop to the bottom. The bubble continues to the top. Sometimes they make it all the way to the top before they drop back down. This can provide hours of entertainment! Cheers Jeff - -- Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, JeffRenner at comcast.net "One never knows, do one?" Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943 Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 8 Apr 2004 07:58:09 -0700 From: "Richard S. Sloan" <rssloan at household.com> Subject: re: post your location Hi all, I'm an infrequent poster, but a daily reader of the digest. I am brewing in beautiful San Diego, CA with an Igloo cooler set-up doing 5 gal all-grain batches. My favorite recipe is my "Lazy Brown Dog" a Mild with Rye. Cheers! Richard Sloan [1917, 261] Apparent Rennerian Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 8 Apr 2004 11:19:39 -0500 From: "River Bound Brewing" <RiverBound at charter.net> Subject: fermenting in corny question Hi everyone. I am considering conducting my primary ferm in glass and my secondary in a corny keg. I have 2 questions... 1) What do I use to plug the inlet and outlet of the keg with? I assume there is some kind of fitting that will screw on to the posts of my ball lock kegs. 2) Is there an easy way to attach a blow off tube to my glass carboy? BTW...bottled an English brown last night and I have to say, it was the best tasting beer at 68 degrees and flat that I've ever had - I must have drank 3 beers straight from the bottling bucket! Cheers! Pat Reddy River Bound Brewing - --- Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free. Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com). Version: 6.0.651 / Virus Database: 417 - Release Date: 4/5/2004 Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 8 Apr 2004 12:21:26 -0400 From: "swamp" <swamp at phlo.net> Subject: vid of flat convection wort chiller in action Got the idea for building a flat convection style wort chiller from the great homebrewing listservs. Was a bit skeptical of how much of a convection flow this type of chiller would generate. But seeing is believing. http://holophlo.net/gallery/album01 enjoy My brew partner and have had three successfull batches that were colded in under 20 min, each, with this design. -Darren - -- +---------------------------------------------+ Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 8 Apr 2004 13:01:26 -0400 From: "Dave Burley" <Dave_Burley at charter.net> Subject: Britsh Homebrewing, Homebrewed Temperature controllers Brewsters: Ken Scammell laments: "I sure wish homebrewing was big over here" in Britain. When I lived in Britain in the late 60s ( so I am undoubtedly a little out of date, although I visit Britain routinely and my daughter lives in London) Homebrewing was bigger - and more importantly - legal ( which it wasn't in the US at the time). A simple trip into Boots the Chemist ( a drug chainstore) was a wonderous event for me the first time. Imagine malt extract, hops and YEAST! on the shelf and BOOKS! I had never imagined it. Before moving to Britain for Post-doctoral studies, I had been struggling in the US using Blue Ribbon malt extract, 1930s Prohibition information and yeast of unknown pedigree - the only hops were those in the extract. I have to say I never tasted any good homebrew other than mine ( and my labmate's who I taught) while I was in Britain. I am sure that is no longer true, but then the practitioners of homebrewing were not intellectuals and the focus ( as you will see in the early books) in cradle-to-grave Socialist, Pre- Maggie Thatcher and North Sea oil Britain was to cut costs - not make better beer . Homebrew in Britain suffers from ( at least then) a well deserved bad reputation. I think there were several origins for this. The first, Boots with nationwide distribution sold the products with a normal markup and prevented specialty stores from getting into the business. Boots personnel were hardly educated on the subtleties of homebrewing. So no help in the area for new homebrewers. The early homebrew books were of pretty poor quality ( J.J. Berry a publisher and author, writing books to publish, springs to mind). In defence, these books were perhaps better than none, which was the case in the US at the time. And provided a needed springboard for later authors. There was already an established, high markup, specialty home wine making activity in the US ( unlike Britain) which stores later provided the dissemination of information as well as products for home beer making, when it was legalized. The Prohibition of the making or drinking alcohol containing beverages in the US during the 1930s provided the impetus for legalizing the making of wine in the home ( largely due to the Italian American influence) and the subsequent illegal making of beer in the home followed the availability of malt extract in 3 lb cans "for Baking". So, home brewing was not a foreign idea to later US generations and surprisingly Prohibition had exactly the opposite effect from that desired by Carrie Nation and other Prohibitioners. Also, after the second world war, the brewing industry in the US had become monolithic and devoted to the accountants and making ever more uniformly tasteless, colorless beers. Britain, of course, at the time had an incredible variety of beers which varied from region to region. Travelling around in Britain and visiting unique pubs was sort of like trying out a new golf course - same game but uniquely different combinations of flavors. Sadly, that has gone by the wayside in Britain and started when I was living there. Buyouts and shutting down the small breweries became rampant and to this day the British brewing scene much resembles the US scene in that fewer and fewer beers are being offered in narrower and narrower styles. Real Ale Movement has had a little influence on this, but I sense that the economic realities of profit from making a universal beer are triumphing. The lack of variety of US beers also provided an impetus for homebrewers to brew what they had been reading about and tasting on visits to Europe. But perhaps the major reason for the low level of homebrewing in Britain is cultural ( which I sense is changing due to driving laws, TV etc) . Beer drinking in Britain is not done in the home as much as it is in the US and usually only after a visit to the pub. The pub provides the necessary source for social interaction much diminished in the US over the last 50 years or so ( a negative influence of Prohibition IMHO along with the high mobility of Americans and lack of a "local" feeling) . Drinking beer in the home ( and not in a bar - which still has a somewhat negative feeling to it) in the US is normal and thus homebrewing is more accepted. So what to do about the state of Homebrewing in Britain? Be aware that things are changing with regard to where beer is consumed and that the choices of beer, while still broader than the US are nevertheless limited. Hope for homebrewing lays in the focus on variety and quality ( as it has in the US) and not making a cheaper pint. - -------------------------- Spencer Graham, a ham ( me too, KC2LZ) asks for some advice on homebrewing his own temperature controller from available kits. I looked at the Rainbow kits site you suggested and as I see it you will have to put at least three of the kits together to do what you want. You will need the temperature detector, the controller and the relay/power controller. Plus a box so you are looking at more like $40. None of the power controllers will give you enough power, being only 3 and 4 amps, for compressor startup ( probably 10 amps) . I have tried a number of different controllers over the years with generally poor satisfaction ( forget the mechanical ones) until I used the Williams Brewing II controller. It has digital temperature readout, works perfectly and has all kinds of delays to keep from burning out the compressor ( a possible problem with the Rainbow kits ). My suggestion? Stick to homebrewing beer and go the extra bucks and get something properly designed for the use and that really works. Keep on Brewin' Dave Burley Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 08 Apr 2004 15:42:44 -0500 From: Ken Meyer <keno5 at wi.rr.com> Subject: re: Cheap Refrigerator Temperature Controller I have built several temperature controllers and a digital thermomometer using the information found at this website: http://hbd.org/mtippin/thermometer.html If you are at all handy with electronics and soldering you should have no problem using these designs to control or measure temperature. I have built refirigerator controllers and incorperated these disigns in my rims system to monitor and control mash temperature Ken Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 8 Apr 2004 14:49:57 -0700 (PDT) From: Craig Sikes <craigsikes at yahoo.com> Subject: The BrewMasters Open Homebrewers: The BrewMasters of Alpharetta announces The Brewmasters Open, an AHA Sanctioned Competition, to be held May 15th, in Alpharetta , GA. This is the next event in the Mid-South Competition Series. The BrewMasters Open is a major Southeast Regional Competition - last year we saw over 300 entries. There will be 1st, 2nd, & 3rd Place Ribbons for all combined categories with 1st, 2nd & 3rd Place Ribbons for the Best of Show round. Big prizes will be awarded to the BOS round winners. Also, a 1st Place Ribbon for Best Mead/Cider. Entries are due April 28th to May 8th. Please check our website for details: www.brewmastersopen.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 08 Apr 2004 16:33:45 -0800 From: "Martin Brungard" <mabrungard at hotmail.com> Subject: Re: Dry hopping problem Dry Hopping with pellet hops can be troublesome, but I prefer pellets because they are usually fresher. I have found a fairly effective method of handling pellet hops when dry hopping. I use my nylon grain sack. I hadn't been using that bag since I moved to all-grain about 4 years ago, so I already had it on hand. The great thing about using the grain sack is that: the fine weave captures most of the hop particulates, you can boil the sack for sanitation, and you can reuse it hundreds of times. The thing that I need to do next is weld tabs inside my corney lids so that I can attach the sack to the lid. That is handy when you want to dry hop for a limited time in a corney. You'll know that you can get the sack out of your keg. Martin Brungard Tallahassee, FL Return to table of contents
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