HOMEBREW Digest #486 Fri 31 August 1990

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  Miller&Bud (Russ Gelinas)
  Types of kegs (gateh)
  Mead carbonation ("FEINSTEIN")
  RE: Homebrew Digest #484 (August 29, 1990)  ("b_turnbaugh")
  Re: Homebrew Digest #485 (August 30, 1990) ("JOHN T. LOHR")
  Grain Brewing Methods (R. Bradley)
  Weirdos and Cheapskates (Tom Nolan)
  procrastination (Paul L. Kelly)
  Re:  Homebrew Digest #485 (August 30, 1990) (Mark E. Freeman)
  Label adhesive (Keith Hearn)
  Grainger, soda kegs, plea for calm (Pete Soper)
  Brew supply stores in the Ocean City, NJ area... (Biru, kudisai!)
  Thanks for the brewpot suggestions.... (Greg Roody - 276-8682  30-Aug-1990 2154)
  WA Labelling Law (Norm Hardy)
  heat source? (Bill Crick)
  my wish for labels (Dick Dunn)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 30 Aug 90 09:17 EST From: <R_GELINA%UNHH.BITNET at MITVMA.MIT.EDU> (Russ Gelinas) Subject: Miller&Bud Tom Fitzgerald posted a message re. a lab test of Miller and Bud, saying that Miller had preservatives, head-retention chemicals, etc. and that Bud came up clean. I find that hard to believe, as Miller bottles specifically state the all-natural ingredients as well as "no additives or preservatives". Bud makes no such claims, except for their "Natural Lite" beer. I'd like to know the who/what/where/when of the lab tests. Russ - --- I don't particulary like Miller *or* Bud, but when forced to choose, I have - --- always taken Miller, with the understanding that if I *have* to drink cheap - --- beer, it might as well be clean cheap beer. So I'm quite interested in - --- this; clean beer is one of my main reasons for homebrewing. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 90 10:22:23 EDT From: gateh%CONNCOLL.BITNET at CUNYVM.CUNY.EDU Subject: Types of kegs > > I ordered ... [three] 5 gallon "ball-lock" kegs (non-Coke) > > 1) Do these 'ball-lock' kegs use the same adapters as standard beer kegs? > > If so it would make me very happy! I have an old regulator and CO2 > tank for tapping a standard keg. There are two basic styles of kegs (in two sizes) in the U.S.: - two-prong tap (or "standard") - This is the older style tap, presently used primarily by smaller breweries and cheaper beers. The kegs are of the squat, usually very dented, difficult-to-carry type. - ball tap (or A-B tap) - I'm assuming this is the "ball-lock" type. It's my understanding these originally came from Anheuser-Busch. These kegs are the nice ones with the straight sides, flat bottoms, and handles. I believe these are the ones some folks have been hacking into brew kettles. Both come in two sizes: quarter-barrels (7.8 gal) half-barrels (15.6 gal) When I finally get around to kegging (just got the fridge, now to get my tap system back from friends 8-), I'm going to use quarter barrels (7.8 gal) of the "standard" type. They appear to be easy to open (big plug in side) - I don't know how to open the A-B kegs, but it would seem one would need some special tools (help anyone?). I personally prefer the two-prong mechanism, for no good reason at all, really. Perhaps it's just my general aversion to anything from A-B. I've had occasional problems with the ball type freezing up around the ball (although I've had similar problems with the two-prong as well). If you don't have the tap set right, you get sprayed when you attempt to tap the barrel (not a real problem for the non-comatose, though). Another thought: A-B half-barrels are several inches taller than the "standard" half-barrels, and so they don't always it into fridges as well. One thing to watch for with the "standard" keg: sometimes the rubber gasket, which looks like an "8", will stick to the barrel when taking the tap off, or it might break. If you are having problems with the tap leaking, check this gasket. You might want to have a spare or two on hand. Also - the recommendation someone gave to have two CO2 tanks is a good one. Getting refills on the weekend (there is a Murphy's law governing when a tank will run out) is always a major pain in the neck, at least where I am. I use two 20lb tanks, but that's probably unnecessary (plus they're pretty heavy). Another CO2 tip - don't keep the tank in the fridge with the keg if you can help it, especially on it's side - the cooled-down gas doesn't run as well (I've seen tanks which seem to have partially liquified). Cheers! - Gregg Gregg TeHennepe | Academic Computing Services | Yes, but this gateh at conncoll.bitnet | Connecticut College, New London, CT | one goes to 11... Return to table of contents
Date: 30 Aug 90 10:49:00 EDT From: "FEINSTEIN" <crf at pine.circa.ufl.edu> Subject: Mead carbonation Hi there! Someone (they didn't append their name to their posting) asked in dig 482 how you carbonate your mead if you're going to add EtOH to kill off the yeast. If you look again, you'll see that if you follow the "basic directions" you allow the sealed jug of mead to carbonate *before* you add the EtOH to kill the yeast. There are all kinds of variations on the basic theme I provided. By all means, feel free to play! Yours in Carbonation, Cher "With one tuckus, you can't dance at two weddings." -- Yiddish proverb ============================================================================= Cheryl Feinstein INTERNET: CRF at PINE.CIRCA.UFL.EDU Univ. of Fla. BITNET: CRF at UFPINE Gainesville, FL Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 90 08:06:28 PDT From: "b_turnbaugh" at lite.enet.dec.com Subject: RE: Homebrew Digest #484 (August 29, 1990) Would you please send Digest 485 (Aug/30th) again, I deleted it before I had a chance to read it. Thanks: Bob T. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 90 09:51 MDT From: "JOHN T. LOHR" <JOHNLOHR at cc.usu.edu> Subject: Re: Homebrew Digest #485 (August 30, 1990) enamel pots I use an enamel pot. They're big, they're cheap, but they're also thin. When using these stir, stir, stir or you'll get crud baked onto the bottom. 'nuff said. Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 90 10:53:32 CDT From: bradley at dehn.math.nwu.edu (R. Bradley) Subject: Grain Brewing Methods In digest 484, Greg Roody asks: > What do all grain brewers out there cook in? Is it possible > to use two smaller pots? Is there a sneaky substitute? There were a few answers in 485, but only to question #1. Also, the unanimity suggests that all of us grain-brewers use 32 qt. enamelled kettles. Let me add a dissenting voice in answering #1, but start with an answer to #2. My first couple of dozen all-grain batches were boiled in two pots. I had a nice 12 qt. (US quarts always, by the by...0.9 l.) stainless tell pot in which I mashed. After the sparge, I split the wort about 1/3-2/3 between it and a 20 qt. aluminum (HORRORS!) pot. Not surprisingly, I divided the hops - both boiling and finishing - between the pots in the same ratio. I also collected all the sweet wort together before splitting it us, so that the concentration of sugars would be similar. It seemed to work very well. In 1987, I bought an "Electrim Brew-Bin"; similar in almost every respect to the "Bru-Heat Bin" described in Dave Line's books, except that it uses 110 volts instead of 220. It cost $100 Candaian. It came from a Wine art store in Toronto...Wine Art is a Candian chain. A bit steep, but I've brewed over 100 batches in it so far. Not bad on a per batch basis. The only drawback is that it takes a while (about an hour) to bring the sweet wort to the boil. (Ample time for a homebrew :-) .) A distinct advantage is that it does triple duty: mash-tun, lauter-tun (if the grain is kept in a large straining bag rather than floating free in the liquor) and kettle. Cheers, Rob Bradley P. S. I recall quite a bit of discussion a couple of months ago about Line's "Brewing Beers Like Those You Buy". I neglected to add my own two cents. If I'd done so, I think I would have been the only one to have had anything good to say about it. It's an excellent source of inspiration, as long as one bears in mind that the ingredients he uses are different from ours in every respect. No recipe can be used verbatim, but with a little scientific analysis and a little artistic creativity, it's an excellent source of new recipes. Any commnets? Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 90 11:39:49 EDT From: nolan at heavax.DNET.NASA.GOV (Tom Nolan) Subject: Weirdos and Cheapskates Wow, that was some strange business with the owner of Wine & Brew by You. I haven't done an actual count, but I'd guess there are more active HBD'ers with ".com" and ".gov" than ".edu" in their names. To dismiss these Yuppies in their prime earning years as cheapskate college students seems foolish. Everyone wants to save a buck but hey... I haven't *bought* any out-of-date Wyeast, but I've *used* some because of delays in my brewing pipeline. I've never found it to be a problem, the pouch has always inflated within a few days, never as long as the one-day-per-month guideline would suggest. Anyway, you're not going to waste $30 worth of malt and hops, because you're going to "proof" the yeast by making a starter before pitching, right? If either the bag fails to inflate or the starter fails to take hold, you try another bag of yeast. You're not even going to start your mash or your boil until you're already assured that your yeast is alive and happy. Tom Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 90 12:38:46 EST From: pkel at psych.purdue.edu (Paul L. Kelly) Subject: procrastination In HBD #484 I wrote: >an incredible cold break. Previously I had ended up with, oh, about one and >a half to two inches of trub in the bottom of the carboy, but this time it >was spectacular! I would estimate that I had about a gallon of sediment. So >for the first time, I ended up racking the wort immediately after the cold >break, and I was faced with another problem -- not enough wort in the carboy >to blow off during early fermentation. So I added about a gallon of water to >the carboy ... In HBD #485 Louis Clark wrote: >This has happened to me twice this summer. I got about 2 gallons of trub in my >7 gallon batches (my carboys are marked in gallons). However, this trub was >not nearly as dense as it seemed. After a day in the carboy the trub settled >down to the usual 1.5-2. inches. Let's hear it for active procrastination. Thanks to Louis for reminding me (and perhaps others) of the value of "never doing today what you can put off until tomorrow." I have often had the suspicion that procrastination was a valuable asset in some circumstances, but now I am firmly convinced. I could have saved myself some trouble, but of course I would have ended up with a completely different beer. Now I'll just have to go back and try the recipe again, darn the luck :). Now here's another question: How can I make diet soda? (no flames from anti- aspartamites, please.) Any successful recipes would be greatly appreciated. One value I place on brewing is that I *know* what I'm drinking, and I would like to have the same advantage when it comes to pop. pkel at brazil.psych.purdue.edu | I think <----+ |"Cows!" - Owen, _Throw Paul L. Kelly | | | |Mama from the Train_ Dept. Psych. Sci., Purdue Univ. | \|/ | | "Humpty Dumpty was pushed!" | Therefore, I am ->+ |Hail Saccharomyces! Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 90 11:02:11 PDT From: freeman at idaho.Inference.Com (Mark E. Freeman) Subject: Re: Homebrew Digest #485 (August 30, 1990) Another problem with listing alcoholic content on the label is the debate over whether one should describe the content by volume or by % of the weight. A lab analysis of Miller showed that it contained preservatives, head- retention agents (this can be demonstrated by adding a drop of milk to the beer, and observing that the head survives, which it shouldn't), anti- oxidants, and something to prevent the formation of ice crystals. Remarkably, an analysis of Bud came up pretty pure. Actually, AB does list the ingredients on the Budweiser label if you look closely; malt, hops, rice, etc... Most people are surprised to learn that they use rice as one of the grains, it's an easy way to win a bar bet. I understand that the "beechwood aging" is actually done by inserting beechwood slats in the conditioning tanks and actually has something to do with fining or carbonation, i.e. not necessarily for the flavor. Even homebrews might look kinda queasy if ingredients were labelled, especially if people use finings: "Ingredients: water, malt, hops, yeast, ground sturgeon airbladder, seaweed, polyvinylpolypyrrolidine pellets, gypsum, chalk, gelatin, etc, etc". There are ways around this. For years many companies have listed ingredients such as butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) as "artificial flavors". Even though it has preservative properties, since it has a distinctive taste they claim that they add it as a flavoring, even though no one in their right mind would really use it as such. Big breweries have also resisted labelling alcohol content since then they'd have to reveal that their lite beers only have 2% to 3% alcohol, so people have to drink twice as much anyway to get a buzz on. There's a way around this, too. I have an empty can of "Great Dane" beer from Denmark at home. The label lists original and final gravities. Most people wouldn't know or even care how to convert these into approximate alcoholic contents, but those of us who want to know would have a means of doing so. - -- Mark freeman at inference.com - Standard Corporate Disclaimer - Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 90 10:19 PDT From: khearn at uts.amdahl.com (Keith Hearn) Subject: Label adhesive Todd Koumrian asked about adhesives for bottle labels. I've found that a glue stick works quite well. it holds on fairly well, but comes off easily when soaked. I'm not sure how well it would stay on a cold bottle that is sweating a lot due to humidity (I tend to pour mine as soon as I pull it out of the beer fridge. Of course it won't hold if you but the bottles in ice water to cool them at a picnic. Keith Hearn khearn at amdahl.com Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 90 18:00:38 EDT From: Pete Soper <soper at maxzilla.encore.com> Subject: Grainger, soda kegs, plea for calm - ------ About Grainger. John Post and Greg Wageman both mentioned Grainger as a source of thermostats. Keep in mind that Grainger outlets in your area may not sell retail. I had to have a local company I do other business with buy the items I wanted from Grainger for me and then sell them to me after adding sales tax. I wonder if it would be legal to set up a mail order business with the express purpose of reselling Grainger's line? If I am wondering this, surely this business already exists somewhere. So who has the phone number? :-) - ------ semantic!bob at uunet.UU.NET Bob Gorman writes: >1) Do these 'ball-lock' kegs use the same adapters as standard beer kegs? No. These are the narrow cylindrical steel cans that you see at soda fountains with Pepsi or the like in them. "Ball lock" is the "Pepsi" type while "pin lock" is the "Coke" type of connector. Neither is like a beer keg fitting. >2) Wouldn't these be hard to clean? No. They come apart completely and can be made squeaky-clean easily, unlike beer kegs. - ------ hplabs!hp-lsd.cos.hp.com!ihlpl!korz (Algis R Korzonas +1 708 979 8583) writes: [about his interaction with Wine and Brew by You] >Strangely enough, he *asked* me to tell you to not order anything >from him. [He is probably unaware that the Homebrew Digest membership I feel we should just comply with his request and stop bothering him. If Mr. Mossberg will stop giving him copies of the Digest this shop owner can be over some of his upset quickly and attempt to forget about us. Then when all the folks having contact with the Digest stop doing business with him his life will be back to normal. But before we get into an uproar over this, consider just how unusual the Digest looks to somebody who has not been reading it for some time or has not realized the ground rules needed to make sense out of it. This person might not realize that *anybody* can write *anything* into the Digest. They might think that there is some sort of implied legitimacy attached to the things written in the Digest or that at least over the course of enough issues there would be correction of mistaken information. But we know better, don't we? Only some misinformation is corrected and loads go by with little comment. The fraction of the Digest that we perceive as "noise" compared to the good stuff we consider "signal" depends in part on our knowledge of brewing and related areas, doesn't it? There are also a lot of items that come along with incomplete context or whatever such that it is impossible to know what is right or wrong. So an unwary reader just starting to brew and acting on everything read in the Digest without sanity-checking with more reliable sources of information, well that person could really get fouled up, IMHO. And when things go wrong who is the closest person to cry to, whine at, or clobber? Shop owners. Another aspect that could really hack somebody off is the mixture of levels of discussion in the Digest. One guy is cutting open 15 gallon beer kegs and mounting F16 engines under them while the next person just needs to know a good source of extract kits and a third is blabbering about models of hop utilization. For a shop owner who deals mostly with mainstream homebrewers all the far out stuff can frequently translate into more work for not much extra profit. (e.g. "The Digest says I should use a yeast starter. Tell me how.") I'm not condoning anything said by this shop owner, just trying to understand why he is so upset. - ----------------------------------------------------------------------- Pete Soper (soper at encore.com) Homebrew Digest Wierdo +1 919 481 3730 Encore Computer Corp, 901 Kildaire Farm Rd, bldg D, Cary, NC 27511 USA Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 90 10:09:52 PDT From: hplabs!sun!nosun.West.Sun.COM!sharpwa!ghidra.dnet!croasdill (Biru, kudisai!) Subject: Brew supply stores in the Ocean City, NJ area... Hi all, Just got asked by a friend if there are any Homebrew supply stores in the Ocean City/Philadelphia area. Thanks for any help you can send. Greg Croasdill UUCP: ...(tektronix | sun | percival)!nosun!sharpwa!gcc The Earth is like a grain of sand, only heavier. (readings from _THE PROFIT_) Return to table of contents
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 90 19:10:29 PDT From: Greg Roody - 276-8682 30-Aug-1990 2154 <roody at whzguy.enet.dec.com> Subject: Thanks for the brewpot suggestions.... Thanks again to all of you who sent me mail suggesting an enamel coated pot. I ended up finding a 30 Q size canning pot for $22 u.s. (for those of you in ne, I found it at a store in Porter Square, Cambridge, MA - the "China Fair"). Now all I need is a few spare hours and a little cool weather and a Pale Ale will be born........ Also, RE: Wine and Beer by you (?), I can't believe that someone in *business*, presumably to *make* money, would turn away customers because they are associated with this newsgroup/net. That's kind of like turning away customers who use MCI or Sprint. While the opinions I express are only my own, I access this net through my company - a company which btw has about 70-80 thousand u.s. employees. And how big is H.P (or Encore, or Apple, or IBM, or...)? All of these companies link to this net. If *I* were in such a business, I'd probably offer a discount to this net; maybe even allow e-net ordering (is this allowed.... hmmm, maybe in my next life.....). Sounds like he made a mistake, a big mistake. /greg Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 90 19:01:36 PDT From: hplabs!polstra!norm (Norm Hardy) Subject: WA Labelling Law An interesting comment about this proposed(?) law: Charlie Finkel of Merchant duVin has cried about the expenses of labelling the beers with the alcohol level. I think his cries are nonsense for two reasons: (1) Merchant duVin already has THEIR OWN labels on many of the beers, so what is the problem with sending the next production of labels to have the alcohol level? (2) Germany, like other countries I'm sure, now requires that all bottled and canned beers have the alcohol content (by volume) listed. In addition, the German beers have the "expiration" date printed, and SOME even have the Specific Gravity or Balling degrees! Changing the subject: I had 3 glorious weeks travelling through Germany this July and I have stories to tell. This was my 3rd trip to the old country ('84 and '87). After brewing for 5 years at home, it was very interesting to taste beers that were the product of centuries of tradition. I tasted beers in the major cities of Hamburg, Bonn, Nuernberg, Munich, nad ... and ... Duesseldorf. Is anyone interested in hearing what I might have to say? Norm Hardy Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 1990 14:57:48 -0400 From: hplabs!ames!gatech!bnr-vpa!bnr-rsc!crick (Bill Crick) Subject: heat source? Some people have been looking fo ra heat source to do boils. Two completely unproven ideas come to mind? Coleman camping type stove? or Take the grills, and lava rock out of your Propane BBQ. I don't know what the BTU ratings of these are, but the BBQ's list the on the lables, or at least in the catalogs. I think they are in the 35000 to 65000 BTU/hr range. The camp stove, I don't know, but they work better for a WOK that an electric stove. ?????? Bill Crick Return to table of contents
Date: 30 Aug 90 02:01:28 MDT (Thu) From: hplabs!ames!gatech!raven.eklektix.com!ico.isc.com!rcd (Dick Dunn) Subject: my wish for labels Speaking of possible changes in labels, one that I occasionally imagine (tho it'll never happen) is this: Put "% of calories as alcohol." What this tells you is whether there's anything of food value in the beer other than just the simple alcohol. It doesn't quite tell you whether the beer has body, but it gives a good clue. Something it might point out to any- one curious enough to check it is this: The "light" beers are made lighter by *increasing* this measure--more of their calories come from alcohol. (I checked this with a handful of beers I could get info about a few years ago; the "light" versions of beers reduce the calories more than they reduce the alcohol.) When you hear the "tastes great...less filling" crap, you (folks on this list) already know it doesn't taste much...but did you know that "less filling" really means "more intoxicating"? That is, it means you can get more alcohol before you start to fill up. Educating the masses is a lost cause, but would folks like "light" beer as much if they saw it as a product that's intended to make them consume more of something that's cheaper to make, and get more drunk as a result? When folks find out how much alcohol there is in a heavy homebrew, the first thing they think is, "wow...you must make that to get really drunk" when in fact it's more satisfying and less intoxicating than chugging through a six of lawnmower beer trying to find some taste. I guess I'm not really thinking about the labeling so much as education. --- Dick Dunn rcd at raven.eklektix.com -or- raven!rcd (303)494-0965 Return to table of contents
End of HOMEBREW Digest #486, 08/31/90 ************************************* -------
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