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10 gallons of yum

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by daveswoodhauler, Dec 2, 2010.

  1. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    Wasn't sure if this would be better of here or in the picture forum, but I figured there would be some home brewers out there.
    Last week made 2 batches of brew, one on the left is a Country Ale that should work out to 7.5 ABV, and his buddy on the right is a nice porter that should be about 5% ABV.
    Bottling should commence in a week, and then should be ready for Xmas.

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  2. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    niiice... I love the smell of fermenting homebrew. Feels like money in the bank when they start rockin

    Get glass carboys if you can- they don't scratch (which hold infections) and clean well. I would pitch cooled wort directly onto the yeast cake from my last ferment in glass- it would be blowing off in less than an hour sometimes. Very satisfying!

    I sold about all of my brewing equipment and my kegging stuff- and now I have the itch to brew (not like I have the time).
  3. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    Thanks AP.
    I'll move the brew into glass carboys this weekend for a quick secondary filter before bottling.
    I only have made about 8 batches or so, so I'm getting ready to experiment a bit more.
    We kept the grains too, so I have 4 loaves of spent grain bread ready to go in the oven...probably should have told the mrs's to use another bread pan lol :)

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  4. homebrewz

    homebrewz Minister of Fire

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    The brew and the bread look good. There a lot of homebrewers on here. One post on brewing and we all start coming out of the woodwork.

    Just made a 10 gallon all-grain batch of stout with a buddy. Time to start brewing some lagers with the colder temps.
  5. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    Homebrez, When you make an all grain batch, is the wort cooked for a much longer time, and no malts added?
    My buddy and I usually make a few batches together, pretty much the only man time I have :)
    I would like to make an Imperial Stout, and be curious on the all grain method? I think I might pick up a book on brewing, as I'd like to get a bit more creative.
    Funny, noticed that you are in NY...the package store in town here caried the Saranac HIgh Peaks IPA, thats a nice beer...about 3 and I am done for the night.
  6. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    deleted - double post
  7. homebrewz

    homebrewz Minister of Fire

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    When you brew all-grain, you're basically doing what they do at the malt extract factory.. taking grain or malted barley and cooking it to get a conversion from starch into fermentable (and unfermentable) sugars. The only difference is, you're not evaporating it to get most of the water out of it to make it into a syrup. You're using it uncondensed.
    So the loose grains that you are steeping in the kettle for an extract batch is just included in the mash along with the base malt.. that would be any specialty roasted grains.. the crystal malts, black malts, etc.

    The boil doesn't necessarily need to happen much longer than say 60 to 75 minutes or so. Some beers will benefit from a much longer boil.. 2 hours or so to get a caramelizing effect on the sugars. Bocks and darker lagers, probably. I typed this at 3AM, so I hope it makes sense.

    I'm familiar with the Saranac Double IPA, not sure about the High Peaks IPA.
  8. JV_Thimble

    JV_Thimble Feeling the Heat

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    I'm a homebrewer as well, and appreciate your post on this topic. I typically brew ten gallon, all-grain batches outdoors, transfer to glass, rack to secondary, and use Cornelius kegs for dispensing. Brewed with a good friend this past weekend, and she's moved away from racking to secondary - longer time in primary, then to kegs. Potential timesaver, decrease to chances of infection, no issues in her beer with quality, etc.
  9. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    I think if I made 10 gallon batches and had kegs on hand I would be drinking quite a bit :)
    Going to start growing some hops this year....I know there are some places online where you can get them in early spring....any thoughts on perhaps a good one to try here in the North East?
  10. homebrewz

    homebrewz Minister of Fire

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    You may start drinking more beer when you make 10 gallon batches, but so will your friends. You might make some new ones too.

    I would look at which varieties you think you would use the most and keep in mind that you won't really know the alpha acid rating, so you won't precisely know how much bitterness they will contribute.

    I'm a terrible gardener, but I've had good luck with Cascades. I gave some to friends about 10 years ago to use as a fence cover and they have really taken off. One year I picked well over a pound, dried. They come as rhizomes which is the below ground portion of the stem. You can get them at just about any homebrew shop.
  11. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    Yeah, I was looking at the Cascades as well....we have a pretty good garden and I have a somewhat green thumb as well, so I think I will check with my homebrew store.
    Thanks for the tips.
  12. homebrewz

    homebrewz Minister of Fire

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    Your welcome! Its the spirit of the hobby. If you have any more questions feel free to pm me.

    good luck!
  13. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    The only issue I had with growing hops is that the Japanese beetles absolutely loved it more than any other plant in the yard.
  14. petersenj20

    petersenj20 New Member

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    I want to start brewing beer . I made wine this year for the first time and it came out well. Muscadine and Crabapple. Kind of afraid of how that one will come out.
  15. JV_Thimble

    JV_Thimble Feeling the Heat

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    Mmmm - hops. Good idea to find a place to plant some in the spring...
  16. guy01

    guy01 Member

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    There is a free online book on all grain brewing .How to brew by John Palmer. He makes it quite easy to understand and follow
    Guy
  17. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    Well, just racked the ale into the carboy, and just finished cleanin up.
    So, now my bucket is empty, and my wife has gone out shopping for the night, so its just me and the boys tonight.
    Have a kit of Weizenbier and some assorted extras, so I am going to make another batch tonight with some extra malt...I tend to like my beer around 7.5% or so.
    And the best thing is, I've got another kit in the basement. :) I'm guessing next weekend I'll brew another batch and have 20 gallons in the basement
  18. gpcollen1

    gpcollen1 Minister of Fire

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    Many people no longer use glass just because of the tendency for it to break - with some assistance of course. Better bottles are the fermenting vessel of choice.
  19. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    I built my mash tun out of a 10 gal. cooler, and a cooling coil that I wound myself from copper. Boiled in a 15 gal keg with the top cut out on a turkey fryer stand outside. Worked awesome.
  20. homebrewz

    homebrewz Minister of Fire

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    I just checked their website as I haven't heard of them before. My concerns with using them would be:

    1. The outside will eventually get scuffed up in places which might make it hard to tell if the inside is clean or not. All it takes is a spec of something here or there to contaminate a batch.
    2. I know the FAQ on the website says they don't need brushing, but I think any fermentation vessel needs the occasional once-over with a brush which would lead to the eventual scuffing of the inside which would render it useless as a fermenter.
    3. I'd be worried about the PET material eventually breaking down (after years of use, of course). I knew homebrewers that would ferment in 5 gallon water cooler containers and after 3 or 4 batches get a new one.

    All of my glass carboys have been scrounged for free, but using glass definitely has its problems. I've broken at least two that I can remember. One with a carboy brush, the other was when I was showing a friend how to brew by making an extract batch and I forgot to put the cold water into the carboy first! Just before the loud cracking noise, the first word I said was "Oh....". Anyway, if I were to switch to something else, I would probably use stainless steel. An old quarter or half barrel could easily be converted for this use, and you could clean it with boiling water.
  21. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    I use glass carboys. A 6.5 for primary and a 5 for secondary. They are relatively cheap and last forever unless you bust them. I use oxiclean to clean out any junk that remains in the carboys instead of brushing and have had great results with it. A huge part of the fun for me is watching the beer ferment so a bucket is out of the question.

    Right now I have a Dead Guy Ale clone from Rogue brewery in the secondary. Measured an OG of 1.064 so I am hoping for a 6% beer.

    I have moved from the extract brewing to the partial mash method using bags. It involves the same steps as an all-grain but in managable volumes so I don't need an immersion cooler or special mash tun. I mash the 4 lbs of grain in the oven in an 8 quart pot.

    Oh and like adios, I boil outside in a turkey fryer.

    My problem is that I can't get commercial levels of carbonation in the bottles. The beer is good, cold, and carbonated but not AS carbonated as commercial beer. I'm upping the bottling sugar this time to the max safe level and if it doesn't work then I may have to move to corny kegs for the sake of super carbing.
  22. homebrewz

    homebrewz Minister of Fire

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    If its cool or cold where you are storing the beer after bottling that could be the problem. About a week after bottling, the beer will be mostly carbonated, or most of the priming sugar will have been consumed by the yeast. It takes another week or two of room temperature conditions for all of the priming sugar to be consumed. Another possibility is that bottles with a small amount of soap or sanitizing residue not completely rinsed out could inhibit the yeast from fully carbonating the beer. Just a thought.
  23. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    If its cool or cold where you are storing the beer after bottling that could be the problem. About a week after bottling, the beer will be mostly carbonated, or most of the priming sugar will have been consumed by the yeast. It takes another week or two of room temperature conditions for all of the priming sugar to be consumed. Another possibility is that bottles with a small amount of soap or sanitizing residue not completely rinsed out could inhibit the yeast from fully carbonating the beer. Just a thought.[/quote]

    Like Homebrewz said, I have run into the same issue on carbonation, and found that the beer I make in the spring/summer does a bit better with carbonization than my fall and winter batches.......I'm guessing its due to the colder temps.
    I am going to try to keep mine upstairs where its warmer and see if that makes a difference.
    Also, speaking of using the max amount of priming sugar....ever had abottle explode on you? I have, not fun :( Think it was due to the fact that I was towards the bottom of the batch when bottling, and perhaps more sugar was in the last few bottles)
  24. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    I store the beer inside for the whole fermenting and bottling process. Open the first beer after three weeks.

    In addition to going to max sugar, I'll try moving the bottles into the stove room for some extra heat. It can't hurt.

    No bottle bombs yet but that is the risk of oversugaring. I use DME for bottling sugar, and am going to 1-3/4 cup for the 5 gallon batch.

    I use iodophor for sanitizing which is a no-rinse sanitizer. I try and do a good job of getting it all out and the yeast does grow in every bottle so I don't think I'm killing the yeast.

    Warm room, I'll try that. Might also try using a plastic tote instead of cardboard boxes to hold the bottles.
  25. fbelec

    fbelec Minister of Fire

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    i tried extra sugar just for the same reason and lost 10 bottles to explosions. all you hear is a little muffled deep sounding pop. no glass everywhere but then you find the puddle :red:

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