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Old 01-09-2013, 12:19 AM   #11
beerspitnight
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Originally Posted by BorealBrewer View Post
More out of curiosity - what kind of liquid gas are you burning?

As I said, mostly curious, but I've used enough different camp stoves in the cold to possibly have a trick or two to share, if I know what fuel you're burning.
I think, think it is NG - propane has only recently started to be available over here. After I filled the tank this weekend, the woman told me in the future she would use propane rather than liquid gas. Fine by me...and yes, I hope the pipes don't freeze!

Yes, blankets, schnapps and a fire should do us well!
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Old 01-09-2013, 01:52 AM   #12
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are you outside or in the garage? I've brewed down to 10 degrees (here in Minneapolis) in the garage with the big door cracked a few inches. No issues with the propane tank.

I leave the chiller in the basement and just carry the bucket down and chill down there.

wool socks and a good hat and you should be good to go.

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Old 01-09-2013, 01:54 AM   #13
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are you outside or in the garage? I've brewed down to 10 degrees (here in Minneapolis) in the garage with the big door cracked a few inches. No issues with the propane tank.

I leave the chiller in the basement and just carry the bucket down and chill down there.

wool socks and a good hat and you should be good to go.
No garage over here - we'll be brewing in my backyard...
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Old 01-09-2013, 12:19 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Glynn

^^^^ plus add some really hot water to your mash tun to pre heat it. then pour it out just before u mash
I read a trick on this forum somewhere, overshoot the temp of your strike water by about 5-8 degrees f, the process of preheating the mash tun will cool it to proper strike temp, add grain, viola, dough in at proper temp! It might take one or two tries to figure out EXACTLY how much heat loss preheating the mash tun, and it will change based on ambient temp, strike volume, etc, but if mashing indoors it will be fairly consistent.
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Old 01-13-2013, 04:08 PM   #15
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So...I'm curious...how did brew day/night go? If it's Sunday morning in Winnipeg, Saturday night should have happened in Beijing...hmmm....a little over a day ago?

I hope everything ran smoothly, and nothing froze!

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Old 01-14-2013, 12:08 AM   #16
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It was so cold! We had issues with the gas tank losing pressure - even though we wrapped it. I think we will use a warm water bath for it next time.
We also had issues with the hoses - I had to take the cleanup hose inside to the tub to warm it up. Ice also clogged the wort chiller hose, which caused a pressure buildup, which blew the hose off the end of the chiller pipe. Next time I will leave the hoses inside until needed.
It wasn't too bad though. The fire kept us warm - the mash temp stayed where it needed to be, but we were happy when it was done.
I put down a lot of road salt to keep the spilled water from freezing over, which made a mess out of the deck, but that was easily cleaned up.
I'll think back to Saturday night with fond memories come August when it is miserably hot and muggy out!

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Old 01-14-2013, 12:43 AM   #17
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I froze my dong off brewing about three or four weeks ago in the cold, and after mashing (moderately successfully), it occurred to me that a Decoction Mash would help maintain temps.

When I mashed in a cooler in 30 deg temps, even with a blanket over it, I lost temp FAST.

My wife, god love her, donated an electric blanket she didn't use, so I could wrap up the Mash Tun in an electric blanket, and now on even the coldest days in the brewhousegarage, my mash holds to within two to three degrees.

But if I didn't have it, and was planning on brewing in the cold, I'd definitely consider a triple decoction mash. it gives you three opportunties to add heat back into the mash. and if you apply a decoction mash schedule to your recipe, I'd just add an additional two quarts to the first decoction. see if you can get temp in the colder climate doing that, but my guess is after the first decoction, you'll get the hang of how much more you need to add.

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Old 01-14-2013, 01:24 AM   #18
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Quote:
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It was so cold! We had issues with the gas tank losing pressure - even though we wrapped it. I think we will use a warm water bath for it next time.
I brewed today in temps around -6c/20f. I tried a water bath for the tank with tap water which is about 20c/68f, and it seemed to work great for keeping pressure, but it ended up with a layer of ice about 6-7 mm/1/4" thick wherever the water contacted the tank, so I'm not sure if it actually helped or not. It also started freezing the surface of water in the tub. I haven't removed the ice from the tank yet, I figure with no pressure release it will warm back up a bit and break the ice off itself, but that could be wishful thinking.
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Old 01-14-2013, 03:18 AM   #19
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Thanks for the update! We're hitting -27C/-17F here tonight...

Glad to hear you stayed warm, and brew night was a success!!!

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Old 01-14-2013, 07:09 PM   #20
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I plan to brew next week in the garage in WI. I have similar concerns about the gas tank freezing and the wort chiller freezing. I am also concerned about creating an ice rink in my yard with the discharge water from the chiller. I was thinking about using frozen gallon jugs of water sanitized and then set into the wort to cool it. Anybody ever do this to eliminate the need for the wort chiller?

As for the tank, I like the electric blanket idea. I will also warm up the tank in the house overnight as well as preheating the cooler and upping the mash water slightly to make up for temps.

This climate is great for fermenting in the basement but not so great for brewing in the garage!

Pat

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