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Old 09-07-2012, 02:00 PM   #1
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Default forms of extract

When I was at the lhbs the other night I happened to glance at the malt extracts they have (not kits). They sold cans of 3.3 lbs for about $18ish which I'm guessing is pretty average. But then they also had 3 lb bags of malt, which looked like a powder form of extract for pretty much the same price.

Anyone have any experience with using that over the cans? I'm thinking if I do extract for a bit, I could get a couple different bags, as it would be easier to measure out and store compared to cans of extract. Also, is around 3 lbs of extract decent for a batch size?

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Old 09-07-2012, 03:54 PM   #2
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I've pasted a post by llazy llama, hope it helps. Remember since dry contains no liquid you use 20% less. Think about that when looking at prices.

Extract: Dry (DME) Vs. Liquid (LME) Vs. Canned

Dry Pros:

Stays fresh longer than liquid Easily storable, and easily transferred into separate containers. This comes in handy when using dry extract for starters, or for doing partial late extract additions Available for bulk purchase from most any LHBS and most online stores Easy to clean up any spills

Cons:

Tends to clump when added to wort. This is easily remedied by adding DME slowly and stirring constantly Available in fewer varieties than LME More expensive than LME

Liquid Pros:

Available in many different varieties Smells amazing. So amazing, in fact, that sometimes I'll dab a bit on my upper lip, and just be in a heavenly mood all day Less expensive per pound than DME or canned extract

Cons:

You will at some point, regardless of how careful you are, spill this stuff. It's not too difficult to clean it off a stove top (if you're quick about it) but it will make your floor feel like velcro if left to dry. Clean it ASAP To get every last drop out of your container, you'll need to either dip the container into the boiling wort and pour the run off out, or ladle in boiling wort and pour again. It's not difficult, just be careful not to burn yourself as I do every single time Pours slowly. Remedy this by letting the container soak in hot water for a while to thin it out

Canned Extract Pros:

Can be purchased pre-hopped Can be stored over long periods of time without much degradation of quality Container shape is conducive to the dip and pour method to get out every last little bit

Cons:

Tend to be much lower quality. The difference between canned LME and LME fresh from an LHBS or online is very noticeable Can be purchased pre-hopped. Your guess is as good as mine as to what variety of hops they used to make it, or in what quantity Requires a can opener to open. Not really a big deal, in all honesty Pours slowly. Remedy this by letting the container soak in hot water for a while to thin it out Just like LME, you want to clean up any spills as soon as possible Available in very few varities

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Old 09-07-2012, 03:56 PM   #3
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I've always preferred dry malt extract over liquid.

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Old 09-07-2012, 05:00 PM   #4
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If I had to give up either LME or DME, I would have to give up LME. I use DME for starters and to adjust OG in my extract brews. If I wanted to brew a smaller beer I would have to use DME. I prefer to use LME because of cost and I find LME easier to use as long as you don't have to measure out an odd quantity. Every extract beer I make starts with 6lb of LME as the base. Then I add DME if necessary. I have never split LME but have had DME get all over stuff while measuring it.

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Old 09-07-2012, 06:55 PM   #5
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You can make a low-alcohol session beer with one can. Typically, you'll need two cans for a 5 gallon batch.

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Old 09-07-2012, 07:25 PM   #6
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I pay up to $5 less for 3lbs of plain DME as LME hopped or unhopped. DME doesn't caramelize in the boil lke LME does. The cans of LME are generally 1.5-1.75 kilograms,about 3.2lbs.
You basically need a minimum of 6lbs of extract malts to make a decent beer. And at least 2oz of hops for the boil,or a bit more if using un-hopped extract for bittering.
And DME can be had pre-hopped as well,I've seen it at JW Dover.
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Old 09-07-2012, 07:53 PM   #7
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Here's a link to a writeup by Ken Schwartz about converting recipes. I know that's not exactly what you are up to, but it really helped me understand the relationships between dry, liquid and grain. He also talks about easy ways figure out how much of either you can combine from different packages to make up the amounts you need.

http://home.roadrunner.com/~brewbeer/extract/pres.pdf

I have always used liquid, mainly because I am lucky enough to have my LHBS carry LME in big drums, they'll pour off whatever you need for your recipe.

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Old 09-08-2012, 03:33 PM   #8
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I have never bought canned LME and don't think I will any time soon.

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Old 09-09-2012, 03:22 PM   #9
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My own humble opinon is DME works better for me. If you calculate the real difference in price of LME v. DME with DME use being 80% of LME it comes out to $.21/lb difference between them. With LME being cheaper. But because of the versatility and storage advantages of DME, I go for the DME. I do a lot of small 2 gal batches when I'm experimenting with different beers. The ability to use partial batches out weighs the minor extra cost. Hope this helps.

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Old 09-09-2012, 05:08 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by detlion1643 View Post
When I was at the lhbs the other night I happened to glance at the malt extracts they have (not kits). They sold cans of 3.3 lbs for about $18ish which I'm guessing is pretty average. But then they also had 3 lb bags of malt, which looked like a powder form of extract for pretty much the same price.

Anyone have any experience with using that over the cans? I'm thinking if I do extract for a bit, I could get a couple different bags, as it would be easier to measure out and store compared to cans of extract. Also, is around 3 lbs of extract decent for a batch size?
$18 for 3.3 lbs of LME!!!!! holy CRAP!!! my store sell it for $2.99 a lb making it about $10 for 3.3 lbs!!!! that's highway robbery!!
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