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Old 04-04-2010, 03:07 PM   #1
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Default Getting Started

I recently purcashed a beginers basic brewing kit, a Rogue Hazelnut Brown Nectar, bottles and we are planning on starting our first brew next sat when everyone has some free time to get this started. My questions are...

-I plan on using my turkey fryer to boil. Will I be able to use my 30qt pot, can I clean it well enough or will I need to buy a new, brew only pot?

-What are the biggest mistakes new brewers make to ruin a brew? I've read all the directions and understand cleaning the equipment.

-With this kit, how long would you leave it in the primary ferminter? Every direction I read says something different.

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Old 04-04-2010, 03:14 PM   #2
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In the FAQ's above, there is a discussion about aluminum type Turkey fryer boilers vs Stainless steel, there is a difference and some treatment required, I don't remember off-hand what it was, but you should try to find it before you brew.

As far as primary time, the short answer is: there's no hard and fast rule. The soonest you want to take it out is 7 days, but that's to make room for another brew. It also depends if you are going to use a "secondary" fermentation or go straight to a bottle. If you are going straight into bottles, you should wait longer to make sure fermentation is complete.

Common mistake: Boilovers and burning the malt on the bottom of the pot, and not aerating the wort well enough, and not cooling it fast enough. If it cools slowly, like overnight, lots of DMS is created. You should do a search for DMS and spend an hour or two reading about it. Wikipedia has some good info on DMS too. Some cooling methods: Ice cubes for your top-off water, plastic freezer thingy's, ice bath in your sink, all of the above.

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Old 04-04-2010, 03:14 PM   #3
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1. Your pot will be fine. Because you'll be boiling in the pot for an hour it will kill everything in there.

2. You got it. Sanitation is key. It's hard when you first start out, but my advice is to be patient and don't rush your brews.

3. Like you said, everyone has different views on this. I usually leave mine in for two weeks. However, you must ensure that fermentation has stopped by taking gravity readings that stay the same over a three day period.

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Old 04-04-2010, 04:03 PM   #4
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Aluminum:

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/vs-p...8/#post1206861

That link takes you to post #8 which deals with the topic.

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Old 04-04-2010, 05:13 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldognewtrick
What are the biggest mistakes new brewers make to ruin a brew?
When I was just starting to brew I consistently under estimated the importance of yeast and the need to pitch the correct amount at the correct temperature. It can dramatically effect the taste of your final product. If your using dry yeast, rehydrate it. If your using liquid, make an appropriate starter but, just don't poor the stuff in there

Also, have a turkey baster handy or a beer thief. It will make collecting samples for testing and tasting much easier. This simple tool has increased my knowledge of fermentation by leaps and bounds.

+1 on sanitation and DMS

Good Luck!
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Old 04-04-2010, 05:35 PM   #6
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First, an aluminum turkey fryer will work fine, but by all means make sure you get any oil of it. Wash it well with dish soap and hot water, then rinse it out very well. Check to make sure the surfaces are no longer oily and that there is no soap left.

Then, if the pot does not have an oxidized layer from your prior use, fill it up and boil water for 30-60 minutes. After that, do not use any cleaner that will take it off, and never scrub it shiny.

Once you get to the fementer, patience is truly a virtue. The easiest thing to do is to just leave it in the primary fermenter for 3 weeks, then take a specific gravity reading, and if it is down to finished gravity bottle when you are ready. There is a boogeyman called autolysis that you can read about in the extensive primary vs. secondary debate, but many of us primary for 3-4 weeks or even longer.

Another boogeyman already cited is DMS, feared by many and given as rationale for chilling the hot wort as fast as you can. Chilling it quickly reduces the window between when the wort is cool enough to be susceptible to infection and when your yeast have had time to establish themselves as the dominant species in your wort. Practicing strong sanitary techniques during that period is critical. Regarding DMS, however, many of us (and many more of our Aussie brethren) practice the "No-Chil Methodl" without DMS problems, but you can read about that another day. Just get it down to pitching temperatures in a very sanitary fashion, don't worry so much about cooling it quickly that you make a mistake.

And by all means, RDWHAHB.

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Old 04-04-2010, 05:42 PM   #7
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DMS may be just a boogeyman, or maybe not. Some people have a lower taste threshold for detecting it's flavor. I've also read that different types of beers have a different amount of vulnerability for it's creation. If DMS is just hogwash, why do brewers boil their wort? A 155 deg mash is enough to kill any micro-organisms and hops can be done at a steep as well, in addition to dry-hopping later. I'm far from an expert, but I have noticed the creamed corn effect in actual practice.

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Old 04-04-2010, 06:45 PM   #8
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My understanding is that the boil does boil off DMS precursors, and so for No-Chill many recommend a 90 minute boil. I don't want to engage in a debate, because this one has been done to death. My point is that there are many, many No-Chill successes, so there is empirical evidence that DMS issues are likely over-exaggerated.

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Old 04-04-2010, 07:03 PM   #9
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I don't want to debate it either, I'm no expert. But for me, there really is no debate. It's kind of a long story. I tried a full boil with a hefe (never done a full boil) and my crappy stove couldn't get the pot hot enough. So I went ahead and put it in the primary after an hour and a half of trying to make it boil. I shared my situation on a culinary forum, and one of the members there who used to be a professional brewer and still has some of his recipes in commercial production told me I absolutely had to boil it. I had never heard of DMS. I didn't know DMS from DJ Jazzy Jeff. So, I split the batch into two separate pots to achieve rolling boils on both of them, and then my house turned into a creamed corn factory. My dog starting eating the air. My carbon monoxide detector started peeing on the wall. The ghost of Orville Reddenbocker appeared in a steam cloud and told me to stay away from the light.

That's when I started doing research online about DMS. I, for one, am a believer. To restate what I said earlier, what I read on wikipedia and elsewhere does say some people have a lower threshold for detecting it's taste, perhaps I'm just really sensitive to it. So I believe that you, or Aussies, may not detect it's presence so much. But I certainly did.

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Old 04-04-2010, 09:33 PM   #10
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Sorry you had a bad experience with the boil. However, no-boil is not no-chill. What you are describing has nothing to do with, after a proper boil, letting the wort come naturally to fermenting temperature while sealed in a proper vessel.

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