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Old 09-28-2005, 03:05 PM   #1
HomerT
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Default Stepped up to the real thing...

Well, after about a two year battle with "the Beer Machine", I have stepped up to the real thing. My wife bought me a beer machine for x-mas two years ago. It produced something beer-like that was even drinkable for one of the 6 batches. It did not make "beer", but it did set the hook for wanting more. Unfortunately, when I mentioned making real beer, my wife had visions of exploding bottles in the basement.

Flash forward to last week when she was watching Food Network. Alton Brown (Good Eats) was making beer. She called me in to watch and in the next half hour she totally changed her outlook. That looks fairly easy and sounds like a fun hobby.

The next day, I found a nice brewing supply place about an hour away. We headed out to "Cap 'N' Cork" for a look-see. The owner showed us around, explained everything and set me up with a great starter kit : 6-gallon plastic primary, 5-galon glass carboy secondary, airlock, autosiphon, bottle filler, bottle washer, bottle and carboy brushes, cleaner, idophor, carboy strap carrier, bottling bucket with spigot, thermometer, hydrometer, tubing, capper, two cases of 12oz longnecks, case of blue 160z flip tops, the Complete Joy of Home Brewing (3rd ed.), a Brewers Best Kit, strainer bag for the hops, and two logo pint glasses to enjoy the first batch.

Well, the first batch I decided on was the Brewers Best Irish Red Ale. It was a partial grain, malt extract kit. The brew went well, and the primary is sitting in the basement bubbling away for the second straight day. I plan on doing the secondary fermentation as well, then bottling. Can't wait to "Relax, not worry and have a homebrew!"

-Todd

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Old 09-28-2005, 03:40 PM   #2
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Best of luck, Todd!

With the store being an hour away, I would suggest picking up a few more 5 gallon carboys and a six-pack of brewing kits next time. Once your first 'real' batch is ready, you'll want to start brewing like a madman and that drive will soon be a real bummer.

Also, pick up extra supplies for those 'just in case' things; extra extract, some dry yeast packets, another 5 foot of hose, etc.

I never had to worry about extra supplies before moving to North Carolina, because I could just go down to the local shop any day I wanted to grab things, but the local shop here in Raleigh is only open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. If I need something on a monday, I have to wait thruogh the week to get it.

-walker

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Old 09-28-2005, 07:15 PM   #3
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Yeah, I plan on stocking up. I need to get the first batch or two behind me though. My wife was interested, but also keeping a keep eye on the cash register too.

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Old 09-28-2005, 07:23 PM   #4
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Welcome to the boards and congrats on graduating to a "real" setup. May the brew be with you

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Old 09-29-2005, 03:47 AM   #5
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You are indeed a lucky man. I too have an understanding spouse. And hey Todd, aren't those blue bottles COOL!!! Got some myself last week and I'm trying to figure out what special beer to put in them!
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Old 09-29-2005, 05:04 AM   #6
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question: are the blue as bottles effective at blocking light as the brown ones? or do they fit in the same category as the green and clear bottles?

-walker

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Old 09-29-2005, 11:57 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Walker
question: are the blue as bottles effective at blocking light as the brown ones? or do they fit in the same category as the green and clear bottles?

-walker
The onwer of the store said they fall between brown and green. Better than the green/clear, but not as effective as the brown. However, my wife lved the Blue....and at that point in time I was not going to argue.

-Todd
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Old 09-30-2005, 06:54 AM   #8
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That's a great beginner setup you've got there.. no rinse sanitizer even! I'm an AG brewer and you have some tools that I don't even have (like a bottle washer, strainer bag, carboy straps, and fliptops). No rinse sanitizer is a must and so is an autosiphon.. you've got everything you need for extract w/grains batches which is all you really need for very very good beer.

Congrats man!

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