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salexander 12-20-2008 09:27 PM

Very New Beginner
I was wondering if there is any general advice before I actually start buying supplies and start brewing if there is any certain words of wisdom or idea's that might have helped anyone when they started out.
I purchased a book on brewing. I have somewhat of a grasp on the idea of brewing becauseI make grain alcohol daily for a career. The book is somewhat like greek I pick things up here and there. I do better if I just dive in and start using my hands. I just want to be "WELL" prepared before I jump in. THanks

McKBrew 12-20-2008 09:29 PM

If you make grain alcohol for a career, I'm betting you'll have no issues with brewing. Read through the stickies in the beginning brewing section, and go through the book you have and make that first batch. Good Luck.

salexander 12-20-2008 10:25 PM

I guess I should say I have tiny grasp on it. The plant I work at produces about 350'000 gallons (Ethanol) per day. 90% of everything is automated. It's all controlled from two computers in a control room. Most of the employees grab samples and the lab runs them. I just understand it needs to be cooked, that you pitch yeast and that you have to separate mash from the alcohol retention times, temps, etc.... I figured there would be a big difference in that and small home brewing.

JoeMama 12-20-2008 11:33 PM

Its really not that difficult. In fact I think the hardest part is waiting patiently, and not being stressed about your beer and how its going to turn out.
Sometimes **** happens when brewing. We have boilovers, fermentations that dont seem to 'take off', very violent fermentations that make you scramble to make a blowoff tube cause the airlock is full.
I would suggest a kit to get your feet wet. Thats what I did, and I just bottled it (the sample tasted good!) From there expand your beer equip to help make it easier and easier.

Also, a batch of Apfelwein is rather simple to do. Let that sit next to your first brew. :)

Good luck and welcome to the addiction!

ajf 12-21-2008 12:36 AM

If you're like me, it is very difficult to read and understand books on home brewing (and many other things) without actually doing it. So my first piece of advice would be to stop just reading, and start actually doing. The books become much more understandable when you do this.
The next thing I would suggest is to start with a kit for your first brew, but to totally disregard the kit directions if they say to follow a rigid timetable. Unfortunately, yeasts cannot read and have no idea of the timetable they are supposed to follow, and they usually take their own sweet time to do their job. Be patient, and use your hydrometer to tell you when to rack or bottle. Do a search on "Is it ready" or "Is it too early", and you will see what I mean.

Good luck.


Deacon240 12-21-2008 12:44 AM

You came to a great place for resources for questions and such. Now get out there and get a beginners equipment kit, 30qt+ pot (SS or aluminum is fine, if its aluminum boil water in it for a hour or so and just use paper towels and hot water to clean it), big SS spoon, and a few cases of good beer that has no twist off caps. Lastly, get a ingredient kit for either a beer type you like and brew it up!

Did I miss anything?

Oh and after you make the first kit get another kit for a beer you've never had before (for expanding your knowledge and helping in developing recipes)

homebrewer_99 12-21-2008 12:55 AM

Three points:

1. You are already reading about the subject...one down.;)

2. Read John Palmer's "How to Brew" book. Version 1 is free to read on-line.

3. Stay away from boxed kits with liquid malt extract (LME). These brews will be darker than you anticipate. Go straight to Dry Malt Extract (DME) and read up on the Late Addition brewing technique.

Welcome moonshiner...:D...I know, you're part of the corn/ethanol rip off...:mad:

RonRock 12-21-2008 01:18 AM

Here is a link,

How to Brew - By John Palmer - Preparation

Good pointer homebrewer 99

Col224 12-21-2008 02:09 AM

Read the process form John Palmer, buy some equipment and a kit(I would suggest midwestsupplies.com, I really liked their equipment and their service was great), I started with a 20 minute boil kit because that way if I screwed up, I didn't feel as bad. Turns out I made great beer.

The biggest thing is ask questions as you think of them on here, people on here are extremely helpful and will answer you.

Hefeweizengeliebter 12-21-2008 02:16 AM

well I just started by getting the basics from the local brew store, I told him what kinda beer I wanted to make and he gave me some extracts and some yeast.... gave me a few basic instructions and I brewed my the seat of my pants on the first run

now I got my first one down, I have been reading on this forum more on how to refine the process, additions, techniques, and most of all variety

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