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05-09-2012 8:41 PM


  • Brewing,Playing Guitar
  • Engineering Student at Illinois Institute of Technology
  • James Hamilton
  • I've been brewing for about a year and a half. I got into it with my sister when we were home for the holidays and looking for something to keep us entertained. At first it seemed like a fun little project but the whole thing kind of snowballed and pretty soon we were brewing most weekends. After about ten extract beers we moved into all-grain. I converted a cooler into a mash tun and a plastic fermentation bucket into a hot liquor tank with an electric heating element. I also made a counter-flow chiller. The hot side equipment works pretty well, but for fermentation we just stick the beer in the basement. I'd really like to get an old freezer for fermentation temp. control. All in all though I've been really happy with the beer we've produced. My friends and family love it and the whole brewing experience has been a really positive thing for me.
  • American Brown Ale
  • American IPA (Dry hopped with lots of Amarillo)
  • Male
  • Single
  • Chicago
  • Il


  • Posted in thread: Thin Hefeweizen: Diagnose? on 05-01-2012 at 09:16 PM
    Not sure what the problem is from your description. The lower mash temp will create more
    fermentables, lessening the body, but I would think if that were the issue you would have an
    unusually low fg. ...

  • Posted in thread: Clarifying Question on 04-30-2012 at 10:36 PM
    when I've used irish moss I rehydrated it in warm water and added it at 15 min. Pretty sure
    those were the manufacturer's instructions.

  • Posted in thread: 37 Plato OG (1.164) on 04-29-2012 at 04:02 AM
    Wow that's the biggest beer I've ever heard of

  • Posted in thread: Trub and Off flavors on 04-28-2012 at 07:07 PM
    I have pretty much the same HLT as you do, 110 volt heating element. Never had any problems but
    I never accidentally boiled the water with it either. Maybe rather than going back to the old
    setup you ...

  • Posted in thread: When do you give up and dump it? on 04-25-2012 at 06:21 AM
    Had a batch that came out pure was a pale ale recipe. I think isoamyl acetate was
    the problem. It wasn't easy but I drank em all. Helped me appreciate fermentation temp control.

  • Posted in thread: Preparing for first AG batch...what should I know? on 04-19-2012 at 12:42 AM
    I'd suggest using the 10g cooler for the mash tun for a couple reasons. Extra room in your mash
    tun allows you to do a thinner mash which generally means higher efficiency. I read that in
    this article...

  • Posted in thread: Way dry on 04-18-2012 at 09:41 PM
    Also noticed you do a 15 min rest at 145, which is right in the middle of the temp. range for
    beta amylase. That'll definitely result in a higher wort fermentability, low f.g.

  • Posted in thread: Water Chiller for Plate Chiller? on 04-18-2012 at 07:46 PM
    Here’s a lil thermodynamic calculation. Specific Enthalpy Water @ 80 degrees=38.2
    Btu/lbToSpecific Enthalpy Water @ 40 degrees=8.1 btu/lbDensity of water= 8.33 lbs/galAvg
    cooling capacity of a m...

  • Posted in thread: Need a mini-mash with Vienna Malts? on 04-18-2012 at 07:11 PM
    Looks like a great recipe! I'm not sure what your setup is like, but aeration is really
    important for high gravity beers like this one. If you can hit it with a second dose of oxygen
    12 to 18 hours af...

  • Posted in thread: Way dry on 04-18-2012 at 07:01 PM
    Is the wheat your using malted or unmalted? If it's malted that protein rest you're doing might
    be making your beer too thin. I'm pretty sure it wouldn't affect final gravity, but a protein
    rest on fu...