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Old 04-28-2008, 02:24 AM   #11
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I wish I would have had one of those Hop bags on my last IPA with 8 oz. of whole hops, it was a PITA. Im a fan of pellets, but all I have is whole hops in stock.

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Old 04-28-2008, 02:55 AM   #12
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I like that big hop bag idea. I might have to make me one of those. I like that the hops can stir around, free float, in the wort.

I've used the hop sacks and have questioned the utilization at times. I've over stuffed them by knotting, cutting and restuffing. I believe I made four additions out of one bag before.

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Old 04-28-2008, 03:54 AM   #13
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I use whole hops all of the time. However, my favorite house brew is a triple IPA that has an OG of 1.110 and uses nearly two pounds of hops in the kettle. I use a false bottom and a Sure Screen over my pickup tube. It keeps the flow from the kettle free from clogging. Additionally, I put the whole hops in a food processor to reduce the absorption of wort by the hops.
Also, you can back flush the kettle with CO2 if things get all clogged up.
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Old 04-28-2008, 05:16 AM   #14
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I like the hop bag. I think I have 3 or 4 of them and I just put all my hop additions in them before I start brewing and lable them so I know at what time in the boil I need to add them. I just use ty-wraps to close them and use the tail of the ty-wrap to hang the bag from so I can grab it out any time I need.
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Old 04-28-2008, 11:39 AM   #16
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I use whole hops when brewing. Always have. They seem to be the norm in the UK, whereas it seems to be the norm to use pellets in the US. I prefer whole hops for the similar reason that paulthenurse mentioned - ingredients are less manufactured.

Anyway, you can easily make a hop filter (I have made 2 as I lost the first one). Take about 1/2 - 1 foot of copper pipe that will fit inside the inlet for your spigot or get some plastic food-grade tubing that will fit over the end of the copper pipe and into your spigot. Clamp one end of the copper pipe shut with a vice and then drill loads of ~2mm holes all throughout the pipe. Takes about 30 mins to do it if you have a power drill. Works like a charm for me.
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Old 04-28-2008, 02:02 PM   #17
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I have a cheap system so no spigot on my brew kettle. I just put a jumbo mesh bag to line the fermenter and pour the cooled wort into the bag. Whole hops/ pellet hops it doesn't matter.

I mostly use whole hops as I purchased most from Freshops. I also will be using my home grown hops, which are ofcourse whole.
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Old 04-28-2008, 03:33 PM   #18
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I prefer whole leaf hops - I use a strainer to aerate and strain and usually use a thin bed of leaf hops to catch break proteins and the odd other mess. I pour out of the brew pot so I don't do the siphon/whirlpool method and found that pellet hops are much messier and more difficult to work with. The spend hops add depth to the filter bed and create a way for me to end up with pretty clear beer going into the fermenter.

But, I will use what I can get and would use pellets over a sub any day.
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Old 04-28-2008, 04:59 PM   #19
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I've been using whole leaf hops from Freshops just thrown in the wort. After cooling, I use an autosiphon without any filter on the end to get as much wort into my ale pail as possible. I have to clean it out a few times as it gets clogged with the whole leaves. I tried putting a hopsack over the end of the autosiphon but it clogs almost immediately and find it works better without. When I get most of the wort out of the kettle, I put a 5 gallon sanitized paint strainer over the ale pail primary and pour in the rest of the wort.

This method is working well for me. I may begin avoiding the autosiphon all together and just pour, but this way the kettle isn't as heavy and it is easier to keep an eye on the trub without as much liquid.

Whirlpooling never worked at all for me with whole leaf hops.

Dry hopping in the secondary with loose leaf hops is no problem. I put a sanitized small hopsack over the end of my autosiphon, and just siphon to the bottling bucket. The hopsack filters any seeds or debris from the whole hops, and I don't have any problems with clogging the siphon.

Once you get a system down, I find it easy to work with Whole Leaf hops.
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Old 04-28-2008, 06:41 PM   #20
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Do you use a hop bag just for whole/leaf hops or also with pellets? Is the 5 gal paint strainer fine enough to hold the pellet hop sludge in? I was trying to figure out a way to avoid the "pouring through the screen in the funnel" and this looks like it would work...unfortunately, I have only used pellets/plugs...

sorry if this is off topic.


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