Recent content by hawaiibrewer

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  1. hawaiibrewer

    Boil-off Rate

    That science is great, but the amount of energy/gas I put into the kettle is actually irrelevant to me since I'm concerned with the amount of wort I end up with to transfer into my fermenter. When I used a larger diameter kettle, I had fewer gallons to transfer. I'm not concerned with btu's...
  2. hawaiibrewer

    Boil-off Rate

    I brew with propane....I use my eyes to determine a rolling boil. When I had a large diameter 20 gal kettle, I lost more in boil off then I do with my smaller diameter 15 gal keggle. Use what ever science you want to explain it.
  3. hawaiibrewer

    Boil-off Rate

    I've found that the surface area of the boil, ie. 16 in. diameter kettle opening versus 24 in. does indeed impact the boil off rate. As a reference, my 15 gal keggle loses 1/2 gal per 30 min with a rolling boil. Bigger surface area, more loss.
  4. hawaiibrewer

    Hop Spider as a strainer

    On the rare occasion that I need to use hop pellets for the boil additions, I'll use a paint straining bag suspended via a spider. But 99 percent of the time I use hop flowers in the boil as well as dry hopping and just toss them into the kettle or secondary fermenter. After 22 yrs of trying...
  5. hawaiibrewer

    Make your own beer, they said. You'll save money, they said.

    One needs to "rationalize" better when comparing brewing to other popular hobbies. Golf at $60+ a round, twice a week adds up quickly. How about snow skiing at $100+ a lift ticket. Then there is tennis at $200/racket, $3/new balls, 3 times a week..not counting new shoes at $80/pair every 6...
  6. hawaiibrewer

    Belgian Candy Syrup and Candi Sugar

    For my first Belgium dubbel (2001), I used a commercially made "rock candy" but have since turned to making by my own. Simple to do and keeping with the "craft" aspect of making my own beer. Having never used a syrup, I can see the upside of a syrup is ease by which it would dissolve. With...
  7. hawaiibrewer

    Yeast Starters....Just starting and ordered some things

    Take tip from Gordon Strong's book, "Brewing better Beer". Keep it simple and don't over think it. He's president of BJCP and past AHA Ninkasi award winner. 1 liter starter, 3 oz DME, 1/4 t yeast nutrient, 1 qt water, boil for 15 min. Cool and pitch yeast and let it go until brew day, poor...
  8. hawaiibrewer

    How many of you use a yeast starter?

    When I first started brewing I just used the Wyeast smack packs which seemed fine for the 6 gallon fermenters, but because the questionable viability once the packs arrived in Hawaii (22 years ago not much was locally available), I started using a starter. It ensures yeast viability...
  9. hawaiibrewer

    Electrical Costs for a Normal Brew Day

    Great information, just what I was looking for as I was thinking about going electric and had no idea what amount of kW a brew day might require. Our electric rates here in Hawaii max out to be about $.045/ kW once I figure all the "add ins and sur charges". I gave up lagering for the cost...
  10. hawaiibrewer

    Motorize your grainmill for under $100

    The distance between my motor pulley and mill pulley is about 16 inches, but pretty much what determined that was the fact that I wanted to put a specific size bucket under the mill to hold my typical 28 lbs of grain. I used a piece of measured rope around the pulleys to determine the needed...
  11. hawaiibrewer

    Motorize your grainmill for under $100

    A hand drill just didn't cut it for me...tried a battery operated as well as a 110v corded drill. Both were too hard to regulate speed and got too hot when grinding my 28 lbs of grain. Went to my local "dump" where old appliances are dropped off with my wrenches in hand and salvaged a nice...
  12. hawaiibrewer

    Make Beer Sweeter??

    Potassium used in mead/wine making to control yeast activity and permit adding a sweetner....but you'd have to force carbonate and not count on natural fermentation to get your "bubbles"
  13. hawaiibrewer

    How many pounds of spent grain do you produce every year? How do you dispose of it?

    My 200 lb/year goes to my compost pile but a neighbor recently showed interest in using some for baking. The local brew pub indeed uses some of their spent grain in their pizza dough so I may look around for a local commercial bakery that wants it.
  14. California Common

    California Common

    Calif Common using local craft brewery they shared
  15. Kona Brewing Company

    Kona Brewing Company

    2013 Brewfest Brewer's Dinner