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Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

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  1. Z

    Bottle Conditioning Question

    Also, unless you need to free up the primary fermenter, I'd just leave the beer alone for the entire 3 weeks. Under ordinary conditions, there's little reason to move a beer to secondary. For standard mid-gravity beers, I don't bother much with FG readings if the fermentation was "normal." I...
  2. Z

    Lager Recipe Question

    Yes. Just about perfect.
  3. Z

    Bitter/Weird Hoppy PRE-Fermenting flavor

    Many of my brews (perhaps most) have a sharp hop-bittery aftertaste. It always worries me, but never shows in the end product. I wouldn't worry. Not much you could do anyway...
  4. Z

    Add DME, sticks to bag!

    I just cut the bag all the way across, open it wide, and dump it as fast as possible. It feels like a lot sticks behind, but it's not really all that much. I prefer this to getting gunk on other implements in the kitchen.
  5. Z

    Can you sanitize bottles, cover with foil, and keep them sanitary?

    If your bottles are clean, I think it ought to work in principle, but I think it's probably not a terrific idea. Whatever method you use to sanitize, if long as you seal the container, nothing is going to find its way in. Sanitized foil tightly on top is probably good enough for this purpose. It...
  6. Z

    Yeast starter question

    Wow, you're edgy. Not sure I can tell where you're serious and where you're ironic, but you're right that you have to choose your battles. However, that's different from advocating poor practices when better alternatives are no more difficult.
  7. Z

    Yeast starter question

    ...or an 11g pack of dry yeast... :ban:
  8. Z

    Yeast starter question

    Yeah, it's the beer you're making. I usually make my starters a bit less than 1.040, based on some book---perhaps Yeast. IIRC, I've seen recommendations from reputable sources that vary from about 1.020 to 1.040 as ideal. I think the key is to create a gentle environment that coddles the average...
  9. Z

    American Lager Lakeside Lager

    No problem being a noob. Don't worry about lager malt, it is just a lightly kilned base malt. You can use pilsener or plain 2-row malt. I've never personally encountered something called "lager malt" at any shop.
  10. Z

    Yeast starter question

    You do realize that your method is essentially identical to running one set of numbers on MrMalty, then using that solution for every beer, right? I think pitching an appropriate amount of dry yeast is probably the best approach for inexperienced brewers. I've only ever used 11g packs, so I...
  11. Z

    Better bottle/ oxy clean question

    By the way, the BB manufacturer has an extensive write-up regarding cleaning practices. Key recommendations: Do not use excessively hot water, 125°F is sufficient Strong caustics will damage PET, so if you are going to use them, minimize contact time Mixing PBW/OxiClean powder with water...
  12. Z

    Better bottle/ oxy clean question

    Well, I gave it another thorough wash with Seventh Gen enzyme detergent (as recommended by BB themselves) on the theory that a different cleaning method might work differently with whatever is causing the streaks. It may have helped a little, certainly the streaks were less prominent, but that...
  13. Z

    Target Gravity and How to Get There : A Tutorial

    That .0018 typo should be fixed, it will be seriously confusing to someone not already familiar with this material. (I'd also suggest using leading zeros---writing 0.018 instead of .018---but that's more a matter of style.)
  14. Z

    Target Gravity and How to Get There : A Tutorial

    That .0018 typo should be fixed, it will be seriously confusing to someone not already familiar with this material. (I'd also suggest using leading zeros---writing 0.018 instead of .018---but that's more a matter of style.)
  15. Z

    Better bottle/ oxy clean question

    I hadn't heard of the rag+oxi thing until a few days ago. I tried it, and it did a great job removing a ring around the shoulder from a batch that had been all but abandoned in the closet since april or so. Sadly, the aging did not make this a good beer: it apparently had a wild yeast problem...
  16. Z

    1-Gallon Brewers UNITE!

    For some reason, a swamp cooler full of star-san just doesn't seem right to me. It's a creative solution, but I don't think I'd try it. You might be ok, though---if the spigot doesn't let beer leak out, it probably doesn't let water leak in. That's easy enough to test: fill it full of water...
  17. Z

    Bottling Tips for the Homebrewer

    I toyed around with a PVC elbow, but never got it to work. I also couldn't find a handy source for the elbows that did not sell them with a sticker directly applied, using some god awful glue that I could not remove without Goo-Gone. (And I'm not a fan of cleaning food preparation equipment with...
  18. Z

    why not more yeast?

    In addition, dry yeast packets have FAR more cells than liquid yeast vials. A 100% viable vial has 100 billion cells, IIRC, and your viability is probably more like 60-80%. If you have a moderately big beer, you might beed 250-300 billion, so you'll need 4-5 packs to ensure a proper pitch rate...
  19. Z

    Yeast starter question

    If you're careful (and hop your starter), you can get a perfectly drinkable small batch out of it. For big starters, this can be worth it if you hate throwing out beer.
  20. Z

    1-Gallon Brewers UNITE!

    The thing that I'd worry more about is fully sanitizing the spigot when it came to bottling time. I strongly prefer to run sanitizer through the full beer path immediately before use. If you try it, I would suggest running sanitizer through the spigot just before filling the fermenter, then...