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  1. 8 points
    Creeps McLane

    Shaken LBK?

    Unless the area the beer sloshed into was infected with mad cow disease, turburculocious or had some @HoppySmile! drool on it, youll be ok. I move stuff around all the time. I have to move a fermenter tonight too. A little bump wont hurt. Actually, some times i give my carboys a little shake if the hop particles are caught on the ridges. Don’t tell anyone else on here ok?
  2. 7 points
    Actually, you can get a lot more advanced. All beer is fermented. Mr. Beer's LBK is a fermenter. Regardless of how you make your wort (can of HME, LME/DME with steeping grains and hops, Brew In A Bag, or all grain brewing in a big pot over a burner, wort is wort. There are some features that make a Mr. Beer LBK "unique" over some other fermenters: 1) The fermenter is made of plastic. That means you must cool the wort to a temperature that will not damage the plastic before pouring it in. Given that all brewing requires the wort to be cooled to a proper pitching temperature (which varies by type of yeast used), that's not a big deal. However, if I had a big metal fermenter, I could choose to put hot wort in it and then cool it down overnight before pitching. Can't do that with a Mr. Beer LBK. And gradual cooling gives the chance for infection. 2) The fermenter has no "blow off" device. This means if you have a very active fermentation, it can overflow out the lid vents and make a mess. Fancy fermenters have a blow off device that during active fermentation can send overflow into a bucket and keep things tidy. Once active fermentation is over, you replace the tube with an airlock. No airlock or tube with Mr. Beer, but it's not needed. 3) Like any fermenter, the Mr. Beer LBK is limited to it's capacity. Basically that's around 2.5 or 2.6 gallons. And if you fill it to the 2.6 mark, you'll probably get overflow. I put in 2.5 gallons regularly, ferment at 65 or lower, and rarely get overflow. I used to regularly make a 5 gallon batch of extract beer, and split it evenly between two LBKs. I now do BIAB, and due to stove limitations I make one 2.5 gallon batch each time. 4) Because it's a plastic fermenter, it can be damaged, either by cleaning improperly (scrubbing) or by a beer that gets a bacterial infection. If an LBK gets a bacterial infection (rare), it's possible that it can't be cleaned well enough to be used again without transmitting that infection. Same goes for a bottling bucket, or anything else plastic. That's why good sanitation is important. Any beer you brew can be fermented in an LBK.
  3. 7 points
    Most of those guys don't brew decent beer either. They tend to deflect to their equipment because their product does not speak for itself. In my experience in my brew club the guys more interested in equipment and who's is better don't bring beer to share and when they do it usually isn't that good. Those of us who concentrate conversations on processes are the base that bring beers to share and surprise, it is usually good beer. We also as a club support anybody that brews with Mr. Beer and try to help them through any issues. It is how I started and even though a lot will not admit it, they started the same way too.
  4. 6 points


    1) You can't look at powder and analyze what it is. If you bought bulk powder, it should have a name, and then you know what you own. Laundry detergent looks the same also... 2) Mr. Beer's sanitizer can be stored, for a week, in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Then it needs to come to room temp to be used. If you just want to clean with it (not sanitize), then you could store it longer, but the oxygen content is gone at that point. 3) Sanitizing a hop sack, or a measuring cup, or such can be done with a pot of boiling water. Or a cup of boiling water in a microwave. 4) You should NOT store things with liquid sanitizer for periods of time. StarSan, an acid, will eat through things like chrome. 5) I use a batch of StarSan for several months, stored in a bucket with a lid. 6) Mr. Beer sanitizer, made at double strength, can in fact be used for cleaning. If you read the packet, it says "No-Rinse Cleanser". There are products that are similar to this, i.e. One Step and Easy Clean. LD Carlson, who makes Easy Clean, told me that it's the same as One Step, but can't be labeled as a sanitizer because they haven't gone through the process ($$$) to get it labeled as such. 7) The dishwasher can be used for sanitizing, but it's not recommended. Bottles don't get properly washed inside, and rinse agents aren't good for beer bottles. Utensils would be fine going through a sanitizing cycle, which is not the same as heated dry. You could also bake metal utensils in your oven to sanitize them. But that's all pretty silly, when dipping them in sanitizer is a one and done thing. I would not store anything for a period of time and then consider it sanitized.
  5. 6 points
    Lol, I'm on another forum occasionally and for sure there is a segment of AG guys that are all about my equipment is superior to yours type of thing. Those guys are all about bigger and better, shinier more heavy duty bragging stuff. They pretty much dismiss small batch and extract brewers as not being "real brewers." The funny thing is in the same forum there's a tremendously expanding segment of small extract brewers AND a significant group of traditional 3 vessel system guys that are overhauling their system to make it simpler by going to BIAB. I think it's great that you can pick from so many levels to fit your preference, style, capacity, budget, whatever and still produce not only good beer but more importantly "your beer." Each batch you produce has your unique signature on it. That's what craftsmanship is all about, to me anyway.
  6. 6 points
    not only does mr beer make it easy... they are kind enough to provide us a support group. in my entire life i have NEVER stuck with anything for very long. i get bored. i get lazy. i walk away. ive never had any lasting hobby... or anything that gives me a modicum of pleasure.. until i discovered brewing.. and cheap wine making... and mead. where else can you experiment... get as complicated or simple as you want .. and drink your mistakes AND get buzzed while doing it? i just checked.. ive been brewing since 2012! time flies. i have never had a hobby this long.
  7. 6 points

    Mold on LBK rim

    Following up on this post from a few weeks ago because I cracked open my first bottle from this questionable batch, and I’m happy to report that the beer (America. porter deluxe) was fantastic. The mold had been contained to the outside rim of the keg and didn’t affect the flavor.
  8. 5 points
    i get emails from another forum that runs a contest to win a free stainless steel uber fermenter with dials and knobs and shiny bits and.... no thanks. why over-complicate brewing to that extent? do i really need to have the ability to drain the yeast out from the bottom with a lever? or am i just being lazy? yeast washing is as simple a process as it gets. do i really need something that requires gaskets and misc part replacements, and a masters degree in rocket science from MIT to figure out? lol. now if you ask me, THAT is NOT brewing. the guy working on a stove with pots and pans and buckets.... and doing things manually... or who uses a panty hose filter as a hop sack... who makes due by improvising equipment.. this is the true homebrewer. screw all your fancy toys. there is also nothing wrong with extracts. all you are doing is using a prefab base to build your kit around. there's nothing wrong with ready mix malt. it's like a fine chef using a box of chicken stock then building a recipe up around it. whats wrong with that? the aussies take this approach to extremes of work smarter not harder. biab came about as a means of water and work conservation. no chill method for the same reasons. if you can get it done with less work and cost, where's the problem as long as the end product is still good? biab- toss in a bit more grain, mash in the full volume of water... dunk dunk..swish swish.. no sparge.. boom. bob's yer uncle. boil, flame out. cover... walk away til the morning. no sitting there for a half hour wasting gallon upon gallon in a chiller to lower the temp to pitching temp. myself, i like and dont mind working a little harder for my craft. i enjoy it.
  9. 5 points

    3rd time is the charm?

    WOW... I cant believe I have been away for almost an entire year.... anyways.. I am finally getting to brew again. I am going to do the Octoberfest refill again (w/o booster) but this time I am using Safale US-05. I will continue to update this thread Hope everyone has been with this past year and had a good Thanksgiving!
  10. 5 points

    Maple Syrup as Adjunct?

    Here's what I'd do with it.
  11. 4 points
    Brian N.

    Bottle priming with Corn Sugar

    Like this stout in the Sam Adams glass. Straight up MB stout, with about 1/2 the recommended amount of sugar. Fermented at 64 deg F for 24 days, then conditioned about 6 months.
  12. 4 points

    Bottle priming with Corn Sugar

    Corn sugar and cane sugar are different since corn sugar is not quite as fermentable as cane sugar. The measurements that you use per bottle of cane sugar will work with corn sugar but will leave slightly less carbonation. For arguement sake, say that 1/2 tsp per bottle will net 2.4 volumes of carbonation with cane sugar it will net about 2.3 volumes with corn sugar. Corn sugar has 95% of the fermentable potential of cane sugar. I batch prime so when you do that you also need to know the highest temperature the beer reached and not the current temperature.
  13. 4 points
    ok, time for my 2 cents worth (cause I'm broke and I ain't got more). Mr. Beer is how I started brewing. Point blank, if you can make soup, you can brew their beer. Don't like it, then you didn't do something right. Brewing beer takes time and patience. You have to learn the "art" of cleaning, sanitizing, waiting for fermentation, waiting for carbonation, waiting for conditioning. Home brew isn't quick, but Mr. Beer's kits and recipes make it very easy to get started, and make nice tasting beers. From here you can grow further, and from here you can help others start in the hobby. Want a cheese burger, go to McDonalds, or grill it yourself. Want a nice sit-down meal, go to a restaurant, or make it yourself. Want a nice beer, go to the store and buy it, or brew it yourself. "Yourself", means you can make something creatively, learn how to do it, and do better/different next time. Or else, go to the gas station and buy some over-produced American lager, and drive through McDonalds for supper on the way home. This is a great place to get started, and learn the art of the science.....or the science of the art. If an all-grain home brewer snuff their nose at you, fine. Your are having fun brewing, learning and sharing. And if you want, you can expand. I'm almost ready for all-grain, and about ready to start studying to be a ciceron. All because of Mr. Beer...…….And Cooper's. Cheers
  14. 4 points


    The pH of water, and the pH of the mash, aren't the same. The grain and the water result in the pH lowering because the grains are acidic. The only question is whether the pH lowers into the acceptable range for mashing, and whether the water makeup is complementary or not to the style of the beer. For most homebrewers, they can brew with good tasting water and not really know what they are missing (or not adding, pun intended). For those that pay attention to water details, proper water can tremendously help with a beer style. That's why certain parts of the world have certain beer styles that stand out. A caution though - many do research and say "oh, here's the water they use in _____, so I will adjust my water to match that". In truth, the brewers in that part of the world may be adjusting their water also, and no one realizes it. So you have to do a good deal of research to come up with the proper way to match water for a certain style elsewhere. Getting your pH to the proper range for brewing is much easier.
  15. 4 points
    D Kristof

    Safale US-05 vs Safale S-33

    ^^^THIS^^^ Back in January my local homebrew club conducted an experiment to demonstrate to sceptical members how variables affect brewing. 20 people took the same pale ale wort, used the same hops and hop schedule and fermented 5 gallon batches within a 2 degree temperature variation. The biggest variable was yeast selection. 10 different yeasts were pitched. In summary, there were 20 different beers. In side by side comparison of two beers with the same yeast the beers were different. You need to know your methods will affect your beer. You need to know how individual ingredients brewed with your methods affect your beer. IMHO, the variables are what make this hobby fascinating.
  16. 3 points

    Partial Mash

    Those two are among my favorites.
  17. 3 points
    Ive used LBKs, MRBs 6 gallon fermenter, buckets, PET carboys, glass carboys, 1 gallon glass jugs, and of course my 10 gallon SS conical. Each has its own purpose to me. I like the ease of buckets, and i like my PET carboys but if you dont take care of them then youre screwed. Glass can break. My conical is my go to. I know when i clean it thats its truly clean. Temp control is a lot easier with a temp controller, a fridge and a carboy or lbk. But for my saisons and wheats and anything else that can ferment at room temp, ill use my conical every time.
  18. 3 points
    Bonsai & Brew

    Guinness for Christmas

    I used 3 lbs. Crisp Maris Otter, the flaked barley, and acidulated malt for the pH-adjusted mash (a half tsp lactic acid did the trick). I also did a Dublin water profile, adding calcium sulfate and sodium chloride per the Brewer's Friend online calculator. OG was 1.057 so this attempt at a Guinness will be closer in style to an Irish Extra Stout.
  19. 3 points

    Bottle priming with Corn Sugar

    Simple table sugar. Just bought 4 pounds for $.99.
  20. 3 points

    Shaken LBK?

    Tip - practice with water. Pour from the right size pot is easy - except when it's not. Put 6 cups in your 3 quart or larger pot, then pour into the LBK. If you spill any, try again. Or try another pot. Spilling water is basically free, and doesn't impact your beer. Spilling wort is a crime and is punishable by removal from this forum.
  21. 3 points


    Okay Eddie Haskell you've opened an interesting door here and the timing seems right for me to pay attention to see if my spring water is basically fine as it is or if I'd benefit from some adjustment to ph in the mash or minerals to the water. So, now in addition to the ph stabilizer, I've got some ph strips coming and a small jar each of gypsum, calcium chloride, and phosphoric acid. Time for a new column in my spreadsheet for each batch. Will likely take months to evaluate. Good news, more beer needs to be brewed!
  22. 3 points

    Whole Leaf Hops

    i use them just like pellets.after the boil i run the wort through a fine mesh strainer to aerate and grab hops and break matter. use a little more leaf than you would pellet. as for whole cones i imagine you would also use a little more. pellets are concentrated goodness. for a mr beer kit, buy a lb of dme or lme . lme is easier to deal with. do a small short boil of lme , water and hops like about 8-10 minutes if you want to add some hop goodness without adding tons of bitter. or when your wort is in the lbk you can toss a handful or two of hop cones in a sanitized hop sack and tie it. then drop that into the lbk to dry hop.
  23. 3 points

    Dry hopping/cold crashing

    That's okay Mic, you might discover something doing that! However, I shouldn't encourage you too much as the mad scientist guys diskapear fairly quickly and I really want to see if @RickBeer is going to A. Send you a long range shock collar for Xmas B. Make a Mic Todd doll that he can hang from the rafters of his brew cave and thwack with the dough in paddle every time you mention adding sugar adjuncts to your recipes. Just kidding in fun here after a few brews on a rainy evening.
  24. 3 points

    Maple Syrup as Adjunct?

    Maple syrup will give absolutely zero maple flavor to your beer. It is sugar and that is how the yeast will treat it. I make a maple wine that is simply maple syrup, water and yeast and it has absolutely no maple flavor at all. It has more of an earthy flavor to it than a sweet maple flavor.
  25. 3 points
    If you are satisfied with the results it shouldn't matter. I haven't brewed yet but when I get my kit I will. I probably wouldn't have thought about it if it wasn't for an inexpensive way to start. I may decide to get more technical down the road.