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Nickfixit

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  1. Like
    Nickfixit reacted to Mic Todd in Mad Scientist Brews   
    Yep, my first which I mentioned somewhere else on the forum earlier. 
     
    I started with the standard MRB CAL recipe and added 1# of dark DME, 1 cup of agave nectar and substituted half a packet of Safale US-05 yeast for the standard MRB yeast with the CAL can.  At bottling time I will be dry-hopping it with a hop tea made from 1/2 oz of Ekuanot hops brewed in a french press.  Simple to make but I have absolutely NO idea if it will even be palatable.   It's an experiment in how to obliterate a perfectly good light lager by turning it into something entirely different, for better or for worse. 😎
  2. Haha
    Nickfixit reacted to Mic Todd in Something other than booster   
    Slugs and teenagers
  3. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Mic Todd in Something other than booster   
    You will get some idea when you taste at bottling.
     
  4. Haha
    Nickfixit got a reaction from RickBeer in Bottle conditioning techiques   
    Don't worry, I always sneak early samples. Usually from  the last part filled bottle or trub bottle, and then maybe a bit later. Using 12 oz bottle is better for tis as you waste less if it is not ready. I mostly use 750ml's  so have to be a bit more cautious about using something that might not be good yet, but I still do sneak a bottle ahead of time. I figure as they change over time one has to try to know what is best for one's taste. Trying them over time will let you know that they actually DO get better  😄   (As Rick B says  - lol.)
     
    Anyway it is your hobby, but we want you to enjoy it too and give us the feedback from your experiences too.
     
     
  5. Like
    Nickfixit reacted to Big Sarge in Bottle conditioning techiques   
    My two cents: as I navigate throughout this hobby and talk to people about beer and brewing, I find that some newbies don't know the difference between head retention and carbonation. We know that extract brewing makes head retention wane and add Carapils to boost it. The bubbles in the beer make it a carbonated beverage. 
  6. Haha
    Nickfixit got a reaction from RickBeer in Bottle conditioning techiques   
    Don't worry, I always sneak early samples. Usually from  the last part filled bottle or trub bottle, and then maybe a bit later. Using 12 oz bottle is better for tis as you waste less if it is not ready. I mostly use 750ml's  so have to be a bit more cautious about using something that might not be good yet, but I still do sneak a bottle ahead of time. I figure as they change over time one has to try to know what is best for one's taste. Trying them over time will let you know that they actually DO get better  😄   (As Rick B says  - lol.)
     
    Anyway it is your hobby, but we want you to enjoy it too and give us the feedback from your experiences too.
     
     
  7. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Cato in Capping/bottling mishap   
    Not to jinx you but I have  broken a bottle with my hand lever operated capper before now (just one though)
    That was because I had the cap on crooked.
  8. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Cato in First Batch - Open Bottles Go Flat?   
    It has seemed to me that it is not that the beer really goes flat, it is just that there is very little head retention so that even though you get some bubbles, you cannot see the result. This can be the result of soap or cleaning residues, so if you use any soap make sure LBK or bottles are well rinsed. Otherwise it maybe just not enough hops or dextrines in the wort.
    Also you can increase the head retention by adding maltodextrin powder or using a partial mash of dextrin malt or Carapil, also flaked grains - barley or wheat or oats. And even more hopping. You can even add the powder (it is sterile) into the LBK after the wort.
    This may help:
    http://beersmith.com/blog/2008/06/25/enhancing-beer-head-retention-for-home-brewers/
     
    The 3 days in the fridge also helps. If CO2 is not absorbed, you cannot get bubbles.
     
    There are also other opinions on that too - in that a couple of days does make some improvement but it is limited, but you need to try it and see what works best for you.
    https://homebrew.stackexchange.com/questions/15058/how-long-should-a-carbonated-bottle-be-refrigerated-prior-to-drinking
     
    I am one of those that only brews Mr Beer (or similar HME based) kits.
     
     
     
  9. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from D Kristof in Guiness Irish Wheat Clone   
    So your earlier pic was after about a week? Does mine look active enough for 3 days?  I only made the malt 1.020  with wheat malt too, and the first couple of days were below 70.
     
    Also bear in mind this is not super mass production it is from their pilotbrewery.
     
    Wait? You have TWO jars of it?
  10. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from D Kristof in Guiness Irish Wheat Clone   
    Well, maybe if it turns out to be a wild yeast it will be a good one lol.
     
  11. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Cato in First Batch - Open Bottles Go Flat?   
    It has seemed to me that it is not that the beer really goes flat, it is just that there is very little head retention so that even though you get some bubbles, you cannot see the result. This can be the result of soap or cleaning residues, so if you use any soap make sure LBK or bottles are well rinsed. Otherwise it maybe just not enough hops or dextrines in the wort.
    Also you can increase the head retention by adding maltodextrin powder or using a partial mash of dextrin malt or Carapil, also flaked grains - barley or wheat or oats. And even more hopping. You can even add the powder (it is sterile) into the LBK after the wort.
    This may help:
    http://beersmith.com/blog/2008/06/25/enhancing-beer-head-retention-for-home-brewers/
     
    The 3 days in the fridge also helps. If CO2 is not absorbed, you cannot get bubbles.
     
    There are also other opinions on that too - in that a couple of days does make some improvement but it is limited, but you need to try it and see what works best for you.
    https://homebrew.stackexchange.com/questions/15058/how-long-should-a-carbonated-bottle-be-refrigerated-prior-to-drinking
     
    I am one of those that only brews Mr Beer (or similar HME based) kits.
     
     
     
  12. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from TonyKZ1 in Guiness Irish Wheat Clone   
    Thanks. I will keep looking for more locally too. There clams to be some within 10 miles.
    2 oz DME in 1/2 pint looks about right. 1.021 OG.
  13. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from D Kristof in Guiness Irish Wheat Clone   
    I found some - 30 min drive away. Tastes good and I saved the yeast in the fridge.
     
    Should I wait to get all 6 bottles emptied before I try it with malt? or make the malt up and keep adding the yeast as I drink them?
  14. Like
    Nickfixit reacted to RickBeer in Cold crashing - what it is, and why do you care?   
    No, what I meant is that the site you reference, homebrewingstoredirectory.com is a blog put together to gain advertising dollars.  A few posts in 2014, then one in 2016, probably because he didn't get the ad revenue he expected.  He also owns https://www.catholicretreats.net   Stop reading blogs written by people simply copying info from elsewhere.  
     
    A good source for learning more about brewing would be John Palmer's book, How To Brew (4th edition).  You can read the first edition, from 2000, online for free.  http://www.howtobrew.com/  Or get it from your local library.  
     
    John Palmer is a guru.  
     
    Much of what's posted here on the forum was figured out by brewers after hundreds of trials.  3-4 was developed by brewers, not by Mr. Beer, when people found that the results from Mr. Beer's earlier versions, brewed for a week and bottled for a week or two (can't recall right now), were crap.  Mr. Beer has since modified it's instructions to follow what we figured out.  
     
    I started on this forum in February 2012, and read and read what the experienced brewers (nearly all left a few years ago before Mr. Beer was purchased by Coopers).  Then I started contributing.  Brewed my first batch 6 years ago, and learned and learned along the way.  Still learning today.  Last year I went and got a Certificate in Brewing and Distillation Technology, took 7 college courses (in person, not over the internet).  And I'm still learning today.   
     
    I've made mistakes you haven't even thought of making.  I don't get paid for posting here (hint, Tim), my sole purpose in posting is to convey what I've learned to others.  
  15. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Cato in Guiness Irish Wheat Clone   
    I want some of that!!!! When you have enough. I can't find the beer in the store anymore.
  16. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Cato in Guiness Irish Wheat Clone   
    I want some of that!!!! When you have enough. I can't find the beer in the store anymore.
  17. Thanks
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Mic Todd in New 3G Conical Fermenter   
    Click for drop down menu on your icon name top right, then select Settings/Signature.
    You can add text or files.
     
    Reminds me I have to change that. 😁
  18. Thanks
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Mic Todd in New 3G Conical Fermenter   
    About 8% ABV is the highest I did  Mostly  I do 4.5 - 6.5 %
    i.e. Mr Beer HME +  ~  up to 1.5 lb  extract equivalent using approx. guide of 0.5 lb per 1% (DME/LME and Booster packs all give slightly different ABV gains.)
  19. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Mic Todd in Something other than booster   
    Ekuanot is nice. I made the Mr B Bindlestick wheat with that. I like the flavor but I can't drink too much of that hoppiness.  1/2 oz is pretty safe.
     
  20. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Cato in Something other than booster   
    Rather than brown sugar,  if I want something different and I don't want to do PM, I add different malt extracts. You want it darker, add some dark DME. You will also get some roasty flavor probably. It depends what it is. I have had good luck with LME too, getting a 1.5 kg tub and adding various amounts. The Special Dark is my favorite.  It is very strong so you do not need much but it is good for dark ales and porters. to add more roastiness. But the Trad Dark DME is good too.
     
    Here is an enhancement to Winter Dark Ale that I really like. I used the Mr Beer yeast.
    The added sweetness reduces the bitterness of the HME but not totally. I get choc, caramel and hints of coffee taste in it. For me, it is a good dessert beer
    I do similar with Mr B Porter, adding a Robust and a Smooth LME pack, also nice.
    Winter Dark Ale 
    + 8oz Sparkling Amber DME
    + 5-7 oz Trad Dark DME (What I had left)
    +1.5 oz Lactose
  21. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Mic Todd in Something other than booster   
    Someone else does do it...……..https://lagunitas.com/beer/brown-shugga
    But I am sure this was not their first time...…
     
    This might help too, with suggestions about what styles it might go with.
    http://allaboutbeer.com/brewing-with-sugar/
     
    So it really depends how brown and strong tasting your sugar is.
     
  22. Haha
    Nickfixit reacted to Mic Todd in Something other than booster   
    OK guys, I surrender!!!!  NO brown sugar - I'll find something else to plug into my concoction - see if I can really screw things up!
  23. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Cato in Something other than booster   
    Rather than brown sugar,  if I want something different and I don't want to do PM, I add different malt extracts. You want it darker, add some dark DME. You will also get some roasty flavor probably. It depends what it is. I have had good luck with LME too, getting a 1.5 kg tub and adding various amounts. The Special Dark is my favorite.  It is very strong so you do not need much but it is good for dark ales and porters. to add more roastiness. But the Trad Dark DME is good too.
     
    Here is an enhancement to Winter Dark Ale that I really like. I used the Mr Beer yeast.
    The added sweetness reduces the bitterness of the HME but not totally. I get choc, caramel and hints of coffee taste in it. For me, it is a good dessert beer
    I do similar with Mr B Porter, adding a Robust and a Smooth LME pack, also nice.
    Winter Dark Ale 
    + 8oz Sparkling Amber DME
    + 5-7 oz Trad Dark DME (What I had left)
    +1.5 oz Lactose
  24. Like
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Cato in Something other than booster   
    Rather than brown sugar,  if I want something different and I don't want to do PM, I add different malt extracts. You want it darker, add some dark DME. You will also get some roasty flavor probably. It depends what it is. I have had good luck with LME too, getting a 1.5 kg tub and adding various amounts. The Special Dark is my favorite.  It is very strong so you do not need much but it is good for dark ales and porters. to add more roastiness. But the Trad Dark DME is good too.
     
    Here is an enhancement to Winter Dark Ale that I really like. I used the Mr Beer yeast.
    The added sweetness reduces the bitterness of the HME but not totally. I get choc, caramel and hints of coffee taste in it. For me, it is a good dessert beer
    I do similar with Mr B Porter, adding a Robust and a Smooth LME pack, also nice.
    Winter Dark Ale 
    + 8oz Sparkling Amber DME
    + 5-7 oz Trad Dark DME (What I had left)
    +1.5 oz Lactose
  25. Thanks
    Nickfixit got a reaction from Mic Todd in Something other than booster   
    So there are 2 things I look at in yeasts.
    One is the Attenuation, how much of the sugars in the wort the yeast will consume. So the net result of that is a sweeter beer or a drier beer, Ale yeasts like Mr Beer's eat in the low 70% of the sugars, other yeasts can go as high as 90% I think. US-05 makes a drier beer than Mr Beer yeast, and you will taste the hops more. Saison yeasts for example eat a great deal of the sugars. You can find these numbers on the Internet but the Recipe builders also have an indication under yeasts, and will change the FG accordingly.  So it depends what result you want. Reading the manufacturer description is a good start, they indicate styles the yeast is good for too.
     
    The second thing is the production of esters that add flavor. Some yeasts make more than others and they add flavors of various kinds. You want them or you don't. Clean means no esters.
     
    The third thing (oops - I said 2?)  is the temperature. This will affect the ester production and the rate yeasts eat through the sugars. For example wheat yeasts will produce banana or clove flavors depending on the  temperature (generalization).  So the temperature profile throughout the fermentation will control the flavor. Esters are mostly produced during growth phase at the start of fermentation is what I read. 
     
    These are the most important things for me.
    There are surely others too that other folks here may worry about.
     
    Hope this helps.
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