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Everything posted by BDawg62

  1. BDawg62


    http://www.ezwatercalculator.com/ This is what I use to get an idea of my mash PH. It is very accurate with the measurements that I have taken with my PH meter. I don't even bother to double check any longer. It does require that you know the mineral makeup of your water. Some municipal water sources will give you this information if you call them. Some frankly don't test for all of those items. You also could take a sample of your water and send it to get it tested. Ward labs is the most recommended lab for this. https://www.wardlab.com/BrewersKitOrder.php They will test your sample and return the results to you via an email. Another option is a water test kit, I have one of these. https://www.morebeer.com/products/lamotte-brewlab-basic-water-test-kit-718901.html?gclid=Cj0KCQiA28nfBRCDARIsANc5BFBa0F8IkvFBTuu6j2XVP6mk-uRsWqW6QtCfxr5znQCLZX9LOkOue0MaAvIEEALw_wcB
  2. BDawg62


    He knows exactly what he is talking about. I couldn't have said it better myself.
  3. BDawg62

    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.
  4. BDawg62

    Grain Mill Problems 😞

    When I was buying grain crushed my recipe efficiency was all over the place. It was unusual to hit my numbers. Most grain suppliers and homebrew stores crush with a larger gap which equals a lower efficiency. They do this because you need more grain to achieve the same OG at 65% than at 75%. That allows them to sell more grain and thus make more money. After I got my own mill began doing my own crush, my general recipe efficiency is now set at 75% and I always come within a percent or two of that number. Most recipes in books or magazines are usually set at 70% so I have to adjust them to my percentage. Water to grist ratio, grain makeup, mash temperature and overall OG make a difference in your efficiency. I used to really freak out if I was off but now I just go with my numbers and adjust if I do the recipe again. I have noticed that in general, the higher my percentage of base malt the higher my efficiency. That makes sense since base malt is where the enzymes come from. I also adjust recipes for big beers (over 1.080) down to 70% efficiency and that helps me get closer to my numbers on those beers. Everybody's system is different and you just need time to figure out your efficiency on your system.
  5. BDawg62

    Grain Mill Problems 😞

    I'll bet your efficiency goes up as well.
  6. BDawg62

    Safale US-05 vs Safale S-33

    I second what @RickBeer said above. I have an inventory of dry yeast that I keep in my brew fridge. But it is only the basics, 1 Nottingham, and a few US-05. I basically keep them in the event something goes wrong with the liquid yeast I bought for a particular recipe. I also keep left over hops vaccume packed in the freezer. In addition, I vaccume all of my left over grains from recipes as well. Then every 6 months or so I put together a recipe that uses my left overs. Usually not the best beer I brew but always drinkable.
  7. BDawg62

    New (essential?) Equipment

    Mic Todd, So based on this skateboard analogy that you have spelled out it sounds as if it is a waste of time to give you any advice because you are just going to do what you want to anyway. I can respect that but I will also probably not be giving any advice to your questions since you are going to only listen to it if you think it is the right thing to do. Remember, those of us that help out a lot on this forum have made the mistakes, researched the hobby and or spent countless hours learning about the hobby from others. I have listened to hundreds of hours of podcasts and brewed nearly 100 batches of beer and mead. I have won many medals in beer competitions and am now also a BJCP beer judge. I don't brew Mr. Beer batches any longer, in fact I have converted to All Grain brewing. But I still take time on this forum to assist others who are just getting started in this hobby. I have seen countless post from users on this forum that have asked for advice and not taken it or have gone all mad scientist with their brewing. I have also seen many of them disappear from this forum. Maybe they just moved on or more likely they quit the hobby. So when @RickBeeror any of us who have been here for a period of time give advice that you may not like. Understand that we are trying to keep you form the members who have disappeared from the hobby. There is nothing personal in what some think are attacks. Dawg
  8. BDawg62

    New (essential?) Equipment

    By a point I mean 1.011 vs 1.012
  9. BDawg62

    New (essential?) Equipment

    Unlike most, I do use a refractometer and rarely use a hydrometer. I did however spend quite a bit of time and beer using both side by side to get a good value for correction. There is a spreadsheet out there somewhere that you put in both numbers and it calculates a correction number. It takes like 20 readings to get a reliable correction factor. I do sometimes check my calculated FG with a hydrometer and they are within a point so I am satisfied that for me it is close enough.
  10. BDawg62

    newbie here

    As has been said, fermentation can take up to 24 hours to begin to show signs it is happening. If the air temp of the cooler is 57 you are a bit cool but not necessarily too cool. I have a chamber that I use a thermostat to regulate and to maintain 62 or 63 degrees in my fermentation vessel, I have to set it at 59 or 60. Remember that your wort temp can be 5 to 10 degrees warmer than the ambient air temperature. So you house temp at 69 would result in a wort temperature in the mid 70's (too warm).
  11. BDawg62

    Induction cooktop

    I use a 5 gallon one for mashing and have been for 2 years now. I didn't even fit it with a stainless braid. I use a laundry bag and batch sparge. Piece of cake to clean out the tun since the grain stays in the bag. I did fit the cooler with a ball valve to make it easier to drain but that is the only modification. I preheated it the first couple of times but now I just put the temperature of it and my grain in Beersmith and it calculates the strike temp of the water. I hit my mash temps easily and hold a loss of 1 or 2 degrees during a 60 minute mash. I do wrap the entire cooler in 2 bath towels while the mash is occurring to hold in as much heat as possible.
  12. BDawg62

    Hazy IPA dry-hopping tips?

    Kedogn, You are a professional brewer with many more batches under your belt than most on this forum. You also aren't brewing in your kitchen or other area that isn't exclusively used to brew beer. The risk for you is lower than what it is for a typical homebrewer. The statement regarding "pitch it all it is not worth the risk" is mainly for the typical homebrew scale with a packet of $4 to $8 yeast depending on dry or liquid. Saving a couple of bucks doesn't make sense when you are potentially risking an entire batch. Dawg
  13. BDawg62

    Hazy IPA dry-hopping tips?

    Liquid yeast unlike dry yeast does not have the same amount of viable yeast cells when you buy it as it did when packaged. Dry yeast (US-05) for example is understood to have roughly 200 billion active yeast cells per 11g packet. Unless past expiration or handled incorrectly it should still be fairly close to that number when you buy it. Liquid yeast on the other hand is understood to have 100 billion active yeast cells at packaging. Because it degrades at a certain percentage daily until the expiration (4 to 6 months), there are less than that number when you buy it. So even though most of my batches are 2.5 to 3 gallons in size and 1.050 or so in gravity, I usually need to make a starter with liquid yeast because there are not enough viable yeast cells there for proper fermentation. I know the package says that there is enough there for 5 gallons but if you use a pitch rate calculator you will find that you are almost always short. In homebrewing it is nearly impossible to overpitch your yeast. So the risk of contamination by saving a packet for later or the risk of yeast not being viable after doing this is too great for me to risk it.
  14. BDawg62

    Hazy IPA dry-hopping tips?

    If you have fermentation after a couple of days, you pitched enough yeast. Adding more will not help.
  15. BDawg62

    Hazy IPA dry-hopping tips?

    Pitch the whole pack. When the beer is finished you can decant the yeast cake into a sanitized mason jar or just put another beer right on the yeast cake in your LBK. If you brew an IPA you should make sure to reuse the yeast in an IPA or another hoppy beer.
  16. BDawg62

    Is this an infection?

    It is most likely a very thick raft of yeast that is just being stubborn and not falling. Every fermentation is different. I have one going now where there was a layer of krausen on top for the first 24 hours and now that has all been absorbed and all I see if very fine bubbles from fermentation that break as soon as they hit the surface. Beer almost looks like it is boiling. I have had it where I had to be careful not to distrurb a layer of yeast (krausen) like the one you have when transferring for bottling. Yeast are alive and just like people they are all different.😉
  17. BDawg62

    Is this an infection?

    Looks like Krausen to me.
  18. Not a bad thought at all. That just means you are a brewer and during any crisis you will take care of your human family first then you will without a doubt take care or your one celled family. Those yeast are our children too and they deserve to be high on our priority list in a crisis situation.😂
  19. BDawg62

    First Batch - Open Bottles Go Flat?

    Reading post on other forums doesn't usually help with brewing Mr. Beer. Those forums are usually people who brew extract or all grain with boil times and hops added to the boil. If you follow the instructions to the letter your pitching temperature was correct. Mr. Beer brewing is different and looked down upon (unfortunately) by most of the people on those forums. Even though some of them probably got their start with a Mr. Beer kit. The green apple taste is because your beer was likely fermented too warm rather than not enough yeast. Your beer goes flat quickly because as @RickBeer said you need at least 2 days in the fridge for the beer to absorb the carbonation. Spend your time on this forum and leave the other forums until you are more experienced. There are a lot of us that only occasionally still brew Mr. Beer kits and also a lot of us that still only brew Mr. Beer kits. In any case there is a lot of years experience here from people who respect the fact that you are brewing a Mr. Beer kit and won't give you grief about it.
  20. BDawg62

    Something other than booster

    The molasses in the brown sugar does not give an appealing result in my opinion. I would steep about 4 oz of 120L Cara/Crystal malt in a qt of water to achieve a better result.
  21. BDawg62

    Something other than booster

    What are you going for with the dark brown sugar? If you are using it for color and ABV, it would be better to use a cup of regular sugar and some darker grains to get the same effect. The molasses in the brown sugar can sometimes not produce the flavor you want. I would use the Safale 05, it is very clean especially at the cooler end of the scale. The Mr. Beer yeast would be enough but I found my beers improved when I stopped using that yeast. I did other things to improve my beers at the same time but I haven't used it since.
  22. BDawg62

    Hops for dry hopping

    The best way is to just Google search "Hop Chart" You will get many options to choose from.
  23. BDawg62

    Pumpkin beer attempt

    If there was a lot of puree floating around in the wort that would explain the reading being off. OK, so the odor coupled with the strong dry cider taste sounds like it might probably be some type of infection. If that is the case, there is not much chance of it getting better. It is possible that the pumpkin didn't give you the infection but possibly the pumpkin pie spice because you didn't boil it. Also the pumpkin may have just degraded in the fermenter and basically started to rot. You said you used organic pumpkin puree from a farmers market. It most likely was not cooked like canned pumpkin would be. That would make a difference as well. Use this link https://learn.kegerator.com/off-flavors-in-beer/ and see if you can identify the smell based on these descriptions. Then you can see what the cause is and try to correct it.
  24. BDawg62

    Pumpkin beer attempt

    JD, There is no way with the process you described that your actual OG was 1.118. That is also true if your FG was 1.010. That just will not happen in fermentation with beer yeast. I would need more of a description of the odd smell to help out there. I will say that a pitch at 74 is not really good. Dawg
  25. BDawg62

    yeast starter

    Cato, I use a 2000ml flask and that has never not been big enough. There are many yeast starter calculators out there. I have links to several below, there is also one in the current version of Beersmith. Take a look at them and then just pick one and use that one all the time. That way you have consistency. I used to use the Brewers Friend one but now use the one in Beersmith. https://www.brewersfriend.com/yeast-pitch-rate-and-starter-calculator/ http://www.brewunited.com/yeast_calculator.php http://www.yeastcalculator.com/ I always make my starter on Thursday evening for a Saturday brewday. On Friday evening I take the stir rod out of the flask and put the flask in the refrigerator to cold crash. On Saturday when my boil starts I decant the wort on top of the yeast and then leave it on the counter to warm up to room temperature so that I can pitch when my wort is at pitching temperature. Dawg