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About voltronguy

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  1. So I am still trying to get a handle on my full volume boil. I can't say for sure yet if I'll need 60,90, or even 120 minutes to get my volume down. My worry is about the hop additions. A) If I wait too late and all of a sudden my volume is getting close to target I won't get the full boil time in. If the boil takes longer than expected I'm not sure what happens to the flavor. For example I complete my 60 min hop boil and remove them, but perhaps it takes another 30-45 minutes to reach target volume. I'm assuming that option A is worse as an underhopped beer would probably be way too sweet. Any thoughts? Hopefully this will be a short term problem after I get in a few more batches with my new setup. Thanks!
  2. So this year the North Carolina State Fair will include beer judging, and more specifically have a home brewer division. I of course don't expect to come any where close to the top of any style category, but I would love to get "professional" feedback on my beer. Does anyone know if you usually get back some sort of score or notes? Or is it kind of a black hole. Thanks!
  3. Hi All, I'm doing my first all grain with a proper mash tun tomorrow. I've seen plenty of suggestions on the volume of mash and sparge water needed, but not the volume of mash out water. Everything I've read said just add boiling water until the mash temperature reaches 170. That's simple enough but I'm just wondering roughly how much water that might be. My mash volume should be about 1.7 gallons. I'm guessing it's not going to make much? Thanks!
  4. Just want to clarify. You added this to a tube coming out of your boil kettle or wort chiller and used it going directly into the LBK right?
  5. "Gymrat" post=264547 said:Be warned when using 50% wheat I do get stuck sparges. Hmm.. I was thinking of a Hefeweizen as my first brew with this. Is this a common problem with wheat beer, or do you think it's specific to this particular setup?
  6. I'm pretty excited, I got this for my birthday: http://www.northernbrewer.com/shop/deluxe-all-grain-system-5-gallon.html Does anyone have any suggestions on what to use as a first time efficiency in qBrew? I'm thinking of going with 75%. I would rather have that too high and get a lower OG, then get a really high OG. Thanks!
  7. This cooler from WalMart ($18) is perfect for a single LBK and it's actually a nice cooler that you can use for normal purposes: http://www.walmart.com/ip/Igloo-Island-Breeze-48-Quart-Cooler/16437961 Recently they had coolers at the front of the store for the summer, but the main stocks seem to be back in the camping section. Nearby they should have these freezer packs for about $1 each: http://www.walmart.com/ip/Coleman-Blue-Ice-Large/13848706 I've used this setup and it was easy to maintain very low 60's, although it was a pain to change the packs every day.
  8. Another benefit of steeping is that allows you to quickly get a feel for handling the grains and moving into All Grain. I had a similar progression as you, playing with DME for a while, then added steeping as well. I soon realized that AG is not nearly as scary as I thought and I was able to do a MB sized batch without extra equipment, just the nylon bag I had already bought to start steeping.
  9. I started with MrBeer about 5 months ago and have been slowly progressing to more advanced techniques. Today I finally made it to BIAB AG!! I'm particularly proud that I did it without any special equipment. Just used a 12QT pot as both my mash tun and brew kettle and it worked fine. In fact I got way better efficiency than I expected. When I made the recipe I figured I would only get 50%, but it seems like I got 65%. So my only real problem is that my OG is much higher than I expected, but that's not such a big deal. I've adjusted QBrew to account for this so hopefully my next batch will be closer to target. I started with a super simple Kolsch recipe. I'm looking forward to what comes next!! :chug:
  10. "oly" post=250584 said: Obviously you are pretty limited with a 3 gallon pot, but I would also suggest a higher liquor to grain ratio if you have the room. A thinner mash can give you higher efficiency, partly because of the fact that it allows the grain to float more freely, and have better exposure to the water and amylase enzymes that convert it. Since I'm limited in volume, is it better to simply start with more water in the mash at the expense of sparge volume? I can also take the water I was going to use in step 10 and contribute it to the mash and sparge, but we're only talking about an extra 3 quarts probably.
  11. OK, here has been my progression: -standard MB HMEUME -MB HMEUME plus hops, and liquid yeast -DME, MB HMEUME, liquid yeast -specialty grain steep, DME, MB HMEUME, hop boil, liquid yeast I'm ready to do my next batch without any MB ingredient. I am limited to a 12 QT brew kettle. I'm thinking of doing a Kolsch as it has an extremely simple ingredient list. I think my plans are really the same, it just comes down to whether I can get enough efficiency out of the mash, and if I would need DME as a supplement or not. Here is my general plan. 1. heat water to 158 (approx 1 qt per # of grain) 2. heat oven to 170 3. add grains to bag and add to 158 water,stir, cover 4. turn off heat to oven, and place mash tun in oven for 45 minutes 5. heat second pot to 170 with 4 quarts water 5. after 45 minutes remove mash tun from oven, lift grain bag from mash tun and let drain 6. place grain bag in colander over mash tun 7. sparge slowly with 4 quarts of 170 degree water 8. (OPTIONAL) add DME if doing partial mash 9. add water to bring to just under 3 gallons (assumes will retain about 80% of total volume after 60 min boil and hit the target 2.5 LBK size, I probably should test this assumption!). 10. hop additions OK, so I'll make a second post about the actual recipe, but my main questions are procedural. Does all of the above look right? Do you think I will get a decent efficiency from AG using this method? I've been using 50% as an efficiency in QBrew to draw up some recipes. I suppose I could take a gravity reading of the mash and if it's way low have some emergency DME on hand? Thanks, I'm so excited, I never would have thought I would be close to AG in only about 5 months of doing this hobby.
  12. Thanks! Looking in the LBK today it's like a hurricane, looks like all that sediment is circulating nicely around.
  13. So I did a partial boil with a gallon of water, steeped Carapils and light DME. After flameout I added two cans of ADIPA. I chilled the whole thing in my sink but I think I went a bit too far, I forget the exact temp but it was probably about 62 or so. When I took the lid off to add it to the LBK I noticed it had separated a bit. You can see it in the hyrdo pic below. [attachment=7675]IMAG0180.jpg[/attachment] Is this just the extra hop particles in ADIPA, or does over chilling cause this? Should it go back into solution as the temp comes back up? I stirred it up like crazy when I pitched.
  14. genotype wrote: Though I have not yet used it, I've heard such good things about the Sorachi Ace aroma. If I was cooking up your recipe, I would probably switch the two hop selections. Just make sure to dry hop for the last 5-7 days of fermentation, or at least wait until primary fermentation is complete. The CO2 released can scrub some of the aroma. Yeah, the descriptions I've read of Sorachi sound good. So if I switch them I guess I would go with 0.5oz Cascade in the boil, and 1oz dry hop Sorachi? The reason I did the 0.5oz for the short boil was I was targeting around 60 IBU. I don't have a good pallet for this yet, but it looks like most commercial IPA's are around 60, so I thought that was a safe spot.
  15. Hi All, I really like IPA's, but I'm not a hop head, and don't like it really bitter. I'm going to brew up a basic IPA with ADIPA and I was thinking to do very little in the boil and do some dry hopping as well. I love citrusy hop aroma so I'm hoping I've made a good choices here. Let me know what you think about the quantity in particular. Is 1oz way too much for a dry hop in an LBK? IPA --- Brewer: voltronguy Style: American IPA Batch: 2.13 galExtract Characteristics --------------- Recipe Gravity: 1.066 OG Recipe Bitterness: 60 IBU Recipe Color: 11° SRM Estimated FG: 1.016 Alcohol by Volume: 6.4% Alcohol by Weight: 5.0% Ingredients ----------- CaraPils - [body, Head] 0.50 lb, Grain, Steeped Extra Light DME 1.00 lb, Extract, Extract MrB. American Devil IPA 1.22 lb, Extract, Extract MrB. American Devil IPA 1.22 lb, Extract, Extract Cascade 1.00 oz, Pellet, 0 minutes MrB. American Devil IPA 1.00 oz, Pellet, 5 minutes MrB. American Devil IPA 1.00 oz, Pellet, 5 minutes Sorachi Ace 0.50 oz, Pellet, 10 minutes
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