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About ruidosobruce

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  1. Congratulations kdjc. You have brewed a beer that you really like. That makes you a very successful brewer. Half of the brewers out here are probably still chasing that goal. So, keep brewing what you like.
  2. I think that the Mr. Beer standard and craft refills all use the same ale yeast. The numbers printed on the yeast packet are the date of manufacture. For example, on your yeast packet, the number 26912 means the yeast was packaged on the 269th day of 2012, which was September 25.
  3. Remember that English real ales, served up from the cellar by hand pumps, are kept and served at 11 - 13°C. The flavor and carbonation will seem much reduced if you serve yours ice cold from the refrigerator.
  4. Your batch seems completely normal. Depending on temperature, three days of very active foam on top is about right. Fermentation will continue for another two weeks, but at a much slower rate. Relax, don't worry, have a homebrew.
  5. Congratulations! The photo of your beer looks great. Nice head. As for temperature, I have lived (and brewed) in Florida, so I know what you are up against. But the LBK in an ice chest works really well, so I encourage you to try that. I use the Blue Ice packs from the grocery store, but many brewers on the forum just freeze a bottle of water. Keep brewing!
  6. To answer your second question, yes, you can definitely buy a 5-gallon kit from your LHBS and divide it into two LBK batches. I have done that many time, with good results.
  7. Welcome to the Mr. Beer community. Both of the extracts that came with your kit can brew good beer. Most of the brewers on the forum would probably add a more malt to the brew. You can order malt SoftPacks from Mr. Beer or you can get dry malt from your LHBS (a half pound of dry malt would be a good addition). The Czech Pilsner extract that you got is patterned after beers like Pilsner Urquell. Although, remember that you are using ale yeast and temperatures, so it won't be a perfect clone. But good beer none the less.
  8. I have brewed several 5-gallon kits from MoreBeer and Northern Brewer by dividing it for the LBK. It worked well for me, and most of it was pretty easy. I have just scaled each of the ingredients by the ratio of 2.13 / 5 with a calculator. Or if you have Beersmith, it will automatically scale it for your LBK volume. Or, you could just brew half, but that will result in a stronger, hoppier beer, which often is OK. I have found it simple to save the remaining ingredients. I put vodka on the LME. The only tricky part is the yeast. Generally, you can't save yeast, even dry yeast, longer than a few days after it is opened.
  9. I'm not sure what happened to losman26's beer, and of course we all hate to see someone have to toss out a batch. But it was definitely NOT the carbonating sugar. I have carbonated 625 bottles of beer with Imperial cane sugar cubes and have never had a flavor or carbonation issue.
  10. I have made the American Ale 13 times, using various additions. Some of my favorites have been the ones (5) where I added 8 to 12 ounces of dry malt (like the BrewMax DME Softpack). I thought the resulting ales were comparable to Bass Ale in color and flavor. A pint of it is in my avatar.
  11. Welcome to brewing. My own experience is that temperature during the conditioning phase is not so critical. I believe that "room temperature" means that if you are comfortable in the room, your bottled beer will be happy. Just give it three or four weeks. Good luck.
  12. +1 to docpc. I use Imperial sugar cubes from the grocery store. They are very inexpensive and each is 1/2 teaspoon. I use 1 cube in a 12-ounce bottle and 3 cubes in a 1-liter bottle. I have always gotten good carbonation and have never had a bottle bomb.
  13. I think any sugar is fine for carbonating. I use sugar cubes, and in 30 batches they have worked fine for me. Early on when I discovered that I had under-primed a few batches, I opened all the bottles in those batches, dropped in an additional sugar cube, and quickly re-capped the bottles. That worked well for me, and later, all the bottles were properly carbonated.
  14. The yeast packets for 5-gallon kits are usually 11.5 grams. I just use half of it, around 5 grams, and save half for the next batch. I have several LBKs so I can do the second half in a few days.
  15. I went the other way. I made 5-gallon batches in glass carboy for a lot of years. Then my son gave me a Mr. Beer kit. Now I have made 30 batches this year in the LBK (local talk for the Mr. Beer fermenter). I love it. I have no problem splitting other kits, like the 5-gallon ones from MoreBeer and others, to fit the LBK. Keep brewing.
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