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Picoc57

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About Picoc57

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  1. I don't agree at all. The LBK is designed with VENTS in the threads of the lid - go take a look. These vents are designed to let out pressure so the LBK doesn't explode, and also they allow out liquid IF the fermentation gets active. Both Bewitched Amber Ale AND Winter Dark did so for me and many others. I often split a 5 gallon batch between two LBKs and the fermentation overflows through the vent. This has been discussed many times on the forum - please don't give out incorrect information or raise concerns about defects or leaking spigots. I don't agree at all. The LBK is designed with VENTS in the threads of the lid - go take a look. These vents are designed to let out pressure so the LBK doesn't explode, and also they allow out liquid IF the fermentation gets active. Both Bewitched Amber Ale AND Winter Dark did so for me and many others. I often split a 5 gallon batch between two LBKs and the fermentation overflows through the vent. This has been discussed many times on the forum - please don't give out incorrect information or raise concerns about defects or leaking spigots. Oh, where was the incorrect information? He losing fluid, check the obvious places first, spigot it area and seams of the LBK, THAT IS IN THE INSTRUCTIONS, YOU ARE INSTRUCTED TO TEST THE LBK! And that had not been determined. There is no incorrect information given. I have been experimenting with all kinds of fruit beers, all have very aggressive fermentation and with 3 LBK I have yet to see one discharge fluid from the lid area. Check the obvious before moving to other possibilities, problem solving 101. If your fermentation is forcing liquid out the vents, then something is wrong with the procedure you are following. But step one is to determine if the LBK was assembled properly and is not defective, no incorrect information given, care to guess what step 2 would be in solving why he is losing fluid? Or would you rather you have a solution before you determined the true problem?
  2. Keep us updated on your results, I am getting ready to brew my first IPA and I'm interested in how your IPA turns out. I wish we had a Forum called "Results" great place to show off our beers, pictures are great too. As for foaming action I have had only one batch that did not "foam" greatly, but the beer turned out fine. I am thinking maybe you did not introduce enough oxygen to the wort before pitching the yeast? The more oxygen in the wort the better the yeast does its job. Or it could be the temperature where you have the LBK is under 65F degrees? Cooler temperatures delay the fermentation. I always check the best before date also, if its old yeast it might take longer to kick off. Let us know.
  3. I'm sounding like a broken record here. Patience is the key. I'd rather wait a couple of weeks than drink "green" beer. With that said you can always try one at one or two weeks, then another at 3 weeks, etc, etc. That was a great suggestion to educate your palate. The darker the beer, the longer I condition it. But, even light beers benefit when the conditioning period is extended. The color and clarity will definitely improve. My SVR Honey Gold Ale after 3 weeks was nice yellow color, now after almost 6 weeks its a nice gold color. When I first tasted it was "okay" I will be trying another bottle this weekend and I hope it has improved to exceptional. The first taste was a let down, I was too eager to try my "first" recipe, one that I devised. Good luck.
  4. I did do a search and didn't really find an answer. I brewed the Cherries Jubil Ale a week ago and at the one week mark I added the hops, mulling spices, sack and the pureed cans of cherries. I was concerned about the instructions of sanitizing the hop sack, I didn't want the sack soaking in the sanitizing solution, so instead I boiled a huge pot of water and sterilized all my brewing utensils and blender in the boiling water for 5 minutes or so, then threw in the filled hop sack for a couple of minutes. I pureed the cherries in the sterilized blender, added that in the LBK along with the sterile hop sack. So what is the different between using the sanitizer or sterilizing everything? Would any rogue yeast or bacteria survive an immersion in boiling water for over 5 minutes? I have never sanitized a hop sack, just added to the boiling water before I removed it from the heat, let it sit for a couple of minutes before adding the HME and any LME, DME or booster. I have up to this point have always used the sanitizing solution. So lets hear your thoughts.
  5. I have never gone past 17 days of fermentation. I have a hydrometer, but never use it, or I haven't used it in many, many years. I am not concerned, 17 days seems perfect for Mr. Beer recipes. I also cold crash it for 2 days, which is mainly to solidify the trub so I don't bottle it. The hydrometer will also let you calculate ABV if you have a need to know. Basically if it tastes like beer after 2 weeks plus, its ready for bottling. I brew for the 3 Cs as I call it, Color, Clarity and Carbonation. On Mr. Beer recipes the taste has been up to this point to my liking. I even liked the Dark Forest Stout and I am not a fan of stouts. Lagering and conditioning the beers really affects the taste and feel of the beers, that's my opinion, if you're doing the 2-2-2 method you most likely not be very impressed by the taste, especially if have an experienced palate. The beer pictured in my profile was brewed 2-2 and tasted after 2, it was good, after 4 weeks, it was again in my opinion, exceptional. My brewing tasting have gotten good reviews. Patience is the key.
  6. It is in all likelihood leaking around the spigot, if you assembled the spigot incorrectly, specifically the gasket/washer it will leak. It is doubtful that it came from the lid, I have heard stories of leakage from the seam on the LBK, which would be a manufacturing flaw. Did you assemble the LBK filled it water and let it sit on a dry towel for 15 minutes to an hour to check for leakage?
  7. I have yet to let any batch ferment 3 weeks, I go 17 days, cold crash for 2 (everyone does 3), prime in the bottle, and let it carbonate for 3 weeks at 68F, then lager for 3 to 18 weeks at 55F, then chill for at 37.5F for 2 weeks. I have yet to have a "bad" batch. I have had one "okay" batch, my own recipe and one that I screwed up my bottling process (PET 1 liter bottles) where I did not add enough priming sugar, but used my soda siphon as a mini keg and carbonated that way. Just read the instructions several times, make sure you sanitize EVERYTHING and be patient. The old adage "haste makes waste" is very true in brewing.
  8. The only time I had a carbonation failure was my fault, I missed the priming sugar on 3 of the PET bottles. As for cold crashing I think 48 hours is plenty, I have never gone 72, you must make sure will it is carbonating after cold crashing that you maintain at least 68F for at least 2 weeks, the longer the better. I always lager for 3 weeks at 55F then chill for 2 weeks at 37.5F. Then serve.
  9. Robert I used pumpkin puree from a can, right after the adding the HME, then added in mulling spices which had ginger and citrus peel in it and stir it well before adding to the LBK.
  10. I prefer glass. Like you said sanitize EVERYTHING, caps too! I never bother with mixing the priming sugar to make a solution, just add the sugar directly into the bottle, then once capped, tip the bottle end over end gently 3 or 4 times. I like it carbonate for 2 to 3 weeks at room temperature, the lager it for 3 weeks to 8 weeks at 55F, then chill at 37,5F for two weeks. I bottle directly from the LBK, which I have placed the lid of the HME can under the spout end after 17 days the trub is petty firm I remove the lid and bottle. I have the auto bottle filler which I haven't used, I just pour down the side of the bottle from the spout. I just cold crashed my first batch, I have had pretty good results clarity even without cold crash, with this batch I used a mix of fresh blueberries and blueberry pie filling, that I added to the boiling water, then removed it from the heat then stirred in the HME, I wanted to make sure all the fruit particles where settled down, I only cold crashed for 2 days. .
  11. Thanks Robert and Fred. During the taste testing one taster said of the Dark Forest Stout "I would order this" Another thought if I could brew a larger batch of it I could convince the local pub to offer it. I'm not a fan of stout, I don't like the "feel" of it on my palate, but I liked this one. It was a let down for me personally that my own recipe was "just okay", that was my review, it disappeared quickly with the testers. The Pumpkin Lager was WAY better than the swill they served at this micro brewery called The Lucky Monk. I'm experimenting with fruity beers, I have a blueberry ale conditioning as we speak, and will be brewing the Cherries Jubil Ale tomorrow, wish me luck. I have 3 LBKs now, hoping Target will blow the remaining stock out soon like they did last year, I picked up two Mr. Beer kits for $22.00
  12. If there are HME kits that you don't have to boil water, I would not buy them, just an invitation for disaster. The fruit in the can has been boiled or steamed or sanitized in some fashion, vacuumed packed before its canned so safe to add to the wort, adding it to the LBK one week after pitching yeast (Cherries Jubil Ale) really worries me, you lose the postive pressure in the LBK which keeps the pollutants out. Chasing higher ABV is good for experienced brewers, for brewers figuring this all out, go for taste, color and clarity, that's my opinion. I also chase the elusive head retention and good lacing.
  13. Any time you open the LBK after the fermentation has started you run the brisk of contamination. So why risk it? That's what I was speaking to, as for the HME going bad in the cans, that would take a very long time for the cans to break down, I think the HME is vacuumed packed. The sugars would still be in there, would they not? So no matter how how it is you would get a minimum of 3.5% ABV, you might get more, hard to believe 2% especially with the cans 2014 best before dates, I would be more worried about the yeast.
  14. WOW! How much of the trub went into the flask? I just posted up pictures of my other batches (without cold crashing) they are still very clear. I am condition my latest which I cold crashed for 2 days before bottling at 68F, it will be three weeks on Saturday, then I will lager it at 55F at for 3 weeks, then 2 weeks at 37F. Then I'll post pictures.
  15. My profile picture is the American Classic Light, my first batch after a 30 year hiatus.
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