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Everything posted by Cato

  1. Yeah, i take mine from the spigot after stirring the wort real good to mix and aerate, to get my OG. I use a squeeze bottle with sanitizer to jet up into the spigot several times to clean it. I take it again after cold crashing and let it sit while I bottle, so it will warm up to room temp so I can get my FG. I always sanitize the hydrometer and tube before using since I return the sample for OG. For FG I sanitize as well, but I drink that sample after bottling.
  2. @RickBeer, not sure if you use Qbrew or not, but I've just been checking it out and trying a few test recipes using MB HME for PM. Regarding the gravity on the post here on the craft and regular refills being 1.036, would the Brewmax LME pack carry the same gravity?
  3. Ah, thanks for clarifying that Rickbeer! Makes perfect sense though just like tap and dies must match.
  4. Cool, I for some reason thought Dos Equis and Negra Modelo were produced by the same company, but after Googling they are not. Glad that the Negra Modelo capped okay and I'll have to add them back into my okay to buy list!!
  5. Might want to check your modelo's as they might use a different bell size, i think thats the term, than the US beers. I know Dos Equis do and won't cap with my MB hand capper. Lol, I do love my Dos Equis, but switched to Devils Backbone vienna lager a couple months ago to build up a supply. I just soak my DB bottles in hot water and unscented 7th gen dish soap. In four hours most peel right off, especially if i hold them under some hot running water while removing.
  6. I know this is an old thread but glad I found it this morning searching threads about Qbrew! I downloaded it recently along with the screwybrewer MB HME data. Since I've just started brewing PM recipes, I've just been practicing with Qbrew building PM recipes to see how additions affect OG. I'll make the corrections to my database for the craft refills. I'm not familiar with Beersmith but sounds like a similar program.
  7. Wow, Congrats on that!! I'm just learning about saisons and have my first one still conditioning for another week before I can sample one.
  8. I tend to ferment at the low end most of the time except for saison. Probably still a bit gun shy from my first two batches before I learned about temp control!!
  9. Received my order of The Best Haze of our Lives today and looking forward to adding this one into my queue. Looking at the picture I hadn't realized that the Barbarian yeast is in liquid form and the pack is about the size of a brewmax LME!! @MRB Josh R I'm guessing this combo of 2 HME's and the Barbarian yeast is a good candidate for LBK overflow!
  10. The printable instructions link for this recipe, may still need correction.
  11. Okay will remember that for in the future for sure. Was brewing the Calavera chile stout recipe and in the fermenter now so it'll be 3 weeks before I know whether that has caused any off flavor or not and still have to add the vanilla and cinnamon. Hope its not going to be a screwed up batch, but I'll definitely taste test it before bottling, so I'll know whether its worth the keeping.
  12. Thanks Rickbeer! Explains the dust in the bags. Does that effect the freshness of the grains?
  13. I brewed the Calavera stout recipe the other day, that calls for black malt, and chocolate malt. The grains in those two were quite a bit different looking than the grains in my Carapils. @MRB Josh R I hand crushed the Carapils but the black and chocolate malt grains looked more like Folgers Crystals in their freeze dried coffee, than actual grains. I went ahead and lighly hand crushed them, but was wondering if that was necessary since they appeared to already have gone through some processing stage?
  14. Figured about another week and a half those PETS ought to firm up considerably and try one then.
  15. @Creeps McLane, that Saison seems to be carbing okay. Bottled on 4-7 and checked the PETS this morning and they are getting firmer but not rock hard stage yet, so seems about on par with other batches, lol, although 1/2 the primer!
  16. Cato

    Cold fermenting

    A camping cooler with a frozen pint of water works great, but since you have a wine fridge, you could tape a sponge or folded cloth to the flat backside of your LBK and put a temp probe between them below the wort line. That way you'll get a closer reading of wort temp and not ambient. Then adjust your fridge cooling if you can to keep the wort in the 65 degree range. For 35-40 bucks you could get an inkbird temp controller for that wine fridge and be good to go.
  17. Brewed my, not Santa Catalina, yesterday (4-11-18) and did sub the Mosaic and pitched with US-05. My first batch using the mini fridge and inkbird. Perved on it this morning and it's just getting some krausen. Mosaic smelled great when I opened the door. Now I have 3 weeks to come up with a name!
  18. Lol, @Creeps McLane on a roll! Guess I'm odd man out, but I like these little LBK'S and producing a couple batches every 3 weeks. Storage would get to be a problem if I started going larger as I have other hobbies that take up space.
  19. Thanks, yes have been insulating my probe on the back of my LBK in my cooler as well to read the wort temp. Although the coolers have worked very well for temp control, I'm really looking forward to the convenience of the fridge set-up.
  20. Thanks, and good to know about increasing the compressor time!
  21. @D Kristof and @RickBeer I have a dorm style fridge being delivered tomorrow, Monday, and got the Inkbird in on Sat. Did you set your fridge thermostat for maximum cooling and then let the Inkbird control it from there? I'm thinking of setting my temp for 64 or 65 with a 1 deg temp differential and I guess leaving the compressor protection at the 3min. default?
  22. Yes, Shrike, part of my reason for alternating the PA's as they are generally hoppier and so a bit shorter conditioning than a lot of the dark ales. Lol, though any pipeline gaps are good reason to add to the bottle supply from commercial craft brews.
  23. Cato


    I just print mine on paper and then just tape each end to glass or PET bottle. For most of my glass though I just use a marker on the bottle cap, unless it's for presentation, the I'll tape a label on it.
  24. For varieties sake I try to alternate a PA/IPA in a LBK and a dark or amber in the other one. Sounds simple enough and would be but I love my dark beers and tend to stock more of those when I order.
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