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bigntall1983

newbie question- should I be worried?

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So i and in the middle of my first batch, Classic American Lager, today is day 14 in the LBK. I picked up a beat up mini fridge from facebook market place, and I got the Inkbird temp controller.

 

I have not observed any activity besides trub collecting on the bottom, approx 1/8 inch, but from what I have read here that everything should be fine. I pitched at 65 degrees wort temp, put in minifridge with controller at 63-65 for the first 3 days then bumped it up to 66-68. I have the Inkbird probe taped to the side under foam and bubble wrap.  I checked on it today and there is mold growing on the LBK (see pic) and on the back side of the lid. There is also a lot of condensation inside the fridge. It has been very humid here the past week and the house has been warm. When transferring the wort from pan to LBK I did spill some down this side, but i wiped it off

 

 Do I need to be worried? Can I just clean off the mold and let it ride?

 

2z57oeo.jpg2wh1369.jpg

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I'll take a shot at this one. I wouldn't worry about it too much since it's on the outside of the LBK. You definitely want to clean it off. I'd do the same type of cleaning that you do with the inside. Unscented soap and a soft cloth or sponge. Then wipe it off with a wet cloth. Do not rinse it off just in case some water were to make it into the LBK. Be careful not to push in the side of the LBK while cleaning. When it expands again it may suck air in which you definitely wouldn't want in this case. 

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I might go so far as saying that since you're at day fourteen don't even bother cleaning it up. You will be bottling in about 7 to 8 days anyway. Given where the mold is located based upon your pictures, it should have no influence on your beer whatsoever and is probably best attended to after bottling. Any cleaning you do will probably disturb your wort and the trub located on the bottom of the LBK and I would think that would be more detrimental than just some mold on the outside of your LBK.

 

Just my $0.02. YMMV!

 

RDWHAHB! :lol:

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I would not be too worried about the beer inside the LBK, but I will be if you bottle as is. The fridge has mold spores in it. Those mold spores will also be on the spout you will be bottling with. If it was my LBK, I would gently remove it from the fridge and wipe it down. I would also clean thst fridge.

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Gently wipe it off. No need to get fancy. A bit of water and a paper towel is fine.

 

The reason you want to get it cleaned off is that if it is mold, it might grow more. And while it is not threatening the beer inside, you are going to be handling the LBK at bottling. No need to risk cross contamination. 


When you are done bottling this, wipe down the inside of the fridge as well.

 

My fridge does what yours does, it gets warm and humid, almost musty, before the temp kicks in to cool things down.

--

ADDITION EDIT - like @D Kristof said, make sure you sanitize the spout before bottling. Again, no need to get fancy, clean it wipe it down with some vodka. You could do that with the outside of the LBK too before bottling.

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Thanks for the info guys! I will make sure to sanitize the spout at bottling. I did wipe the outside of the LBK gently with damp rag to get the mold off. I will keep a closer eye on it this week. It did seem to pop up over a night or two.

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Funny that this post is here now b/c I noticed some mold in the airlock on my Barleywine.  Only thing I can think of is that some wort must've gotten up in there.  I CAREFULLY removed the airlock, tossed it, and put a new one in (this one had some sanitizer in it).  Didn't bother to check the beer--Rick would be proud of me.  This still has another 3mths in the bucket so I better keep an eye on it.  

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I would carefully lick it off, if it has a spoungey sour taste then it's ok you will live, the beer inside the LBK will be fine too, but yes, at least make sure the spigot is definitely sanitized properly. I've seen some guys on youtube even soak a q-tip in sanitizer and gently swab the inside of the spigot

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2 hours ago, HoppySmile! said:

 

 

but yes, at least make sure the spigot is definitely sanitized properly. I've seen some guys on youtube even soak a q-tip in sanitizer and gently swab the inside of the spigot

Precisely what I would do. Wiping down the outside only would be pointless.

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you might want to wipe down the inside of the fridge with a mild bleach solution too in case mold spores latched onto it.  you might consider getting a DAMP-RID container and putting it on the bottom shelf to act as a kind of dehumidifier. bad thing is that youll likely have to constantly dump it and add more damprid. don't know how effective it would be.. just a thought.

 

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OK so no more mold has appeared yet. With monday being day 21, do all of you do like the MR Beer instructions say and taste a sample at day 21 to see if its beer or still sweet?

 

Also I am going to cold crash for 3 days before bottling, should I taste before I cold crash?

 

 

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Definitely take a sampler to see if it tastes like flat beer. Cold crash is always the last step before bottling, so definitely take a sampler before cold crash. 

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Taste is not always reliable, Depending on beer type it might still taste sweet when done.

Best way is to take readings with hydrometer or refractometer before/after fermentation.

I don't always do that (despite RickBeer's enthusiastic encouragement) but it is the best to ensure good results.

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Live it up. Take a shot-glass sized sample before AND after cold-crashing. It's part of the educational experience. Seems to me the one I take after the cold-crash bears a lot of resemblance to the finished product.

 

Jim

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if you do a bottling sample never judge your beer at bottling time. your sample will have lots of yeast and be unconditioned so it will taste a little funky. also be prepared if you drink a larger sample for excessive tummy gas at the least , and the squirts with cramps at the most if you aren't used to ingesting yeast. the little buggers get into your stomach and intestines and have a field day eating anything left floating around in your gut.  on the plus side yeast are high in vitamin b's...

 

I recall my first trub bottle that I sampled. lol...  they should market it for weight loss. crap yourself to the new and exciting you!

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On 7/18/2017 at 3:21 PM, HoppySmile! said:

I would carefully lick it off, if it has a spoungey sour taste then it's ok you will live, the beer inside the LBK will be fine too, but yes, at least make sure the spigot is definitely sanitized properly. I've seen some guys on youtube even soak a q-tip in sanitizer and gently swab the inside of the spigot

 lets not and say I did..

 

On 7/21/2017 at 8:47 AM, Nickfixit said:

Taste is not always reliable, Depending on beer type it might still taste sweet when done.

Best way is to take readings with hydrometer or refractometer before/after fermentation.

I don't always do that (despite RickBeer's enthusiastic encouragement) but it is the best to ensure good results.

I was in such a rush to get my first batch started I did not get a hydrometer until it was already in the LBK for a week or so, I have one now so I will be taking readings from now on.

 

20 hours ago, zorak1066 said:

if you do a bottling sample never judge your beer at bottling time. your sample will have lots of yeast and be unconditioned so it will taste a little funky. also be prepared if you drink a larger sample for excessive tummy gas at the least , and the squirts with cramps at the most if you aren't used to ingesting yeast. the little buggers get into your stomach and intestines and have a field day eating anything left floating around in your gut.  on the plus side yeast are high in vitamin b's...

 

I recall my first trub bottle that I sampled. lol...  they should market it for weight loss. crap yourself to the new and exciting you!

I think i will just take a SMALL sample HA! I drink enough coffee every day that I dont need extra help in "losing" extra bowel content

 

 

Again, thank you for all of the comments, I am taking them all into consideration for future batches

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hydrometers are great but there is the tendency to test and test and test... and lose volumes of beer before its done.  unless you sanitize the hydrometer and dump the sample back, you diminish the final volume.  you could drink your sample but again... yeast gut isn't fun.

 

I would give it 3 weeks... take a single hydrometer sample.  . . unless it is way off expected final grav.  remember adding things like lactose will impact your final gravity.  lactose bumps it up due to un-fermentable sugars. .. if youre using a saison yeast, it is not uncommon for the buggers to drop your final grav below 1.01  .  bottle too soon and you can get bottle bombs.  I always ferment my saisons warm and about 2 days before bottling bump up the heat a  little more.  bella saison is a monster. 

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i started the cold crash today, well at least i turned my inkbird down to 36... have to see if the beat up mini-fridge i picked up cheap will get that cold. If not the wife my be giving up a shelf in the fridge for a couple days =p

 

 

Update: just got home from work and the inkbird is reading 37, so it took approx 10 hrs to drop from 66-68. Does that sound about normal?

 

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6 hours ago, bigntall1983 said:

i started the cold crash today, well at least i turned my inkbird down to 36... have to see if the beat up mini-fridge i picked up cheap will get that cold. If not the wife my be giving up a shelf in the fridge for a couple days =p

 

 

Update: just got home from work and the inkbird is reading 37, so it took approx 10 hrs to drop from 66-68. Does that sound about normal?

 

There are several unanswerable questions to be able to say one way or another.... On the normal, possibly depending on the heat load in the fridge and size of fridge various other factors.... (insert technical jargon here) The other side of this is did it really take 10hrs or was it down to temp in a couple hours and you just weren't there to see it and when you looked you were just a degree off set point as does happen during normal operation.... (and yes, I am a professional I do heating, cooling, and refrigeration for a living.... 12 years and running....)

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On 7/22/2017 at 9:57 PM, bigntall1983 said:

 I was in such a rush to get my first batch started I did not get a hydrometer until it was already in the LBK for a week or so, I have one now so I will be taking readings from now on.

 

 

I bought a refractometer for my OG readings.  The volume in an LBK is small enough that I only want one hydrometer reading's worth lost.  One drop with a refractometer and about 1/2 - 3/4 of a cup for the hydro.  That gets sipped as I'm bottling once I read the FG and make any corrections.

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2 hours ago, C-ya said:

 

I bought a refractometer for my OG readings.  The volume in an LBK is small enough that I only want one hydrometer reading's worth lost.  One drop with a refractometer and about 1/2 - 3/4 of a cup for the hydro.  That gets sipped as I'm bottling once I read the FG and make any corrections.

I, like many of my big time brewer friends, have our refractometers collecting dust.  I don't trust it, thus I don't use it and I was quite happy when I heard I wasn't the only one :)

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4 hours ago, hotrod3539 said:

There are several unanswerable questions to be able to say one way or another.... On the normal, possibly depending on the heat load in the fridge and size of fridge various other factors.... (insert technical jargon here) The other side of this is did it really take 10hrs or was it down to temp in a couple hours and you just weren't there to see it and when you looked you were just a degree off set point as does happen during normal operation.... (and yes, I am a professional I do heating, cooling, and refrigeration for a living.... 12 years and running....)

 

 

Very good point. Im still trying to get used to 3rd shift, i was pretty beat when I posted and didnt consider that possibility lol

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1 hour ago, kedogn said:

I, like many of my big time brewer friends, have our refractometers collecting dust.  I don't trust it, thus I don't use it and I was quite happy when I heard I wasn't the only one :)

 

When I first got mine, I calibrated it and compared it to the hydrometer.  It was always within a point of the hydro, and both were within a point or so of the recipe if the OG was given, or what the brew program calculated.  After that, I quit wasting wort in the hydro and used the refractometer.  Is it 100% right?  Probably not.  Do I care?  Absolutely not!  I like to have an idea of the ABV, but I don't need to prove that it is correct in a lab or a court.

 

With 5 gal batches, I wouldn't mind a hydro at both ends of fermentation.  I'll probably do both as a check on each of them for OG.

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I love my refractometer, use it all the time. So handy for pre boil gravitys and OG. Maybe im just not a big time brewer. Its a great tool for measuring the progression of my wort on brew day

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I'm on the fence on refractometer use. I never hit my target OG using it. I only discovered much later that the wort settles and gravity will vary at different locations in the pot... to give it a stir before testing.   I do like that you only need a drop of wort. 

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18 hours ago, Creeps McLane said:

I love my refractometer, use it all the time. So handy for pre boil gravitys and OG. Maybe im just not a big time brewer. Its a great tool for measuring the progression of my wort on brew day

 

Same here. I'm constantly checking the gravity and pH when I brew AG. My refractometer is probably the most important tool I have to be sure I hit my numbers.

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Sooooo I had to push bottling off until tomorrow, so 4 days of cold crashing.

 

Quick question, my A/C is on the fritz so it is 75-85 degrees in the house depending on the time of day. If I leave the bottles in those temps to bottle condition/carb will it be ok? Classic American Lager is the MR Beer extract.

 

I think my only other option will be to store the bottles in the mini fridge (after cleaning it out) at 70degrees to condition, at least until we can get someone out to fix the air, also there is a Free-on shortage in our area... so there are quite a few of us in my town that need their systems re-charged and we are on a waiting list, they said it could take up to 1 month to get more in... wonderful >.<

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27 minutes ago, bigntall1983 said:

Sooooo I had to push bottling off until tomorrow, so 4 days of cold crashing.

 

Quick question, my A/C is on the fritz so it is 75-85 degrees in the house depending on the time of day. If I leave the bottles in those temps to bottle condition/carb will it be ok? Classic American Lager is the MR Beer extract.

 

I think my only other option will be to store the bottles in the mini fridge (after cleaning it out) at 70degrees to condition, at least until we can get someone out to fix the air, also there is a Free-on shortage in our area... so there are quite a few of us in my town that need their systems re-charged and we are on a waiting list, they said it could take up to 1 month to get more in... wonderful >.<

You will be more than fine. Good luck sleeping in that sweat box though. 

 

Where do you live? Maybe @hotrod3539 can help a brew brother out?

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6 minutes ago, Creeps McLane said:

You will be more than fine. Good luck sleeping in that sweat box though. 

 

Where do you live? Maybe @hotrod3539 can help a brew brother out?

 

Good to hear, I was worried if the heat had the same effect during conditioning as during fermentation with off flavors and such.

 

We picked up a couple window units to make it bearable. but its still hot just not stifling. We are in NE Indiana

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14 minutes ago, bigntall1983 said:

Bottled my first batch this morning! I ended up with 10 1/2 of the 750ml bottles.

20464880_10156351620582506_804629564_o.jpg

20472585_10156351620542506_355308833_o.jpg

Congratulations!  It's a beer!!!   ???

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1 minute ago, AnthonyC said:

Congratulations!  It's a beer!!!   ???

Now just 4 weeks and 3ish days until I can see if it is drinkable =p :D:D

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45 minutes ago, bigntall1983 said:

Now just 4 weeks and 3ish days until I can see if it is drinkable =p :D:D

The wait is actually the hardest part!  Hang in there & be strong.  ??

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1 hour ago, bigntall1983 said:

Now just 4 weeks and 3ish days until I can see if it is drinkable =p :D:D

 

Oh, it's drinkable! No worries there.

 

The question is after the first drink will you keel over, grasping your throat, and then raise one had to the heavens and rasp out "why mr beer, why?" and then fade away to become part of the Big LBK.

 

And the likelihood of that is very small.

 

You're beer is going to be fine. And even if it's not, that is what the next batch is for!

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8 hours ago, MrWhy said:

 

Oh, it's drinkable! No worries there.

 

The question is after the first drink will you keel over, grasping your throat, and then raise one had to the heavens and rasp out "why mr beer, why?" and then fade away to become part of the Big LBK.

 

And the likelihood of that is very small.

 

You're beer is going to be fine. And even if it's not, that is what the next batch is for!

 

'

LOVE IT!

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23 hours ago, bigntall1983 said:

Sooooo I had to push bottling off until tomorrow, so 4 days of cold crashing.

 

Quick question, my A/C is on the fritz so it is 75-85 degrees in the house depending on the time of day. If I leave the bottles in those temps to bottle condition/carb will it be ok? Classic American Lager is the MR Beer extract.

 

I think my only other option will be to store the bottles in the mini fridge (after cleaning it out) at 70degrees to condition, at least until we can get someone out to fix the air, also there is a Free-on shortage in our area... so there are quite a few of us in my town that need their systems re-charged and we are on a waiting list, they said it could take up to 1 month to get more in... wonderful >.<

 

I am betting the Refrigerant (Freon is a brand name that kinda grabbed as the common term for refrigerant like Channel Locks being the common term for a type of pliers are a brand name.. the actual term is slip joint pliers... but i digress...) that is in demand is R22..... the shortage is gonna get worse and worse... they are Phasing that one out and if i remember right it is now on the not in production list...

 

22 hours ago, Creeps McLane said:

You will be more than fine. Good luck sleeping in that sweat box though. 

 

Where do you live? Maybe @hotrod3539 can help a brew brother out?

 

Always willing to help a brew brother out if i am able...

 

22 hours ago, bigntall1983 said:

 

Good to hear, I was worried if the heat had the same effect during conditioning as during fermentation with off flavors and such.

 

We picked up a couple window units to make it bearable. but its still hot just not stifling. We are in NE Indiana

 

Something is better than nothing...lol I am on the east side of central ohio... your a bit out of range for me....lol

 

11 hours ago, bigntall1983 said:

Bottled my first batch this morning! I ended up with 10 1/2 of the 750ml bottles.

20464880_10156351620582506_804629564_o.jpg

20472585_10156351620542506_355308833_o.jpg

 

Congrats on your first!! It is the start of plenty more to come!

 

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45 minutes ago, hotrod3539 said:

 

I am betting the Refrigerant (Freon is a brand name that kinda grabbed as the common term for refrigerant like Channel Locks being the common term for a type of pliers are a brand name.. the actual term is slip joint pliers... but i digress...) that is in demand is R22..... the shortage is gonna get worse and worse... they are Phasing that one out and if i remember right it is now on the not in production list...

 

 

Always willing to help a brew brother out if i am able...

 

 

Something is better than nothing...lol I am on the east side of central ohio... your a bit out of range for me....lol

 

 

Congrats on your first!! It is the start of plenty more to come!

 

 

 

you are absolutely correct. The HVAC guy came out today. Our system was made to use R22, which is no longer manufactured like you said. He put in R44, said that was made to work in the R22 systems as a replacement. We also had a blown capacitor, R22 was only a little low he said. The house is back to a comfortable 70ish

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1 hour ago, bigntall1983 said:

 

 

you are absolutely correct. The HVAC guy came out today. Our system was made to use R22, which is no longer manufactured like you said. He put in R44, said that was made to work in the R22 systems as a replacement. We also had a blown capacitor, R22 was only a little low he said. The house is back to a comfortable 70ish

He is correct, R44 is whats known as a "drop in" replacement meaning there is no component or oil changing that needs done in order to use it in the system (except one thing i will mention in a min.) and it has very close to the same pressures and capacitiy of R22.  Heres the one thing.......and i hope your tech did things proper and removed the remaining R22 in the system and pulled a proper vacuum before putting in the R44, is here in the US it is not lawful to mix refrigerants. It is a violation of EPA standards and rules. If he just "topped off" the system with the R44 that is a big no no in the industry, that said, it poses no risk to your equipment or you if he did just top it off as the two refrigerants will be fine together per the manufacturer of the R44 in tests done in Europe. ***** Steps down from soapbox****  ( I have been in the HVAC trade for 12 years and running....) 

 

Glad you are back to a comfortable temp! Bad capacitors happen and are generally a cheap and simple fix.

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20170827_174648.jpg

20170827_174700.jpg

20170827_174709.jpg

 

well 4 full weeks bottle conditioning/carbing and  2.5 days in fridge.. its drinkable.. but not good LOL!  I have only opened the 1/2 full bottle which was the last out of the LBK, had a nice hiss sound when i opened it, but very little in the glass, no head whatsoever, but it does have bubbles floating up. It was much darker than I was anticipating considering the refill on mr beer website compares it to Bud, PBR & rolling rock...

 

I fermented in a Mini Fridge, and used an Inkbird, with foam taped over top of the temp probe under the liquid line on the LBK. I went 64 deg for first 3 days then 68 the rest of the time. the variation was set to 2 degrees. SO idk what happened, it does have a cidery taste.

 

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3 hours ago, bigntall1983 said:

20170827_174648.jpg

20170827_174700.jpg

20170827_174709.jpg

 

well 4 full weeks bottle conditioning/carbing and  2.5 days in fridge.. its drinkable.. but not good LOL!  I have only opened the 1/2 full bottle which was the last out of the LBK, had a nice hiss sound when i opened it, but very little in the glass, no head whatsoever, but it does have bubbles floating up. It was much darker than I was anticipating considering the refill on mr beer website compares it to Bud, PBR & rolling rock...

 

I fermented in a Mini Fridge, and used an Inkbird, with foam taped over top of the temp probe under the liquid line on the LBK. I went 64 deg for first 3 days then 68 the rest of the time. the variation was set to 2 degrees. SO idk what happened, it does have a cidery taste.

 

This was the Classic American Light, right?

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9 minutes ago, AnthonyC said:

It needs more time to condition.  Take 'em out of the fridge, give it another week, and then try another bottle.  ????

I had only put 2 in the fridge, the first and last. I will give it another week for sure.

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1 hour ago, AnthonyC said:

It needs more time to condition.  Take 'em out of the fridge, give it another week, and then try another bottle.  ????

@RickBeer would be so proud of you for this comment....... :lol:

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Just now, hotrod3539 said:

@RickBeer would be so proud of you for this comment....... :lol:

@RickBeer will cringe when he sees this /\ /\

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Just now, AnthonyC said:

@RickBeer will cringe when he sees this /\ /\

Meh... win some, lose some!

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UPDATE: Still no head retention, but did get a little head for a minute after pour. Tastes much better, I will wait another week to put the next bottle in fridge. Good test to see how my homebrew matures over time.

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1 hour ago, bigntall1983 said:

but did get a little head for a minute

Alright now, keep it clean... lol ;)


It's a Sunday before a paid day off, I've hardly slept, and my mind is all over the place! :) 

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4 hours ago, kedogn said:

Alright now, keep it clean... lol ;)


It's a Sunday before a paid day off, I've hardly slept, and my mind is all over the place! :) 

LMAO! Didn't even think of that when I posted...

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