Newb here with a newb question...

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Postby clept » Fri Jun 05, 2009 11:47 pm

Went to Home Depot and purchased 50' x 1/4" copper tubing, 2 hose clamps and a hose for a washing machine. Came home and wrapped the copper tightly around the stand for the birdbath in my backyard(best cylinder shaped object I could find small enough). I cut one end off the washer hose and clamped it onto one end of the copper and clamped some old clear tubing I had around the house to the return end.

I took aleguy's suggestion and boiled a gallon of vinegar with 4.5 gallons of water in my pot to try and neutralize some of the old food funk that may have been leftover in there. After a long boil I put my newly made chiller in and brought the temp from 200*+ to 80* in 15 minutes. I was pretty impressed by how quickly it worked.

I ended up spending around $45 for the parts so thats not too bad. After all this weeks research and tonight's prep I'd say I feel pretty confident about brewing tomorrow. Thanks for all the helpful suggestions guys..
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Postby aleguy » Sat Jun 06, 2009 11:04 am

We're always glad to help. That's one of the great things about being in the club! We get to help people make beer, and better beer. Not to mention all the other benefits of membership. Even if you're just building equipment, the experience of other members can help you avoid making expensive mistakes.
Never trust a skinny chef, a sober brewer, or a cat with thumbs!
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Postby clept » Thu Jun 11, 2009 2:46 pm

Just a quick update, everything went really smooth on Saturday. I ended up with an OG of 1.074 which is right close to the 1.071 original est..

Well yesterday I racked my IPA and dry-hopped 2oz of Cascade. I took a gravity sample while transferring and my reading was 1.018. Using Beersmith I determined that my abv was 7.3%. Thats .7% higher than my original estimate, and quite frankly, thats a bit stronger than I would have liked for a single IPA. I plan on leaving it in the secondary for 2 weeks, then 2 more weeks conditioning in the bottle. Hopefully its not too hot when it comes time to drink.

This weekend I plan on brewing a cream stout, any recommendations/tips for making this extra tasty? A buddy of mine suggested using an ounce of vanilla extract at flame out so I'll probably add that just for kicks.
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Postby aleguy » Thu Jun 11, 2009 3:07 pm

Your IPA is right where it should be. IIPA's are usually around 9%. BJCP guidelines be damned! Anyway, if you put vanilla in any form in your beer, put it in the secondary. whole beans are best, but it takes a good month or more (after bottling/kegging) for the flavor to develop and then starts to fade fairly rapidly. You have 4-6 weeks to drink it at its peak.
BTW 2beans/5-gallon batch, split and seeded. add all of it to secondary for 2 weeks.
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