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OT: basic homebrewing

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  • OT: basic homebrewing

    I am thinking about making some homebrew this winter and want to go about it to get good success the first time out. My usual approach is to shove my MM210 aside, crank up the Stickmate ac/dc and go at it with 6010. I don't like fancy, complicated, etc. for the first pass. I am not a craftsman, but I am a do-it guy.

    Given that background, any advice about starting up a brew kit. I looked at brewing boards online and got a head ache from the perfectionists and purists. Hoping to make something like Heileman Old Style or Olympia, heck even PBR would be fine. Basic American lager.

    Looked at these guys: http://www.ebrew.com/systems/brewing_systems.htm
    and similar.

    Suggestions?

    TIA
    Garfish

    Hobart 160i
    Lincoln 225/125 AC/DC

  • #2
    bump

    Me too -

    I'd like to brew my own just to save a few bucks but those boards are jammed with beer snobs.

    I'm no connie-sewer, just want to chug some lager !

    Comment


    • #3
      Take a look at Better Beer

      Originally posted by Chuck U&R View Post
      Me too -

      I'd like to brew my own just to save a few bucks but those boards are jammed with beer snobs.

      I'm no connie-sewer, just want to chug some lager !
      The guys I know all buy their stuff from them. You can go as exotic as you like but compare it to something like reloading ammunition, it can be a PITA and you don't seem to really save money unless you bypass the malt kits and do all the ingredients separately. Malt kits make it easier though. Another thing for the less than a beer testing professional, use screw on quart bottles and not the pry cap bottles you have to buy from the brewer. I did it both ways and finally just used the big bottles as its SOOOO much easier to deal with believe me. They say you don't get good enough seal with the screw caps but I have only had a couple duds, so what? Its sort of like the fuel injection / carburetor debate, pick your poison but it is about half the time involved filling 20 quarts as it does 60 somethin small bottles and capping them. If you are a purist then get ya a bottle capper, the plastic one works well, but just don't get pressured into having to do it. When it comes to washing out your old bottles you will really love the big ones, makes it really simple. Yes I have used plastic ones and never died even once.
      Sign up with the better beer forums and you are on your way. Probably best not to mention using screw top bottles or you will get run out of town on a rail or dipped in **** so lets just keep that our little secret.
      You need a big stainless steel pot around 6 gallons, get that locally. The rest you can get from Bbb. Stuff like food grade tubing, a racking caine and a couple air locks. Racking cane makes it a lot easier. You can get food grade 6 gallon plastic buckets from Walmart for around 2 bucks or try to bum some off of the local Drunken Doughnuts shop, they go through acres of em and love to give them away. The big thing to worry about is not to get liking your new sport too much. I know a few guys who fit that profile. Its embarrasing when the DUI's start piling up and you can't see your toes since 5 years before

      Comment


      • #4
        If your Internet service provider still has news groups then with a news group reader.
        If not then search google groups for;

        rec . crafts . brewing

        News group reader is better such as Agent or free Agent.

        Home Brew Digest regularly comes out on that news group which is great by its self.

        Comment


        • #5
          A while back I went through a wine and beer making streak. Beer was OK, wine sucked. 5 gal batches are popular, probably because the 5 gal glass water bottles work so well. Filling slightly into the neck of the bottle reduces the trapped air. Any container, any size batch, will work for that phase if you can figure a way to not have a lot of air inside and a bubbleier (one way air lock) to let pressure escape while keeping out bugs and outside air. The yeast eats the sugar and makes alcohol and CO2.

          I bottled the beer in recycled champagne bottles using purchased plastic stoppers wire thingies. One good wedding reception will yield plenty of bottles (2 dozen will do most of 5 gal.) I also prefered syphoning from the "brew tub" to the bottles, keeping the input end of the tube well off the bottom until the very end. Marked the last bottles that might have sediment.

          If you blow it on the first attempt, your out the ingredients. All the rest can be reused for the next batch.

          The "connie-sewers", as Chuck U&R called them, may gag, but ... you can buy "Hires Root-Beer flavoring", add sugar and water, and make root beer with a real beer kick.

          Bob

          Comment


          • #6
            Alton Brown will be happy to help you out:

            http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...27078421700337
            Lincoln Idealarc 250
            Lincoln Weldanpower CC/CV engine drive
            Lincoln LN-25 wire feeder
            Miller Syncrowave 180 SD
            Various oxy-fuel setups featuring Victor, Harris, and Prest-o-lite products

            Comment


            • #7
              thanks moya, good info there. Made me thirsty and it's only 7am !

              ? - After he soaked everything in water/bleach to sanitize did he just rinse it off ?

              run everything thru the dishwasher ?

              would washing the bottles in the dishwasher sanitize them ?

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Chuck U&R View Post
                thanks moya, good info there. Made me thirsty and it's only 7am !
                You're welcome. Good Eats is the best cooking show ever.

                Originally posted by Chuck U&R View Post
                ? - After he soaked everything in water/bleach to sanitize did he just rinse it off ?
                It's my understanding that the bleach concentration is small enough that once you pour it off nothing will linger and effect the beer. Rinsing it off is just another way to introduce nasty microbes into the picture.
                Lincoln Idealarc 250
                Lincoln Weldanpower CC/CV engine drive
                Lincoln LN-25 wire feeder
                Miller Syncrowave 180 SD
                Various oxy-fuel setups featuring Victor, Harris, and Prest-o-lite products

                Comment


                • #9
                  The things my Momma didn't tell me.

                  Thanks guys. Great information. I am asking Santa for a simple brewing kit. I never would have thought about qt or champagne bottles.

                  So I'm talking to my 86 year old mother and saying I think I'll make some brew. She smiles and says that after WWII, when my late Dad went to college on the G.I. Bill (after 2.5 years in Africa and Europe fighting Hitler as an artillery forward observer), they lived in relocated converted Bachelor Officers Quarter barracks with dozens of other ex-GI families. My Mom was a home-brewmaster. She brewed dozens and dozens of gallons of beer. She said the parties were great. She took out her now ancient Betty Crocker cookbook and pulled out and unfolded a yellowed sheet of onionskin paper, and bequeathed to me her recipe. She said it tasted like Miller Hi-Life with an edge of Schlitz (from 1940s). There is a lot about the parents that are unknown to us until we stumble on it. I'll tell you how it turns out.

                  Thanks again.
                  Garfish

                  Hobart 160i
                  Lincoln 225/125 AC/DC

                  Comment

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