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48

Brewing day Sanitizer - To sanitize all of your equipment. 6 gallon fermenter - For primary fermentation. Funnel or Tubing - To transfer from the brew kettle to the fermenter (pour or siphon) +3 gallon brew kettle - For boiling the mixture and making wort Thermometer - To monitor the temperature of the wort Hydrometer - To test the original gravity of your ...


34

Temp Control for fermentation Hitting the happy-yeast zone prevents high-temperature off-flavors like phenolics and low-temperature under attenuation. There is a separate community wiki post on this subject.


29

If you don't have enough reputation to edit this list, leave your addition as a comment, and someone will add it. Easy to re-use USA West (AK, HI, CA, OR, WA, ID, NV, AZ) Anchor Brewing- They look good and the labels come off easily. Alaskan Brewing Company Come of easily with water but do require a much longer than expected soak (possibly over ...


20

I would point you to the Basic Starter Kit from Northern Brewer: http://www.northernbrewer.com/brewing/starter-kits/basic-starter-kit.html Some items are probably not STRICTLY needed, but for $80 you definitely get all the gear you would need to get started.


20

Patience For me, this mostly applies to fermentation. Allow it to complete then wait a few more days. After packaging chill undisturbed for at least two weeks so suspended particles fall to the bottom. Like a good soup or pasta sauce, give the flavors a chance to mingle and mellow.


18

If I wash my hands regularly do I need to sanitize them as well? Do I even need to wash regularly, between touching everything? No. As long as you're not touching the insides of bottles, fermenters etc. you should be fine. Do I need to sanitize the rim of the mouths of bottles? Yes. Dipping the ends of the bottles into a container of your ...


18

Is any of the advanced equipment really necessary? No, not strictly. But like any hobby, as we advance we acquire more gear. Regarding the chiller in particular, if you are performing partial boils of 3 gallons or less, then you can definitely get by without a chiller. I did just fine. But once I switched to all grain and the full-volume boils that ...


17

Buy a bottling bucket and a bottling wand, it should cost you less than $15 combined and will save you a ton of pain. Cut a small (2-3") piece of 3/8" beverage tubing and connect the wand directly to the spigot on your bottling bucket, so that it looks like this: Notice that I put it over the dishwasher with the door open, the door will catch any ...


15

First off, Simon, your answer was spot-on in answering Jarrod's questions with logical, proven answers. Props. However, Jarrod is asking for anecdotal advice, so here's mine: In practicality, you can actually often get away with a lot of carelessness. The problem, though, is this: while the risk is low, the stakes are fairly high. I absolutely hate ...


14

Yeast Managment Yeast produce different flavors during the phases in their lifecycle. Pitching the right quantity of healthy yeast is in the top two most important things you can do to control fermentation Ester production occurs most strongly during the growth phase, when you first pitch. Yeast uses oxygen to bud (grow). Insufficient aeration leads to ...


14

Why should you start lagering? Because you want to make a lager. It's a simple choice of preference, mate. Why brew a stout? Why brew an IPA? Brew whatever you feel like. But if the style of beer that you want to brew happens to be a Pilsner, Light Lager, Vienna Lager, Bock, Oktoberfest, Dunkel, Baltic Porter, Schwarzbier, or any variant of those ...


13

Assuming you're beginning from concentrated malt or a kit, and can figure out how to boil water on your own, The bare minimum: 5 gallon plastic (food grade container) with lid. Airlock for same. Bottles, and appropriate closures for them. Plastic hose for siphoning off of finished product. Disinfectant (chlorine or sulfite) Recommended: 5 Gallon ...


13

Following normal, reasonable sanitation practices (always sanitize containers and utensils immediately before use) usually keeps the risk of infection pretty low. The greatest risk of infection after containers and utensils is simply open air. Keep your containers covered while working, even if you're just turning away for a few minutes. Keep your empty ...


13

Using a Wort Chiller This has a few advantages: Better cold break Less chance for unwanted organisms to get a foothold Minimizes the time wort is in the DMS-precursor-producing temperature range Better retention of Hop aromatics and flavor


12

I just answered this question for a friend. Means I get to cut'n paste. I don't know what your budget is... you can easily spend a few hundred dollars for a good kitchen setup. The Minimum: A large pot. Stainless steel is best, but aluminum is cheap. At least 2 gallons. The bigger, the better. Best is 6 gallons so you can do a full-wort boil where you ...


12

First, time and patience. Moving to all-grain is a big step, but definitely an awesome one. Including cleanup, your brew day will extend to many hours. Probably close to 9-10 hours when you first start, though it will become faster as you learn your system. Equipment wise, I'm not sure what you have, so I'll just go through it all. Propane burner. It's ...


12

Reading How to Brew By John Palmer. It's available to read online for free, or you can buy a hard copy. How to Brew is an amazing book for beginners to read and experts to reference. No brewer should go without reading it.


12

There are only a few reasons why this might happen. Suck-back due to temperature changes Evaporation Airlock is damaged Somebody is messing with it As it has been mentioned by others, s-locks are better at keeping liquid, but are nearly impossible to clean if you get a blow-out. Three-piece airlocks are easier to clean. I use mostly 3-piece, except for ...


11

The wet t-shirt and swamp cooler method is probably insufficient for temperatures in the mid 90's. Controlling fermentation temperature is one of the best things you can do to make good beer! Like Florida, the temperatures in East Texas get stupid-hot eight months out of the year. Last year I built myself a duck-in cooler powered by a small window air ...


11

Whirlpool chilling utlilizes a pump and an immersion chiller. Many brewers that have an immersion chiller will find that an upgrade to a pump for other uses allows them to get better chilling from the immersion chiller. A whirlpool chiller uses a pump to pull wort from the base of the kettle, then returns the wort to the top of the kettle. The return is ...


11

Skip the Mr. Beer kind of kits and go to a local Home Brew Supply shop. They'll sell you a brew kit for $75-$140 depending on how nice you want it. My local place had a deal for a while where you got your first recipe either free or deeply discounted when you bought a full kit, so that was nice. The actual kit you need isn't all that important, believe it or ...


10

My kettle is stainless, but the other kettle in our club is aluminum. We've brewed the same recipe in both kettles and not noticed any differences. You want to make sure that you keep a nice patina on the aluminum though, that's what keeps it non-reactive.


10

Full Wort Boils Boiling your full volume of wort — as opposed to boiling a concentrated portion of your wort and then adding water to the fermenter to reach your full volume — will significantly increase your hop utilization rates. Your hops simply cannot perform to their full potential in the high sugar concentration of a partial boil. Your ...


10

I've heard of people using the elements from hot water heaters to make heating wands. A lot of people who make their own computer controlled breweries use these because they actually get more temperature control than propane gives them. They're pretty cheap to make too.


10

Pour the wort from the kettle into the primary through a colander. The hops get caught in the colander, and the wort dripping through this aerates it.


10

Carboy neck handles. I bought one and never used it and probably never will. I don't trust the neck on a full carboy and an empty carboy is easy enough to move. For full carboys I always use a Brew Hauler... definitely a great piece of equipment! I'd probably also suggest anything to solve a "problem" you didn't know you have... water treatment, Ph, etc. ...


10

Neither of those... The next purchase to making better beer is a thermostat controller and a fridge. The controller you can get at your LHBS or at an online shop. Then cruise craigslist for the fridge. You can get a fine chill in the sink with ice, like you already are doing (right!). A secondary isn't necessary really anyway. And several people make great ...


9

I say use any size it fits in. In the secondary, there is unlikely to be any significant foaming unless you add a fermentable flavor such as a fruit juice. A five gallon carboy will serve fine. Concerns about oxygenation in larger carboys, in my opinion, are largely unfounded. Small amounts of fermentation are still occurring in the secondary as well as ...


9

The consensus answer is that the only thing safe to put food with non-neutral PH into is #1 Polyethylene terephthalate or #2 High-density polyethylene. The big blue jugs you get with water in them are made from #7 polycarbonate. Polycarbonate has some potential health issues as it can leach, even in water at room temperature, a substance known as Bisphenol ...


9

Reading Designing Great Beers By Ray Daniels. It's packed full of principles and practicalities. Buy it on Amazon



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