Homebrewing..... Some tips | TigerDroppings.com
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BugAC
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Baton Rouge
Member since Oct 2007
20694 posts
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Homebrewing..... Some tips

I posted on here before about starting homebrewing.

I have this book.

Image: http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51KFMQB4WFL._SL500_AA300_.jpg


and may get this one once i start brewing a couple batches

Image: http://sustainableseedco.com/images/P/Homebrewers_Garden.jpg


I plan on starting and getting my brother involved. Probably will brew it at his house.

One of the problems I can see is keeping it at a cool temperature. What is a good way to do this? I saw someone but theirs in a tub with ice, but that seems like it would be alot of maintenance dealing with that everyday. Also, someone mentioned using adjustable refrigerator. Anyone have any suggestions on types?

Also, as far as growing your own herbs, hops, malts, etc... Is Louisiana climate good for this? Or do you need a more controlled climate?


Boudreaux35
BR
Member since Sep 2007
9073 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
You should get this one also:
Image: http://multimedia.billybrew.com/how-to-brew.jpg


As for temps, unless you're brewing lagers (not suggested to someone just starting out, your temps inside your house are pretty close to what you need. 68-70 degs should be ok.
This post was edited on 3/30 at 9:23 am


LSUBoo
Bowling Green Fan
None. None More Black.
Member since Mar 2006
61835 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
quote:

One of the problems I can see is keeping it at a cool temperature. What is a good way to do this? I saw someone but theirs in a tub with ice, but that seems like it would be alot of maintenance dealing with that everyday. Also, someone mentioned using adjustable refrigerator. Anyone have any suggestions on types?


Definitely a challenge... I use a kegerator with a temperature controller to keep it fermenting at the exact right point. A lot of people use chest freezers with a temperature controller, so they can fit 2 or 3 carboys. The problem with that of course is that they have to be at the same fermentation temperature. The problem with my way is that I can't use the kegerator for beer when I have one in there fermenting.


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Catman88
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge, LA
Member since Dec 2004
40931 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
How to Brew by Palmer is almost a must have book

Also to keep it cool google son of chiller. Its a pretty easy design to make a nice chiller cheap.

Other option is either an old fridge with a temp control or a chest freezer with a temp control. Or just stick with brewing Ale's and keeping your house cool.

You can grow hops in the south.

LINK


Boudreaux35
BR
Member since Sep 2007
9073 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
quote:

You can grow hops in the south.


Got some growing at my house now. Trick is finding a spot that gets morning sun and later afternoon sun. Direct sun in the middle of the day down here is not preferred. Unfortunately I don't have that spot so I have to just hope for the best. Maybe I can produce enough to make a batch or two.


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tetu
New Orleans Saints Fan
Ascension Parish
Member since Jan 2011
12048 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
I've seen Hops growing here in BR so yeah you can do it. Id start w/ that since it will be the easiest to prepare for brewing (not that I'm much of a authority on this)


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Catman88
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge, LA
Member since Dec 2004
40931 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
Unless you have a farm growing your own malt may be a bit much. AHS just started selling the root system of different types of hops.


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Boudreaux35
BR
Member since Sep 2007
9073 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
One of the simplest and cheapest way to insure cool temps is the by using the power of evaporation. Put the carboy in a large bucket with water. Drape an old wetted t-shirt (dark colored) over the carboy so that it covers the top, leaving the airlock exposed, and extends down into the water. Direct a fan at the carboy. As long as your room temps are in the 70's, the evaporation will drop the temps of the contents down to the 68-70 deg range which is plenty cool enough for ale fermenting.


Catman88
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge, LA
Member since Dec 2004
40931 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
Im probably going to end up buying a 8cu upright freezer or something like that to put my conical in so I dont have to constantly change ice.


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Fratastic423
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Feb 2007
5413 posts
Online

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
Welcome to the hobby sir. Like other posters have said during the summer the easiest way to keep beer cool is with a fridge or a chest freezer with a temp control. Obviously not everyone has the money/space to have that option. The evaporation idea looks feasible.

I cannot leave this thread without pimping the two homebrewing clubs in town. Brasseurs a la Maison and Red Stick Brewmasters. I know you will get guidance in the club that I am in and I am sure you can get it from the other one as well.


Fratastic423
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Feb 2007
5413 posts
Online

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
Also I tried growing hops last season and had no luck, my neighbor however had a great season. His Cascade was like 3 years old though but produced probably 5 lbs of hops.


Boudreaux35
BR
Member since Sep 2007
9073 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
@Fratastic: Are your hops coming back up this year?


Fratastic423
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Feb 2007
5413 posts
Online

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
quote:

Are your hops coming back up this year?


Not unless I buy new rhizomes. My yard doesn't get enough sun in the mornings and evenings, only really gets midday sun. I don't really feel like dumping more money into a project that probably will not work out. Rather spend it on other brewing stuff. Like the new refractometer that I bought yesterday.


Catman88
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge, LA
Member since Dec 2004
40931 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
On my to buy list:

Wort Pump
Therminator Wort Chiller
hmmm a refractometer would be nice
Fermenter Freezer big enough to hold my conical
False Bottom
extra corny kegs
beer plate filter


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Boudreaux35
BR
Member since Sep 2007
9073 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
Mine came back up and are looking a lot better this year. While last year, the bines were barely 1/4" thick by the end of the summer, this year's are already about 1/4" thick at the base and about 12" tall now.

Most people have told me that 1st year bines are known for not producing. I'm hoping they are correct.


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Dallas Tiger
Lamar Fan
Dallas
Member since Mar 2006
15080 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
This is the one I have. It can get very technical/ scientific which overwhelms you at first. But after doing a few brews, you can start to understand some of it. And he does have some more basic, overview chapters that a beginner can understand.

Image: http://multimedia.billybrew.com/how-to-brew.jpg


I also like the Homebrewtalk web site. It has lots of good threads on many brew subjects.


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swampdawg
Georgia Fan
Baton Rouge, LA
Member since Nov 2007
4911 posts
Online

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
I agree with the temp override on the freezer/fridge. This is what I do. Depending on what temp you keep your house at, the swamp cooler method might work to begin with. Try googling it.

I have not tried growing hops but others in my club (Redstick Brewmasters) have with little success. Hope enjoy a long photoperiod that does not exist down here. Likewise it is hot as balls. That said, if I had a spot that got sun all day I would try it. Relatively cheap investment.


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BottomlandBrew
LSU Fan
Nashville
Member since Aug 2010
15172 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
quote:

large bucket with water...wetted t-shirt...Direct a fan at the carboy


I tried using that technique when I first started out. It didn't work all the well in the humid summer. It seems you just don't get enough evaporation for it to cool it down enough.

A good, cheap solution that I used for years, and still do occasionally when I have a lager in my fermentation fridge, is one of those large cube-like coolers. I cut a hole in the top for the carboy to stick out. I fill the cooler with a ittle water and add bottles of ice once a day. You can easily ferment anywhere from 55-70 degrees with minimal monitoring. Hell, I even crash cool in it and can get it down to less than 40 degrees with a few extra bottles of ice.


tetu
New Orleans Saints Fan
Ascension Parish
Member since Jan 2011
12048 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
quote:

A good, cheap solution that I used for years, and still do occasionally when I have a lager in my fermentation fridge, is one of those large cube-like coolers. I cut a hole in the top for the carboy to stick out. I fill the cooler with a ittle water and add bottles of ice once a day.


Thats a great idea, much beter than keeping it in an open bucket. My wife loves keeping the ac off as much as possible so there was no chance for me to ferment during the summer w/out something. This seems feasible enough.
This post was edited on 3/30 at 1:02 pm


BottomlandBrew
LSU Fan
Nashville
Member since Aug 2010
15172 posts

re: Homebrewing..... Some tips
quote:

My wife loves keeping the ac off as much as possible


I'm the same way. I don't run it while I'm at work during the day. The cooler maintains its temperature well enough. Just make sure the hole at the top is snug around the neck of the carboy.


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