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Worts and all

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  1. Have I happening upon a dressmaking forum here? Sorry, just a little light needling that probably won’t have you in stitches No doubt there will be some knitting of the brow amongst those who don’t cotton on.
  2. My word,we do worry a lot about what could happen ,don’t we? What will really happen I predict,is that Blacksands’ beer will turn out fine,evenly carbonated,and he will drink it and smile a good deal. I confidently look forward to news to that effect.
  3. You describe my technique perfectly. As you hinted, any problems with this method seem to be imaginary . I am always delighted at how little sediment comes over, My brews are all K&K. The sediment always forms,as you say, a solid cake. Perhaps this is a chosen characteristic of the yeast in the kits? Someone here will know. Lets know how it goes,. Cheers.
  4. LDME= light dry malt extract. Sounds like your brews are similar to mine. I have never used liquid malt. Hope you solve the head problem!
  5. I reuse the original twist tops. They twist off and will twist back on again. You can use them over and over again, never a problem.I have lost count of the number of cycles some of mine have done. A rinse off after use,store away,a soak in sanitiser on bottling day,and all is well.
  6. Like you,I do kit and kilo. I use only LDME,no sugar,and usually a little extra hops. I think I can humbly say the heads on my beers are at least equal to commercial brews. I have had to reduce carbonation priming on my dark ale as the head was always a bit too generous. Why,and why aren’t yours? I wish I knew and could tell you, and feel quite clever about it. I brew with our domestic filtered rain water,which I fondly imagine,on the basis of no evidence whatsoever ,is superior to any other. Maybe the possums I occasionally hear scampering on the roof at night might be a clue. I hope you solve the problem. A generous,creamy head is a beautiful thing.
  7. Dishwasher works fine for me too. Regarding nucleation,at someone’s advice I scratched the bottom of my 3 favourite glass mugs with sandpaper to provide nucleation points. It worked a treat,but within a couple of weeks all 3 emerged from the dishwasher with a crack from top to bottom. I promise not to do it again! Anyone have a clue to the physics going on here? Cheers.
  8. I use unscented dishwashing liquid to wash my FV after brewing. Thoroughly rinsed of course,never had a problem with head formation or retention. As Herr VB says, something in the recipes may be offending. As you are no doubt aware,any slight contamination of oil or grease will kill the head immediately. Obviously something common to all 3 brews. The major ingredient is water. No problems possible there? Hope you sort it out. A beer with no head is a disappointing thing indeed. Cheers.
  9. I’m with you on this one. Having tried(and enjoyed) all sorts,I keep coming back to good old Dark Ale. It is easy,reliable, delicious and with a rich,creamy head that clings beautifully. I always have at least one in the fridge,and more often than not it will be the one I reach for. I use 1kg Ldme instead of BE,and sometimes a little extra hops,briefly steeped. But as you say,it doesn’t really need it. It is a great kit for novices as well,being easy and (almost) bomb proof. Get the hygiene and temperature right and you can’t make bad beer from it. Cheers!
  10. Reading the above discussion reinforces my belief that home brewers tend to worry unnecessarily at times,or even tend towards superstition. Fridge and freezer compressors can and often do run continuously. They are controlled only by the thermostat which measures the temperature of air in the cabinet.. As others have noted,an external controller cannot force it to do more work than it would do without the controller. Relax and enjoy your fancy temperature control. I am lucky enough to live in a climate which is kind to brewers. Cheers.
  11. I,too,like the PET bottles- that reassuring firmness as they carbonate,and the way the sediment lodges and stays in the little foot indentations. And,yes,there is something about glass. I have quite a collection of 750 ml Bundaberg ginger beer bottles. They are robust brown bottles with an aluminium screw top which can be reused countless times. Replacement lids are available for a few cents. I find them ideal beer bottles. If you are not a fan of ginger beer,try diluting it with rum. Improves it no end. You see it occasionally on special for $2. The bottle has to be worth $1, so it becomes almost as cheap as home brew! Cheers.
  12. Stirred up a few comedians this thread! And I thought this site was for beer,not whisky.
  13. I’ll happily take your word for that Herr VB (there’s a good name for a beer right there),as I’ve never cold crashed. After the first week I usually let the brew go to ambient temperature,normally in a cool area- a sort of pretend,environmentally friendly,half hearted,low fat,lactose free cold crash if you like. No animals are harmed during the process. Anyway,the beer is fine and sediment is not a problem. I may move to the brew fridge system some time,maybe not. Meanwhile I am content.Contentment is a good thing. Cheers!
  14. Hi Muzzy. You don’t need a fridge or secondary fermenter. Leave the brew in your primary fermenter for 12-14 days. By then you will be sure fermentation has finished and most sediment will have sunk to the bottom and solidified.Pour you cooled priming fluid into it and stir gently with your long spoon,being careful not to touch the bottom. Let it sit for 30 minutes or so,then bottle away! Any drawbacks to this method are,in my experience,imaginary. I am always delighted at how little sediment I get in the bottle,and carbonation is uniform. Given there has to be some sediment after the bottle fermentation,I cannot imagine any other method would yield less. Try it and you’ll never look back. Good luck!
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