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New Labels & New Thomas Cooper Range

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An update to my earlier post on the Bootmaker.

 

Made to recipe with two packs of Bootmaker kit yeast supplied, 1.5 kg Coopers LDM, 23 litres, 18 days in the FV at 19°C then bottled with carb drops, stored at room temp for another 18 days.

 

It is now one month in the bottle and it's coming along nicely. All but gone is that young green beer taste I described when trying it at 18 days.

 

It's quite an enjoyable drop now and it is quite malty, but I think my Pale Ale palate has been influenced by many brews that have some aromatic hop additions and I'm missing that somewhat.

 

I think for my next Bootmaker kit that I have on the shelf I'll give it a couple of short Cascade additions and some US-05 yeast so I can make a more direct comparison with what I'm used to making with the APA kit.

 

I am enjoying this beer now and I feel that if the improvement the last couple of weeks has made to it is any indication, another couple of weeks will only make it better.

 

Ein Prosit

 

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Edit: the top picture without flash is a true indication of color.

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I too have emailed Coopers direct from their website and sadly never received a reply. . I simply don't understand why not because I feel that anyone who is employed to do a job should A: Be doing it, and B: Doing it well. I enjoy answering customer queries and lets face it, customers appreciate the help and will always come back but it seems to me at first glance the guy (s) at the end of the email do not care and probably shouldn't be working for Coopers. When you have a passion for something, along with the knowledge you WANT to pass it along and you give service to the people. A kind of 'purpose' you could say

 

I may be wrong but I doubt it. Having worked for numerous larger companies I've seen many, many instances of 'cushy' Employees not doing their job and no consequence at stake. It's become the Australian way

 

I'd love to be proven wrong with a group email: Please accept our apologies, our email attendee had a severe fall from a volcano while trekking Indonesa's high country and has lost his phone and Internet connection. We endevour to get back to you asap, it's not easy answering emails you know! Here's a complimentary bag of PET lids

 

 

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An update to my earlier post on the Bootmaker.

 

Made to recipe with two packs of Bootmaker kit yeast supplied' date=' 1.5 kg Coopers LDM, 23 litres, 18 days in the FV at 19°C then bottled with carb drops, stored at room temp for another 18 days. [/quote']

 

It is now one month in the bottle and it's coming along nicely. All but gone is that young green beer taste I described when trying it at 18 days.

 

I think for my next Bootmaker kit that I have on the shelf I'll give it a couple of short Cascade additions and some US-05 yeast so I can make a more direct comparison with what I'm used to making with the APA kit.

 

I am enjoying this beer now and I feel that if the improvement the last couple of weeks has made to it is any indication, another couple of weeks will only make it better.

 

Good to know , i put down an almost recipe bootmaker but used US-05 , some cascade and citra so i'll tell you in a month or so

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At nearly $20 a can, I'm a bit lost on why you would buy this brew, then buy separate yeast, and then add your own hops.

I've been told you can just buy LME, add yeast and hops and have beer.

If that's true, then why pay $20 for a kit?

Just wondering.

 

Brotherboy - I agree with everything you say. I always thought the saving grace for Coopers was the fact they were never a multinational blob company, but at the other end of that coin, mis management is also just as possible because it's all just a bit of a laugh.

 

I'm watching standards slipping fast, whether it is customer service or recognition of feedback. It pisses me off, because I would prefer the ideal of a family company that does the right thing, and Coopers had that not so long ago.

 

There's a wheel in a ditch somewhere, Coopers need to find it and put it back on.

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I agree Dave, but I also think that (insert company here) will always reap what they sew and learn from that. Same as all individuals and groups do. In any case it's not a personal loss and up to the Company's discretion I guess, lets not take it personally because it really isn't. It's like footy teams, I watch people barrack for them as if it was part of them somehow but in reality: it has zero to do with anyone bar those playing the game, this is really no different. Just view it as a completely separate (from us) personal reflection of the Company and choose what you will from there

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I'm personally finding many of the comments in this discussion about some (at this point) dodgy yeast packets that have accompanied some of the new kits, a gross over-reaction, & more than anything else, very disappointing. sad

 

Whinging & whining seldom achieves anything positive. Constructive criticism is far more helpful. I'm a firm believer if you're not part of the solution, then you're part of the problem.

 

It's nice to see the Aussie "Tall Poppy Syndrome" is alive & well. annoyed

 

Just my 2 cents.

 

Lusty.

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At nearly $20 a can' date=' I'm a bit lost on why you would buy this brew, then buy separate yeast, and then add your own hops.

[/quote']

 

From today's tasting I'm pretty happy with how mine is turning out as just a plain kit plus dry malt brew (albeit with the two packets of the supplied yeast) which is how it's intended to be made.

 

I and many others already buy adjuncts for the cheaper kits. I almost always add my own yeast, hops and grain to APA kits to change them into what I like so it's not really an added expense and I plan to do just that with my next Bootmaker kit to see how it compares.

 

The few dollars more this kit costs ($17.96 with the free shipping) compared to an APA kit will hardly be a deal breaker for me if I can turn it into 23 litres of something I really, really enjoy.

 

Otherwise, myself being somewhat of an Ebenezer Scrooge I'll be back to making what I already really enjoy and save the three dollars whatever per brew.

 

More brewing more testing more tasting to come yet.

 

 

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I dunno.. it seems to me most of the gripes are about the seeming lack of response to the issue, which is understandable, because that is disappointing as well.

 

People have bought a product which doesn't function as it is intended to, complained to the manufacturer and then been ignored. It can't be that bloody hard to at least reply that the concerns have been noted and are/will be being looked into, if the issue hasn't been solved yet.

 

I know you love Coopers to death, but to me that's pretty slack. When my mill effed up, I emailed the manufacturer and had a response within 5 minutes that a new roller would be sent out free of charge and what's my address. Granted, his enterprise is nowhere near the size of Coopers, but that to me was absolutely brilliant. You could forgive a day or two in this instance, however it seems that nobody has yet had a response at all.

 

In all my time on this forum I have never seen so many reports of kit yeasts failing as I have in the last month or so; there is obviously a problem somewhere. Whether it's simply a dud batch of yeast or whether the hot glue is screwing with the viability or whatever it is, something is mucking them up. And I don't think you can blame those who have been affected by it for complaining about it, especially given that these are the top of the range kits.

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Hi Kelsey.

People have bought a product which doesn't function as it is intended to' date=' complained to the manufacturer and then been ignored. It can't be that bloody hard to at least reply that the concerns have been noted and are/will be being looked into, if the issue hasn't been solved yet.[/quote']

It CAN be if you don't have a suitable answer yet to give!

 

I know you love Coopers to death' date=' but to me that's pretty slack. When my mill effed up, I emailed the manufacturer and had a response within 5 minutes that a new roller would be sent out free of charge and what's my address. Granted, his enterprise is nowhere near the size of Coopers, but that to me was absolutely brilliant. You could forgive a day or two in this instance, however it seems that nobody has yet had a response at all.[/quote']

You pretty much answered your own question there. Speaking purely from an outsider's POV because that is what I am, the store appears to have some customer representatives tied in with the DIY side of Coopers, along with Frank whom is available to speak with via Coopers customer service support line. Beyond those limited access areas, I'm not sure of whom it falls on to investigate & deal with these specific areas.

 

Customer support services across the globe have gone to @#$% over the last 10-20 years, we all know it, & deal with it in everyday life. I can't understand why it's being expected at a higher more instant level here? unsure

 

In all my time on this forum I have never seen so many reports of kit yeasts failing as I have in the last month or so; there is obviously a problem somewhere. Whether it's simply a dud batch of yeast or whether the hot glue is screwing with the viability or whatever it is' date=' something is mucking them up. And I don't think you can blame those who have been affected by it for complaining about it, especially given that these are the top of the range kits. [/quote']

I feel there's been far more multiple posting about the issue than there has been actual individual cases. If you can find more than a dozen individual complaints here on the forum about the new kit yeasts, I'd be interested to know the current number. wink

 

A little patience is all that is needed (IMHO).

 

Cheers,

 

Lusty.

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Good to know ' date=' i put down an almost recipe bootmaker but used US-05 , some cascade and citra so i'll tell you in a month or so [/quote']

 

Cool, thanks Markoman.

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I disagree with that first part. Even if the issue hasn't been rectified, a simple response that it is being looked at would suffice. That hasn't even happened.

 

It appears to me that it isn't being expected of a higher level - it's being expected of what it has been all along (from what I've seen on here) and is now dropping off for some reason.

 

I dunno, at the end of the day I'm just glad I'm not having to go through the stresses of having yeast that doesn't work properly. tongue

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Maybe it's just my loyalist customer service attitude showing through here given that's a major part of my job.

 

Over that 15-16yr journey I've learned no matter how hard you try in some scenarios, there's just no pleasing or appeasing some people. rightful

 

Lusty.

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Point is Lusty: They're NOT trying.. I mean no disrespect for your loyalty to the Coopers brand, but if they were trying they'd have answered my very simple question via their 'customer service' email, which had nothing to do with dead yeast in new kits mind you. I don't mean to ruffle any feathers here but here's an excert from the dictionary on the word 'try'

 

To attempt to do or accomplish

 

This will be all from me, I'm not here to argue. I just wanna' make good beer!

 

Ciao

 

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Hi All,

I made the Bootmaker with the supplied yeast and had no trouble - it fermented out fine.

I have been following this thread with interest because I recently purchased three of the new label Australia Pale Ale as they were on special at Woolies ($13 a can).

The yeast packet was glued to the top, so my question now is this -

Is it only the new TC range that is giving occasional trouble with the supplied yeast, or is anyone having problems with the Original and International range.

I'm debating whether to buy some US05 just to be on the safe side - would the US05 be Ok in the Fruit Salad recipe (Cascade and Amarillo steeped) with APA.

Is anyone having problems with the APA and supplied yeast that is glued to the top of the can.

Cheers, Peter.

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From what I can gather, it's a problem of quality control & customer service when it comes to things not being quite right with some of the brew kits (mainly the yeast in the new range, as well as dented cans & some other issues).

 

In isolation, it can be seen as a niggling issue, & sure most of us will just shrug our shoulders & go with it if we get a dented can.

Likewise, if the yeast from the new range seems a bit iffy, most of us will just buy some yeast from the LHBS & use that instead.

 

I'm dubious about whether the hot glue used to stick the yeast to the can makes any real noticeable difference.

When I got my can of Bootmaker, both yeast packs were there, but I don't seem to recall them being stuck with glue, (though one of them may have been). I used both pack of yeast, so if it was just that the yeast viability was questionable, this should have mitigated the problem; which leads me to think that whatever yeast it is, it's not the same quality as we usually get with our brew cans.

 

Obviously from a customer perspective, the first thing we should do in such instances is as PB2 suggested, report it to customer service, however if these sort of issues are continuing to crop up, it's not inappropriate to have a discussion about it.

 

I noticed with my recent purchase of the ROTM pack - Pacific Summer Ale, that one of the packs of summer hops was not properly vacuum sealed, though the other 2 packs of hops were.

I dismissed this, & just let it go, as at the time I just thought it was one of those things that happens from time to time.

It's all in my FV now, so other than the unlikely chance this brew doesn't turn out well, I'll leave it at that for this particular incident.

 

I think the real concern here is that there is a line between a bit of dumb luck from time to time with issues such as dented cans or dicey yeast, then there is the issue of frequency.

 

I totally get that Coopers would be looking into this, & likely not ready to give a response until they identify & rectify the cause of the problem/s, however the underlying theme I can see in these instances is lack of quality control, lack of action in resolving the cause (though clearly some have received replacement products in individual cases), & lack of transparency & timeliness when it comes to customer service.

 

We get that stuff goes wrong, but a brief explanation of what Coopers is doing would not be out of place, even if it was an admission they didn't know exactly what was wrong, but were working to rectify any problems customers were having with their products.

 

We purchase Coopers products because we consider them good quality products, & generally most of us are satisfied with them.

When the quality starts to reduce & incidents of poor attention to maintaining the standards customers have come to expect occurs or increases in frequency, that's when loyalty is tested, & rightly so.

 

Others have pointed out that these issues seemed to start occuring or increasing in frequency about the time the packaging changed; I don't think it's the fault of the packaging, but it does seem a reduction in quality control did coincide with rolling out the new range & new packaging of existing product.

 

I look forward to hearing of these issues being addressed & resolved, but in the meantime, it seems part of the problem lays between the online store, the warehouse, & dispatch, as well as the yeast that comes with the TC range, so for me the solution is simple.

I'll keep buying Coopers products & using them, but I'll be steering clear of the online store, & make my purchases at the LHBS until I can be satisfied these issues have been resolved.

 

In the meantime, I'll also report any further issues to customer service, & hopefully if this occurs, I'll also be able to advise Coopers' response to any such issues raised with them.

 

The difference between a customer, an ex customer & a loyal customer is the experience one has using a company's products, & their interaction with customer service.

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Hi All' date='

I made the Bootmaker with the supplied yeast and had no trouble - it fermented out fine.

I have been following this thread with interest because I recently purchased three of the new label Australia Pale Ale as they were on special at Woolies ($13 a can).

The yeast packet was glued to the top, so my question now is this -

Is it only the new TC range that is giving occasional trouble with the supplied yeast, or is anyone having problems with the Original and International range.

I'm debating whether to buy some US05 just to be on the safe side - would the US05 be Ok in the Fruit Salad recipe (Cascade and Amarillo steeped) with APA.

Is anyone having problems with the APA and supplied yeast that is glued to the top of the can.

Cheers, Peter.[/quote']

 

I think it's just the new range, & has nothing to do with the glue used to stick the yeast packs to the can.

I've currently got a batch of the same Pale Ale I made using the LHBS version of BE2, along with some steeped & dry Cascade hops, & used the yeast that came with the can with no problems.

I've also got a batch of Pacific Summer Ale in the FV - though I used the accompanying pack of Windsor yeast with this one.

 

I do miss the old packaging though, including the little booklet with instructions & brew record.

The instructions didn't really make much difference to me, but having a little booklet to use for recording brews was much more useful than trying to pry a label off the can without damaging it!

 

I don't know if it's just the Bootmaker, all the new TC range, or isolated batches of yeast that are the issue, but from what I understand, the rest of the range don't seem to have any issues, other than the odd dented can, or lapses in quality control in the warehouse or dispatch.

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Howdy,

I ordered every tin of the new TC series from the online store about a day after it was released. I have done all the brews now, except for the porter.

 

I asked a question early on here about the yeast because i found that it took about 3 days to start to look like it was brewing, then after about 2 1/2 weeks the airlock was still bubbling... i was abit nervous about bottling it as i didnt want bottle bombs, but the gravity was indicating that it was finished. its now been in the bottle for quite a few months and it hasnt overcarbed and tastes fine. I havent had one for a few weeks, so i best try one tonight just to double check...

 

I just always assumed that the kit uses a different yeast strain, i didnt read the instructions on the back of the label because i like to keep one of every tin that i make and didnt want to destroy the label incase i didnt like the brew and decided not to make it again.

 

Im not sure about the glue gun theory, but we use them here for at my work and the ones we use are super hot and will burn your hand pretty bad if you get it on you when applying it. The glue stays pretty hot for about 5 mins after aswell... so i suppose its a valid question.

 

Im a big coopers fan and have ordered a hell of alot of extract tins from the online store. I rarely get a tin that has a dent in it. i would blame the dents on Australia post rather than coopers, but i suppose living in adelaide the trip was considerably shorter than it is now that the distribution centre is in Qld... i will probably have ace ventura delivering my brews from now on and wished id never said anything to jinx myself...

 

my 2c worth...

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We get that stuff goes wrong' date=' but a brief explanation of what Coopers is doing would not be out of place, even if it was an admission they didn't know exactly what was wrong, but were working to rectify any problems customers were having with their products.

[/quote']

 

That's exactly the point I was making. When the Mashmaster grain mills started playing up, that's exactly what happened after a few guys reported having the same issues as I did (grains not pulling through). I didn't report mine straight away as I thought it was a specific grain issue rather than the mill, but eventually it became evident that the mill was not working as it should have been. They acknowledged the problem and then set about a complete design overhaul, but kept everyone up to date with what was going on and when the new roller design would be ready etc. etc. so everyone knew it was being looked into and a solution being worked towards. And the new rollers are bloody good too, so they have done well.

 

Same as medical science for instance, they don't go, well here's XYZ illness, we'll just disappear into secrecy and then suddenly announce a successful treatment 3 or 4 years later. All the testing and trials and whatever are made known as the process goes along. I don't really see why that logic can't apply here, albeit to a lesser degree - more in line with what you have said above.

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I've received quite a few dented cans too, it's not a big issue for me but I would prefer if they weren't dented as my stirring paddle is straight edged and it's easier scrape out the goo without the dents.

 

Having worked in the transport and logistics industry I'm not surprised that they arrive with dents. Short of packing them in wooden crates I think we can continue to expect a few dented cans. I'm inclined to blame the guy at the postal service with the baseball bat who product tests the non fragile labeled packages.

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Need some advice here,

 

24 hours ago I set down my replacement Brew AIPA, and got a flat moon of browny/white marbled mush, hardly a krausen, with about a 2cm gap around the edge of the FV. (I used dry malt this time). I could hear faint fizzing, Like at volume level 2.

 

So I've now chucked in the only yeast I had available spare, which was an Irish Stout yeast, as soon as it hit the brew it went mental, fizz volume went to 8, and big white creamy almost ugly looking bubbles started popping up.

 

I've never had to add extra yeast, so I hope this is normal? The other thing is that the 'moon' that I had has now risen to a thin white pavlova and is now covering the circumference of the FV, and I'd say it's looking good.

 

My layman's deduction would be that maybe only 5% of the yeast was viable, and had escaped the glue burn? It was going to be a slow process waiting for it to kick in. In 24 hours I normally have swiss alps krausen and a fizz volume of about 5.

 

Nothing to lose I suppose, but would be nice to know if this sounds normal.

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Today I received an email from Frank at Coopers Customer Service. Frank and Abbey at the store have got their IT people looking into why Coopers are not receiving any emails via the online web form. Frank did not make mention of any of the issues that I had raised with him previously so I replied back so he understands that there are issues that some people would like an explanation for.

 

 

The following is what I have now raised with Coopers via Frank:

 

G'day Frank -

Thank you for your reply. I guess by now you are aware of the loss of confidence by many brewers using the new Thomas Coopers series. There have been some people writing in the Coopers forum about dead or failed Bootmaker brews. I put down a Bootmaker at 19 to 20 degrees C, pitched yeast at 22C and it was very slow to start off virtually nothing for the first 52 hours. However mine has brewed out OK and reached FG. There has been a lot of speculation on the forum about a slack yeast being supplied which has contributed to failed or slow brews. The hot glue being used to stick the yeast packets on the cans is one theory.

 

The reason of my contact with you is that I am quite happy to continue to use the TC series so long as I supply a third party yeast as I am not confident in using the Coopers supplied yeast anymore or at least until I can get some response back from you where Coopers are at with this issue. The few members on the forum experiencing dead brews may just be the tip of a much bigger iceberg.

 

Also I'd like to raise with you the issue of the very dented extract cans arriving in the mail. This has not only been my experience but also of others that have written on the Coopers forum and again the few members on the Coopers forum may just be the tip of a much larger iceberg. There has not been any impact whatsoever to the external packaging and the damage appears to be happening back at the Coopers source or the Coopers supply chain.

 

Originally I tried to contact Coopers through the online web form so as to not propagate any bad publicity for Coopers as I believe by and large Coopers do supply a quality product that I have happily used for many years. It is somewhat regrettable that there is quite a significant amount of bad publicity surrounding these issues on the Coopers forum now. In my opinion this could have been circumvented through communication with your customers. Unfortunately for whatever reason this has not occurred. I hope that Coopers can come back to me with some explanations of the above issues I have raised so we can put this all to bed and move on with some happy and confident brewing.

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It's hard to say whether it's normal or not Dave, some yeasts do take longer than others to kick in to gear fully. They also greatly vary in the size of the krausen they produce. If you have used the same yeast all the time then one that behaves differently would be a bit confusing/concerning no doubt. Maybe it is normal for whatever that yeast is, or maybe the viability was compromised somehow, it's impossible to say for sure. The fact there were signs of action though suggests that it was working, even though it was slower than you're used to. I would have left it for at least 48 hours before throwing more yeast at it though.

 

Most of mine are up and going in 12-18 hours, however, they aren't Coopers yeasts and they are also built up in starters on a stir plate. The only one that doesn't get going that quickly is my Urquell lager yeast, but that's probably partly due to the lower temp it is pitched at (~10C) as well. It normally takes between 30 and 36 hours, although some minor signs have been evident at 24 hours on some batches.

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Morrie - nice email mate, well put, and hopefully a response worthy of the respect you gave.

 

Otto, thanks for the advice mate. I realise what you say about some yeasts being slow to react, in fact that was my thought the first time it all went wrong. Thinking the range has changed, maybe this yeast performs slower, even at 22c etc. However that brew never started, so this time I wasn't taking chances.

 

Currently the brew looks exactly as it should, bubbles settled, fizz back to volume 5, krausen threatening to build and should be good by morning - ie a PROPER fermentation.

 

And of course, I was making a 'naked' brew, no additives so I could see what Coopers were offering. Now this has been compromised with stout yeast, so I'm back to the drawing board whatever happens.

 

This is the s**t that I'm having trouble dealing with. I want to know what is on offer, and I want to get back to stabilised brewing in that I know what I've got and what I want to do with it. 6 weeks after receiving the new batches, and I know nothing, in fact I've gone backwards.

 

So yeah, If some people think this is being negative, I think I'm being more than patient!

 

Cheers for the advice :)

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Me and a mate sat down to a few longnecks of the Bootmakers last night...

They seemed fine... im not sold on the flavour of the beer, but my mate loved it...

 

I was concerned that after a few months they might have overcarbed in the bottle because of the amount of co2 that was still bubbling out of the airlock, but the carbonation was no different to any of my other beers.

before bottling i had checked that the FG was steady for a few days and it had been in the fermenter for nearly 3 weeks at about 20deg, so i thought bugger it time for bottles

my unprofessional opinion is that its just a slow yeast???

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