Mo Beer Mo Promblems

Not a good day of brewing. To many changes all at one time, I need to slow down and work out one change at a time. First I got a new brew pot from Jeff, a 10 gallon Bayou Classic with a thermometer and a ball valve. This is the second time I brewed with it and both times I missed some of the gravities.

This new pot has required me to reduce the diameter of the immersion cooler that I use and reduce the initial water volume of the mash by about one half gallon. It also increases the amount of dead space under the false bottom during the mash. The first time I was spot on the pre boil gravity but 3 points low on the starting gravity. Today I was 5 points low on the pre boil and 1 point low on the starting gravity. I should have worked that out first but I did not.

Second I am using a new store bought bag which is on the big side. It does not fit well in the dish drainer that I use and I ended up with a mess on the floor and the side of the pot. Here again I should have worked on fixing this issue before moving on.

Third I bought a pump and used it with some re-enforced plastic tubing and copper pipe to whirlpool during cooling. While this worked in cooling the wort from boiling to 68 degrees in about 20 minutes I did not use any hose clamps. When the tubing is cold it fits very tight over the fittings however, once it gets hot it expands and gets loose. This is especially true on the input side of the pump. The hose gets loose, the pump sucks in air which in turn gets pumped into the wort causing hot side aeration. Hot side aeration causes your beer to taste like wet cardboard.

I will get back to you in 2 weeks as to how bad it is. Then, while it did cool the wort down very quickly, I did not let it sit for the recommended 30 minutes after the end of whirlpooling for the turb to settle out, instead I immediately transferred it to the fermenter and it looks like crap.