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Sep 7, 2023
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Hello Forum!

Just before Covid I was given a corny keg and regulator with a tap for a present; so I started brewing beer.

There's a home-brew shop near me, I bought a sugar kit and made 30ish bottles of beer that actually was drinkable. Then I moved on to the boil in the bag kits off the internet and slowly I needed more kit.

At this point, I decided to start looking at 'proper' brewing, all grain and start buying kit that would get me there. The local shop has had loads of great advice and I've slowly built up my method and equipment along with a basic recipe that I've made and refined.

I'm having a lot of fun and love walking in to the house and drawing off a small glass of beer I've made from my own keg.

I have an electric urn that I use for the mash from Vevor, I am using Marris Otter pale base malts and East Kent Goldings hops. I've started adding some Caramalt in various quantities. I have a small pump that I use to circulate the mash after an hour, I pump it up and sparge the grains with a double colander arrangement that lets the water rain over the bed. It takes about 45mins to clear and then I pump it in to my boil kettle which is on the gas hob.
Bring that up to boil and after 15mins I'm putting in 33g of hops, boiling an hour, adding 33g of hops, boiling for 15mins then adding the last 33g of hops at heat off. I have a counterflow SS coil and it takes about 15mins to cool it down enough to be pumped in to the fermenter. I have run pretty much Safale S04 only. Takes about a week to finish but sometimes it's done in 4 days. I siphon in to my keg and pop it with CO2 at 40psi for as long as I can stand not trying it. I try to vend it around 10-12psi. I have some work to do on my lines and vending.

I don't temperature control my fermenter at all, I don't have room for that right now.

I've developed my own recipe with help from my home-brew shop and it tastes great. I understand a bit about how adding hops at different times effects taste, but I haven't tried to control that, yet.

Next step for me is to integrate a new pump I just purchased, magnetic driven, in to my brew day and probably get better hoses and fittings for the operation. I'd like to try more grains and different hops, of course. My wife makes soda water with the CO2 tank so I need a manifold and somewhere for the actual tap to mount, rather than being on the keg. And I've also just watched someone make Orange Fanta, so that's another project for the spare keg.

Brew On!
Thank you, Chippy_Tea, Rwilts,

I'm looking forward to getting some tips and information; I'd be totally on my own if it wasn't for the Home Brew Shop Guy.
I don't temperature control my fermenter at all, I don't have room for that right now.


If you have room for the fermentation vessel you must have room to put insulation on it and a heat mat and an inkbird surely.
Fermentation temperature control makes so much difference. The yeasties will thank you.
Thanks, starseeker. I don't join forum very often, thought I should ...

Thank you, too Ross1974. I've done quite a bit of reading and there's a lot of information here before I've even got in to anything.

MashBag - I tried at the beginning with a heat mat and belt but when I actually measured the temperature it was overly warm anyway. I have a Victorian house so there are places to put my fermenter that stay around 15-20, mostly below 19. But I would like to do something about this, yes. The BrewShop Guy told me at the beginning that a huge amount of the success is in the constant fermentation temperatures. Or the temperature that that particular yeast likes. Anyway, I think in Autumn and winter my problem isn't really keeping it warm. In summer it's harder to keep it cool and slow it down so it's not done in 2 days, but I gather it's even temperatures I should be chasing.

I've seen fridges, blankets and even that moulded foam box thing for the conical plastic fermenters. And I've put a jacketed SS fermenter in the basket to see how painful the total would be. I was going to work on my hop additions and malt base first, but then again it might have to be the fermentation. Plastic blown conical fermenters look like a PITA to clean and keep, whereas the SS ones look like they would kill a small child if toppled over and certainly dent a bank account.

Saying that, I suspect my tap water might be playing a bigger part with the bitter hops than I first realised. So I might be looking at how I can improve that, first.

We're doing our kitchen soon and I'm putting in a tap point for my cooling coil so I don't have to bring in the garden hose.

And so it goes, I see. Great hobby!

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