Old Barrel, Old Malt

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Leglesswondercat, Nov 29, 2017.

  1. Leglesswondercat

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    Let me first begin by saying that neither of these ideas are good, if you hurt yourself by copying me then I will laugh at you, If you try to sue me, your lawyer will laugh at you for trying to sue a man with so little that he has to try this. With that said here are the chronicles of such a man. May whatever god you believe in be with you lol.

    I had to stop brewing about four years ago, I had been doing AG and had about 4kg of ground malt left when work called me away, didn't know how long it was gonna be for, so I stashed my malt away in my 19L pot, sealed with insulation tape around the edge. Turned out to be quite a while before my life was stable enough again for brewing.

    When I opened it up again, four years later, I fully expected to have to throw it away but it showed no signs of mould and still tasted fresh. I decided to make a brew from it and I'm glad I did. I am well aware of ergot poisoning and even induce a synthetic form from time to time, however I am not foolhardy in this respect and if it had displayed any symptoms of decay I would have chucked it at this point.

    I bought some fresh hops and mashed it up, I fully intended this to be a practice or if lucky, sacreifcial brew. Giving me something to drink while better brews matured. I have been pleasantly supprised. The efficiency was down (15%) compared to the following brew but as yet flavour is good and I wouldn't hesitate to do this again, although I know its far from best practice.

    I had two more brews planned when I started this one and only bottles enough for that, I did however have an old pressure barrel from 1987 o_O

    If I had had a bit more cash and cared about my personal safety a bit more I would have bought a new one but I do know the history of this barrel, attic stored and mostly unused. Plus I had all the bits to make this work. It also offered some advantages to those that I can buy readily. It is far thicker than modern barrels, opaque and the fitting I put into it means you don't waste a full bulb of co2 each time you charge. The safety valve was in good condition.

    I first off drilled the lid and put in an automotive Stai[​IMG][/IMG]nless shraeder valve, this was something I had knocking about. I pumped it to around 5psi and checked it for leaks with washing up liquid and It came out fine. Once I pumped to 10 however the central rubber bung started to leak. I decided to take a look in the workshop and see what I had available, after a bit of hunting, a stainless bolt and some washers did the trick. I pumped it up to 15psi and the safety started to bleed as expected so I left it for 3 days to see if it held pressure. It did :)

    Confident now I put my brew into it and 3 weeks later we are carbed and happy. I will use a co2 bike pump to charge which has a valve and guage but so far 10l down and it has not been nesessary.

    Some pics for you and if you have questions go for it. [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG][/IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  2. Leglesswondercat

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  3. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Looks tge good legless why buy a new one if tge old one does suffices.
     
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  4. Leglesswondercat

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    Exactly! Wish I could buy more of this quality, still don't trust it entirely though. Sitting in a deep tray with a sack over it atm.
     
  5. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Looks like that bath tub :p perfect! Less temp fluctuations in the house and why not put the plug in and fill er up half way and give it a water bath too:D seriously though:) itll help keep swings to a minimum you know what i mean:p.
     
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  6. Leglesswondercat

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    Haha , alsa the bathtub was not a permanent solution. While I can get away with 3 days and no shower while flatmate is away, she kinda perrty and I do tend to be cleaner once she's back lol. Sitting in stairwell in tray at around 5c just now. Been looking at fermentasaurus for the next big investement, looks real good. For now a bottle tree and no rinse would seem to be the go.
     
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  7. Leglesswondercat

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    Keg is about empty for this batch :-( pretty confident in it now but belly is starting to grow and I recon beer on tap is just something I shouldn't live with. It will go back up into loft as emergency option and and I'll carry on bottling just now. I don't need the next shiney shiney, I'm making beer I like just fine on a shoestring, I will invest at some point on a better easier system but gonna at least make my kit pay for itself before I upgrade it.

    I like the fermentasaurus, it's great design and they cut out the need for a lot of kit but some of it is kit I have already and functions well so far. They have priced it well in the market but I still baulk at the price a little when I can buy a better valve for £19, the vessel is a big coke bottle and the pressure kit is about 3 times the price of the parts.

    However most stuff I can make to a better standard than the mass produced item, this one leaves me a bit stumped,gonna give it time till either, my skills get better, the price comes down or I start to earn/drink more lol
     
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  8. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Beer will do that to you;) brew within your means i say. You dont need fancy shiney wiz bang latest equipment to brew great enjoyable beer!
     

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