January 29, 2012

Filling the Barrel

My Friday was spent filling the barrel.  Unfortunately I don't have a lot of pictures as I was too busy working, but i'll share the ones I did take.  The wort was ready for me and was split into 2 drums with 30 gallons in each.     they had the drums sitting on a pallet and simply fork-lifted the pallet into the bed of my friend's truck.  As I mentioned earlier, my plan was to simply siphon the wort down to the barrel once I got the drums back to the house.

With the truck backed up to my house, I slowly submerged the siphon into the drum.  I closed the valve and pulled the siphon out of the drum, through my basement window, and to the barrel.  Opening the valve, wort started flowing!  However, the end of the tube that was in the drum had turned and was above the wort, so instead of pulling in more wort, it was pulling in air, and the siphon ran dry.  After figuring out what went wrong, I was able to get some assistance and kept the end of the tube in the wort.  The drums quickly emptied, however, I didn't think about putting a tube after the valve which would enable me to fill the barrel from the bottom.  Instead, all of the wort dropped from the top of the barrel to the bottom, which created a lot of foam. For future reference, I would suggest adding that section of the tube to the siphon, as well as designing a way to make sure the other end of the siphon stays at the bottom of the drum.

OG: 13.95 degrees Plato (1.057 SG)               Ambient Temp: 57°F

Here I am with the filled barrel.  The yeast from East Coast Yeast has also been added.  There ended up being enough wort left over that I was able to fill one of my small 5 gallon barrels.  So, with some friends visiting that night, we fired up the steamer and drank a glass of Tilquin Oude Gueuze.  After the small barrel was steamed, I gave it a quick rinse, and then we added the wort.  However, we lacked yeast.  We were headed to Central Water's 14th Anniversary party the next day, so I filled a Nalgene bottle with some wort and brought it along.  I knew there would be a bottle share and likely a good assortment of sour beers that I could collect the dregs from.

As you can see, I got just that, and there were probably another 3 bottles added after that picture.  The next day when I woke up, that Nalgene was under pressure, and I had to burp it throughout the morning until I was able to get home and add it to the barrel.  Its not as big of a yeast culture pitch, so it will likely be a while before I see activity in the small barrel.  The big barrel on the other hand....

1 comment:

Pete said...

Damn man you going "native" on me. Must have been a cold winter! Love the setup wish I had the time . . . damn kids. Drop me a line as I am now on both sites.


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