Embarrassing first brew

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Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby awkwardMistake » Sun Aug 23, 2015 5:16 pm

Hey.

So, I find this so embarrassing that I created a fake account to post about it. Since it is also so stupid, it might be kind of funny to read about, so I thought I could post it here. Since I really found quite some interesting posts in here before I got started.

So first, a bit about me. I have brewed for about 5 years, but recently won a BM 20 in a competition. Pretty awesome prize, to say the least. Since I know how the brew process goes, and I have been attending i BM brew session once I guess things went a bit fast there. Or not... Still looking for a reasonable explanation to my stupidity :p

So, today was the brew day.

Was going to brew a saison. Along the lines of saison dupont, but with more orange. I had brewed something similar before, only adjusted some parts for the BM and was adding more orange this time.

Started with filling up water. I had read a couple of posts in this forum how you do no-sparge with just more water to start with, which seemed like a good fit for me. So first beer in the BM, I ignore the manual (which tells me "start with 23 liters") and start with 30 liters of water. And ignore another part of the manual, and use around 5.5K malt. Still, this probably all seems doable to the average reader, but here comes the first mistake:

Speidel stops and makes a sound. Says "add malt". Sure thing, I think, putting the malt pipe in its place and pouring malt in. Started stirring a little when it dawns on me. No filter plates were added into the malt pipe.

Ensue a range of events in various degrees of panic.

First I start to empty the speidel to rinse it, since I suspect this in no way can be good for... well, anything. This takes about 30 minutes and literally a lot of sweat. At this point I have added the bottom "filters" to the malt pipe, and is using this as a strain to salvage the malt, while getting the speidel emptied.

So I start considering if I should just abort it all. But since I am kind of eager to get my first brew on the speidel I decide to start over, with wet malt. Rinse the speidel, add the malt pipe directly into it. start to fill up with the drainings from the strained malt (since I was somewhat worried to lose fermentables here). Get things sort of looking OK, and skip directly to first mash step.

Now, at this point I am glad I had seen a speidel in action before. Because pretty soon it becomes apparent the pumps are not working. Figures, I think, the way I treated it. So out with all malts and liquid for the second time. At this point I decide to throw out all malts and buy new. Fill up with just a little bit of clean water to see if the pump fixes it self. No go.

The pump is not working, and in my mind I have now broken my speidel without even reaching mash step 2. The panic is not getting better...

So, abort brewing, start being mechanic. I soon find out that one of the "holes" of the pump is clogged with malt. I try a couple of varying degrees of clever tools to reach into there to just "de-clog" it, before I get the idea of hooking my cooler "output" to the hole, and force water into there to unclog. To be fair, this is after quite a while of said panic, and a decent pile of swear words. Success! A nice chunk of malt splashes into the wall and I have sucessfully declogged my pumps with my wort cooler.

Fill up with some clean water, and pump is back to working.

So. The brew day did not go as planned. And compared to my more manual setup before, this automation did not make things less stressful. But I guess that's on me.

Sipping on a comforting imperial stout and hoping I learned my lesson. And since this forum has been of a high professional standard (and probably source of future knowledge in my BM ownership), I hope at least my mistakes was of some entertainment to some :)

Have a nice sunday, everyone!
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby GrowlingDogBeer » Sun Aug 23, 2015 5:20 pm

Yes, that was entertaining. Before the next brew RTFM :)
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby awkwardMistake » Sun Aug 23, 2015 5:44 pm

:D

Since my day-trade is programmer I am googling ways to reprogram the instructions to now say: "Add malt (and remember the filters, stupid)".

Could add a language set maybe?

- German.
- English.
- Rude English for dummies.
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby Icefever » Sun Aug 23, 2015 7:41 pm

We all make mistakes....I'm thinking you'd better do a "- Rude English for dummies." and I'll take a copy please. :lol:
Of all the beautiful things in the world, only man can invent boredom
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby ibbones » Sun Aug 23, 2015 9:09 pm

Don't we learn by mistakes? I know I will not (hopefully) forget to put in the bottom screen again. :beer: With mine, I panicked and poured my water and malt into a 20L bucket so I could put my bottom screen in place. Yep, that's about 26L of water and malt trying to fit into a 20L bucket.
I didn't get to save my malt. :oops:
"BONES"
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby 3LB » Sun Aug 23, 2015 9:21 pm

Costly mistake in more ways than one... Hope you'll do better next brew day - the Braumeister is a really awesome tool but like any device it needs some experience to get the most out of it. Hang in there! :)
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby dinnerstick » Mon Aug 24, 2015 6:20 am

i'm sure there are some clever clogs out there who have not experienced that horrific feeling of going to add the top plate and screen and finding both sets still there. i wish i could forget it but i can't.
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby McMullan » Mon Aug 24, 2015 8:54 pm

dinnerstick wrote:i'm sure there are some clever clogs out there who have not experienced that horrific feeling of going to add the top plate and screen and finding both sets still there. i wish i could forget it but i can't.


Just last week I placed the bottom plate, doughed in and then realised both mesh screens were on the bottom plate... doughed out and started again :oops:
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby thepatchworhdoll » Tue Aug 25, 2015 12:39 am

Hi there Guys
Things happen only last week I mashed in 4 kgs of malt before I realised I had'nt put the bottom filter and screen in place. Then it just got worse. tried to retrieve the grain and forgot to put the top screen in plkace. And then the fountains. Total disastee Wont do that again I hope. Ha ha ha
Reg\ards
Patch
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby Joe1002 » Sun Aug 30, 2015 10:05 am

Not the bottom filter but I had a close call yesterday. It was my second brew of the day, I hit the continue button after adding the malt. I glanced at the malt pipe and realised I hadn't installed the top screens. Thankfully I got to the 'abort' button just before the malt overflowed the malt pipe. It was a very close call.
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby Icefever » Sun Aug 30, 2015 12:55 pm

Jeez....I've got all this to think about tomorrow....Image I'm not going to sleep tonight.
Of all the beautiful things in the world, only man can invent boredom
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby Joe1002 » Mon Aug 31, 2015 8:47 am

Good luck today. I only made the mistake as I was tired, in a rush and not concentrating properly.

You will be fine.
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby mashy » Tue Sep 01, 2015 7:08 am

While reading this I began to wonder if I had posted this in my sleep.... All far too familiar.
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby evildrakey » Tue Apr 26, 2016 7:01 am

That was brew #2 for me...

Brew #3, I put in filter and because I hadn't hit the okay button to fill malt pipe, the temp dropped as I was filling the malt in and the pump started back up and shit went everywhere...
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Re: Embarrassing first brew

Unread postby Goose » Sat Apr 30, 2016 6:53 am

Nothing to be embarrassed about.

In my time homebrewing I can't think of a problem I didn't have.

In my case they usually they stem from complacency. Which breeds contempt, and consequences...

Persevere and ye shall succeed.
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