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Like wow....help

I have found that if you tell your friends that you are looking for dark pry off bottles, you will soon get more than you can use.

I do not even try to take the label off of Summit - I get enough of other bottles that I can be picky.

+1 to swing tops from Germany - their bottles are the sturdiest. Tell your friends to save Sam Adams or other brown pry offs, but tell them you will trade home brew for (full) swing tops. With my crew of friends, I had several dozen in no time and then within a couple years I began kegging…have fun!

I’ll second the need for a thermometer, hydrometer and long stirring spoon.

There’s one other item that is not a necessity, in fact I brewed several years without it, but I’d never give up now. That is a spray bottle for your sanitizer. Spraying the sanitizer on all surfaces is so much easier than trying to submerge all surfaces.

[quote=“Brick1083”]I’ll second the need for a thermometer, hydrometer and long stirring spoon.

There’s one other item that is not a necessity, in fact I brewed several years without it, but I’d never give up now. That is a spray bottle for your sanitizer. Spraying the sanitizer on all surfaces is so much easier than trying to submerge all surfaces.[/quote]

Yup. Spray bottle is the best $1.05 spent ever. plus - as long as the sanitizer is a no rinse - it can double as boil over control…needed that the other day.

If a kit comes with steeping grains, they come with a muslin bag to hold them. I add the grains and tie a knot in the bag just above the grain. After the steep, I cut the bag under the knot and reuse it for the hops, either in the boil or for dry hopping. You will find that homebrewing is synonymous with resourcefulness. :slight_smile:

Really like the idea of using muslin bags for hops. Do you just let them float freely in the boil?

I don’t bag my hops for the boil. I use a strainer when transferring from kettle to carboy.

Yes, let the bag 'o hops float freely in the wort.

Pssst. Don’t tell anybody, but if you cross over the state line into God’s country New Glarus still uses paper labels and they just float off when soaked in a little PBW(Powdered brewery wash) or scent free generic oxy. Best part is the beer is pretty good.
Also please guard the secret that this hobby gets easier with experience, because if we don’t keep the membership exclusive Bear’s fans might even be able to do it.
PS. When you get sick of bottling and convert to kegging don’t give away all your bottles. You will probably still want to bottle some larger beers for aging or to give as gifts.

Hey, I resemble that remark!

:cheers:

I use an electronic grilling thermometer for my brewing. It has a long handle, big readout, super-fast reading, and seems to be pretty accurate within a couple of degrees. We did use a glass floating thermometer for a couple of years and it worked fine too, just more of a trick to keep from dropping it in the pot.

If you are just getting started the accuracy of the thermometer isn’t critical. You’re only watching the water while you are steeping the grains and the kettle comes up to temp, and then again when you’re cooling to pitch the yeast. But even then those measurements are not overly critical.

Lots more good info all
Thank you

[quote=“mvsawyer”]I don’t bag my hops for the boil. I use a strainer when transferring from kettle to carboy.

Yes, let the bag 'o hops float freely in the wort.[/quote]

This is probably a stupid question - how do you use a strainer with the carboy? Do you hold the strainer above the funnel? I would need help with that.

It’s a little stainless steel basket strainer that fits in the funnel. Just have to pour slow when you get to the last of the kettle.

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