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Priming with DME

Posted: |26 Nov 2014|, 15:29
by Venari
I've heard some people prime their bottles with DME. Does this appreciably affect the flavour? For me to use DME, I'd have to buy it online and pay for the shipping, which could get expensive. Would it be worth the cost, or would I be better off priming with dextrose or table sugar?

Many kits have instructions that say to make 23L batches, but they tend to taste weak, so I now make 19L batches. Would priming bottles with DME better the flavour enough to make 23L?

Re: Priming with DME

Posted: |26 Nov 2014|, 15:42
by Goulaigan
May have very slight effect on flavour but doubtful it will be '4L extra beer' enough. DME isnt 100% fermentable like sugar so it would require more of it to do the same c02 volume.(30-50% more according to popular priming calculators) I have also read that it will create a bit of a krausen in the bottle, which may cause less clarity/more gunk in the bottom? And possibly more time before the beer clears, just guessing here tho.

Since you would require more and its way more pricey than sugar, I don't think its worth using it to prime. You may be better off just adding it before initial fermentation if you want a stronger beer, and then priming with sugar...

Re: Priming with DME

Posted: |26 Nov 2014|, 20:37
by Venari
Thanks for the info Goulaigan.

I suppose I could try adding some DME into the wort when I make it with LME, but that seems like an added cost to achieve what following the instructions should already give me. Given my remote location, I don't think BIAB is really an option, especially when I don't really have a convenient or cost effective way to cool the wort.

At least with LME I just add about 15 liters of cold water.

Re: Priming with DME

Posted: |26 Nov 2014|, 22:52
by Dee Envy
Venari, just a note on your BIAB comment.
I BIAB exclusively and just let the wort cool in the kettle overnight and then transfer to the fermentor. There are many people who do this and never have a problem.
I have read on different forums that some even pitch the yeast directly into the kettle and produce fine beer.Don't let the cooling aspect deter you from trying BIAB.

Re: Priming with DME

Posted: |27 Nov 2014|, 00:27
by Goulaigan
Agree with Dee here, don't let chilling worry you, I also slow/no chill in the kettle, overnight in the summer, couple hours outside in the winter. I have done probly 15 batches or so now, just throw the lid on after the boil and let it sit in the wood shed. If you are already doing extract, all you need is a bag and a good thermometer and you can do all grain BIAB, although it may be tricky getting grain given your location...

I started with extract last January and after 3 or 4 batches, went to BIAB and never looked back. Could never go back to that twangy taste I get from extract and I really have no desire to go 3 vessel with more equipment, time and especially cleaning for the same end product. I entered 2 bjcp comps so far with my BIAB brews and placed 2nd in one and 3rd in the other, BIAB is efficient, easy and makes great beer!

Re: Priming with DME

Posted: |27 Nov 2014|, 07:57
by Venari
Are there any large pots that can be done on an electric stove? We don't really have propane up here. Also, what size would be best for 5 gallon batches?

Re: Priming with DME

Posted: |27 Nov 2014|, 08:31
by Reignman
At least 7 gallon pots. Electric stoves sometimes struggle to get a good boil with bigger pots. A heat stick will help, but they aren't cheap. What about a Cajun cooker? Can you get 20 lb. propane cylinders up there?

Re: Priming with DME

Posted: |27 Nov 2014|, 09:37
by SmokeyMcB
If all else fails, do the BIAB mash in a 5 or 6 gallon bucket and then split the wort into two pots for the boil. Split all your hop additions evenly and boil the two pots on your stove and combine the two finished worts into one 5 gallon batch for fermenting. Or keep the two batches separate and ferment with two different yeasts. This would help you understand the flavors of your yeasts.

If you can't get propane, what about natural gas? Or maybe furnace oil and a jerry-rigged old oil furnace burner? Or maybe look into building an electric boil kettle. Just install an electric water heater element through the wall of a big vessel (pot or even heat proof bucket) and boil away.

Re: Priming with DME

Posted: |27 Nov 2014|, 11:12
by Goulaigan
I have a 60 litre pot that works great for 5-6 gallon batches, but I can't quite do 10 gals in it unless I hold back water from mash. If I had to do it again I would have bought a 20Gal pot. I think a 7 gallon pot would be pushing it for 5 gallon biab batches, but definitely possible, do you have to hold back any water from mash Reignman? When I do a bigger (7% ish) beer my total mash volume is upwards of 12 gallons to get 6 into fermentor...

If you can't get propane, electric as SmokeyMcB says is probably your best bet.

Re: Priming with DME

Posted: |27 Nov 2014|, 14:21
by Venari
Reignman wrote:At least 7 gallon pots. Electric stoves sometimes struggle to get a good boil with bigger pots. A heat stick will help, but they aren't cheap. What about a Cajun cooker? Can you get 20 lb. propane cylinders up there?
I ordered a CO2 tank back in august I'm still waiting on. I don't think they'll actually ship a flammable pressurized gas.