From the HBD Archive
Date: 1988-12-20 22:23:00 GMT

Hello, everyone!

This posting is going to reply to several things I've seen in the last couple
of digests, and also to answer some direct enquiries I've had. This last is
to cover any e-mail that goes "boing!" I will also be attempting to reach
individuals directly; I would appreciate it if anyone I successfully reach
acknowledges both receipt of e-mail and tells me which gateway worked.

First, for those who have already asked, or are wondering: the answer is yes,
the historical re-enactment group I'm a member of is the Society for Creative
Anachronism. If you've just read this and are now wondering what the SCA is,
contact me and ask; I'll gladly explain.

To Darryl Richman, regarding your microscope and such: I'm not entirely
certain, but it is possible that your 'scope has sufficient magnification to
let you see the structure of yeast cells. To do this, you will indeed need a
stain. If you can, contact someone you know with access to microbiology
equipment and stains. You could try to do it at home, but in my opinion would
not be worth all the muss, fuss, and bother. To do the other things you
mention, such as a cell count (this would be your "yeast density") would be
difficult outside a lab. If we can communicate directly, I'll be glad to tell
you more about basic microbiology, and give you a better idea of what's
involved. Feel free to ask. I would also suggest you check a campus
bookstore for a book on basic microbiology; it's not a difficult subject, so
don't be phazed.

To Tony Giannnone, regarding his carbonation problem: after several cases of
trial-and-error, I finally took the advice I'm about to offer you. I haven't
had a whit of trouble since. Let your wort go until fermentation
_stops_ or 14
days pass. If the brew is still fermenting at 14 days, check the specific
gravity; it's probably ready to bottle (NOTE: the 14 days is no joke-- I did
a Russian Imperial Stout with something like 18 lbs. of malt in 5 gallons,
plus grains, and it was still fermenting quite nicely at 14 days!). Once the
fermentation stops, bottle ASAP, priming with 7/8 cup corn sugar. I have
found the usual 3/4 cup to be too flat-- the 7/8 cup (suggested by the friend
whose advice this was) has produced a nice, snappy degree of carbonation every

Thanks for your attention; I hope this helps.

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