USB Cord Surgery

Last weekend when heating up caustic last weekend to clean I burned the USB cord on the HLT temperature and float sensor.  Multi tasking the boil, hop additions, manning the pumps and trying try to get the hoses all sorted out I failed to notice the cord got pretty close to the high output burner.  Didn’t notice the issue at first but the temperature shown on the screen was decently far off so I ran the troubleshooting menu and noticed the mis formed cord sheathing.  It felt a bit crispy.  I cut off the burned section and decided to put a female connector up higher and use a USB extension incase it happens again I can just use any USB cord vs having to do this again.  Once I opened the cord it occurred to me that this will be somewhat of a chore to solder and repair.  I got the tools and order the cables and gave it a shot.

Once the outer sheath is pealed back there is a mesh weave that has to be cut, this provides pull strength on these types of cables.  Once that is gone peal back the foil and you will be presented with a red, black and three shielded pairs (some string and other strength wires as well).  Pull off the plastic and foil on the pairs and separate them all out , you should have 8 separate wire at this point.  Get them all organized and straight, strip a short section off each and start splicing them together.  Once the pairs are spliced together hit the wire with the fine tipped solder gun, apply the solder to the wire and wait for it to flow on to the wire, making a one piece connection.  Once a good splice it made I went with liquid electrical tape to each connection to minimize a short.  When its all sealed and your happy with you work apply some heat shrink wrap over the splice and give it enough heat to make the joint nice and smooth.

A splice in wires this small will never be as good as one solid piece but it works and was a good way to save a chunk of change over buying an entire HLT sensor.  They only sell this entire assembly so stainless and all.

I would like to see MoreBeer make a connection near the top to one could just buy new cables as I am sure this will happen again.  There is no way to keep the cord entirely protected when they are cut to specific length and the HLT burner kicks out some serious BTU’s.

All done and tested, success.  It lives to brew another day.

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Black Friday Amber Pale Ale Brew day

While the mad dash to go shopping amongst thousands of nut cases has never drawn me in, I do find it fascinating. Wake up at the crack of dawn, stand in line shoulder to shoulder with tons of people to save what you spend on Starbucks in a week? I digress. Set out to brew a darker style amber with the hops we had on hand. Brew day went as planned with the exception of over oxygenating the wort and over flowing the conical. Excited to see what some of the lesser known to me hops taste like. I scored about 20oz of free hops at the Homebrew shop a few weeks ago, mostly European but some common ones as well.

First casualty of the brew stand also occurred, the HLT prob cord got a little toasty and started malfunctioning. At $75 for a new probe I decided to cut off the melted section and perform a bit of surgery. It appears to be a standard USB with temp shielding. The plan is to place a female USB end up high and use a USB extension to make the run past the burner in the event it happens again. The cord is shielded, has a red and black and three sub shielded pairs carrying data. Utilizing a USB extension will also give the ability to make this cord run around the heat source and minimize the chance of future issues. I will perform the cord surgery this week and post a short video of the repair.

Other Brewery tasks completed:

  • Juice Box NEIPA was Kegged and placed on tap.
  • All Kegs cleaned, sanitized and purged
  • Ordered a second Tilt Hydrometer. These are great and a good way to monitor fermentation from afar.

Anchor Christmas in large format was consumed, it was OK this year. Definitely was not my favorite year for it or my tastes are going away from spiced beers. Nonetheless it has become a tradition at this point so I will endure on.

Brew Stats for the Pale Ale (Euphoria Pale) brewed

https://www.brewstat.us/share/2473/euphoria-pale

Southern Tier Imperial Pumpking



Southern Tier Imperial Pumpking, originally uploaded by adambarhan.

Appearance: Pours an almost clear honey color with a modest, but frothy head that leaves a reasonable splashing of lace

Smell: Pumpkin pie spice, vanilla sugar.

Taste: Opens with a rich pumpkin and spice flavor, which becomes increasingly spicey by mid-palate; after the swallow, the cornbread flavor builds, sweet and buttery; the finish has some alcohol on it

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation; some warmth coming in at the end.

Drinkability: A big, flavorful pumpkin brew; a bit sweet but good.

Chatoe Rouge Pumpkin Patch Ale



Chatoe Rouge Pumpkin Patch Ale, originally uploaded by adambarhan.

A: Pours a dark burnt orange with a small soapy white head. Good retention for the style, no lace.

S: Pumpkin spice. Some flesh, lots of cinnamon, nutmeg.

T: Spice dominated. The overall pumpkin flavour is light. Cinnamon and clove heavy taste. Clove especially on the back end.

M: Medium-bodied, soft crisp carbonation. Light aftertaste. Thin at points.

O: A solid pumpkin beer.

Orval Trappist Ale – Brasserie d’Orval S.A.

A: Amber orange in color with a good amount of head that lingers forever.

S: The nose is yeasty and very funky, prominent horse blanket smell as well.

T: Slight tartness, yeast and that subtle barnyard/wet hay funk. Perfectly balanced malty/hoppy/sweetness.

M: Light body, high carbonation finished very dry.

D: One of the best beers all the way around. Very good and pairs well with a lot of things.

MOA Brewing Breakfast Ale



MOA Brewing Breakfast Ale, originally uploaded by adambarhan.

Appearance: A Hazy light-golden yellow with a strong fizz and a thin layer of white foam. Both of the MOA beers I tried seemed over carbed.

Smell: Sweet, floral, fruity aroma with a hint of tartness. Cherry flavor is there, candy like.

Taste: Slight malt backbone with a sweet, aspartame-like flavor. Cherry flavor present. Unfortunately, there’s quite a bit of artificial-ness here, not a good thing here.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body with a huge carbonation.

Overall: Interesting beer with some qualities I don’t like. As with most flavored beers, not a winner.

21st Amendment Sneak Attack Saison

Its been a while so I guess its time to get back on the hog, I have quite a queue of beers to go. Onward…

A -A bright hazy straw yellow with a 1/2 inch of fizzy white head.

S – Smells of subdued spices and some cardamom, light bittering hops, and some wheat.

T – Not a traditional saison but pretty damn good. Needs more wild characteristics and maybe some brett flavor.

M – Light and bubbly, went down quicker than a Saison should.

Will definitely pick this one up again.