A New Homebrewer

I went over to a friend’s house today to help him brew his first batch of beer. Seems he got bitten by the homebrewing bug when I did that little demonstration a couple weeks ago. He did a clone of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from the most excellent Clone Brews book.

The brewing went off without a hitch, and that turkey fryer burner that he used really knocked down the time because we weren’t waiting around for it to boil. It’s in the carboy now and we should know how well it turned out in a couple weeks.

The Mauritius Command

Book four in Patrick O’Brian’s Aubrey/Maturin series, this one sees Jack a little more comfortable at home, no longer on the run from his creditors, but still beached on half pay until Stephen shows up with secret orders for a mission that will take him to the Indian Ocean to lead the expedition to retake Mauritius and La Reunion from the French.

All in all it was a good book, and I’m eager to start in on the next one in a vain attempt to decrease the height of the to-be-read stack of books I’ve got.

Gaelic Storm

I’d picked up these tickets a while back because they sounded like an interesting band to go see. Well, tonight was the night and The House of Blues was the venue.

I can’t begin to write down a set list, as I am a complete newbie when it comes to their music, but it was a great show. They were really in to the audience and the venue was small enough that you were within shouting distance of the stage no matter where you were in the room.

They played two full sets of music interspersed with witty repartee between themselves and the audience. The music was fantastic, traditional Irish with a modern flair, and not at all melancholy. Though there were a few slower songs, for the most part it was just fun, occasionally bawdy, music.

After an extended encore they called it a night and hung around to talk with fans.

Saturday Brew And Learn

A few friends of mine had expressed interest in learning how to brew so I had them over to help out with brewing another batch of what I’ve decided to call my 50 wt. Wheat. The recipe’s pretty well standard now, and I’ve started using Beer Alchemy to keep track of the batches. We did a partial mash, and it looks like I nailed the conversion because my pre-boil gravity matched what the software predicted it should perfectly.

It’s in the carboy and hopefully the yeast will get going soon. About a month and there’ll be more wheat beer on tap.

Replacing The Tappets

I picked up the new tappets, made by Crane Cams, from Strokers this morning and started working on getting the two for the front cylinder replaced, since I already had that half disassembled. After that I moved on to taking apart the rocker box on the rear cylinder and it’s tappets. They’re replaced as well and everything’s buttoned back up.

The moment of truth when I hit the starter but it fired right up and other than some clatter from the lifters bleeding up I didn’t hear the valve/piston contact that had been there before.

I’m going to take it for a test ride later and make sure that I haven’t missed anything like seals, etc. and that it’s really, truly, functioning correctly, but for now it looks like it is.