Fruiting

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Strawberries are now in full force with the blackcurrants, raspberries and even a few blackberries also following suit.

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You can’t tell we had double in there at one point.

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I’m wondering when the birds will notice…

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Victoria plum is fruiting for the first year so I’m pretty excited. I love Victoria plums.  So much so we have two of them!

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Grape vine seems to be going mental… Looking forward to them again! They were very tasty last year.

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Yellow plum here.

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First baby courgette

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Leeks and basil ready for planting out

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Sweetcorn is a definite success this year. We’re also growing baby corn.

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Beans haven’t been decimated either

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Our elephant garlic is in bloom too.

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Galaxy Delight kegged up

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Tonight I got off my backside and racked up the Galaxy Delight beer.

It was only about the last 7 litres when I realised the keg would only take 19L and I’d need to bottle some. This is the first brew I’ve put into them, so I’m not 100% used to the routine and I was ill prepared.

Anyway, this beer isn’t going to be cask conditioned. Its going to be force carbonated so I’ve rigged it up in the kegorator to the CO2 cylinder at about 10PSI

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Kegerator and Lasers!

So last night we went to the London hackspace with an EPS file and a lot of hope.

The plan…

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Lasers!

Can you tell what it is yet?

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Next of course was to start on the kegerator.

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For most kegerators, you need to lots of complicated things. We decided to keep it very simple and try to keep the fridge as insulated as possible.  The gas (CO2) is kept outside and fed in through the top of the fridge.

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This conduit we got for another project was perfect for 3/8 beer line.  It can take two lines in each section.  The plan is to run a gas line in from outside and the beer out.  We have one beer line for the handpump, two for a font (yet to buy).

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Siliconed in!

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Just needs a clean!

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And a spray… remember that laser cutter at the start?

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Won’t lose these easily!

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Sprayed all the things!

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And soon to come, a pump clip! :)

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Homebrew festival

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This weekend we attended the home brew festival in Market Bosworth. 

I entered three beers, two all grain and a kit.  I placed with one of the all grain beers (2nd) and the kit (3rd)

Very pleased and thanks for all the help and encouragement from my friends and family

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Workstation

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Idiocy is, I assume, building a wall over a wooden racking system.

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I honestly have no idea why they did this.

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Some donated racking!

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Much more organised! And now the woodworm infested woodwork has gone, things are tidier and I’m almost ready for the roof to be replaced.

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Biltong maker/box

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So a few months ago I built a biltong maker.

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Its purely a plastic box with a reptile heater and a computer fan. Oak dowels support the meat and a lid stops flies getting in.

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I suspend with string

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A few days later! Biltong. Juicy biltong!

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The Home Brew Festival

In a few weeks I’ll be joining members of the craftbrewing forum in Market Bosworth for The Home Brew Festival.

Its the successor to “the spring thing”.

Its members only (membership of the home brew festival not any associated forum).  You pay the membership fee, then about £23 for the full weekend camping! Beer is provided completely free at the bar.

There’s also a competition – I’m putting in three entries – one of my entries is a kit, but the rest are all grain.

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So 3 weeks later, I’ve kegged 160ish pints!

If you’re going, I’ll see you there!

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Spring cleanup

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Above: before
Below: after (in the rain)

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Sweet corn planted

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Chickens are happy with the grape vine progress

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Bean poles moved and naughty self seeded squash moved

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Ready for more planting next week!

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Brewday

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Another brewday.  This was Hoperific Landlord from the malt miller. I’d actually forgotten I’d bought it and its been sitting in my garage awaiting a brewing.

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I got some big help and some little help. The little help insisted in banging everything with trains.

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Instead of just all grain, my brother in law gave me two liquid kit beers which were in an odd squeezy plastic packing.

Inside there was yeast and dried hops.  The two kits came with silly instructions which were very basic.  I followed my usual kit process by bunging in a couple of kettles of boiling water in each and mixing with cold tap water.  In the IPA I added brewing sugar, for the bitter I went with two pouches of light spray malt.  The IPA had an OG of 1.048 and the bitter had 1.044.

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The landlord seemed to be a bit watery, so I continued to reduce to 20ltrs and had an OG of 1.048.

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Boris bikes #2

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Well it didn’t last long.  After 10 journeys via bike, yesterday a grinning bus driver purposely denied me right of way and tried to run me off the road.  I’d already decided to get a camera, next time I’ll report him and or his colleagues.  Here the helmet is sporting an SJ4000 camera which for £65 cones with all the accessories you’d need!

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