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Archive for April 2009

My Stock Pot to Copper Conversion.

The Starting point was this, a Huge 38 Litre Aluminium Stock Pot:
The Huge 38 Litre Aluminium Stock Pot
I had this welded up at work, made from a 1/2″ BSP Stainless Steel barrel nipple from BES and a 3mm thick M22 Stainless washer from Stig’s Stainless Steel Fasteners:
Home made Tank connector
The 1/2″ BSP Female-Female Ball Valve came from BES and 1/2″ BSP-Compression Elbow was from B&Q, there is a brass 1/2″ BSP Female-15mm Compression fitting with another M22 washer on the inside of the stockpot holding the Tank connector in place:
Mounted Ball Valve tap
My Home made Hop Strainer (Hop Stopper), can drain down with a bit of a Pan tilt to 1 litre of dead space (*To be improved):
Hop Stopper
Outflow from the boiler via a piece of 15mm copper pipe (*slight redesign in order):
Outflow
Plan view of a re-design idea (*which I won’t need to use)
Redesign idea

* <<< Stuff marked with a star / asterisk:
The first drain down of the pot left about 1 Litre of liquid and I had to tilt the pan to get it to drain that far. I did some reading up at www.jimsbeerkit.co.uk and started looking into the ‘Syphon Effect’ and decided to stick some electrical tape over the top two thirds of the strainer (the bottom third of the holes are left open) holes and also reduced the internal diameter of the outflow pipe with a bit of PVC tube stuffed in the end. I did the same drain down test and found that it not only drained down faster but also only left 75ml of liquid in a level pan, no tilting necessary!
Now I just need to get a 15mm-10mm copper reducing fitting for the outflow pipe and solder up the top two thirds of the holes in the hop strainer. I’ll also drill some more holes in the remaining bottom third to as to keep a good open area.

Can’t wait for the next brew day now 🙂 I can’t help but think that I could half cool the wort via the outflow pipe now too if I just did a bit more coper pipe bodging and turned it into a counter-flow chiller!

My modified hop Strainer section, holes just in the bottom third of the tube, makes use of the syphon Effect:
Modified hop Strainer

2nd Extract brew – Bramling Cross IPA 🙂
This time its a 12 litre brew, so more than a demijohn full like my first extract, this time its in a new small 15 Litre FV bucket which is a nice manageable size for lugging up and down the cellar steps!
This was a real test for my stock-pot conversion to boiler (I should blog the details) 😉

The recipe:
Malt Extract Syrup Pale – 5.5 EBC – 1500 grams
Dried Malt Extract Pale – 10 EBC – 390 grams
Wheat Malt Extract – 8 EBC – 50 grams
Crystal Wheat Malt – 125 EBC – 50 grams
Roasted Barley – 1350 EBC – 20 grams

Bramling Cross – 38 grams – 60 Mins
Bramling Cross – 26 grams – 15 Mins
Bramling Cross – 10 grams (added to steep for about 20 mins at 80 Deg C)

Final Volume: 12 Litres
Original Gravity: 1.051
Final Gravity: 1.012
Alcohol Content: 5.1% ABV
Bitterness: 61 EBU
Colour: 31 EBC

The Ingredients:

Bramling Cross Hops:

First batch of hops gone in, grain bags bobbing around:

Run-off from boiler into FV3, which was cooled in the bath:


Yeast Starter, the Safale us-05 was mad-for-it with loads of fine bubbles:

Hydro @ 35 degrees, apparently its really about 1044 (6 or 7 points below where it should have been):

15 Litre FV tucked up to bed:

Things I’d change:
The way the boiler drains off through the hop stopper could be improved, I’m thinking a short curved copper pipe.
The Linen bags for the grain are a little watertight, though they did their job, I shall have to search for muslin bags 😉
Immersion cooler wouldn’t go a miss!!
I maybe wouldn’t rinse the hops with as much liquor next time so as to keep the right gravity, I should have checked the hydro in the FV and adjusted after 🙂

**Update**
Bottled 6/5/09 with 50g Dry Spray Malt instead of sugar @ FG 1010.

It goes like this:
Hop Back Entire Stout – 5-Litres

  • Dried Malt Extract Pale: 725 grams (Actually used 500g Light DME and 225g Medium DME)
  • Crystal Malt: 32 grams
  • Chocolate Malt: 32 grams
  • Roasted Barley: 32 grams
  • Black Malt: 18 grams (not called for but I needed to up the colour with something)
  • Challenger: 90 mins – 10 grams
  • East Kent Golding: 15 mins – 4 grams

The Ingredients:

The Spray Malt Dissolved:

The Colour Change after Grains and Hops added, nice boil going on:

Used So4 yeast

    Final Volume: 5 Litres (actually got abot 4.5 L)
    Original Gravity: 1.055 (actual OG in picture below)
    Final Gravity: 1.015
    Alcohol Content: 5.3% ABV
    Bitterness: 41 EBU
    Colour: 171 EBC

Got a bit less than I wanted and nearly 10 points higher gravity, wonder if it will go off like rocket through the bubbler!
Pics:


🙂
Thanks to:
http://www.hopandgrain.com – for the AG recipe.
Graham Wheeler’s book and Beer Engine software – for helping me work out a small batch.
http://www.barleybottom.com for the Hops and Grain malts.

*A few hours later*

*The morning after*

*Bottled today, 18th April 2009*
Original Gravity (OG): 1066
Final Gravity (FG): 1020
Alcohol Content ABV: 6.04%
After a sneaky little taste while bottling it tastes quite sweet, looks like a different yeast might have chewed through the malt a bit better, but 6.04% is pretty fair. I just hope my 1/3 Tsp priming sugar has enough viable yeast to carbonate.

Just a quick note to say that my Mostphotos.com portfolio is now deleted.
It seemed a waste of space, I rarely checked the site and never sold anything, better to delete my account. At least Yaymicro has sold 1 image.

This might be the next camera 🙂 HD video sounds interesting for the occasional stock footage creation. Shame it doesn’t quite get to XXL size at istock though.

Canon says…

Canon EOS 500D
Digital SLR Camera

EOS 500D

With the EOS 500D, every side of your story comes alive. Capture every detail in stunning 15.1 Megapixel resolution, or switch to shooting pin-sharp Full High Definition video.

Features

  • 15.1 MP CMOS sensor
  • Full HD (1080p) movies
  • High ISO up to 12800 for low-light conditions
  • 3.4fps with up to 170 JPEG burst
  • 3.0” Clear View LCD with Live View mode
  • 9-point AF system
  • DIGIC 4
  • EOS Integrated Cleaning System
  • EF/EF-S and EX Speedlite compatibility

Tell the full story.

15.1 MP CMOS sensor
Ideal for those who want to create large, poster-size prints – or crop images to perfection without losing any of the detail necessary for printing – Canon’s 15.1MP CMOS sensor is outstanding in low light, and produces images with incredibly low noise.

Full HD movie recording
The EOS 500D combines exceptional still shooting with the ability to shoot Full HD (1080p) video. For occasions when larger amounts of footage need to be stored on a memory card, users can also choose to shoot at 720p or VGA resolution. An HDMI connection allows High Definition playback of footage and images on any HDTV.

High ISO for low light
When light levels fall, the EOS 500D offers an ISO range of up to 3200 – expandable to 12800 for those environments where using flash is undesirable.

3.4fps with up to 170 JPEG burst
The EOS 500D features shooting speeds of up to 3.4fps in continuous bursts of up to 170 large JPEG images (9 RAW).

3.0” Clear View LCD with Live View mode
Detailed checks on images and video are possible with a 3.0” ClearView LCD screen, which features an ultra-high 920,000 dots for increased clarity. Switch to Live View mode and use the real-time visual feed to shoot from awkward angles.

9-point AF system
A high-precision AF system employs 9 AF points AF Points are located throughout the frame to better accommodate off-centre subjects. For accurate focusing with fast aperture lenses, the central AF point features a high sensitivity cross-type sensor, suitable for lenses with an aperture of f/2.8 or faster.

DIGIC 4
Canon’s DIGIC 4 processor works with the CMOS sensor to deliver 14-bit image processing, for smooth gradations and natural looking colours. DIGIC 4 also powers advanced Noise Reduction when shooting at higher ISO speeds, plus split-second startup times and near-instant image review after shooting.

EOS Integrated Cleaning System
Canon’s built-in dust prevention system offers three ways of guarding images against the effects of dust: reduction of internal dust generation; an in-camera sensor cleaning mechanism; and the ability to map stubborn dust sports for removal with the included Digital Photo Professional software.

Full EF/EF-S and EX Speedlite compatibility
The EOS 500D is compatible with Canon’s full range of EF and EF-S lenses and EX-series Speedlites. This allows the creation of a shooting system as unique as the photographer using it.

EOS 500D – MAY 09

Product Specification

IMAGE SENSOR

Type

22.3 x 14.9mm CMOS

Effective Pixels

Approx. 15.1M

Total Pixels

Approx. 15.5M

Aspect Ratio

3:2

Low-Pass Filter

Built-in/Fixed with Self Cleaning Sensor Unit

Sensor Cleaning

EOS integrated cleaning system

Colour Filter Type

Primary Colour

IMAGE PROCESSOR

Type

DIGIC 4

LENS

Lens Mount

EF/EF-S

Focal Length

Equivalent to 1.6x the focal length of the lens

FOCUSING

Type

TTL-CT-SIR with a CMOS sensor

AF System/ Points

9 AF points (f/5.6 cross type at centre, extra sensitivity at f/2.8)

AF Working Range

EV -0.5 -18 (at 23°C & ISO100)

AF Modes

AI Focus

One Shot

AI Servo

AF Point Selection

Automatic selection, Manual selection

Selected AF Point Display

Superimposed in viewfinder and indicated on LCD monitor

Predictive AF

Yes, up to 10m ¹

AF Lock

Locked when shutter button is pressed half way in One Shot AF mode.

AF Assist Beam

Intermittent firing of built-in flash or emitted by optional dedicated Speedlite

Manual Focus

Selected on lens, default in Live View Mode

EXPOSURE CONTROL

Metering Modes

TTL full aperture metering with 35-zone SPC

(1) Evaluative metering (linked to all AF points)

(2) Partial metering at center (approx. 9% of viewfinder)

(3) Spot metering (approx. 4% of viewfinder at center)

(4) Center weighted average metering

Metering Range

EV 1-20 (at 23°C with 50mm f/1.4 lens ISO100)

AE Lock

Auto: In 1-shot AF mode with evaluative metering exposure is locked when focus is achieved.

Manual: By AE lock button in creative zone modes.

Exposure Compensation

+/-2 EV in 1/3 or 1/2 stop increments (can be combined with AEB).

AEB

+/- 2 EV, 1/2 or 1/3-stop increments

ISO Sensitivity*

AUTO(100-1600), 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200 Expandable to 6400 + H (approx 12800) in 1-stop increments

SHUTTER

Type

Electronically-controlled focal-plane shutter

Speed

30-1/4000 sec (1/2 or 1/3 stop increments), Bulb (Total shutter speed range. Available range varies by shooting mode)

WHITE BALANCE

Type

Auto white balance with the imaging sensor

Settings

AWB, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten, White

Fluorescent light, Flash, Custom.

White balance compensation:

1. Blue/Amber +/-9

2. Magenta/ Green +/-9.

Custom White Balance

Yes, 1 setting can be registered

WB Bracketing

+/-3 levels in single level increments

3 bracketed images per shutter release.

Selectable Blue/Amber bias or Magenta/ Green bias.

VIEWFINDER

Type

Pentamirror

Coverage (Vertical/Horizontal)

Approx. 95%

Magnification

Approx. 0.87x ¹

Eyepoint

Approx. 19mm (from eyepiece lens centre)

Dioptre Correction

-3 to +1 (1/m) (dioptre)

Focusing Screen

Fixed

Mirror

Quick-return half mirror (Transmission: reflection ratio of 40:60, no mirror cut-off with EF600mm f/4 or shorter)

Viewfinder Information

AF information: AF points, focus confirmation light

Exposure information: Shutter speed, aperture value, ISO speed (always displayed), AE lock, exposure level/compensation, spot metering circle, exposure warning, AEB

Flash information: Flash ready, high-speed sync, FE lock, flash exposure compensation, red-eye reduction light

Image information: White balance correction, SD card information, monochrome shooting, maximum burst (1 digit display), Highlight tone priority (D+)

Depth of Field Preview

Yes, with Depth of Field preview button.

Eyepiece Shutter

On strap

LCD MONITOR

Type

3.0″ TFT, approx. 920K dots

Coverage

Approx. 100%

Viewing Angle (Horizontally/Vertically)

Approx 170°

Coating

Dual Anti-reflection, anti smudge

Brightness Adjustment

Adjustable to one of seven levels

Display Options

(1) Quick Control Screen

(2) Camera settings

FLASH

Built-in Flash GN (ISO 100, meters)

13

Built-in Flash Coverage

up to 17mm focal length (35mm equivalent: 27mm)

Built-in Flash Recycle Time

Approx. 3 seconds

Modes

Auto, Manual Flash On/Off, Red-Eye Reduction

Red-Eye Reduction

Yes

X-Sync

1/200sec

Flash Exposure Compensation

+/- 2EV in 1/2 or 1/3 increments

Flash Exposure Bracketing

Yes, with compatible External Flash

Flash Exposure Lock

Yes

Second Curtain Synchronisation

Yes

HotShoe/ PC Terminal

Yes/-

External Flash Compatibility

E-TTL II with EX series Speedlites, wireless multi-flash support

External Flash Control

via camera menu screen

SHOOTING

Modes

Auto, Portrait, Landscape, Close-up, Sports, Night Portrait, No Flash, Movie, Program AE , Shutter priority AE, Aperture priority AE, Manual, A-DEP

Picture Styles

Standard, Portrait, Landscape, Neutral, Faithful, Monochrome, User Defined (x3)

Colour Space

sRGB and Adobe RGB

Image Processing

Highlight Tone Priority

Auto Lighting Optimizer (Basic and Creative modes)

Long exposure noise reduction

High ISO speed noise reduction

Peripheral illumination correction

Drive Modes

Single, Continuous, Self timer (2s, 10s+remote, 10s + continuous shots 2-10)

Continuous Shooting

Max. Approx. 3.4fps. (speed maintained for up to 170 images (JPEG)¹, 9 images (RAW)) ²

LIVE VIEW MODE

Type

Electronic viewfinder with image sensor

Coverage

Approx. 100% (horizontally and vertically)

Frame Rate

30 fps

Focusing

Manual Focus (Magnify the image 5x or 10x at any point on screen)

Autofocus: Quick mode, Live mode

Metering

Real-time evaluative metering with image sensor

Active metering time can be changed

Display Options

Grid overlay, Histogram

FILE TYPE

Still Image Type

JPEG: Fine, Normal (Exif 2.21 [Exif Print] compliant) / Design rule for Camera File system (2.0),

RAW: RAW (14bit, Canon original RAW 2nd edition),

Digital Print Order Format [DPOF] Version 1.1 compliant

RAW+JPEG Simultaneous Recording

Yes (RAW + Large JPEG only)

Image Size

JPEG: (L) 4752×3168, (M) 3088×2056, (S) 2256×1504

RAW: (RAW) 4752×3168

Movie Type

MOV (Video: H.264, Sound: Linear PCM)

Movie Size

HD (16:9)1920 x 1080P -20fps, 1280x720P -30fps, SD(4:3) 640 x 480 -30fps

Movie Length

Max duration 29m 59sec, Max file size 4GB

File Numbering

(1) Consecutive numbering

(2) Auto reset

(3) Manual reset

OTHER FEATURES

Custom Functions

13 Custom Functions with 39 settings

Metadata Tag

User copyright information

Intelligent Orientation Sensor

Yes

Playback Zoom

1.5x – 10x

Display Formats

(1) Single image with information (2 levels)

(2) Single image

(3) 4 image index

(4) 9 image index

(5) Jump Display

Slide Show

Autoplay: All images, repeat

Histogram

Brightness: Yes

RGB: Yes

Highlight Alert

Yes (Shooting information display only)

Image Erase/Protection

Erase: Single image, Checkmarked images, Unprotected images

Protection: Erase protection of one image at a time

Data Verification

Original image verification data can be appended to the image (OSK-E3 required for verification)

Menu Categories

(1) Shooting menu (x2)

(2) Playback menu

(3) Setup menu (x3)

(4) My Menu

Menu Languages

25 Languages

English, German, French, Dutch, Danish, Portuguese, Finnish, Italian, Norwegian, Swedish, Spanish, Greek, Russian, Polish, Czech, Hungarian, Romanian, Ukrainian, Turkish, Arabic, Thai, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Korean and Japanese

Firmware Update

Update possible by the user.

INTERFACE

Computer

Hi-Speed USB

Other

Video output (PAL/ NTSC) (integrated with USB terminal), HDMI Type C

DIRECT PRINT

Canon Printers

Canon SELPHY Printers, Bubble Jet Printers with the direct print function and PIXMA Printers supporting PictBridge

PictBridge

Yes

STORAGE

Type

SD card, SDHC card

SUPPORTED OPERATING SYSTEM

PC & Macintosh

Windows / XP (SP2/SP3) / Vista (excl. Starter Edition)

OS X v10.4-10.5

SOFTWARE

Browsing & Printing

ZoomBrowser EX / ImageBrowser

Image Processing

Digital Photo Professional

Other

PhotoStitch, EOS Utility (inc. Remote Capture, Original Data Security Tools*), Picture Style Editor

* Requires optional accessory

POWER SOURCE

Batteries

1 x Rechargeable Li-ion Battery LP-E5

Battery Life

Approx. 400 (at 23°C, AE 50%, FE 50%) ¹

Approx. 380 (at 0°C, AE 50%, FE 50%)

Battery Indicator

4 levels

Power Saving

Power turns off after 30sec or 1, 2, 4, 8 or 15mins.

Power Supply & Battery Chargers

AC Adapter Kit ACK-E5, Battery charger LC-E5E, Car Battery charger CBC-E5

PHYSICAL SPECIFICATIONS

Body Materials

Stainless Steel/Plastic

Operating Environment

0 – 40 °C, 85% or less humidity

Dimensions (WxHxD)

128.8 x 97.5 x 61.9 mm

Weight (Body Only)

Approx. 480g

ACCESSORIES

Viewfinder

Eyecup Ef, E-series Dioptric Adjustment Lens with Rubber Frame Ef, Eyepiece Extender EP-EX15II, Angle Finder C

Case

Semi-Hard Case EH19-L

Lenses

All EF and EF-S lenses

Flash

Canon Speedlites (220EX, 270EX, 380EX, 420EX, 430EX, 430EX II, 550EX, 580EX, 580EX II, Macro-Ring-Lite MR-14EX, Macro Twin Lite MT-24EX, Speedlite Transmitter ST-E2)

Battery Grip

BG-E5

Remote Controller/ Switch

Remote Switch RS-60E3, Remote Controller RC-1/RC-5

Other

Original Data Security Kit OSK-E3

Predictive AF

¹ with EF300mm f/2.8L IS USM at 50kph

Magnification

¹ with 50mm lens at infinity, -1 (1/m) dpt

Continuous Shooting

¹ Large/Fine(Quality 8) resolution
² Based on Canon’s testing conditions, JPEG, ISO 100, Standard Picture Style. Varies depending on the subject, memory card brand and capacity, image recording quality, ISO speed, drive mode, Picture Style, Custom functions etc.

Battery Life

¹ Based on the CIPA Standard and using the batteries and memory card format supplied with the camera, except where indicated

All data is based on Canon standard testing methods except where indicated.

Subject to change without notice.

*Recommended Exposure Index

Coopers Stout + 1kg Dark Spray Malt + 20g Target + 20g Fuggles (40min boil) + 10g Fuggles (10min boil) + 250g Malto Dextrin + 100g Wheat Spray Malt


Yet another home brew experiment 🙂

*Less than 24 hours later*

Coopers Stout all over the floor
Originally uploaded by pdtnc

The YouTube version with kind of a spooky composition to go with the monster escaping!

*Bottled Today 18th April 09*
Original Gravity (OG): 1040
Final Gravity (FG): 1010
Alcohol Content (ABV): 3.94%

March was different, I made my average cashout level but just missed out by a day or so on cashouts from iStock and Dreamstime, for the first time in a while SXP did not reach the minimum payout figure.
Here’s the Lookstat graph for March:
march09lookstat

Next up here’s my monthly cashouts graph over time, after reading things on Microstockdiaries regarding some slowdown, so the graph below kind of backs that up showing me that earnings for March are as good, or bad, as they were over two years ago. August ’08 being my best month ever, its looks like a gradual slide downward now.
monthlycashouts

This is backed up my blog views at imagepushing.com , the first graph in weeks and then months after shows a slump in views… meanning less designers, artworkers, and buyers are searching for images
imagepushingweekly
imagepushingmonthly

What I need to do is to start being more targeted in what I shoot and submit, if only to improve my approval ratings a little!
Its a short report this month, more in reaction to Lee’s over at MD to see if there was any correlation.


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