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Fermentation: save a life


TMonster
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My friend just decided to make homemade alcohol. He put powdered sugar, 95 degree water, and a packet of yeast in a mason jar. He poked a hole in the lid and stuffed a piece of paper towel to plug it. In a couple of days he's going to filter it twice through coffee filters and then he plans to drink it.

 

I'm only in my freshman year of college chemistry but I'm pretty sure this will produce methanol in lethal amounts since it isn't distilled. Am I right?

 

Thanks in advance!

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It'll work to an extent. Yeast needs added nutrients to grow properly for any length of time. Most likely he is indeed in for foul tasting slightly alcoholic sugar water. Making proper beer really isn't that hard and is vastly more pleasant. There's all sorts of info available online.

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95 degree? bye bye yeast, or are you using an archaic form of temperature scale?

 

Hm I really thought that he was using real values not that mockery of a poor excuse of one. In that case the yeas will indeed not die (as I assumed initially). Chances are that there is still too much oxygen.

 

Hey, at least we drive on the right side of the road.

Given what I see regularly on the streets here, I am not sure that it makes any difference on which side they drive...

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Fahrenheit is the fail-scale. You get about 35 °C in that case. Normal body temperature is 37 °C. So if he used water of that temperature, the yeast will not die. Very useful, those units. If they are actually USED for once. :doh:

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You might tell your friend to search for

"ginger beer recipe"

It's likely to make a better product.

 

Thanks John. You just made me really thirsty for some homemade ginger ale, but it takes a good week to make it properly. :(:P:D

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the fahrenheit scale is amusing. It was based upon the freezing point of salt water (0°F) and the rectal temperature of a cow (100°F).

 

Still more amusing, mr celsius, when he decided to make his scale, thought it'd be clever to make the boiling point of water 0°C and the freezing point 100°C. Immediately everyone told him how stupid that was and swapped it around.

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