Thursday, April 11, 2019

We Brewed in a Hail Storm -- Hail Storm Surprise Altbier Brew Day

The last brew day at my little condo was quite extreme. It also happened to be the latest in the day I've started brewing.

This brew my buddy from the Dunkelweissen brew day came to join me going half-in on this batch. We initially discussed making some kind of amber ale, but those plans got slightly.... altered. From my Trader Joe's Beer Reviews, I really liked the flavor of the Alternate Dimension Altbier enough to try a brew of that style. Here is the recipe we came across for that style:

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Top 6 $1 beers from Trader Joe's

If you are a frequent shopper at Trader Joe's and visit the alcohol for some fine $3 wine or other beverages, you may have seen their house brand beers. Believe it or not, even though they cost $1 each before any taxes or CRVs, these are an incredible value. Let's review my 6 favorite $1 beers they have for sale.

Trader Joe's Beer Review: Alternate Dimension Altbier Ale

Tasting notes:

Trader Joe's Beer Review: Josephsbrau Hefeweissen

Tasting notes:

Trader Joe's Beer Review: Josephsbrau Spring Prost Maibock

Tasting notes:

Trader Joe's Beer Review: Josephsbrau PLNZR

Tasting notes:

Trader Joe's Beer Review: Black Toad Distinctive Dark Ale

Tasting notes:

Trader Joe's Beer Review: Stockyard Oatmeal Stout

Tasting notes:
Very dark, good roasted character and good mouthfeel from the roasted oats.
Probably my favorite of the $1 Trader Joe's beers is Stockyard Oatmeal Stout.

Stockyard Oatmeal Stout
ABV: 5.2%
Flavor Profile: Roasted; caramel, malty
My rating: 8.5/10

Timestamped video review and tasting:

Sunday, March 31, 2019

YouTube Recap | Videos from March 2019

In case you are not subscribed to our YouTube Channel or you missed one, here are the videos we released in the month of March. In total, a total of 5 vids were released. More videos are coming, so don't forget to subscribe!

Gemüseeintopf 2 | How to make Vegetable Stew: Beach BBQ Style

@diecaster_d makes the dish which a classic German rap video is based off of... at the beach!

Completing The Computer Lab - Curtain Rod

The final structural addition to the loft bed computer lab was to add the curtains.  I had some curtains left over from my old apartment which my mom made for me, but unfortunately, we accidentally donated the curtain rods.  Thankfully, the Law of Scrap Alchemy saved the day when I found this extended mop/squeegee handle in the trash that happened to be the perfect length to span the entrance to the computer lab!

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Let There Be Light! - Computer Lab Lighting

I initially bought these LED light bulbs to replace the ones in the chandelier at my house.  The only problem was, the threaded parts weren't long enough to screw all the way down into the light socket and complete the circuit (perhaps this is why they were on clearance at the grocery store). What's even more embarrassing was while trying to switch out the light bulbs, I broke one of the glass panels in the chandelier!
Having had to admit defeat, I had these light bulbs still, and needing some lighting for the computer lab under my loft bed, I bought a couple light fixtures to use them.  Not surprisingly, I had the same problem of the light bulbs bottoming out before reaching the bottom contacts.  This time, however, I was able to take matters into my own hands and put the sockets into the lathe and turn down some of the plastic.  Bingo! They worked!

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Repairing The Tray

One of my favorite early projects on this website was the tray.  Though simple, it has proved to be very useful.
Check out the original tray post here
However, after 6 years of long and hard use as a dish rack, the wood panel started getting moldy.  Nasty!  Time to upgrade to metal!

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Beer Battered Everything! Best Beer Batter for Frying Fish, Scallops, and Calamari -- Lent Special

I love fried fish, and I had been struggling to find a decent fry batter recipe for making it. I eventually found this incredibly simple recipe posted up on Paste Magazine, and after trying it out the first time with scallops, I fell in love. So now that it's Lent again, it's time to break out the fish!

Monday, March 18, 2019

Hitting level 85 Smithing IRL | Painting the Ingots

Back when I was visiting home for winter, I managed to snag the aluminum ingots that Diecaster_D cast in his foundry. Despite being great paper weights, I thought they could use a good paint job to actually look like something out of Runescape.

Monday, March 11, 2019

The Brake Job from Hell featuring @vinnysvic

Today we are going to feature something a bit different.
My car, a 2005 Crown Victoria was due for a brake job. When braking, I would experience some vibration coming through the brake pedal upon being compressed. It wasn't a serious issue, but it had to be fixed eventually. In the past, I had done a brake job on my other car so this was not going to be my first rodeo. I had been procrastinating on doing this task for a while, but after helping out a friend with his car earlier in the same day, I decided to stop by AutoZone to rent a torque wrench to get the job done. I figure it was a good day to do the front pads and rotors and thought it shouldn't take too long, right?


Monday, March 4, 2019

How to Make Soft Pretzels | Perfect snack to enjoy with Homebrew

^Check out the video recipe guide!

I was inspired to make these soft pretzels after reading the experience another homebrewer had making them to enjoy with his beer. So I decided to try out the recipe for myself. (thanks to /u/kyrgyznomad and his reddit post for the inspiration)
The recipe linked in his post is adapted from the website Sally's Baking Addiction. You can visit her site by clicking the link there, but I've also posted the ingredients needed at the bottom of this post. These pretzels looked simple enough to make so I went for it. Let's get baking!

Thursday, February 28, 2019

YouTube Recap | Videos from February 2019

In case you are not subscribed to our YouTube Channel or you missed one, here are the videos we released in the month of February. In total, a total of 6 vids were released. More videos are coming, so don't forget to subscribe!

Hydroponic Gardening | The Truth behind hydroponic nutrient blends

"To help readers of all the hydroponics DIY guides get a good start on their systems, I break down what kind of nutrient blend is perfect for starting out growing." -- Vinny

Monday, February 25, 2019

Building The Desk For The Computer Lab

To make the desk going underneath the loft bed, I began with some scrap wood.
First drilling some holes to clear the screws.  I gave the old hand drill a chance to avoid bothering my roommates with noise.  This worked fine until I had to drill the screw pilot holes with the very small drill where I ended up breaking the bit since I couldn't spin it fast enough and hold it straight.  I guess that's what I get for "trying to help".  The center drill in the plastic collet was used for countersinking the holes.

Friday, February 22, 2019

Friday, February 8, 2019

Pizza Time! | How to make Homemade Pizza Dough and White Alfredo Sauce

Lately I have been making pizza with an amazing dough recipe and awesome sauce recipe, and I would like to share both. Skip ahead to the recipes: DOUGH SAUCE
First let's look at some awesome pizzas I've made with this dough.

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Diecaster D.'s New Years Resolutions

Happy New Year everybody!
Yeah I guess waiting until Lunar New Year gave me an extra month to reconsider my goals for the year, but better late than never eh?

Monday, February 4, 2019

I Was Interviewed On "Barefoot & Bearded" Podcast

Joel Robinson, founder of the local nonprofit Naturalist For You, had me over for an interview.  We discussed various topics including how I got into bicycling, building stuff, and making music, as well as my fabled castor bean poisoning story.  We also dispelled the urban myth that childbirth is supposed to be painful, and of course, explored areas of southern California's natural history.
Tune in for an exclusive glimpse into the mind of your favorite (or second favorite) Greens and Machines writer!

Saturday, February 2, 2019

19" Equipment Rack

Welcome back to Wooden February!!!!
*Wooden February is a trademark of MJTV
After a manic shopping spree, I finally had enough studio equipment to need another 19" rack.  I decided to build one from scratch using some reclaimed pine wood.
E-Mu morpheus and mo'phatt
Starting by cutting the wood pieces on the table saw.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

YouTube Recap | Videos from January 2019

In case you are not subscribed to our YouTube Channel or you missed one, here are the videos we released in the month of January. In total, a total of 8 vids were released, which meet's Vinny's New Year's Resolution. More videos are coming, so don't forget to subscribe!

DIY Hashbrowns (Remastered)

"Despite its success, I was disappointed with the video quality of the original DIY Hashbrowns video. I decided to remake it with an upgraded phone camera, microphone, and editing software." -- Vinny

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

How to Make Turkey Chili | Meal Prep Recipe


In the quest to find some good meal prep recipes, I came across this one by none other than Scooby1961 himself. It was for Beef and Bean Chili and it looked easy to make. At the time though I had some leftover ground Turkey from my Thanksgiving feast in my freezer so I adapted the recipe to create some great chili. Check the video above for the walkthrough and read below for the recipe:

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Starting Seeds for the Unlimited Basil Factory

Now that it's a new year, I need to get some plants started for my NFT garden to plant in it when spring rolls around. Let's walkthrough my process of filling my system with plants.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Building a Smaller and Lighter Bicycle Trailer | Bicycle Trailer 2

My original trailer proved to be a massive success.  However, I built it so bombproof, that it became too heavy and inconvenient to want to pull it out for an average sized job.  After trading it away for a bunch of music equipment, I eventually wanted to build another one.  This time, it would be far lighter and use smaller wheels.
I decided to make the frame from some scrap bed frames which had thinner wall thicknesses than the angle iron I used last time.  For this reason I decided not to weld it, since it would probably just melt through.
I started by cutting up the frame into the shape I wanted.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Filling the Kegs | Rye Stout Batch 5 Bottling part 1

I wanted to consolidate the space in my bathroom so I can get some seeds started later this month. Since my two fermenters full of Rye Stout were still there, they needed to be moved to somewhere more long term until I had enough empty bottles to process them. So why not throw them in the kegs I picked up last year?

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Vinny's 2019 New Year's Resolutions

Happy New Year!

Here is what I (Vinny) am striving to accomplish in 2019 on top working at my day job: