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General Category => All Grain Brewing => Topic started by: SiameseMoose on November 29, 2010, 09:26:06 PM

Title: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: SiameseMoose on November 29, 2010, 09:26:06 PM
Beat that! ;D

OK, it means I almost certainly made an error in weighing out my grain. I just hope the error was in the base Pils malt, and not some astronomical error in the specialty malts. The beer is a Dubbel, and I knew before the boil that I was way over target gravity. I ended up diluting with an extra gallon pre-boil, and increasing my hops accordingly. Still, my target was 5 gallons at 1.069, and now I have 6 gallons at 1.073. I generally get pretty high efficiency, 85% or higher, but every now and again I get a batch near 100%, but never this high before. I just wish there were a way I could recheck my grain amounts. But I'm not complaining about extra beer!

(And just for the record, I am aware that it is possible to legitimately get greater than 100% efficiency. The highest I've ever heard of was the near 130% claim by DeKonick, in Antwerp. They grind their grain to powder, and use a high pressure filter to lauter. That's also why they have to filter the beer so much before it goes out the door.)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: tubercle on November 29, 2010, 09:33:27 PM
Tubercle gets 109% on a regular basis but his was only after the blue stripes were added to the red cooler/mash tun.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: MDixon on November 29, 2010, 10:06:07 PM
I once couldn't figure out why my runoff gravity was so high and later found out I had put in 4lb too much malt...  ::)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: thatguy314 on November 30, 2010, 03:11:29 PM
Are you reading your malt spec sheets, or are you just using homebrewing software.  Homebrewing software has a good average number, but you could have an especially rich batch of malt on your hands as well.  The only true way to determine efficiency is to get the malt spec sheets.  For most homebrewing purposes this doesn't always make that big a difference, but I hear on the pro level it makes a tremendous difference.

That said, it seems like you figured out the cause of your problem.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Podo on December 12, 2010, 10:40:40 PM
Not to change the subject, but the title of this post reminds me of one of the early Simpsons episodes where Homer is in a tank of water and the doctor says "this isn't right, this man is 104% body fat" because Homer is eating a turkey leg.  "Hey, no eating in the tank."  Sorry, nothing more of value to add!
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Malticulous on December 14, 2010, 02:58:05 AM
I tend to get much better extract from pills malts, over 83%. The 90 minute boil also helps with efficiency.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: MDixon on December 14, 2010, 01:45:51 PM
Boiling doesn't change efficiency, because sugars are conserved...
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bonjour on December 14, 2010, 02:43:06 PM
Boiling doesn't change efficiency, because sugars are conserved...
But boiling more wort because you are boiling longer to cover evaporation does increase efficiency.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on December 14, 2010, 02:51:26 PM
Boiling doesn't change efficiency, because sugars are conserved...
But boiling more wort because you are boiling longer to cover evaporation does increase efficiency.

It doesn't matter what your volume of wort is when you start the boil, your "efficiency" is still the same, even if you boil it down to a syrup. Now if you're saying that you sparge more to collect more sugar and then boil that down, then yes, your efficiency will increase a little.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bonjour on December 14, 2010, 03:06:05 PM
From the same malt bill

collecting wort for a 60 minute boil to have 5 gallons at completion
or
collecting wort for a 120 minute boil to have 5 gallons at completion

The 120 minute boil will have a greater efficiency
Both will make beer
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Hokerer on December 14, 2010, 03:16:10 PM
From the same malt bill

collecting wort for a 60 minute boil to have 5 gallons at completion
or
collecting wort for a 120 minute boil to have 5 gallons at completion

The 120 minute boil will have a greater efficiency
Both will make beer

But the fact that you're boiling for 120 minutes has nothing to do with the efficiency.  The greater efficiency comes from the fact that you have to sparge more in order to get enough pre-boil volume to still end up with 5 gallons post-boil.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bonjour on December 14, 2010, 03:35:41 PM
OK,
But I wouldn't have to do that if I didn't boil for 120 minutes,  therefore the long boil is the cause of the increased efficiency.

Do you need the chicken to lay the egg, or do you need the egg to hatch the chicken,  That's not clear to me either. ;)

Talking about chickens and eggs on a beer board,  I need to get a life
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: tubercle on December 14, 2010, 04:41:08 PM
Tubercle always thought efficiency was the ratio between the total available sugar in the malt vs. the amount actually extracted and had nothing to do with what gravity the wert ends up being.


 The post boil gravity takes into consideration Pre-boil gravity, evaporation, etc and that is where the grain bill is configured at a predicted efficency of extraction.

 Something like that.... :'(
 

Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: MDixon on December 14, 2010, 04:54:38 PM
Maybe I should repeat myself??? Boiling doesn't change efficiency, because sugars are conserved... ;D

The extracted amount of sugar does not change. Now if one COLLECTS more volume then they can potentially extract more sugars, but it has NOTHING to do with the boil. ;)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: tubercle on December 14, 2010, 05:28:44 PM
Maybe I should repeat myself??? Boiling doesn't change efficiency, because sugars are conserved... ;D

The extracted amount of sugar does not change. Now if one COLLECTS more volume then they can potentially extract more sugars, but it has NOTHING to do with the boil. ;)

  That was what Tubercle was trying to say. You said it shorter ;D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bonjour on December 14, 2010, 06:18:38 PM
Maybe I should repeat myself??? Boiling doesn't change efficiency, because sugars are conserved... ;D

The extracted amount of sugar does not change. Now if one COLLECTS more volume then they can potentially extract more sugars, but it has NOTHING to do with the boil. ;)
Gotta have some fun with this, but I do understand

The ONLY reason I collect more wort is because I boil longer. ;)  OK, well not the only reason  ;D

That changes the brewing process, which affects the resulting beer. 

Without question, given a certain amount of wort, no amount of boiling, or NOT boiling it will change the efficiency.




Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on December 14, 2010, 07:17:45 PM
Maybe I should repeat myself??? Boiling doesn't change efficiency, because sugars are conserved... ;D

The extracted amount of sugar does not change. Now if one COLLECTS more volume then they can potentially extract more sugars, but it has NOTHING to do with the boil. ;)

Exactly. Boiling should be completely left out of the discussion when referring to efficiency.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: blatz on December 14, 2010, 07:32:04 PM
I think the answer is yes and no.

I often leave behind a lot of sugars in the mash (which I sparge a little more to freeze for starters, but that's a different story), which I think is what fred is getting after.

for example, I generally collect 14gal for a 12gal batch, losing 1.5gal to evaporation over a 90min boil and .5gal to hop absorption and dead space to get 12 in the fermentor. 

For an average 1.065 batch of beer, I generally acheive 77% efficiency in collecting my 14gal, but can collect about 3qts of 1.025 starter wort with another sparge while the boil is going on.

if I sparged another 1.5gal through the mash grain bed, I could get another 1.5gal of 1.025ish gravity beer for 15.5 gal but then I would need to boil longer to get down to my batch volume, in this case 3 hours total of boiling given my boiloff rate. 

There would be a little more sugar in the wort at this point since I collected more sugars.

However, I think this is retarded since to save a few $2 in grain by being more efficient I wasted $5 in propane and polluted more as well.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bonjour on December 14, 2010, 07:55:19 PM
Yea but I like the flavor impact a long boil has on my BWs and Wee Heavys.  It is a secondary effect to increase efficiency utilizing a long boil, the efficiency increases because I have to increase my wort collection to compensate for the evaporation losses of a long boil.  Thus my efficiency increases because choose to alter my brewing procedures by performing a long boil (and the need to collect more wort to allow it). 

Energy efficient, nope, not that.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: blatz on December 14, 2010, 07:57:58 PM
Yea but I like the flavor impact a long boil has on my BWs and Wee Heavys.  It is a secondary effect to increase efficiency utilizing a long boil, the efficiency increases because I have to increase my wort collection to compensate for the evaporation losses of a long boil.  Thus my efficiency increases because choose to alter my brewing procedures by performing a long boil (and the need to collect more wort to allow it). 

Energy efficient, nope, not that.

I know - I should have put a smiley after the last sentence - I know there are other purposes, it just seems oxymoronic to put the words more efficient in the same context as boiling longer.  ;)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bonjour on December 14, 2010, 08:18:24 PM
no smilies needed, but in case I needed some  ;) ;D ;) ;D ;) ;D ;) ;D ;) ;D ;) ;D ;) ;D

This is similar to the argument that "adding" sugar gives you a drier beer, 
Swapping sugar for malt gives you a drier beer ;) ;D ;) ;D ;) ;D ;) ;D ;) ;D ;) ;D ;) ;D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Malticulous on December 15, 2010, 02:32:52 AM
Sorry I was so unclear.  ::)

I tend to look at efficiency in light of the grain to water ratio in the mash. Often I will top off pre-boil for long boils.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: MDixon on December 15, 2010, 03:31:03 AM
It was a good discussion and now everyone understands boiling does not affect efficiency (and why).
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: tomsawyer on December 16, 2010, 08:18:03 PM
Yea but I like the flavor impact a long boil has on my BWs and Wee Heavys.  It is a secondary effect to increase efficiency utilizing a long boil, the efficiency increases because I have to increase my wort collection to compensate for the evaporation losses of a long boil.  Thus my efficiency increases because choose to alter my brewing procedures by performing a long boil (and the need to collect more wort to allow it). 

Energy efficient, nope, not that.

Its a nice one-two punch, because needing more preboil volume lets you get more sugar out of the wort, which you need for those bigger styles.  Probably part of the reason why the styles evolved as they did.

Someone just needed to adequately define "boil" in the beginning.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: tomsawyer on December 16, 2010, 08:19:34 PM
Not to change the subject, but the title of this post reminds me of one of the early Simpsons episodes where Homer is in a tank of water and the doctor says "this isn't right, this man is 104% body fat" because Homer is eating a turkey leg.  "Hey, no eating in the tank."  Sorry, nothing more of value to add!

Theres your answer, you must have been stirring with a turkey leg.  One coated with a sugary BBQ sauce.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Malticulous on December 17, 2010, 12:40:58 AM
It was a good discussion and now everyone understands boiling does not affect efficiency (and why).

I disagree. Overall boil off is part of the mash equitation and therefor also part of efficiency. At the point you stop filling the kettle efficiency is set.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on December 17, 2010, 01:32:20 AM
It was a good discussion and now everyone understands boiling does not affect efficiency (and why).

I disagree. Overall boil off is part of the mash equitation and therefor also part of efficiency. At the point you stop filling the kettle efficiency is set.

Overall boil may be part of YOUR perceived efficiency, but not part of the mash efficiency.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: MDixon on December 17, 2010, 02:05:44 AM
It was a good discussion and now everyone understands boiling does not affect efficiency (and why).

I disagree. Overall boil off is part of the mash equitation and therefor also part of efficiency. At the point you stop filling the kettle efficiency is set.

Explain in depth...

I'll repeat for what must be the millionth time...BOILING DOES NOT AFFECT THE EFFICIENCY.

The second part of your statement pretty much proves the point. You boil once you stop filling the kettle, so boiling plays no part in efficiency.

Boil off IS NOT part of a mash equation or equitation for those without a spell checker - therefore vs. therefor - less drinky before typy ;)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on December 17, 2010, 02:23:44 AM
For those that don't understand, enter your recipe into something like Promash. Collect your runnings and measure you volume and gravity. Note your efficiency.

Now boil the living $hit out of it and remeasure your volume and gravity. Plug those values into the program and note your efficiency. It will be the same, unless you screwed up. Your volume has gone down but your gravity has gone up, however your efficiency is the same.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: tomsawyer on December 17, 2010, 03:19:41 AM
Doesn't hot break dropping out, change the specific gravity of the solution at all?  Not that we are counting protein in efficiency, but if you define efficiency by a specific gravity reading times volume then it would seem to have some small effect.  I know my brewhouse efficiency is typically slightly lowe than my preboil, and I pitch trub and all in the fermentor.  I figured it had to do with some protein being suspended versus dissolved.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Malticulous on December 17, 2010, 04:48:03 AM
It was a good discussion and now everyone understands boiling does not affect efficiency (and why).

I disagree. Overall boil off is part of the mash equitation and therefor also part of efficiency. At the point you stop filling the kettle efficiency is set.

Explain in depth...

I'll repeat for what must be the millionth time...BOILING DOES NOT AFFECT THE EFFICIENCY.

The second part of your statement pretty much proves the point. You boil once you stop filling the kettle, so boiling plays no part in efficiency.

Boil off IS NOT part of a mash equation or equitation for those without a spell checker - therefore vs. therefor - less drinky before typy ;)

I don't understand what you don't get. Longer boil requires more wort from the mash. More wort from the mash increases efficiency. Therefor the root of the increase is the longer boil.  Can't see the forest..there's a tree in your face.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bonjour on December 17, 2010, 05:05:40 AM
Without question, the volume of wort collected is what determines efficiency.  What usually causes me to collect more wort is my choice to boil longer.  Therefore this causes my efficiency to increase.  I rarely collect more wort to increase efficiency.

But what ever the cause of the increased wort collection, efficiency is dependent on the volume of wort collected, not the length of boil.  Even though a long boil is the cause of my increased efficiency the amount on increase is determined by the volume of wort collected.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Malticulous on December 17, 2010, 05:30:25 AM
The true cause of the effect is the boil length. I thought that to be understood in my first post in this thread but I was wrong.

It can be useful in big beers. Most of my beers are under 1.060. The 90 minute boils can bring my BHE over 90%. I've decided to top them off pre-boil. I am going to try to shoot for 80% BHE for every brew but still tend to hit 85%.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: jeffy on December 17, 2010, 12:12:01 PM
Doesn't hot break dropping out, change the specific gravity of the solution at all?  Not that we are counting protein in efficiency, but if you define efficiency by a specific gravity reading times volume then it would seem to have some small effect.  I know my brewhouse efficiency is typically slightly lowe than my preboil, and I pitch trub and all in the fermentor.  I figured it had to do with some protein being suspended versus dissolved.

I don't think that things floating in the wort (like hops or break material) will change the sugar content of the liquid, so specific gravity will not be effected.  You may gain or lose final volume by leaving some wort in the kettle or not, but it still doesn't change the efficiency. 
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: MDixon on December 17, 2010, 12:30:58 PM
Malt...let's make it really easy...collect your wort...now we have an efficiency...boil a minute...same efficiency..boil 10 min...same efficiency...boil two hours...same efficiency...boil 5 hours...same efficiency...

Sure the amount one collects has bearing on efficiency, but the boil does not...whether you choose to boil for a minute or forever, the efficiency will remain the same.

Now someone later spoke about losses after the boil. The boil did not affect those either, it's losses in hoses, to trub, etc. which may make it appear the boil had something to do with it, but in reality, the efficiency is EXACTLY the same pre and post boil.

--

Malt - glad to see that spell checker workin for ya ;)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on December 17, 2010, 12:38:15 PM
I always check my efficiency after I've collected all the runnings and before the boil. To me it easier to gauge a dip stick in calm liquids, rather than boiling ones. 

Sometimes I'll check it again right before cooling, but guess what, it's always the same. :D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: jrskjei on December 26, 2010, 04:57:25 AM
...the efficiency is EXACTLY the same pre and post boil.
Right.  The efficiency is calculated based on numbers obtained before any boiling occurs.  If you're factoring anything else into the equation then you're calculating efficiency differently than what is conventional.  And if you're using more water to sparge than you normally would in an attempt to get more sugars out of the mash, you're really decreasing your efficiency. 
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bonjour on December 26, 2010, 01:19:37 PM
...the efficiency is EXACTLY the same pre and post boil.
Right.  The efficiency is calculated based on numbers obtained before any boiling occurs.  If you're factoring anything else into the equation then you're calculating efficiency differently than what is conventional.  And if you're using more water to sparge than you normally would in an attempt to get more sugars out of the mash, you're really decreasing your efficiency. 
Then why does my efficiency go up when I collect more wort for my big beers?
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: beerocd on December 26, 2010, 02:25:33 PM
Three pages of efficiency discussion without a single equation?
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: hopfenundmalz on December 26, 2010, 02:38:55 PM
Kai has "some" equations on his page.  ;D

I am with Fred on this discussion.  If you sparge more, you get more sugar into the kettle.  Longer boil and you lose the extra water. 

http://braukaiser.com/wiki/index.php/Understanding_Efficiency
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: kerneldustjacket on December 26, 2010, 04:31:27 PM
A syllogism:

Major premise:   Longer boils increase efficiency
Minor premise:   Adding 2 gallons of distilled water will increase my boil time
Conclusion:       Therefore, adding distilled water increases my efficiency

Longer boils can't "cause" efficiency, but a particular brewer's habits can lead to him/her using methods that in turn typically produce higher efficiency.
So the "practice" of wanting to conduct a longer boil requires the running off of more sugar-entrained wort from the mash tun, and it is here -- in the running of more water through the mash and it's collection of more sugars -- that the increased efficiency comes from. What "caused" the brewer to make that decision is immaterial where efficiency is concerned.

Of course, there's another way to put it:
Q: What caused that guy to get more efficiency?
A: He wanted to do a longer boil, so he used more sparge water.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on December 26, 2010, 04:41:18 PM
Next time I brew I'm adding 5 gallons of distilled water, so I get really good efficiency.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: beerocd on December 26, 2010, 04:55:03 PM
Ah, you guys are just arguing two different things and being stubborn about it.
What we have here is .....

Mash efficiency(into the boiler) VS Brewhouse efficiency(into the fermenter)

But by all means carry on - I am enjoying this.  ;D

Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: jrskjei on December 26, 2010, 04:56:36 PM
If you use more water to sparge, then you will collect more sugars, but at the cost of having to boil off the extra water.  That's where the efficiency goes down.  An example:  say we're brewing a batch with 8 pounds of pale malt which yields 6 gallons of wort at a gravity of 1.036.  The yield and gravity is measured before any boiling happens.  We calculate the total sugar extraction as 36 points multiplied by 6 gallons equals 216 points.  All pale malt has a potential extraction of about 1.036.  So in this case, the total potential efficiency would be 36 points multiplied by 8 pounds yielding 288 points.  The efficiency is then 216/288 * 100% = 75%.  

If you use more water to sparge, then you will certainly get more sugars out of the mash.  But the gravity of the wort that is extracted using the extra water (the wort at the end of the sparge) is lower than the gravity of the wort drawn off previously.  This would be different for batch sparging, but the gravity of the wort for the second batch would be lower for 3 gallons of batch sparge water than for 2 gallons of batch sparge water.  With big beers, this may be less noticeable because you may be using a thicker mash or just more grain and there would therefore be more sugars to be extracted (or less left in the tun).  With normal gravity beers, adding additional water will cause the gravity of the wort that is extracted using the extra water to be very low in gravity.  In both cases, it depends on what gravity you would normally stop the sparge and how much further you're willing to take that.  Using the example above, if you collect 7 gallons but at a lower gravity of 1.030 the total sugar extraction would only be 210 points instead of 216.  It comes down to trying to find the balance between these two factors without letting the pH go too high or letting the gravity of the runoff go too low .

Correcting for (possibly) less efficient mashes by boiling longer does create a beer that may have an equal or even higher OG, but that doesn't have anything to do with the mash efficiency.  However it's done, it's about the process that works on a given system and the final product.

Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: kerneldustjacket on December 26, 2010, 06:57:44 PM
jrskjei: thanks, a reasonable argument presented in a civil manner. Glad you're here.
But I do disagree with a few of its points.

Using the example above, if you collect 7 gallons but at a lower gravity of 1.030 the total sugar extraction would only be 210 points instead of 216.

I assume you mean from the same mash, i.e., run off 7 gallons instead of 6.

Question: If you take your example of 6 gallons with 216 points, and add a gallon of pure water to it, you would have 7 gallons of 1.0308 wort...still 216 points. How then can you take the same 6 gallon 216 point wort, add a gallon of water to it by running that water through the lauter tun, and somehow lower the total points to 210?

I'll agree that there may be limited gain from running additional water through the lauter tun, maybe even zero sugars, but no way it'll "subtract" from what you already have, and lower the points you've already extracted.


I like the page Kai has created on the subject.
His findings, for both batch and fly sparging, support the contention that "The more water that is available for sparging, the more extract can be rinsed from the grain."

http://braukaiser.com/wiki/index.php/Understanding_Efficiency

Ah, you guys are just arguing two different things and being stubborn about it.
What we have here is .....

Mash efficiency(into the boiler) VS Brewhouse efficiency(into the fermenter)

But by all means carry on - I am enjoying this.  ;D

A very good point beerocd.

I have assumed that mash efficiency -- pre-boil -- was the type in question...but I may be wrong!
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: hopfenundmalz on December 26, 2010, 07:16:44 PM
Your logic in the second paragraph does not compute.  If I take your original 216 pts for 6 gallons, and dump a gallon of water in to the kettle, you end up with 216/7=1.031 SG (rounded up slightly).  If you get your original points in the kettle for 6 gallons and then sparge to collect one more gallon, you will get more points into the kettle than 216.   Sure the SG for the larger amount is lower, but you have more points in the kettle.  That is what some of us are trying to say.

I see another post has the same point.  Had to answer the wife's questions.

Read Kai's page, one of the best for this.
 
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bluesman on December 26, 2010, 07:49:08 PM
Mash efficiency(into the boiler) VS Brewhouse efficiency(into the fermenter)

This is how I understand efficiency.

We can talk about mash efficiency and debate the effects of the crush or mash pH. This is important for brewers in the sense of getting the most out of your grain. One must know the exact volume of water and weight of grain added to the mash tun in order to calculate the mash efficiency.

Brewhouse efficiency on the other hand is the brewing process efficiency as a whole including any losses.  Losses anywhere in your brewing system, including deadspace in the mash tun, transfer lines, pumps, and trub at the end of the mash result in lost wort. The lost wort takes sugars with it, reducing your overall brewhouse efficiency.

But both are important to the brewer.

Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: hopfenundmalz on December 26, 2010, 07:58:15 PM
Ron,summed up in the graphic on page 3 or so.

http://braukaiser.com/download/Troester_NHC_2010_Efficiency.pdf
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: brushvalleybrewer on December 26, 2010, 08:10:22 PM
This is the funniest thread I think I’ve ever seen.  ::)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: beerocd on December 26, 2010, 08:24:49 PM
This is the funniest thread I think I’ve ever seen.  ::)

I dunno, the BFI threads are pretty darn good. I bet he doesn't care about efficiency either.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bluesman on December 26, 2010, 11:45:57 PM
Ron,summed up in the graphic on page 3 or so.

http://braukaiser.com/download/Troester_NHC_2010_Efficiency.pdf

Yes! I suppose I am just reinforcing the points made....and Kai has a very good presentation indeed.  8)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: jrskjei on December 27, 2010, 04:16:52 AM
jrskjei: thanks, a reasonable argument presented in a civil manner. Glad you're here.
But I do disagree with a few of its points.

Using the example above, if you collect 7 gallons but at a lower gravity of 1.030 the total sugar extraction would only be 210 points instead of 216.

I assume you mean from the same mash, i.e., run off 7 gallons instead of 6.

Question: If you take your example of 6 gallons with 216 points, and add a gallon of pure water to it, you would have 7 gallons of 1.0308 wort...still 216 points. How then can you take the same 6 gallon 216 point wort, add a gallon of water to it by running that water through the lauter tun, and somehow lower the total points to 210?

I'll agree that there may be limited gain from running additional water through the lauter tun, maybe even zero sugars, but no way it'll "subtract" from what you already have, and lower the points you've already extracted.

You're right, I used the numbers in a "for example" manner.  I don't know for sure that adding another gallon would drop the gravity of the wort to 1.030, and when viewed as a total points result, there is no way to subtract points by adding water.  The point I was driving at was that when adding water to the calculation (increases efficiency), the lower gravity (decreases efficiency) balances out at some point.  And then you have to spend more time and money on propane to get to nearly the same place.

Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: jrskjei on December 27, 2010, 04:38:06 AM
Ron,summed up in the graphic on page 3 or so.

http://braukaiser.com/download/Troester_NHC_2010_Efficiency.pdf

Yes! I suppose I am just reinforcing the points made....and Kai has a very good presentation indeed.  8)

That is a nice piece... I hadn't seen that before.  I was thinking along the lines of what Kai has on page 19 (benefit of additional sparges quickly diminishes...)

Thanks for the discussion.  The apples to oranges comparison was at least funny, and who doesn't like to discuss beer?  If we could only keep the wives from interrupting our, um, learning. ;D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: MDixon on December 27, 2010, 12:25:13 PM
I guess I'll just keep repeating the factual information.

The efficiency is the same pre-boil or post-boil. So the boil has no effect AT ALL on efficiency because sugars are conserved.

Now if you lose some wort in your hoses, that's your mismanagement, and has nothing to do with the boil. If you have to runoff more wort due to an inadequacy of gravity and have to boil the resultant volume longer, the efficiency of that wort is still the same pre and post boil.

Feel free to not take my word on it. Cool a sample of wort to the proper temp and measure the pre-boil gravity and measure the volume of wort. Repeat post boil (in the kettle). You'll find the volume x pts equal before and after the boil. You could boil it for a nanosecond or for hours and that will remain true. At some point you might boil off all the water which will make it tricky to measure the gravity, but it still would remain true ;)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: tubercle on December 27, 2010, 01:05:59 PM
This is the way Tubercle see it:

 10 pounds of grain contains 100% of the sugars.

  If during the mash and resulting run off and sparging I collect 5 gallons of wort that contains 85% of the sugars in the grain then the efficiency is 85%.

   If nothing else is done the efficiency is 85%.
  
   If this 5 gallons is boiled for 1 hour and 4 gallons of wort remains the efficiency is 85% - the specific gravity is higher but the efficiency is still 85%.

  If it is boiled down to a quart of syrup the efficiency is 85%.

  If this syrup is dumped in an Olympic size swimming pool the efficiency is 85%.

  Regardless of what happens to the original wort its not going to pull out any more of the 15% of the sugar that was left behind in the grain which is now in the mulch pile.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on December 27, 2010, 01:23:24 PM
This is the way Tubercle see it:

 10 pounds of grain contains 100% of the sugars.

  If during the mash and resulting run off and sparging I collect 5 gallons of wort that contains 85% of the sugars in the grain then the efficiency is 85%.

   If nothing else is done the efficiency is 85%.
  
   If this 5 gallons is boiled for 1 hour and 4 gallons of wort remains the efficiency is 85% - the specific gravity is higher but the efficiency is still 85%.

  If it is boiled down to a quart of syrup the efficiency is 85%.

  If this syrup is dumped in an Olympic size swimming pool the efficiency is 85%.

  Regardless of what happens to the original wort its not going to pull out any more of the 15% of the sugar that was left behind in the grain which is now in the mulch pile.

I agree with what Tubercle has said, except the pool analogy could be flawed if someone happened to throw in a Baby Ruth candy bar.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: kerneldustjacket on December 27, 2010, 01:53:29 PM
You're right, I used the numbers in a "for example" manner.  I don't know for sure that adding another gallon would drop the gravity of the wort to 1.030, and when viewed as a total points result, there is no way to subtract points by adding water.  The point I was driving at was that when adding water to the calculation (increases efficiency), the lower gravity (decreases efficiency) balances out at some point.  And then you have to spend more time and money on propane to get to nearly the same place.

OK...got it. I agree, there is a point where diminishing returns prompt a brewer to stop sparging or limit the number of batch sparges they run; some base it on time savings, some on cost, some on flavor/stability impact, etc.
You're giving me flashbacks to college economics -- marginal analysis and the decision to produce one more unit of output.

tubercle...that's it in a nutshell...or is that you in a nutshell? ???
Mikey...any idea what specialty grains would make a brown ale/porter taste like a Baby Ruth? Sounds interesting. :D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: denny on December 27, 2010, 04:25:08 PM
I guess I'll just keep repeating the factual information.

The efficiency is the same pre-boil or post-boil. So the boil has no effect AT ALL on efficiency because sugars are conserved.

Because Mike is right, I'll repeat what he repeated...
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: tygo on December 27, 2010, 05:17:47 PM
If I can get 109 angels to dance on the top of my mash tun will it improve my efficiency?
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: SiameseMoose on December 27, 2010, 06:50:05 PM
If I can get 109 angels to dance on the top of my mash tun will it improve my efficiency?

I think it's more important to get the angels to dance on my fermenter, but that's a different thread.

As the guy who started this mess, my 109% was calculated as brewhouse efficiency, meaning that's the sugars I got into the fermenter.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: denny on December 27, 2010, 07:09:18 PM
So you got more sugar into the fermenter than existed in the grain?  I knew you were good, Rob!
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: kerneldustjacket on December 28, 2010, 12:13:16 AM

As the guy who started this mess, my 109% was calculated as brewhouse efficiency, meaning that's the sugars I got into the fermenter.

No worries about the mess Rob... ;)...it's all been fun. ;D

What it all boils down to is that boiling does not increase efficiency!
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on December 28, 2010, 12:26:11 AM
If I could get 109 angels, who work for Victoria, to dance around my fermenter, I'm sure the size of my efficiency would increase, but if not that, then something else. :D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: kerneldustjacket on December 28, 2010, 12:41:29 AM
If I could get 109 angels, who work for Victoria, to dance around my fermenter, I'm sure the size of my efficiency would increase, but if not that, then something else. :D

<whisper mode on> Sshshhhhh...not so loud Mikey...I have my wife conveinced that the efficiency size dosen't matter, 'cause my efficiency is small (71% no sparge). Don't go giving her any ideas  :-X <whisper mode off>
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bluesman on December 28, 2010, 01:28:48 AM
The efficiency is the same pre-boil or post-boil. So the boil has no effect AT ALL on efficiency because sugars are conserved.

Agreed.

I like to think of brewhouse efficiency in terms of:

brewhouse efficiency=conversion efficiency*lautering efficiency

because if we were all lucky enough to acheive 100% conversion AND also lauter every single drop....we would have 100% brewhouse effiency. Of course this is virtually impossible but it proves out the calculation.

Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: brushvalleybrewer on December 28, 2010, 01:37:07 AM
Okay. I’ve managed to follow along so far, but somebody tell me…

Does boiling affect efficiency?  ???



::)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: MDixon on December 28, 2010, 01:40:44 AM
No, boiling does not affect efficiency...  ;D

Mashouse efficiency is what you get out of the mash/lauter vs theoretical.

Brewhouse incorporates all the loses due to transfer.

Neither is affected by boiling... ;)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bluesman on December 28, 2010, 01:48:26 AM
Okay. I’ve managed to follow along so far, but somebody tell me…

Does boiling affect efficiency?  ???



::)

Boil time is not used to calculate efficiency. Boiling rate only affects the final volume of the wort.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: hopfenundmalz on December 28, 2010, 01:56:06 AM
Okay. I’ve managed to follow along so far, but somebody tell me…

Does boiling affect efficiency?  ???

::)

This might be the funniest post in a funny tread.  OK, I have have a few tonight. :)

Boiling has no influence on efficiency.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on December 28, 2010, 02:01:22 AM
If I could get 109 angels, who work for Victoria, to dance around my fermenter, I'm sure the size of my efficiency would increase, but if not that, then something else. :D

<whisper mode on> Sshshhhhh...not so loud Mikey...I have my wife conveinced that the efficiency size dosen't matter, 'cause my efficiency is small (71% no sparge). Don't go giving her any ideas  :-X <whisper mode off>

Your secret is safe with me and the rest of the internet. :D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: maxieboy on December 28, 2010, 02:01:40 AM
Okay. I’ve managed to follow along so far, but somebody tell me…

Does boiling affect efficiency?  ???

::)

This might be the funniest post in a funny tread.  OK, I have have a few tonight. :)

Boiling has no influence on efficiency.


Have have ya?  Me to. ;D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: tubercle on December 28, 2010, 02:48:11 AM
Sounds like he needs needs some more ;D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: SiameseMoose on December 29, 2010, 06:11:20 PM
So you got more sugar into the fermenter than existed in the grain?  I knew you were good, Rob!

You should go visit De Konick, in Antwerp. They claim 130%!
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: denny on December 29, 2010, 06:13:25 PM
So you got more sugar into the fermenter than existed in the grain?  I knew you were good, Rob!

You should go visit De Konick, in Antwerp. They claim 130%!

That's how they make money, man.  They get 30% of the sugar back from every batch, so about every 3rd batch is free!   ;D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: jeffy on December 29, 2010, 06:14:17 PM
So you got more sugar into the fermenter than existed in the grain?  I knew you were good, Rob!

You should go visit De Konick, in Antwerp. They claim 130%!

That's how they make money, man.  They get 30% of the sugar back from every batch, so about every 3rd batch is free!   ;D

I'll bet they boil for a long time, too. ;)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: MDixon on December 29, 2010, 06:23:17 PM
What I did notice at both Rodenbach and Palm was a plate and frame filter press for the mash. They squeeze every last drop out they can...of course that has nothing to do with the boil  ;D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on December 29, 2010, 06:38:20 PM
The last time I brewed I boiled twice as long. Since my gravity went up substantially, I know my efficiency did as well. :D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on December 29, 2010, 07:31:57 PM
I should give credit to those that gave me the idea of boiling twice as long. Thanks, Fred. 

Now, who's Fred?
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: kerneldustjacket on December 30, 2010, 03:25:11 AM
Um...a Flintstone?
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on December 30, 2010, 03:47:08 AM
Um...a Flintstone?

Ya ba da ba brew!
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: SiameseMoose on December 30, 2010, 12:43:09 PM
Um...a Flintstone?

Ya ba da ba brew!
(http://www.bloatarian.org/gallery/albums/album10/IMG_0929.jpg)
You can't tell in this picture, but as the front barrel turns it says. "Ya Ba Da Ba Brew!!"
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: malzig on December 30, 2010, 01:42:22 PM
So you got more sugar into the fermenter than existed in the grain?  I knew you were good, Rob!
You should go visit De Konick, in Antwerp. They claim 130%!
Like MDixon suggests, it's possible they use a mash filter system.  In that case it seems that it's not uncommon to get over 100%, even though 130% seems excessive.  If I recall correctly, Alaskan Brewing Company, which has one of the few mash filter systems that I've heard of in the US, cites in the range of 110% mash efficiency.

There was a post (sorry, can't find the actual post.  My Google-foo is weak today) on increased conversion efficiency from using both an alpha and a beta amylase rest.  That experimenter saw frequent conversion efficiencies well over 100%.  I imagine the standard deviation is pretty high in most brewing measurements, though.  (Which doesn't explain how reliably I get 87% mash efficiency...)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Kaiser on December 30, 2010, 02:03:27 PM
To get better efficiency than 100% you'll need to have a more intensive mashing schedule than the congress mash that is used to determine the extract potential of the grain. After that congress mash only 1-2% of the starches have not been converted yet. To get to them you may need decoction mashing.

I don't think that the 130% efficiency number is true.

Kai

Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: jeffy on December 30, 2010, 02:20:44 PM
So you got more sugar into the fermenter than existed in the grain?  I knew you were good, Rob!
You should go visit De Konick, in Antwerp. They claim 130%!
Like MDixon suggests, it's possible they use a mash filter system.  In that case it seems that it's not uncommon to get over 100%, even though 130% seems excessive.  If I recall correctly, Alaskan Brewing Company, which has one of the few mash filter systems that I've heard of in the US, cites in the range of 110% mash efficiency.

The 1950's era brewery in Tampa that is now Yuengling uses a mash press.  It's huge, probably 30 feet long, 15 feet wide and 10 feet tall, all folds of what appears to be some sort of cloth.  I'll have to ask what their efficiency is.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: SiameseMoose on December 30, 2010, 08:29:12 PM
De Konick grinds their grain to a fine powder, almost like bread flour. They use a very high pressure (in excess of 10,000 psi!) filter mash. I have a picture, but it's on my computer, not a website.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: denny on December 30, 2010, 11:08:40 PM
Maybe I'm just dense (okay, no maybe) but how can anyone, no matter what the process, get more than 100%?  Reminds of coaches telling their teams to give it 110%.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Kaiser on December 30, 2010, 11:33:07 PM
Maybe I'm just dense (okay, no maybe) but how can anyone, no matter what the process, get more than 100%?  Reminds of coaches telling their teams to give it 110%.

It all depends how the 100% mark is determined. In German brewing, for example, it is the weight of the grist and in this case it is impossible to get more than 100% since that would mean that weight was created.

But in our brewing we take the result from a standard mash. Most commonly the congress mash but there are also hot water extract mashes that don't involve a slow temp rise. While these mashes try to convert as much starch as they can by using a fine grind, high mash temp and high water/grist ratio they are not perfect mashes either. One can take the spent grain from a congress mash, boil it in water and add more amylase enzymes to get few more % of sugar out of them.

This is on the mashing side. Since we want to stay close, or even above 100% we cannot accept large losses during lautering which is why  >100% efficiency only seems to come up with mash filters which tend to have a near perfect lauter efficiency. This is in addition to the fact that mash filters can process pulverized grists which also tend to have a near or above perfect conversion efficiency when compared to the congress mash with a pulverized grist.

But if home brewers report close or even above 100% efficiency I agree that the culprit are either measurement errors or much better than expected extract potential from the grain.

Kai
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Kaiser on December 30, 2010, 11:45:07 PM
Reminds of coaches telling their teams to give it 110%.

It is possible for people to give more than 100%. If 100% is defined as the most they can give under normal circumstances. I.e the fastest one can run in a competition for example. Then if you have them perform in a life threatening condition. E.g. being chased by a bear, many will be able to run faster. This is because the body is able to unlock more resources if survival depends on it. I think I heard this on NPR once.

This is similar to mashing where the test mash is designed to estimate the extract potential under best yet realistic mashing conditions.

Kai
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: malzig on December 31, 2010, 08:58:23 PM
I assumed that the primary reason for greater than 100% mash efficiency from mash filter systems was the fact that the grain is left virtually dry.  I've never performed a congress mash, but from the SOP, it looks like the lauter is performed through a filter paper, but it is drained passively.  In that case, there is still absorption of water and loss of wort to the grain, no?

With a quick and rough calculation, it seems that 110-115% would be achievable, with 100% conversion efficiency, if the grain was squeezed dry from a 12 plato wort..
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Kaiser on December 31, 2010, 09:36:27 PM
The lauter efficiency of the congress mash does not matter since the extract content is determined from the gravity of the wort and it's mash thickness, which is 8 l/kg. The collected volume, and thus the amount trapped in the paper or filter cake, does not matter.

Kai
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: denny on December 31, 2010, 09:41:47 PM
If 100% is defined as the most they can give under normal circumstances.

I think the "under normal circumstances" qualifier is bogus.  To me, 100% is all there is.  If you're being chased by a bear, that's where you give 100%.  Under other circumstances, you may be running really fast, but it's not 100%.  Just my curmudgeonly take on it!
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: brushvalleybrewer on December 31, 2010, 10:32:02 PM
To me, 100% is all there is.  If you're being chased by a bear, that's where you give 100%.  Under other circumstances, you may be running really fast, but it's not 100%.  Just my curmudgeonly take on it!

Okay. Let’s work with that. Say we all agree it’s 100% if you’re being chased by a bear.

Now suppose we shoot you out of a cannon…  ;D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Kaiser on January 01, 2011, 12:50:25 AM
Denny, in that case the laboratory extract given in the malt sheets is not the 100% mark. And we should not use it as the baseline for efficiency. 

Kai
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: tubercle on January 01, 2011, 12:53:46 AM
To me, 100% is all there is.  If you're being chased by a bear, that's where you give 100%.  Under other circumstances, you may be running really fast, but it's not 100%.  Just my curmudgeonly take on it!

Okay. Let’s work with that. Say we all agree it’s 100% if you’re being chased by a bear.

Now suppose we shoot you out of a cannon…  ;D

 Tubercle gets off the couch and draws another from the kegarator - that's 100%

 Being chased by a bear - might be able to squeeze out another 1% ;D
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: hopfenundmalz on January 01, 2011, 04:40:58 AM
If 100% is defined as the most they can give under normal circumstances.

I think the "under normal circumstances" qualifier is bogus.  To me, 100% is all there is.  If you're being chased by a bear, that's where you give 100%.  Under other circumstances, you may be running really fast, but it's not 100%.  Just my curmudgeonly take on it!

I am with Kai on this.  100% is often a standard rating on engines or electric motors that can be exceded for short periods without damage.

Not beer related, but WWII fighter planes had maximum rating for the engines.  There were also max combat ratings, and the top power rating was emergency power ratings for 5 minutes of operation.  Emergency power broke a tell tale on the throttle, made of piano wire.  The mechanics know there was some serious work to do, or that it was even time for a new engine. 

Kind of like you might outrun the bear, but something is blown out the next day...






Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bluesman on January 01, 2011, 03:14:07 PM
I think the 100% mark is the level to which we as homebrewers can pratically achieve. Anything more than that will require additional resources and steps with which we don't ordinarily undergo. So for all pratical purposes, 100% efficiency for homebrewers is the ultimate goal.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: kerneldustjacket on January 01, 2011, 03:42:59 PM

 Tubercle gets off the couch and draws another from the kegarator - that's 100%

 Being chased by a bear - might be able to squeeze out another 1% ;D

Can't you mount a tower in one arm of the couch? It would reduce the energy required to obtain a full glass, and therefore improve your efficiency.


Not beer related, but WWII fighter planes had maximum rating for the engines.  There were also max combat ratings, and the top power rating was emergency power ratings for 5 minutes of operation.  Emergency power broke a tell tale on the throttle, made of piano wire.  The mechanics know there was some serious work to do, or that it was even time for a new engine. 

Good analogy Jeff. I remember a book I read as a teen where WWII pilots give their first-hand account of  harrowing or eventful missions; one fighter pilot mentioned the piano wire across the throttle's path...he had to break it to escape a flight of enemy zeros, IIRC.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: oscarvan on January 01, 2011, 03:59:40 PM
100% is then a limit imposed by the engineers, whereas "war power" or "stuffing it in the radar" is the ACTUAL 100%, ie the maximum the engine will produce under the circumstances. Semantics vs physics.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: denny on January 01, 2011, 05:47:32 PM
Denny, in that case the laboratory extract given in the malt sheets is not the 100% mark. And we should not use it as the baseline for efficiency. 

Kai

and the thought of that makes my head hurt....wait a minute, maybe that's the hangover!  ;)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: beerocd on January 01, 2011, 06:33:01 PM
I think the 100% mark is the level to which we as homebrewers can pratically achieve. Anything more than that will require additional resources and steps with which we don't ordinarily undergo. So for all pratical purposes, 100% efficiency for homebrewers is the ultimate goal.

Sounds like 100% is average, the way you put it. Anything less, is due to not enough effort on the brewer's part.
So, the new "C" grade brewer needs to get 100%, anything below is lazy and below average - anything above is due to effort above and beyond (aka: above average effort).
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Mikey on January 01, 2011, 07:03:17 PM
I think the 100% mark is the level to which we as homebrewers can pratically achieve. Anything more than that will require additional resources and steps with which we don't ordinarily undergo. So for all pratical purposes, 100% efficiency for homebrewers is the ultimate goal.

Sounds like 100% is average, the way you put it. Anything less, is due to not enough effort on the brewer's part.
So, the new "C" grade brewer needs to get 100%, anything below is lazy and below average - anything above is due to effort above and beyond (aka: above average effort).

Well, that puts me in the "lazy and below average" category.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: bluesman on January 01, 2011, 07:16:35 PM
I think the 100% mark is the level to which we as homebrewers can pratically achieve. Anything more than that will require additional resources and steps with which we don't ordinarily undergo. So for all pratical purposes, 100% efficiency for homebrewers is the ultimate goal.

Sounds like 100% is average, the way you put it. Anything less, is due to not enough effort on the brewer's part.
So, the new "C" grade brewer needs to get 100%, anything below is lazy and below average - anything above is due to effort above and beyond (aka: above average effort).

I need to proof read more often.  ;)

What I really meant to say was that 100% efficiency presumes 100% conversion of available starches (assume 80% extract potential) plus 100% lautering efficiency which is near impossible from a practical standpoint. I'll venture to say that the AVERAGE homebrewer achieves 75% efficiency.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: malzig on January 01, 2011, 07:36:02 PM
The lauter efficiency of the congress mash does not matter since the extract content is determined from the gravity of the wort and it's mash thickness, which is 8 l/kg.
Thanks, that's good to know.
I've only read the procedure in journal articles, where that detail was never pointed out.  I had assumed, since they were running off the wort through a filter paper, that they were using the volume as well as the gravity.  I hate it when research papers leave such important details out of the method section.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: tubercle on January 01, 2011, 08:24:31 PM

... I'll venture to say that the AVERAGE homebrewer achieves 75% efficiency.

 Then 75% becomes 100% ;)
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: malzig on January 01, 2011, 08:35:54 PM
What I really meant to say was that 100% efficiency presumes 100% conversion of available starches (assume 80% extract potential) plus 100% lautering efficiency which is near impossible from a practical standpoint. I'll venture to say that the AVERAGE homebrewer achieves 75% efficiency.
Or maybe less, which infers that the average homebrewer either isn't achieving complete conversion, has a tun with a substantial dead volume or suffers grain bed channeling.

Recently I saw a brewer confused when his new tun made his efficiency drop from 80%+ to 65%.  His numbers indicated that his dead volume increased by 1 gallon.
Title: Re: 109% Efficiency!
Post by: Kaiser on January 01, 2011, 11:35:21 PM
Thanks, that's good to know.
I've only read the procedure in journal articles, where that detail was never pointed out.  I had assumed, since they were running off the wort through a filter paper, that they were using the volume as well as the gravity.  I hate it when research papers leave such important details out of the method section.

I had to look for this too. It didn't make sense to me that the lauter efficiency would matter. And if it mattered why weren't there any specifications about the size of the filter paper, for example. The larger the filter paper, the larger the losses during lautering.

Kai