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General Category => All Grain Brewing => Topic started by: brewandski on March 15, 2011, 10:21:23 pm

Title: Mashing in cool weather
Post by: brewandski on March 15, 2011, 10:21:23 pm
I am hopefully going to be going all grain for the first time this weekend, and I was going to do it outside.  The weather is supposed to be in the mid 50s.  I converted a 10 gal Rubbermaid cooler for my mash tun.  In people’s experience if I keep the lid on the cooler the whole time I mash, will the temp stay constant in that kind of weather or will I have to add hot water?
Title: Re: Mashing in cool weather
Post by: jaybeerman on March 15, 2011, 10:36:24 pm
There are a number of options.  The simple - let it ride, it will lose some temp.  The pretty easy – use a blanket, sleeping bag, keg koozy, winter coat and throw it over the mashtun.  The slightly more difficult - heat water outside, carry inside, mash-in inside, carry back outside for run-off, sparge and boil.  Personally, my rubbermaid looses a few degrees over an hour’s time with 60s ambient, not a big deal.  I brew outside even in the coldest of temps and improvise from all of the options I listed above.  cheers, j 

don't sweat it
Title: Re: Mashing in cool weather
Post by: srnoel on March 15, 2011, 10:48:24 pm
I did my first all grain last friday outside and it was about 40ish out.  I didn't have a problem maintaining my temp.  Got the grain bed to 152...covered the cooler and then threw a blanket on for good measure and forgot about it for an hour. 
Title: Re: Mashing in cool weather
Post by: Will's Swill on March 15, 2011, 11:03:05 pm
I'll mash outside in a snowstorm (we'll get a snowstorm in July if I decide to brew...) and I won't get a significant drop in temperature over an hour in a cooler.
Title: Re: Mashing in cool weather
Post by: srnoel on March 15, 2011, 11:46:59 pm
I'll mash outside in a snowstorm (we'll get a snowstorm in July if I decide to brew...)

I like your style.  Maybe I'll do a brew while its hailing one time so I can call it Pale Hail.......yep I just said that.
Title: Re: Mashing in cool weather
Post by: brewandski on March 16, 2011, 02:07:35 pm
Thanks for all the input.  I am just going to insulate it and go with it.

I am hopfully going to hit 1.083 OG with this beer and I was wondering if it will be ok to just pitch two bags of liquid yeast rather than making a starter because I don't have time to make one before the weekend.  The liquid yeast I used last time said it started out with 500 billion* cells in the bag.

Edit: 100 Billion
Title: Re: Mashing in cool weather
Post by: Hokerer on March 16, 2011, 02:16:52 pm
The liquid yeast I used last time said it started out with 500 billion cells in the bag.

Is that some sort of commercial bag?  Even the large Wyeast bags only claim 100 billion.
Title: Re: Mashing in cool weather
Post by: brewandski on March 16, 2011, 02:18:14 pm
Whoops, yes I did mean 100 billion.
Title: Re: Mashing in cool weather
Post by: Mark G on March 16, 2011, 03:32:25 pm
Thanks for all the input.  I am just going to insulate it and go with it.

I am hopfully going to hit 1.083 OG with this beer and I was wondering if it will be ok to just pitch two bags of liquid yeast rather than making a starter because I don't have time to make one before the weekend.  The liquid yeast I used last time said it started out with 500 billion* cells in the bag.

Edit: 100 Billion
Well, according to http://www.mrmalty.com/calc/calc.html (http://www.mrmalty.com/calc/calc.html), you need 283 billion cells for a 5 gallon batch. Even if you had a brand new pack at close to 100% viability, you'd be grossly underpitching. You should consider making a starter or buying a couple more packs.
Title: Re: Mashing in cool weather
Post by: bluesman on March 16, 2011, 06:13:43 pm
Thanks for all the input.  I am just going to insulate it and go with it.

I am hopfully going to hit 1.083 OG with this beer and I was wondering if it will be ok to just pitch two bags of liquid yeast rather than making a starter because I don't have time to make one before the weekend.  The liquid yeast I used last time said it started out with 500 billion* cells in the bag.

Edit: 100 Billion
Well, according to http://www.mrmalty.com/calc/calc.html (http://www.mrmalty.com/calc/calc.html), you need 283 billion cells for a 5 gallon batch. Even if you had a brand new pack at close to 100% viability, you'd be grossly underpitching. You should consider making a starter or buying a couple more packs.

Yes, 4 vials/smackpacks or a 3.6L starter with one package of liquid yeast.