Finished my first out door all-grain batch today. I did one all-grain on the stove top, years ago, so this maybe counts as my first.
Anyway, on to the questions.
My efficiency is maybe around 65%, which seems low. I milled my own grain, and I've got it set pretty tight.
Strike water was 160 and dropped to 140 in the tun. I add boiling water to bring it back up to 150.
I mashed for 90 minutes. Recipe is Saison d'ete from NB. Pils, Vienna, torrified wheat. Expected OG = 1.041.
Mash was three gallons (I mashed in two round coolers, so 3 gallons each). Sparge was 4 gallons.
My boil was pretty hard (Dark Star burner, LOTS of soot but NB is sending a new one with a redesign to control the soot). I wound up with 8 gallons at 1.048.
Curious as to thoughts on how to increase efficiency. Was my mash and sparge water not enough? I think pH was fine but didn't check. Crush, as I said, was pretty fine. The mash had trouble draining. Sparge drained pretty much OK.
I've been doing partial mash batches on the stove-top, BIAB. That efficiency has been crappy, too. But there wasn't much sparge with that process and I never worried about it because I adjusted with DME.
Here's Himself (Jr.) stirring the mash.