Author Topic: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain  (Read 2755 times)

Offline Thirsty_Monk

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #15 on: January 20, 2010, 08:17:10 PM »
Would a $30 propane burner be sufficient to boil a 10 gallon batch?  My biggest cost would be a proper sized kettle.  How about a pH meter?  I have read about the importance of pH and mash.  Luckily the water here in Bend, OR is clean and soft (which allows for adjustment I guess). 

I do not know anything about propane burner. Did you think electric?

For AL kettle check http://www.instawares.com/ you can get 10 gal kettle with lid for $60.
http://www.instawares.com/stock-pot-aluminum-40.alsksp007.0.7.htm
You still want to have spigot so add $30 for weldless kit.
By the way if you want to make 10 gal batches buy 15 gal pot.
http://www.instawares.com/stock-pot-aluminum-60.alsksp009.0.7.htm

if you want to check your mash pH go with ColorpHast Strips from here:
http://www.sanitationtools.com/Products.asp?Product=1391&Category=72

I would also say just go All Grain and skip partial mash.

Na Zdravie

On Tap At The TapRoom:
Bohemian Pilsner
Bohemian Dark Lager
Smoked Bock
MaiBock
American Brown Ale
Marzen
Root beer

Offline BrewingRover

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #16 on: January 20, 2010, 10:13:35 PM »
Build a cheap mash tun and brew a few 2.5 gallon batches with the equipment you already have.  Add the rest of the equipment as you have the money to get to 5+ gallons.

Best brewing related decision I ever made.
That was my progression as well. I used a cheap 3 gallon cooler following Colby's methods for my partial mashes and it really let me get things figured out. I also did small batches and stepped up to 5 gallons once I could do full boils.
It's such a fine line between stupid and clever.

Offline brewsumore

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #17 on: January 22, 2010, 10:31:06 PM »
Trying partial mash before going all grain is how I went, and when I found out how much better the partial mash beer was than extract, it whetted my appetite to go all grain even more.  Having started from experience as an extract brewer, I think partial mash is a natural progression - and it marries the extract with the AG process so provides a good transition.  I figured out how to do stove top partial mashes and actually came very close to the method explained in the BYO article you reference.  If you go that route I'll bet you conclude as I did, that once all grain equipment is purchased, brewing all grain takes about the same amount of time as partial mash, is cheaper when figuring ingredients cost, gives you more control over the beer, and allows you to make bigger batches.  Still, I was glad to learn partial mash, and there was a time when work called me away from my all grain setup for an extended time, and I was still able to go back to stovetop partial mash and make really good beer with very little equipment.  My point is that at least from my perspective, there's nothing lost by going partial mash as your next step.

Offline yaleterrace

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #18 on: January 23, 2010, 10:42:20 AM »
+ another 1 on going all-grain!  the basic setup is REALLY simple.  I started AG brewing and skipped the extract phase altogether.  I brewed 5 gallons every week for 19 batches in a row with the following items you don't need for extract batches:

8 gal AND 5 gal steel stockpot
immersion wort chiller
Papazian's "zapap" lautering tun, (converted 2 Ale Pale buckets)
strong mash spoon/paddle
2-quart pitcher
vinyl tubing

you can mash at a single step or stepped-infusion style with the pot over 2 gas range burners on your stove.  after mash-out, scoop the mash into your bucket-in-bucket lautering tun.  drain your first runnings back into the big kettle (you have washed this out after removing the mash) because this is also your boil kettle.  batch sparge (pour) your hot water into the grains, let them steep for a few, and drain those into the kettle too.  THATS IT!  start your boil from there, and forget that you ever opened a can to make beer!  it isn't scary, it isn't hard, and it isn't really too mysterious.  the benefits (which far outweigh the expenses and increased brew time) are many.  you will understand beer much more than before, you will be very proud of every batch, even the s***ty ones, and you will make better beer every time since you will have a rapidly growing conception of brewing and ability to apply it.  like i said, brew time goes up (5-7 hours total from set-up to clean-up) and you will need to be mentally present for all steps, but you WILL NOT REGRET IT, I PROMISE.

cheers, and tell us what you wind up doing!

Offline rabid_dingo

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #19 on: January 23, 2010, 11:17:55 AM »
A 7.5 gallon kettle is (barely) big enough for 5 gallon batches.

As a10t2 pointed out it is big enough, just barely. :o Even though the margin of error
for using a 7.5 gal kettle is minuscule it is big enough. I made several batches with
one and successfully made the jump to AG. Go for it. You will just need to be diligent
with watching for boil overs.

Ruben * Colorado :)

Offline Thirsty_Monk

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #20 on: January 23, 2010, 01:51:36 PM »
A 7.5 gallon kettle is (barely) big enough for 5 gallon batches.

As a10t2 pointed out it is big enough, just barely. :o Even though the margin of error
for using a 7.5 gal kettle is minuscule it is big enough. I made several batches with
one and successfully made the jump to AG. Go for it. You will just need to be diligent
with watching for boil overs.


I also started with 7.5 gal turkey fryer.
Now I will tell you that it is too small for 5 gal batch.
I need to have 8 gal wort when I do 5 gal batch.
SO if you are buying a new kettle, buy at least 10 gal pot.
And Spigot is essential.
Na Zdravie

On Tap At The TapRoom:
Bohemian Pilsner
Bohemian Dark Lager
Smoked Bock
MaiBock
American Brown Ale
Marzen
Root beer

Offline denny

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #21 on: January 23, 2010, 04:19:31 PM »
It's too small if you do a full boil.  When I started AG, I used a .5 gal. kettle, did a higher gravity boil, and topped off afterwards.  It wasn't ideal, but it worked fine.  Fortunately, after a few batches that way, a friend who was getting out of brewing gave me a converted keg.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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Offline bendbrew

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #22 on: January 24, 2010, 02:13:23 PM »
Well-I have decided simply to try the partial mash approach first.  I made a "mash tun" out of two gallon cooler.  I am brewing right now.  It was exciting to see how things work.  I used 165 degree-5.5qts of water and added my 4lbs of grain-hit 154 degrees perfectly.  It is now resting.  I have made contact with another brewer here in town that makes 30 gallon all grain batches.  I will met up with him next weekend.  My homebrew shop will start carrying Wyeast 1450 so when I switch to all grain I will go with the Denny's Rye IPA.  Here are the two articles that I used for where I am today.  Thanks to all for your advice. 

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/wiki/index.php/Making_a_Partial_Mash_mash_tun

http://www.byo.com/component/resource/article/511-countertop-partial-mashing

Offline Thirsty_Monk

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #23 on: January 24, 2010, 02:48:16 PM »
Well-I have decided simply to try the partial mash approach first.  I made a "mash tun" out of two gallon cooler.  I am brewing right now.  It was exciting to see how things work.  I used 165 degree-5.5qts of water and added my 4lbs of grain-hit 154 degrees perfectly.  It is now resting.  I have made contact with another brewer here in town that makes 30 gallon all grain batches.  I will met up with him next weekend.  My homebrew shop will start carrying Wyeast 1450 so when I switch to all grain I will go with the Denny's Rye IPA.  Here are the two articles that I used for where I am today.  Thanks to all for your advice. 

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/wiki/index.php/Making_a_Partial_Mash_mash_tun

http://www.byo.com/component/resource/article/511-countertop-partial-mashing

Great news.
As someone else said.
JUST BREW IT  :D

All grain is not that difficult at all.
Na Zdravie

On Tap At The TapRoom:
Bohemian Pilsner
Bohemian Dark Lager
Smoked Bock
MaiBock
American Brown Ale
Marzen
Root beer

Offline bendbrew

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #24 on: January 24, 2010, 06:41:58 PM »
Okay-first experiment over (at least brewday).  I missed the mark.  Expected OG was 1.045 and I hit 1.042.  This recipe called for the late addition of the liquid extract (45 minutes into the boil).  I had difficulty getting the boil going again (5 gallons on a stove top).  I had a 2L starter (on a stirpate-very active) so the fermentation should be fine.  My guess is a very love ABV beer with perhaps some chill haze.  I feel good about the partial mash though and look forward to experimenting further.

Offline tygo

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #25 on: January 24, 2010, 07:12:43 PM »
I'd consider aiming for 1.045 and hitting 1.042 to be pretty successful actually. 
Clint
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On Tap: Lucifer's Hammer Golden Strong Ale, Dopplebock, Old Fuzzynut's Ale

Offline bendbrew

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #26 on: January 25, 2010, 11:12:27 AM »
Just picked up a 70qt Coleman extreme for $36.  Heading towards all grain.

Offline brewsumore

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Re: Partial Mash As a First Step To All Grain
« Reply #27 on: January 25, 2010, 11:19:03 PM »
Good luck converting it into a mashtun.  That's a good size for doing 10 gallon batches.  I first used Denny's SS braided hose setup, but went to using a 1/2" SS Kewler Kitz spigot/bulkhead with straight Bazooka screen for filtration and prefer that.