Author Topic: astringency and over sparging  (Read 2075 times)

Offline jimrod

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astringency and over sparging
« on: April 10, 2012, 08:04:21 PM »
I have also been getting some overly astringent beers and I am wondering if I am over sparging. What is over sparging? I'm usually brew 10 gal batches.

Currently I fly sparge. I strike at 168* to get the the mash to 150*-154*.  When the mash gets below 150. My Ranco starts the pump and recirculates the liquid through the HLT and moves it back on top of the grain to bring it up to temp. The pump isn't always recirculating but it could be on periodically throughout the 60-90 min. mash time.

I'll drain slowly for about 30-45 min into the boil tank while adding 180* water over the top of the mash. I'm careful to keep the pH of the mash around 5.4 using lactic acid if needed. I usually add about 3 ml. of lactic acid per 6 gal of sparge water for tap water that has a pH of 8.0.

Does it sound like I'm doing it right?
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Offline paul

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Re: astringency and over sparging
« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2012, 09:58:10 PM »
Sounds about right, but there a couple things you didnt mention.

I've never seen anyone quantify oversparging this way, but I like to track the amount of wort I collect relative to the grain weight.  I usually collect between 0.6 and 0.7 gallons per pound. 

The other thing to watch is either the gravity or pH of the runoff towards the end.  I've always heard it's best to stop when the gravity drops to 1.010 or the pH rises to 5.8.  I was talking to a pro brewer who wins some comps who said he prefers to stop runoff on competition beers at 7 Plato (1.028) for better malt flavor.  I've tended to follow this advice.  I think it keeps me far from oversparging.

Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: astringency and over sparging
« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2012, 06:30:14 PM »
How do you calculate volumes with that method?
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Offline paul

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Re: astringency and over sparging
« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2012, 09:16:20 PM »
Not sure I understand the question.  But if it wasn't clear, I collect about 0.6 gallons per pound before the boil, and end up with less after the boil.

Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: astringency and over sparging
« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2012, 11:10:46 AM »
Yeah I get that part, but working backward on the stopping of the collection at 1.028 -  how do you determine volumes in advance to set your grain bill?  Maybe I am missing something there, but I would think that calculating to collect 6 gallons at 1.028 might be tough to hit unless your efficiency is really precise.
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Offline paul

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Re: astringency and over sparging
« Reply #5 on: April 12, 2012, 10:31:23 PM »
It tends to work out because my efficiency is fairly consistent.  I essentially plan my grain bill for 70% collection, knowing the I could probably achieve 75% by collecting more wort.  Similarly, I plan to hit that efficiency by collecting 0.6 to 0.65 gallons per lb of grain.  If necessary I can collect a bit more, but then I might start to watch the gravity of the runnings.  Finally, I plan for a 5.5 gallon batch so that if my efficiency is higher or lower I can readjust my final batch volume accordingly and still hit my planned OG.  So, there's not a ton of precision, but a lot of room for on-the-fly adjustments.