Author Topic: Batch Sparging: Dilution  (Read 1322 times)

Offline wheelhousebrewing

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Batch Sparging: Dilution
« on: March 07, 2013, 01:48:27 PM »
My last batch came out with a pre-boil gravity far lower than what I expected.  (I do plan to recalibrate my efficiency with next batch).  But it got me wondering how much water dilution effects this outcome.

My current batch sparge process: I add around 5 gallons of water (at 170, though I read I should bump this to 190) to the tun after the first runnings complete.  Stir, sit and sparge until my desired volume is achieved.

Should I be more precise in how much water I add or is the impact not so great?

Thanks!
« Last Edit: March 07, 2013, 01:53:01 PM by wheelhousebrewing »

Offline gymrat

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Re: Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2013, 01:54:34 PM »
How much water did you mash with?
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Offline a10t2

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Re: Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2013, 01:55:26 PM »
You should run the mash tun dry for each runoff. Otherwise you're intentionally leaving sugars behind.
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Offline wheelhousebrewing

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Re: Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2013, 01:58:57 PM »
I don't recall but the mash water was more than I had planned (Maybe up to 2-2.5qts/lb.  I used a two-step process and used 'boiling' water to get from the protein rest to the sach rest.  But here in Denver, my boil water temp is lower so i had to increase the volume).

I only need one runoff and I do let the first runnings dry out the tun.

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Re: Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2013, 01:59:26 PM »
Yes, because all of the sugars are equally distributed in the sparge water. If you sparge with 5 gallons but only drain off 4, you're leaving 20% of the sparge sugars behind.
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Re: Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2013, 02:01:47 PM »
I don't recall but the mash water was more than I had planned (Maybe up to 2-2.5qts/lb.  I used a two-step process and used 'boiling' water to get from the protein rest to the sach rest.  But here in Denver, my boil water temp is lower so i had to increase the volume).

When I correct mash temperature with boiling water, I reduce my sparge water by an equal volume. 
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Offline gymrat

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Re: Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2013, 02:05:09 PM »
So you had a thin mash then over sparged? Between the two that is a really high water to grain ratio.
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Offline denny

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Re: Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2013, 02:31:35 PM »
You should run the mash tun dry for each runoff. Otherwise you're intentionally leaving sugars behind.

Yep.  What you want to do is measure how much runoff you get from the mash.  Subtract that from the amount you want to boil.  The answer you get is how much sparge water to use so that you have nothing left behind.
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Offline DrewG

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Re: Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #8 on: March 07, 2013, 02:33:35 PM »
Quote
Yep.  What you want to do is measure how much runoff you get from the mash.  Subtract that from the amount you want to boil.  The answer you get is how much sparge water to use so that you have nothing left behind.

^
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Offline wheelhousebrewing

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Re: Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #9 on: March 07, 2013, 03:33:28 PM »
So you had a thin mash then over sparged? Between the two that is a really high water to grain ratio.

Well when you put it that way...  But hey, it's gonna be the richest 3.4% beer in town.

Muchas gracias to everyone for the feedback.

Offline fmader

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Re: Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #10 on: March 07, 2013, 04:45:18 PM »
Yeah, what these guys are saying lol.

I use this batch sparge calculator. It works wonders for me. I do use 1.5 quarts per pound, and disperse the infusion volume they give me over the mash and sparge water. I try and keep my numbers close to quarter gallon increments....

http://onebeer.net/batchspargecalc.shtml

....and as per Denny's advise, boosted my sparge water temperature
Frank

Offline alcaponejunior

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Re: Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #11 on: March 10, 2013, 03:46:37 PM »
You should run the mash tun dry for each runoff. Otherwise you're intentionally leaving sugars behind.

Yep.  What you want to do is measure how much runoff you get from the mash.  Subtract that from the amount you want to boil.  The answer you get is how much sparge water to use so that you have nothing left behind.

I guess I stumbled upon the approximate correct technique by accident.  This is what I've been doing, basically.  Wind up with about 6-6.5 gallon pre-boil, about 5 or slightly  less after (depends on how much hops, mostly). 

Drain mash tun till it's a slow trickle, then add sparge water, then drain again, then add sparge water, then drain final time.  OG works with beersmith II if I use 67% efficiency (top of design page input). 

Beers have been coming out fine since I made adjustments and figured it out.  Even before then, they were good but my OG was low.  Adjusting efficiency on beersmith was key (for me at least).

Offline denny

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Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #12 on: March 10, 2013, 04:40:03 PM »

I guess I stumbled upon the approximate correct technique by accident.  This is what I've been doing, basically.  Wind up with about 6-6.5 gallon pre-boil, about 5 or slightly  less after (depends on how much hops, mostly). 

Drain mash tun till it's a slow trickle, then add sparge water, then drain again, then add sparge water, then drain final time.  OG works with beersmith II if I use 67% efficiency (top of design page input). 

Beers have been coming out fine since I made adjustments and figured it out.  Even before then, they were good but my OG was low.  Adjusting efficiency on beersmith was key (for me at least).

Do you have a very small mash tun?  There should be no other reason to have to sparge twice.  And are you stirring well after you add the sparge water?
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Offline alcaponejunior

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Re: Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #13 on: March 10, 2013, 04:55:49 PM »

I guess I stumbled upon the approximate correct technique by accident.  This is what I've been doing, basically.  Wind up with about 6-6.5 gallon pre-boil, about 5 or slightly  less after (depends on how much hops, mostly). 

Drain mash tun till it's a slow trickle, then add sparge water, then drain again, then add sparge water, then drain final time.  OG works with beersmith II if I use 67% efficiency (top of design page input). 

Beers have been coming out fine since I made adjustments and figured it out.  Even before then, they were good but my OG was low.  Adjusting efficiency on beersmith was key (for me at least).

Do you have a very small mash tun?  There should be no other reason to have to sparge twice.  And are you stirring well after you add the sparge water?

Yes, and yes.  5 gallon igloo cooler mash tun (cylindrical, vertical).

I have a 5 gallon mash tun.  I usually sparge twice and stir in each time (and let sit a few minutes each time).  Total sparge volume (per run) about 1.75 gallons.  Similar to BS "recommendation."

Any tips on improving?

Offline denny

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Batch Sparging: Dilution
« Reply #14 on: March 10, 2013, 05:07:06 PM »

I guess I stumbled upon the approximate correct technique by accident.  This is what I've been doing, basically.  Wind up with about 6-6.5 gallon pre-boil, about 5 or slightly  less after (depends on how much hops, mostly). 

Drain mash tun till it's a slow trickle, then add sparge water, then drain again, then add sparge water, then drain final time.  OG works with beersmith II if I use 67% efficiency (top of design page input). 

Beers have been coming out fine since I made adjustments and figured it out.  Even before then, they were good but my OG was low.  Adjusting efficiency on beersmith was key (for me at least).

Do you have a very small mash tun?  There should be no other reason to have to sparge twice.  And are you stirring well after you add the sparge water?

Yes, and yes.  5 gallon igloo cooler mash tun (cylindrical, vertical).

I have a 5 gallon mash tun.  I usually sparge twice and stir in each time (and let sit a few minutes each time).  Total sparge volume (per run) about 1.75 gallons.  Similar to BS "recommendation."

Any tips on improving?

Get a bigger cooler!  ;)
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe