Author Topic: barley crusher gap settings ?  (Read 5668 times)

Offline aschecte

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 60
  • Don't worry I'll drink it !!
    • View Profile
barley crusher gap settings ?
« on: June 03, 2013, 09:33:20 PM »
WOW all I can say is WOW !!! I have been using my barley crusher mill for near 2 years now and I dropped the factory .039 setting down to .034 upon a few batches as I wanted to boost my efficiency. I have averaged a constant 85-86% eff since doing this before at the factory setting I was getting around 7-72%..... now I have gotten lazy and I'll admit it... I usually check my gap with a feeler gauge about every 5-6 brews this time around I had some issues ..... Knee surgery back surgery etc..... Don't get hit by a concrete truck but that's another topic. So the last two brews my partner in crime who is a huge help considering my medical issues and slow recovery says to me wow your crush it looks weird really chunky  ( he's brewed with me for over 2 years now)... I agreed and said lets just brew and damned if my eff went down to 75% that's a 10 % drop !!!! I let it go like I said I got lazy .. I brewed on Sunday and this time before brewing I actually pulled out my feeler gauge and low and behold the on the left was at .047 !!! the middle was at .044 and the right was at .039 !!!! the darn thing was all over the place so long story short I re gapped her down to .034 again and when I brew in a week or two that should bring things back to where I like to be 85%. Now here's the real question what does everyone else gap their rollers to ? I know most people like to hit about 70% recipe design ..... so where are you all at or do you guys and gals just fly with however it came and don't mess with it. I'm just curious...... also and I guess this is a preference thingy but does anyone see a advantage of having a lower mas eff ? ease of lauter ? grain is cheap so who cares about an extra 1/2-1 pound of grain to compensate ? I'm honestly just really curious as to the mindset of how and why people crush the way they do and if others actually try to dial in a specific mash eff. cheers !!!!
don't worry I'll drink it !!

Offline a10t2

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 3163
  • Ask me why I don't like Chico!
    • View Profile
    • SeanTerrill.com
Re: barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2013, 09:45:56 PM »
When I got mine I set it to .030" and I haven't changed it since. Overall efficiency runs 68-88% depending on gravity, but conversion efficiency is always >95% (assuming I get the pH right).
Beer is like porn. You can buy it, but it's more fun to make your own.
http://seanterrill.com/category/brewing/

Offline In The Sand

  • Brewer
  • ****
  • Posts: 397
    • View Profile
barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2013, 03:43:14 AM »
When I got mine I set it to .030" and I haven't changed it since. Overall efficiency runs 68-88% depending on gravity, but conversion efficiency is always >95% (assuming I get the pH right).

Same here. I left it at factory settings. Crush looks good and I don't have feeler gauges, so I didn't change it.
Trey W.

Online erockrph

  • Brewmaster General
  • *******
  • Posts: 2415
  • Chepachet, RI
    • View Profile
    • Critical Tastings
Re: Re: barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2013, 05:01:38 AM »
When I got mine I set it to .030" and I haven't changed it since. Overall efficiency runs 68-88% depending on gravity, but conversion efficiency is always >95% (assuming I get the pH right).

Same here. I left it at factory settings. Crush looks good and I don't have feeler gauges, so I didn't change it.

I have feeler gauges, but I just end up using 0.88mm guitar picks most of the time.
Eric B.

Finally got around to starting a homebrewing blog: The Hop Whisperer

Offline duboman

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 784
    • View Profile
Re: barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2013, 05:26:24 AM »
I re-set the gap to .035 and achieve 82% efficiency in both mash/lauter as well as brewhouse which is consistent and I'm happy with it. The crush is great and stuck sparges are non-existent.
Peace....Love......Beer......

The Commune Brewing Company-Perfecting the craft of beer since 2010

Offline aschecte

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 60
  • Don't worry I'll drink it !!
    • View Profile
Re: barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2013, 07:44:05 AM »
The guitar pick is interesting !!!! I have played for over 25 years..... I actually have a degree in classical guitar studies... you probably mentioned thickness pick what brand also ? to the others comments maybe I'll dial in a drop wider of a gap as I'm not convinced higher conversion as in my 85% eff is really nessasary there has got to be a reason for example why BYO , AHA, brew, Zymurgy all calculate their recipes to 70% mash eff. maybe it's they assume not every one has a mill and they are playing it safe.....at the same time I have beersmith formatted to expect a 85% conversion and beersmith is a PITA to change/dial in the program. IDK I was just vey disappointed to miss the OG on my last two batches that I expected though most guys in my HBC are shocked that I even strive for that high of an effeciencey. The other thing is my brewhouse eff is and I want it this way pretty low hovering 65% as I leave all ( or most ) trub and sediment behind which in my setup equates to about 1.5 gallons but I'm comfortable with that as long as I end up with 5.5 gallons in my carboy and I hit my gravity... that's where beersmith shines for me as it takes all the guess work out.
don't worry I'll drink it !!

Offline aschecte

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 60
  • Don't worry I'll drink it !!
    • View Profile
Re: Re: barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2013, 07:50:38 AM »
When I got mine I set it to .030" and I haven't changed it since. Overall efficiency runs 68-88% depending on gravity, but conversion efficiency is always >95% (assuming I get the pH right).

Same here. I left it at factory settings. Crush looks good and I don't have feeler gauges, so I didn't change it.

I have feeler gauges, but I just end up using 0.88mm guitar picks most of the time.

Just a fyi I just did the conversion as the gap on the mill is usually done in inches so, that said a .88mm guitar pick equates to a .35" gap which is it seems where most people are tuning to.
don't worry I'll drink it !!

Offline denny

  • Administrator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 11660
  • Noti OR [1991.4, 287.6deg] AR
    • View Profile
    • Dennybrew
barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2013, 07:56:04 AM »
I have no idea what my mill is set to and I don't care.  As long as I get the crush I want it doesn't matter.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

www.dennybrew.com

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

Offline chumley

  • Brewer
  • ****
  • Posts: 305
    • View Profile
Re: barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2013, 09:02:57 AM »
That sort of poor attitude will keep you in intermediate brewer status forever, Denny.

Offline beersk

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1878
  • In the night!
    • View Profile
Re: barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2013, 09:13:41 AM »
I have no idea what my mill is set to and I don't care.  As long as I get the crush I want it doesn't matter.
I read you said recently that it was something like .028.

My gap is set to .032. I normally get around 75%, not great, but it's pretty consistent, so that's all that matters. I typically use some rice hulls in my mash as well, just a couple hands full. Using a bazooka screen, it tends to gum up sometimes.
Watch out for those Cross Dressing Amateurs!

Offline jeffy

  • Brewmaster General
  • *******
  • Posts: 2444
  • Tampa, Fl
    • View Profile
Re: barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #10 on: June 04, 2013, 09:19:05 AM »
That sort of poor attitude will keep you in intermediate brewer status forever, Denny.
It's as if he's afraid he might learn something.
Jeff Gladish, Tampa (989.3, 175.1 Apparent Rennarian)
Homebrewing since 1990
AHA member since 1991, now a lifetime member
BJCP judge since 1995

Offline aschecte

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 60
  • Don't worry I'll drink it !!
    • View Profile
Re: barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2013, 11:35:47 AM »
That sort of poor attitude will keep you in intermediate brewer status forever, Denny.
hahahaha !!!!!! it jus goes to show that who gives a **** can still get you great results..... I mean he's Denny Conn for Gods sake ......But, that said I kind of do Kind of don't agree with his mentality I like to know exact numbers for repeatability purposes but, at that point other factors like PH, mash temp, etc play into the bigger picture but it all starts with a good crush.
don't worry I'll drink it !!

Offline aschecte

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 60
  • Don't worry I'll drink it !!
    • View Profile
Re: barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2013, 11:37:40 AM »
I have no idea what my mill is set to and I don't care.  As long as I get the crush I want it doesn't matter.

hey as a side note .... I posted a thread !! ( this goes back to our PM's on the other forum )
don't worry I'll drink it !!

Offline deepsouth

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1008
  • Brew Maison
    • View Profile
Re: barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #13 on: June 04, 2013, 11:41:02 AM »
I have no idea what my mill is set to and I don't care.  As long as I get the crush I want it doesn't matter.

LOL  nice one.
Hoppy Homebrewers of South Mississippi (est. 2009)

AHA# 196703

bottled:     white house honey ale

Online erockrph

  • Brewmaster General
  • *******
  • Posts: 2415
  • Chepachet, RI
    • View Profile
    • Critical Tastings
Re: Re: barley crusher gap settings ?
« Reply #14 on: June 04, 2013, 03:32:18 PM »
I have feeler gauges, but I just end up using 0.88mm guitar picks most of the time.
Just a fyi I just did the conversion as the gap on the mill is usually done in inches so, that said a .88mm guitar pick equates to a .35" gap which is it seems where most people are tuning to.

I'm using Dunlop Tortex (green) picks, BTW. If I need to adjust my gap I cinch down on a pick kind of tight, so I'm thinking I'm at about 0.034. I'll spot check my mill every few months if I think of it, or if I am trying to troubleshoot an efficiency issue. Otherwise I'm pretty much in the "set it and forget it" camp.

And I'm tuning to C# standard on my 6-string and either B-standard or drop-A on my 7 :)
Eric B.

Finally got around to starting a homebrewing blog: The Hop Whisperer