Author Topic: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature  (Read 2317 times)

Offline Leroy

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Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« on: October 07, 2015, 04:13:12 PM »
Greetings!

I'm a new AHA member and relatively new to All Grain Brewing.  I have a few questions I hope the community can help me with.  I use a two-cooler fly sparging system.

1) After the mash is complete (ex: 60mins at 152degF), I have recently learned that I should:
  • Add hot water to raise the mash temp to 168 - 170 deg
  • Proceed with the vorlauf
  • Rinse slowly at a rate such that my boil volume can be achieved in approx 1 hour
  • Start to add hot liquor water at ~170deg once the water gets to approx 1 inch above the grain bed, with the idea being to maintain a grain temp of 168 - 170deg while rinsing
Is this thinking correct?

2) What is the risk of having a low temp, say 150deg or so during this step?  My understanding is the risk is simply efficiency, but are there other risks?  The first few batches I brewed I did not pay careful attention to the grain temp during this step.  I'd like to have an idea of what to expect for those beers.

Thanks in advance for your comments.

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Re: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2015, 04:18:28 PM »
Personally, I would just do the mash rest (and that 60 min can include the vorlauf, by the way), then vorlauf and sparge with liquor at around 185°F. Otherwise you have to either start with a very thick mash, or dilute it so much during the mashout that efficiency will suffer.
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Offline Leroy

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Re: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« Reply #2 on: October 07, 2015, 07:03:57 PM »
Hi, thanks for the feedback.

I understand what you're saying, but there is an ideal target to rinse the grains during this step, correct?


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Re: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2015, 08:09:05 PM »
I continuous sparge, and I rarely perform a mash-out. 

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Re: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2015, 08:21:45 PM »
I understand what you're saying, but there is an ideal target to rinse the grains during this step, correct?

The ideal target temperature is the one that produces the wort composition and flavor that you like.  I can push my extraction rate up to 34 points per pound per gallon, but the flavor is not as pleasant as when I keep it in the 29 to 30 points per pound range with domestic malt and a point or two higher with imported malt.   That's an efficiency range of 80.6% to 83.3% treating all of the grains in the grist as base malt for calculation purposes (it would higher if weighting for non-base malts was factored into the equation).   An extraction rate of 29 to 30 points per pound per gallon is relatively easy to achieve with domestic 2-row once one gets the hang of continuous sparging.

With that said, I have to put a plug in for Denny's method (Denny calls it "batch sparging," but I cannot bring myself to call it that) and BIAB.  Both of these methods produce solid wort with less stringent requirements gear-wise, and the techniques are more foolproof.

Offline Leroy

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Re: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2015, 02:18:40 PM »
Okay, thanks for the feedback.  I'm still a little new to this, but I think I'm following you.

I think what you are saying is the temperature during the grain-rinsing step will effect efficiency and flavor.  And with higher efficiency (i.e. Temp closer to 169-170) I can get higher efficiency but there will be a flavor change, correct?

This is a little different than my understanding, I learned that if I stay in the range of 168-170degF there wasn't a risk because I shouldn't be producing tannins at that point.  Just more efficiency.  Is my thinking incorrect?

Another point, I'm learning that the idea of adding very hot water to force the water in the mash tun after mash is called "mash out."  Stopping the conversion of starches, if there is any left.

That's fine, but the alternative to that would be to start the vorlauf at the mash temp (i.e. 152F) and drain until there is about an inch of water left on the grain bed, then start adding my 170F water.  My understanding of this idea is the grain bed will eventually get to 168-170, improving efficiency at that point to finish the step from there.

Is my understanding correct?

Thank you so much for your support and feedback!  I'm learning a great deal from these forums.


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Re: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2015, 03:41:17 PM »
Tannin extraction is very much dependent on pH.  If your pH is correct, you can sparge much hotter than the conventional wisdom says you can.
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Re: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« Reply #7 on: October 08, 2015, 03:48:12 PM »
Tannin extraction is very much dependent on pH.  If your pH is correct, you can sparge much hotter than the conventional wisdom says you can.

Yep. Do it all the time.
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Re: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« Reply #8 on: October 08, 2015, 08:17:24 PM »
I think what you are saying is the temperature during the grain-rinsing step will effect efficiency and flavor.  And with higher efficiency (i.e. Temp closer to 169-170) I can get higher efficiency but there will be a flavor change, correct?

The method that Denny and Jon both use is a very different animal than continuous sparging (a.k.a. fly sparging) when it comes to mash pH.  That lautering technique separates sugars from the grist via dilution.  Continuous sparging extracts sugars via displacement.   With the lautering technique used by Denny and Jon, the entire contents of the mash tun are always at the same pH.  With continuous sparging-based lautering, the grain bed starts to rise as the sugar molecules are displaced by water molecules.  This displacement occurs top-down, which means that the top of the mash bed can have a higher pH than the bottom of the mash bed.  Controlling sparge liquor pH is much more critical with continuous sparging because silicate extraction in addition to tannin extraction can become a problem after the mash bed pH rises above 5.8.  In effect, the gains obtainable via continuous sparging do not come without offsetting risks, which is why leaving a little sugar in the grain can lead to improvements in the quality of the runoff.

Offline Leroy

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Re: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2015, 02:02:23 AM »
Thanks for the reply!  Very helpful.


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Offline Wort-H.O.G.

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Re: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2015, 10:22:13 AM »
And for consideration, you may want to simplify things and try a batch sparge. once mash is drained, and the sparge water, mix thoroughly with gentle stirring, and vorlauf and drain as fast as your system permits. as mentioned if your mash PH is in line, not much to worry about. I sparge with 180-185F water without any issues of tannin extraction.

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Re: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2015, 04:04:51 PM »
And for consideration, you may want to simplify things and try a batch sparge. once mash is drained, and the sparge water, mix thoroughly with gentle stirring, and vorlauf and drain as fast as your system permits. as mentioned if your mash PH is in line, not much to worry about. I sparge with 180-185F water without any issues of tannin extraction.

I was trying to avoid derailing things by saying that, but since you brought it up....Leroy, check out www.dennybrew.com.  Also http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/how-to-brew/advanced/, based on my methods and equipment.
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Offline Wort-H.O.G.

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Re: Fly Sparging Question Regarding Temperature
« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2015, 04:08:08 PM »
And for consideration, you may want to simplify things and try a batch sparge. once mash is drained, and the sparge water, mix thoroughly with gentle stirring, and vorlauf and drain as fast as your system permits. as mentioned if your mash PH is in line, not much to worry about. I sparge with 180-185F water without any issues of tannin extraction.

I was trying to avoid derailing things by saying that, but since you brought it up....Leroy, check out www.dennybrew.com.  Also http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/how-to-brew/advanced/, based on my methods and equipment.

I feel it's relative to mention. Anytime someone brings up tannin and temp with continuous sparse method.

IMO try both and decide what you like and works best.

EDIT: and for the record- your recommendation to me to try it when I first started brewing was a great game changer for me.


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« Last Edit: October 09, 2015, 04:10:14 PM by Wort-H.O.G. »
Ken- Chagrin Falls, OH
CPT, U.S.Army
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Harveys-Brewhaus/405092862905115

http://braukaiser.com/wiki/index.php?title=The_Science_of_Mashing

Serving:        In Process:
Vienna IPA          O'Fest
Dort
Mead                 
Cider                         
Ger'merican Blonde
Amber Ale
Next:
Ger Pils
O'Fest