Author Topic: Partial mash question  (Read 2500 times)

Offline ipaguy

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Re: Partial mash question
« Reply #15 on: January 16, 2011, 07:41:19 AM »
It seems that a lot of folks are hesitant to make starters when first getting started, but they really shouldn't be.  You can put together a top-of-the-line setup for 2 liter starters for under $20.  That pays for itself pretty quickly vs. $5 - $6 each for extra smack packs or vials.  If you're not using the Mr. Malty calculator, a general rule of thumb is that you should be using 2 smack-packs or vials for ales with OGs over 1.060, and double everything for lagers.
What goes into your top of the line setup for starters for under $20?  I don't see how you get there for that little. 
Granted you don't need to spend $100, but $20 seems low.
Maybe 'top-of-the-line' was a little too strong a phrase.  I certainly didn't include a stir plate!  However, you can get a good new 2 liter Erlenmeyer flask for $18.  Aluminum foil works, but I use the foam plugs (around $1 -$2).  I didn't include cost of DME or yeast nutrient as 'equipment', as I consider them as supplies.  Main point is that making starters is neither difficult nor expensive.
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Offline kgs

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Re: Partial mash question
« Reply #16 on: January 20, 2011, 07:14:06 AM »
It seems that a lot of folks are hesitant to make starters when first getting started, but they really shouldn't be.  You can put together a top-of-the-line setup for 2 liter starters for under $20.  That pays for itself pretty quickly vs. $5 - $6 each for extra smack packs or vials.  If you're not using the Mr. Malty calculator, a general rule of thumb is that you should be using 2 smack-packs or vials for ales with OGs over 1.060, and double everything for lagers.
What goes into your top of the line setup for starters for under $20?  I don't see how you get there for that little. 
Granted you don't need to spend $100, but $20 seems low.
Maybe 'top-of-the-line' was a little too strong a phrase.  I certainly didn't include a stir plate!  However, you can get a good new 2 liter Erlenmeyer flask for $18.  Aluminum foil works, but I use the foam plugs (around $1 -$2).  I didn't include cost of DME or yeast nutrient as 'equipment', as I consider them as supplies.  Main point is that making starters is neither difficult nor expensive.

I have made starters in a 1-gallon growler. If you're not using a stir plate, wouldn't almost any glass container work ok? Agreed, also, that starters are much easier than new homebrewers realize. Dry yeast is a good way to start out, though, because it's harder to introduce contamination with dry yeast. When you're troubleshooting your first few batches, it helps to have a minimum of trouble spots to isolate for issues such as "where did that infection creep in" and "my beer taste funny."  (Not to suggest that you won't turn out perfect beer from the git-go... ;-) )
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Offline a10t2

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Re: Partial mash question
« Reply #17 on: January 20, 2011, 08:51:41 AM »
I have made starters in a 1-gallon growler. If you're not using a stir plate, wouldn't almost any glass container work ok?

It doesn't even have to be glass, just food-safe and sanitary. Gallon milk jugs (cleaned, of course) work well.
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Offline bonjour

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Re: Partial mash question
« Reply #18 on: January 20, 2011, 10:55:04 AM »
it has a lot more grains to steep than my last kit did. Would I still steep 6 lbs of grains with 1 1/2 gallons of water? or would I add more water? The last kit I used had less than a pound of grains to steep. These were all the directions it said "Mash at 152F for 60 minutes.
You said "Steep".  There are many ways to steep, only one works in a partial mash.

"Steep" or better termed "mash" by steeping (there is that word again) by keeping the grains at about 152F (between 150-155F) for an hour".  Don't worry about being exact, but the more you are the more repeatable your process will be.
The difference between being a mash and steeping this way is the presence of base malt that will provide enzymes for conversion.
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Offline hokerer

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Re: Partial mash question
« Reply #19 on: January 20, 2011, 11:21:56 AM »
"Steep" or better termed "mash" by steeping (there is that word again) by keeping the grains at about 152F (between 150-155F) for an hour".  Don't worry about being exact, but the more you are the more repeatable your process will be.
The difference between being a mash and steeping this way is the presence of base malt that will provide enzymes for conversion.

another difference being that you should care about the water/grain ratio, right?  Need the grains to be able to get the mash to the proper pH for the enzymes to do their thing.
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Re: Partial mash question
« Reply #20 on: January 20, 2011, 11:44:07 AM »
"Steep" or better termed "mash" by steeping (there is that word again) by keeping the grains at about 152F (between 150-155F) for an hour".  Don't worry about being exact, but the more you are the more repeatable your process will be.
The difference between being a mash and steeping this way is the presence of base malt that will provide enzymes for conversion.

another difference being that you should care about the water/grain ratio, right?  Need the grains to be able to get the mash to the proper pH for the enzymes to do their thing.

You should use the proper ratio even for steeping to avoid pH related tannin problems.
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Offline bonjour

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Re: Partial mash question
« Reply #21 on: January 20, 2011, 11:46:09 AM »
1-2 qts per pound of grain
6lbs of grain
6-12 qts (4.5 will work)
OP Mentioned 1.5 gal or 6 qts
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Offline bonjour

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Re: Partial mash question
« Reply #22 on: January 20, 2011, 11:49:56 AM »
as with all things brewing, you can keep it simple, or you make like a mad nuclear scientist (measure the pH to make sure it stays in range),  both will make beer, frequently good beer.

(Does designing control systems for nuclear power plants count?)
Fred Bonjour
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Everything under 1.100 is a 'session' beer ;)