Author Topic: First All Grain Batch  (Read 2095 times)

Offline BrewinSB

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First All Grain Batch
« on: June 30, 2011, 09:51:42 PM »
Hi Everyone,

I am doing my first all grain batch this weekend and just wanted to get some last minute tips, pointers, critiques etc.  Below is what BeerSmith2 kicked out and is telling me to do.  Does this look good?  I am using a 52 quart Coleman Xtreme Cooler with a SS Hose Braid inside and a 10 gallon SS Brew Kettle.  I am going to try and have it ferment in the primary for 3-4 weeks at 65, then bottle.  The only thing I have to control temps is the a big bucket that I can swap frozen water bottles in and out of.  I am a little worried because it has been hot lately and I may be gone one weekend during those 3-4 weeks.  Thanks.  I can't wait to give this all grain thing a shot.    

Style: Blonde Ale
TYPE: All Grain
Taste: (35.0)

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Boil Size: 5.96 gal
Post Boil Volume: 5.46 gal
Batch Size (fermenter): 5.00 gal  
Bottling Volume: 4.50 gal
Estimated OG: 1.050 SG
Estimated Color: 4.2 SRM
Estimated IBU: 20.6 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 72.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 64.1 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amt                   Name                                     Type          #        %/IBU        
7 lbs                 Rahr Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM)           Grain         1        75.7 %        
1 lbs                 Vienna Malt (3.5 SRM)                    Grain         2        10.8 %        
4.0 oz                Caramel/Crystal Malt - 15L     Grain         3        2.7 %        
0.25 oz               Magnum [14.10 %] - Boil 60.0 min         Hop           4        14.2 IBUs    
0.50 oz               Cascade [6.40 %] - Boil 15.0 min         Hop           6        6.4 IBUs      
0.50 oz               Amarillo  [9.30 %] - Boil 0.0 min        Hop           7        0.0 IBUs      
1.00 Items            Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 mins)        Fining        5        -            
1.0 pkg               California Ale (White Labs #WLP001) [50. Yeast         8        -            
1 lbs                 Honey (1.0 SRM)                          Sugar         9        10.8 %        


Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Light Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 9 lbs 4.0 oz
----------------------------
Name              Description                             Step Temperat Step Time    
Mash In           Add 4.16 qt of water at 189.6 F         154.0 F       60 min        

Sparge: Drain mash tun, Batch sparge with 1 steps (6.16gal) of 168.0 F water
Notes:
« Last Edit: June 30, 2011, 09:54:29 PM by BrewinSB »

Offline oscarvan

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2011, 10:22:59 PM »
Quote
Name              Description                             Step Temperat Step Time    
Mash In           Add 4.16 qt of water at 189.6 F         154.0 F       60 min  

189.6 seems very, very high, and the amount of water very low..... Ballpark 1.5 qts per pound, 13-14qts is 4 gallons and change...It looks like the initial step is missing and there's a small hot addition to create another step.

In comparison, I do 10 gallon batches, the 1050-ish OG beers take around 20 pounds of grain, I add 8 ish gallons. Heat my water to (this time of year the barn is HOT) 4-5 degrees above target.... so 155-ish..... So for five gallons figure 10 ish pounds of grain (you have 9, close enough) and 4 ish gallons of water. The sparge volume and temp seem OK, although most people like half and half on the mash/sparge volume. With grain absorption that means the mash needs to be a little larger than the sparge.

If I was brewing your recipe I would add a pound of grain to compensate for the half gallon I lose in the bottom of the kettle, do the mash 5 gallons/155º which would give me about 4 gallons in the kettle and then sparge with 4 gallons 165º which would yield another 4, total 8, boil off two, lose a half to trub/hops, 5.5 in the bucket.

But, as you can tell I don't use sophisticated software...... ;)


« Last Edit: June 30, 2011, 10:35:29 PM by oscarvan »
Wooden Shoe Brew Works (not a commercial operation) Bethlehem, PA
http://www.woodenshoemusic.com/WSBW/WSBW_All_grain_Setup.html
I brew WITH style..... not necessarily TO style.....

Offline euge

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2011, 11:39:57 PM »
Good luck with the first AG. And that amount like Oscar says is suspicious.

Stir the mash real good and measure the temp deep in the mash after it's settled for a minute or more. If it's too hot after 5 minutes after doughing in throw some ice cubes in the mash. Just a handful though!

If it's too cool then add boiling water in small amounts. :)

Fermenting an AG batch is no different than an extract batch. Swap those bottles. Try to get it bottled or kegged before you leave if it's a concern. Or you could secondary and just drop a bunch of frozen bottles in the bucket.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline denny

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2011, 07:42:42 AM »
Yep, a gal. for the mash and 6 gal. for the sparge just doesn't seem right.  And your sparge water should be more like 185-190F, not 168.
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Offline chezteth

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2011, 04:11:13 PM »
It looks like your water to grain ratio is set incorrectly.  4.16 qts of strike water is way too low.  I usually set my water to grain ratio to 1.3 qts/lb.  You should check the mash profile for the water to grain ratio and correct it if necessary.  Hope this helps.

Happy Brewing,
Brandon

Offline BrewinSB

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2011, 10:05:37 PM »
Thanks for all the info.  Sounds like the mash was completely wrong.  I am still learning how to use BeerSmith also so that probably doesn't help.  I made some adjustments and it now has this as the mash steps:

Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Light Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 9 lbs 4.0 oz
----------------------------
Name              Description                             Step Temperat Step Time     
Mash In           Add 13.38 qt of water at 167.6 F        154.0 F       60 min       

Sparge: Drain mash tun, Batch sparge with 1 steps (3.86gal) of 185.0 F water

However, it has been hot lately and I am going to pre-heat my cooler, so I think I will do as suggested and only heat to 160 to try and achieve 154 mash temp.  Also, I figure that 13.38 I might as well just bump that up to 4 gallons and then do another 4 gallons with the sparge water.

Offline newrocset

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2011, 01:49:54 AM »
I always heat my water at least 20 degrees above my target mash temperature....otherwise your in for a nightmare if your mash is not hot enough.

It is way easier to cool down a 4 gallon mash in a cooler than it is to heat it up....I would heat that water to 174....if it's too hot, just keep stirring your mash, like soup, and expsose it to the air to get it to cool down.....do this before using ice cubes or cold water....it might take longer to get your temp down, but at least you'll get it to where you want it...believe me, it's a royal pain to be constantly adding boiling water to a 10 gallon cooler full of mash that wont hit your target temp  ;)
Have a Kolsch and a smile!

Offline chezteth

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2011, 05:44:49 AM »
If you want to use an even 4 gal. of strike water you can change the amount in the mash profile in your recipe. You will have to change from qts/lb to the amount you want to use.  Beersmith will then adjust the temp you need to use.

Offline Will's Swill

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #8 on: July 02, 2011, 05:57:37 AM »
Yep, a gal. for the mash and 6 gal. for the sparge just doesn't seem right.  And your sparge water should be more like 185-190F, not 168.

That seems high for sparge water temp doesn't it?  I thought general consensus was that sparge water above 170F would extract tannins?  Are you assuming some amount of temperature loss for a batch sparge or something?
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Offline tygo

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #9 on: July 02, 2011, 06:08:40 AM »
The consensus seems to be that alkaline sparge water above 170F may potentially extract tannins.  If you have alkaline water then you can add acid to bring the pH down and not worry as much about the temp. 

That being said I usually don't heat my sparge water over about 175F and figure on losing a few degrees when transferring to the mash tun.
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On Tap: Lucifer's Hammer Golden Strong Ale, Dopplebock, Old Fuzzynut's Ale

Offline Will's Swill

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #10 on: July 02, 2011, 06:23:34 AM »
Makes sense.  So is the higher temperature for a mash out or something?
Is that a counter-pressure bottle filler in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?

Offline oscarvan

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #11 on: July 02, 2011, 07:44:14 AM »
Thanks for all the info.  Sounds like the mash was completely wrong.  I am still learning how to use BeerSmith also so that probably doesn't help.  I made some adjustments and it now has this as the mash steps:

Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Light Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 9 lbs 4.0 oz
----------------------------
Name              Description                             Step Temperat Step Time     
Mash In           Add 13.38 qt of water at 167.6 F        154.0 F       60 min       

Sparge: Drain mash tun, Batch sparge with 1 steps (3.86gal) of 185.0 F water

However, it has been hot lately and I am going to pre-heat my cooler, so I think I will do as suggested and only heat to 160 to try and achieve 154 mash temp.  Also, I figure that 13.38 I might as well just bump that up to 4 gallons and then do another 4 gallons with the sparge water.


That looks much better.

The temperature loss is system specific. Even if I don't pre-heat my cooler, I barely lose more than 5º. If I do, it's more like 2º. So unfortunately, it will take a while, with different ambient temperatures, for you to get a feel for your system. One thing you can do is a "no grain" run to find a starting point.
Wooden Shoe Brew Works (not a commercial operation) Bethlehem, PA
http://www.woodenshoemusic.com/WSBW/WSBW_All_grain_Setup.html
I brew WITH style..... not necessarily TO style.....

Offline denny

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #12 on: July 02, 2011, 08:25:06 AM »
Makes sense.  So is the higher temperature for a mash out or something?

Sparging at a higher temp has more chance of getting the grain bed up to 168, which could kinda be considered a mashout temp.  In reality, that doesn't actually happen, though.  I've found the main benefit from the higher temp is that it encourages a more complete conversion, kinda giving you an alpha rest step in the mash.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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ccarlson

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #13 on: July 02, 2011, 09:52:44 AM »
Makes sense.  So is the higher temperature for a mash out or something?

It thins the sugars and results in a little better efficiency. If the conversion is incomplete, then it will help you here as well. 

It definitely helps.

Offline denny

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Re: First All Grain Batch
« Reply #14 on: July 02, 2011, 10:56:55 AM »
Keep in mind that Kai did an experiment where sparging with room temp water got him the same efficiency as sparging with hot water. Based on that and my own experience, I have to question how much the viscosity is reduced and how much difference it makes if it is.
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