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Old 08-25-2011, 05:00 AM   #11
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When I brew that recipe (or one very like it i.e. same wheat to pils ratio and same amount of sauermalz approximately) with 9:1::RO:tap plus supplemental CaCl2 I get better than 70% efficiency and that's calculated based on the ratio of the amount of extract that gets delivered to the kegs divided by the weight of the grain that went into making the beer i.e. it's a much more conservative efficiency than efficiency calculated in the usual way. IOW there is nothing wrong with the water you have synthesized nor in the recipe nor in the temperature at which you have chosen to rest. That means it has to be somewhere else and, of course, I have no way of knowing what that somewhere else might be. If you brewed it before using the same process then something has to have changed besides the water. Thermometer or hydrometer out of cal? Slack malt? Less modified malt? Mill setting slip? Scale used to measure sauermalz way off or sauermalz unsually high or low in lactic acid? Poor sparge efficiency?

I'd like to know the mash pH just to confirm that pH isn't the problem but I can't see how even if that was high or low by a couple of tenths it would make the difference between 70 and 50% efficiency. But I wouldn't waste even $13 on the pH meter suggested in #7. You'll need to spend about $80 to get a meter useable in brewing.

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Old 08-25-2011, 05:15 AM   #12
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Alright, AJ. I have a new batch of grain going into my batch tomorrow. I will report back. Can't be the hydrometer, because I can taste how watery my recipes have been.

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Old 08-25-2011, 12:30 PM   #13
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I sense your frustration but we will get to the bottom of this.

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Old 08-25-2011, 05:23 PM   #14
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OK...I'll give you the play by play on the brew day:

Warmed up mashtun (10g cooler)
Mashed in 13.75 lbs. grain for the stout with 16.56 qts. 9:1 RO to tap + 3/4 of a tsp CaCl. with 170 water for a mash temp of exactly 154.
It's supposed to be a final of 5.5g recipe.

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Old 08-25-2011, 05:24 PM   #15
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Got some test strip for kicks and it looks right about 5 or a bit higher. They are not very good because they only test in whole numbers. It's not 4 or 6 though.

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Old 08-25-2011, 05:34 PM   #16
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That all looks good to me.

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Old 08-25-2011, 05:40 PM   #17
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Have you verified that your mash thermometer is correct? I had a digital go wonky on me. I am fortunate that I always leave a floating thermometer in the mash tun as a backup; otherwise, it would have been a 144F mash.

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Old 08-25-2011, 05:41 PM   #18
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Heating up my batch sparge water to 180. Two 2.20 gallon sparges with just under 1/2 tsp CaCl each in the boiler.

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Old 08-25-2011, 05:42 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Franc103 View Post
Have you verified that your mash thermometer is correct? I had a digital go wonky on me. I am fortunate that I always leave a floating thermometer in the mash tun as a backup; otherwise, it would have been a 144F mash.
Got two of them going since the "black day of beer dumping" began. One digital and another old school alcohol.

Just gave it a re-check and we're holding at 154
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Old 08-25-2011, 05:52 PM   #20
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Just because I'm standing here thinking about it, I think the problem may lie in the sparge. The mash always looks great and comes out good, but the sparge looks weak then super weak as I'm getting the last drain out of the cooler.

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Being Dealt (kegged): Carbed Crystal light lemonade for the boys, Delta Bravo IPA, Applewinder
Primary: Climbing stout
Primary #2: ESB
Big Blind: Pucker Bitter
Small Blind:
Tasty Remembrances: White 'N Nerdy, Dynamite Red (Hop bursted), APA, The Bonaduce (irish Red), runners stout, ridgeback brown,

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