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Old 09-16-2010, 05:39 AM   #1
Ziggybrew
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Default 2 hot-breaks, 2 runnings, 1 boil, same pot?

I'll cut it short. Have only 7.5 gallon pot and starting AG.

Had a grain bill on the heavy side. I brought the first runnings to boil-down while I did the batch sparge. Then added the second runnings when there was room for it in the pot. I got a second hot break as I suspected. Then did the normal boil with hops and all.

Is this an "OK" method until I buy a bigger pot? or should the entire volume of wort be boiled at the same time?

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Old 09-16-2010, 01:37 PM   #2
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I've used this method a number of times with great results, but if you're doing that to bump up your extraction efficiency it would probably be easier to just increase the grain bill from the beginning and save yourself the time.

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Old 09-16-2010, 02:36 PM   #3
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7.5 gallon pot should be fine for full boils, but you might have to use that anti-foaming stuff (can't remember what it's called). For a 6gal recipe, you only need slightly more than 7gal pre-boil. Maybe you could bump down to 5.5 gal recipes?

I think your method works well enough, and my only concern is darkening the wort from too much boiling. How long are you boiling down before you add the second runnings? Remember the first runnings are much higher in sugar and more prone to maillard reactions and forming melanoidins.

Still, I'd just settle for making slightly less beer. And if you use a more flocculant yeast, you can probably still get a full 5gal in bottle/keg. I recommend WLP002/Wyeast 1968 if you like English character, or if you prefer American, try WLP050/Wyeast 1272. It has nice flocculation and is similar to the typical California Ale.

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Old 09-16-2010, 02:44 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kanzimonson View Post
7.5 gallon pot should be fine for full boils, but you might have to use that anti-foaming stuff (can't remember what it's called).
Fermcap S, yo!

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For a 6gal recipe, you only need slightly more than 7gal pre-boil. Maybe you could bump down to 5.5 gal recipes?
+1 I do AG full boils in a 7.5 gallon pot for 5.5 gallon batches. Hell, I even do it on my electric stove-top... gotta love high elevation boils (202*F ). Pre-boil volume is usually around 6.5-7.0 gal, depending on length of boil (60 or 90.) A spray bottle with cold water keeps boil-over until control really well, but Fermcap S is just plain awesome.
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Old 09-16-2010, 04:53 PM   #5
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Yes, I guess I just chickened-out when I saw that I was going to have a total volume of 7 gallons.
I had the hot-break almost get away from me once while using a spray bottle. It had to look ridiculous -- I was spraying with one hand, stirring with the other, and my face was in the pot blowing to keep it down. (and that was only six gallons)
Maybe I'll try that Fermcap stuff. Or the sprayer on my garden hose.
Thanks for the input.

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Old 09-16-2010, 05:15 PM   #6
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I think everybody has at least a little management problems when it comes to hot break - I just take my time, turn the heat on and off, and let it sort itself out. It doesn't have to always be boiling to break the protein foam, and I hate to lose wort in a boil over, so I would rather turn the heat off and have to deal with relighting the burner, rather than frantically stir, spray, and blow. Besides, it only takes 5 minutes to get through. Then I add my hops and actually begin the boil. I like to add the hops after the hot break so you don't lose any on the side of the kettle (or worse, in a boil-over).

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