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Old 11-28-2007, 04:33 PM   #1
MikeFlynn74
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Default AG brewing-

Ok I wanna make sure I have a handle on this before I take the dive. This is at best a simple step by step.

Once youve picked a recipie and have the equipment the steps should look like the below?

1. mill grain
2. Heat water to 160 and add to the mash tun
3. let sit for reccomended time 45-60min.
4. Drain the water back into the boiling pot making sure to rewash the mash once or twice
? Tae hydrometer reading?
5. Start the boil
6. Add hops
7. Drink lots of previously made beer while boiling new stuff
8. Cool, yeast and rack new wort.
9. Take hydrometer Reading
9. Wait

Excuse me if this has already been asked 900 times

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Old 11-28-2007, 04:35 PM   #2
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The water needs to be heated higher than 160F for the mash. Do you have any software? Don't taste the hydrometer reading unless you've cooled it down...

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Old 11-28-2007, 04:39 PM   #3
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software?

I know hydrometer readings are done at 60

Ive read that different mashes use different temps. Is this wrong? or personal prefrence?

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Old 11-28-2007, 04:44 PM   #4
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As an oversimplified overview, yeah, that's about right... But if that description is as far as your knowledge goes, you ought to spend more time reading before you actually try brewing your first AG batch.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeFlynn74
Ive read that different mashes use different temps. Is this wrong? or personal prefrence?
There's a fair amount to learn about the mash and sparge, and temperature is very important. howtobrew.com has some good info on this, and based on the very elementary question you just asked I highly recommend you spend some time reading. In answer to your question, yes, mash temperatures are very important, it makes a difference in whether you end up with a crisp, dry beer, or a sweet, full-bodied one. Perhaps you should start here:
http://www.howtobrew.com/section3/chapter14.html

You'll want to start with a good recipe that has good detail on the strike water/mash/sparge water temperatures and volumes (I recommend EdWort's Haus Pale Ale recipe, if you're looking for one), and using some brewing software to figure out the volumes/temps helps too.
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Old 11-28-2007, 04:45 PM   #5
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most of the brewware out there has a free trial period. i like beersmith the measurement usually come pretty close as long as i preheat my mlt.

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Old 11-28-2007, 04:45 PM   #6
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Well, basically yes.

There are a few more little tweaks, though.

1. Yes- right before you use it is best, but do it away from where you're brewing. I buy mine pre-milled, since I don't have a mill.

2. Heat your water to YOUR strike temperature. This depends on many factors- the equipment you're using and what type of beer you're making. For example, today I wanted my mash at 154 degrees and I had 14.5 pounds of grain. So, I used 18.13 quarts of 170.1 degree water to maintain my 154 for one hour in my igloo cooler. Brewing software is a HUGE help for this!

3. Yep!

4. Yes, drain the mashtun. Drain the first few quarts into a pitcher, and gently pour that back into the mashtun without disturbing the mash. This is because the first drainings have bits of husk and are cloudy. The grain bed itself will filter it for you, once it settles. Once it's cleared up, drain it into your boil kettle. Then, close the ballvalve and add your sparge water. The sparge water should be around 168 degrees. Stir well, and then drain that the same way you did the first runnings. You can break your sparge water into two additions and so just use 1/2 the first time and 1/2 the second time.

5. I put my boil kettle on the fire while I'm batch sparging- it helps it to stop enzyme activity, and gets it to a boil faster. Bring it to a boil and wait for the hot break.

6. After the hot break, start your timer and begin your hops additions.

7. Ok- today I'm having coffee, though! I started at 8:00 AM.

8. Cool to 70 degrees as rapidly as possible. Aerate as best as you can- splash, pour, strain, etc. Fill your fermenter. Take the sg.

9. Pitch yeast.

Now, you can add to this if you want. I started doing some different things recently- added a mashout, bought an aquarium pump for oxygen, etc. But that's the basics.

There's a chapter in howtobrew.com called "Your first AG batch" and even if you are using a different recipe, you can follow along with it, and it really helps!

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Old 11-28-2007, 04:47 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeFlynn74
Ok I wanna make sure I have a handle on this before I take the dive. This is at best a simple step by step.

Once youve picked a recipie and have the equipment the steps should look like the below?

1. mill grain
2. Heat water to 160 and add to the mash tun
3. let sit for reccomended time 45-60min.
4. Drain the water back into the boiling pot making sure to rewash the mash once or twice
? Tae hydrometer reading?
5. Start the boil
6. Add hops
7. Drink lots of previously made beer while boiling new stuff
8. Cool, yeast and rack new wort.
9. Take hydrometer Reading
9. Wait

Excuse me if this has already been asked 900 times
Yup, you'll want to heat your waer up a bit more than that to hit your target mash temperates (which is usually between 149-158).

You kind of lost me on #4. You'll want to recirculate (vorlauf) about 2 qt. of your mash (drain it out then pour it back into your MLT on top), then you need to sparge. I double batch sparge. The amount of water required to do this is directly proportional to the amount of malt that you are using.

So after you've mashed for 60 min, vorlauf, then drain to your kettle. Pour in your sparge water (normally around 170F). Some folks here drain immediately, I like to leave it for 10-15 minutes. Vorlauf and drain into your kettle, then sparge one more time and drain into your kettle until you have reached your desired preboil volume.

You can take a hydrometer reading that this point if you would like, but if you're not going to use it to make any gravity adjustments then it probably won't benefit you much.

Cool the wort to pitching temps as quickly as possible. Get it into your primary fermenter, take a hydrometer reading, then pitch your yeast.

If you need to top off with water, make sure that you mix your wort well prior to taking a hydrometer reading.
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Old 11-28-2007, 04:47 PM   #8
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Using a software program can help you keep track of things. They also have handy calculators in them to help you determine things like strike temp (the temp of the water before you add grains to achieve the proper mash temp) and temp correction for hydrometer readings.
Sort of nit picky, but I would change 8 to: cool, rack to primary and take hydro reading. Then 9 becomes pitch yeast, put blow off tube/airlock in place.

This way if your gravity is way off, you can add lme or dme before adding the yeast.

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Old 11-28-2007, 05:01 PM   #9
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Awesome- This is the kind of info I needed. I know im a bit away from truly understanding but at least im on the right track.

I have 5 months before Im back from Vietnam 2 "electric boogaloo". So I am making sure I get all my ducks in a row.

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