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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > all grain blues
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Old 02-21-2009, 12:39 PM   #1
blackwaterbrewer
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Default all grain blues

i have made 4 all grain batches now. the first was good. the second was a sierra nevada clone. it is very thin, but has good flavor. no body. i am trying to chug it to empty the keg for the next batch. the third is a 90 shilling that has excellent aroma and flavor and decent body. it is still a little thin. the fourth batch is a stout. it is in secondary. i had my LHBS crush the grain a bit finer and also did a double batch sparge with a higher sparge water temp. i believe i have hit my o.g. and f.g.

my beer has good flavor but just tastes too dry or thin. i don't know which it is. maybe i am not getting a good filterbed when i sparge and thus allowing grain husk into the boil causing excess tannin? could this be a reason for the dryness of the beer? or should i just relax, and keeping tweaking my system.

i also recelntly procured an old double 40qt industrial coffee maker. it has 2 40 qt stainless pots with ball valves and sight tubes. i am in the process of converting it into a mash tun and brew kettle. i will post pictures when it is done of the whole process. i think my aluminum stock pot is giving me wierd flavor too.

alright i am done venting. any encouragement or advice is apppreciated.
happy brew-day!

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Old 02-21-2009, 12:43 PM   #2
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What temp were you mashing? If you were mashing at below 150°, you got a highly fermentable wort. Have you checked the thermometer for accuracy?

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Old 02-21-2009, 12:47 PM   #3
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I seriously doubt the Aluminum stock pot is giving off any flavors you can perceive though there is plenty of debate so I'll leave that to others.

I had a bit of a problem with beers drying out a little too much or tasting a little too thin. Then yesterday while transferring the Cream of Three Crops Ale to secondary I took a hydro sample and it was 1.005. Not believing this I grabbed an older hydro that I have and checked it again, same reading 1.005. After doing some reading this morning I decided to check my new digital thermometer in 32 degree ice water. Well, wouldn't you know it the thermometer was off by 5 degrees (too high). since I normally mash pretty low (low 150s) I was actually masking in the mid/high 140s. I'm guessing this is the reason I ended up with so much fermentable sugars. I'll know for sure in a couple weeks as I'm going to do an identicle IPA that I have on tap right now (it dried out to 1.009)

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Old 02-21-2009, 12:47 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyangler18 View Post
What temp were you mashing? If you were mashing at below 150°, you got a highly fermentable wort. Have you checked the thermometer for accuracy?
good advice!
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Old 02-21-2009, 12:50 PM   #5
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i mashed at 152 for the sierra nevada and 155 for the 90 shilling. how do i test my thermometer?
i mashed the stout at 158 and got a o.g. of 1.062 and it is right at 1.020 now after 10 days. the other ones finshed around 1.010 which was way lower than any extract brew i have done. anyone want to come help me drink 10 gallons of thin, dry, yet tasty beer?

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Old 02-21-2009, 12:53 PM   #6
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another thing to consider is the type and even 'brand' of grains you're using. Try adding some wheat malt and munich to a pale ale for body. Also, dextrine malts such as crystal and carapils are good for adding body but the crystal can be too sweet. My favorite way to increase body is wheat malt, maybe a pound or even two in a five gallon batch with ~10 lbs 2 row. Oh, back to my first point, if you're using rahr 2 row it's pretty tasteless. Even briess is pretty light. Try marris otter as another potential way to increase body and maltiness. Another thing, even, is carbonation. If you get too carb'd it will taste very thin and watery.

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Old 02-21-2009, 12:55 PM   #7
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Fill up a glass with ice water and let it sit for 5-10 minutes. Put the thermometer in the water (careful not to touch the sides of the glass) and let it sit for 5 minutes or so. The reading SHOULD be 32. If it is 5 degrees high then you know you are at least 5 degrees lower on your mash temps than you though you were.

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Old 02-21-2009, 01:05 PM   #8
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i used all marris otter on the malt for the 90 shilling. i lose a lot of wort volume during boil due to a large surface area ( 60 qt brew kettle ). i boiled too much off ande added some water to the fermenter. that could also be the culprit.

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Old 02-21-2009, 01:07 PM   #9
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j;ust tested thermometer. reading 36 F after about 10 minutes in ice water. The culprit?

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Old 02-21-2009, 01:35 PM   #10
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Make sure it's really ice water though. Put a bunch of cubes in a glass and just a smidge of water. All my thermometers read 32.2 - 32.5 this way. Good luck!



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j;ust tested thermometer. reading 36 F after about 10 minutes in ice water. The culprit?
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