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Old 05-29-2007, 03:19 AM   #21
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I think the difference is what is meant by the first and second runnings.
You are assuming that the first runnings are the draining of the mash (before any sparge water is added) is the first runnings. and that the second runnings is the draining after the addition of a single batch of sparge water,
Rich is assuming that the mash is drained before any sparge water is added, and that the first runnings relate to the draining after the first batch of sparge water, and the second runnings relate to the drainings after a second batch of sparge water.
Rich's suggestion will always result in higher efficiency, but does run a very small risk of over sparging, but this will not be an issue unless you are brewing a very light gravity beer..

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Old 05-29-2007, 03:26 AM   #22
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I discovered that when I moved to 10-gallon batches, my temperature loss at strike was worse than with 5-gallons. I like to mash at around 156 degrees and with 5 gallon batches, that meant I had to strike with 168-170 degree water.

No with a 10-gallon batch, (using a 10 gallon rubbemaid cooler) I have to strike with 180 degree water (against a 20-21 lb grain bill) to get my 156 range.

Anyone else discover this change when they moved up to 10-gallons?

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Old 05-29-2007, 04:28 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BierMuncher
I discovered that when I moved to 10-gallon batches, my temperature loss at strike was worse than with 5-gallons. I like to mash at around 156 degrees and with 5 gallon batches, that meant I had to strike with 168-170 degree water.

No with a 10-gallon batch, (using a 10 gallon rubbemaid cooler) I have to strike with 180 degree water (against a 20-21 lb grain bill) to get my 156 range.

Anyone else discover this change when they moved up to 10-gallons?
That is good information. I never thought of that. I wonder why that happens?
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Old 05-29-2007, 04:58 PM   #24
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So (correct me if I am wrong) the way I see it is that the whole thing comes down to whether you have a max capacity you can boil (my boat). In that case you should set the runnings equal and increase the amount of grain (per Plamer). If you can boil however much you want, increase the sparge volume (per RichBrewer).

Does this sound reasonable? Is this very obvious and only confusing to me?

I tried to get fancy with the batch sparging, but trying to figure out volumes of first runnings, second, etc. was just too confusing. It seemed like I had to add more water no matter what they said.

So , here's what I do that has worked for me very well with my 5 gallon round cooler.

1) Mash in for 60 minutes at your desired temp and water/grain ratio.
2) If you have some space left in the cooler, add boiling water to mash out (don't go above 170, although this has never been a problem with my 5 gallon cooler, there's never enough volume).
3) Collect your first runnings.
4) Have 4 gallons of water at about 170-180 degrees ready.
5) when you are done with #3, add the water to fill the cooler. Stir in and let set a few minutes.
6) Collect runnings again until you have 7 gallons in your pot. If I have to repeat #4 and #5 to get there, I just add more hot water to the cooler.

It's really pretty easy becuase I just keep adding water to the cooler until I have 7 gallons in my pot. I guess it's kind of a mix of batch and fly sparging, only I add a bunch of water at a time and dont' worry about sprinkling it over the grain. I've seen several other people mention doing this way, and it seems to work. I have been getting about 80% eff. since I started doing this and using 5.2.
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Old 05-29-2007, 10:19 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichBrewer
That is good information. I never thought of that. I wonder why that happens?
The only thing I can think is that the solid mass (the grains) have an exponentially higher temperature impact than liquid.

In other words, it's a lot more difficult to bring 20lbs of 70 degree grains up to temp with 6 gallons of 165 dgree water, than bringing 10 lbs of 70 degree grains up to temp with 3 gallons of 165 degree water.

Does that sound like I hoped it would sound???
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Old 05-29-2007, 10:26 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BierMuncher
The only thing I can think is that the solid mass (the grains) have an exponentially higher temperature impact than liquid.

In other words, it's a lot more difficult to bring 20lbs of 70 degree grains up to temp with 6 gallons of 165 dgree water, than bringing 10 lbs of 70 degree grains up to temp with 3 gallons of 165 degree water.

Does that sound like I hoped it would sound???
There is something nagging at me that the physics of this don't work out. Assuming you are using the same tun for the mash, the actual ratio of grain to water has not changed in your example. Shouldn't the rise in temperature using an equally proportional infusion of hot water be similar?

Of course, if you are using a different mash tun for the 10 g batches, then that could be your difference. But I assume that isn't the case.
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Old 05-29-2007, 11:04 PM   #27
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I'm no scientist but I can see that- say your grains are 60 degrees. For a 10 gallon batch, you may have 23 pounds of grains to bring up to 156. Therefore, you need a higher strike temp than if you had 12 pounds of grain. Even if your grain to water ration hasn't changed, the thermal mass is different. More hot water doesn't equal higher grain temp, necessarily.

(This makes sense to me, but I'm going to have to add this disclaimer- I've been drinking this evening.)

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Old 05-30-2007, 12:18 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BierMuncher
The only thing I can think is that the solid mass (the grains) have an exponentially higher temperature impact than liquid.

In other words, it's a lot more difficult to bring 20lbs of 70 degree grains up to temp with 6 gallons of 165 dgree water, than bringing 10 lbs of 70 degree grains up to temp with 3 gallons of 165 degree water.

Does that sound like I hoped it would sound???
I just did my first 10 gal on sat and I noticed the same thing and was way low on my mash temp 150 vs 156 which is what I wanted. Didn't really know why because with the same set up ,but doing a 5.5 gal batch my strike temps at 165 worked great. But the day was kind of a cluster so I just glazed over it. I think the mass definitely affects strike temp even though the grain to water ratio doesn't change. These are the sort of questions that I love about brewing.
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Old 05-30-2007, 02:42 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BierMuncher
The only thing I can think is that the solid mass (the grains) have an exponentially higher temperature impact than liquid.

In other words, it's a lot more difficult to bring 20lbs of 70 degree grains up to temp with 6 gallons of 165 dgree water, than bringing 10 lbs of 70 degree grains up to temp with 3 gallons of 165 degree water.

Does that sound like I hoped it would sound???
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper Chick
I'm no scientist but I can see that- say your grains are 60 degrees. For a 10 gallon batch, you may have 23 pounds of grains to bring up to 156. Therefore, you need a higher strike temp than if you had 12 pounds of grain. Even if your grain to water ration hasn't changed, the thermal mass is different. More hot water doesn't equal higher grain temp, necessarily.

(This makes sense to me, but I'm going to have to add this disclaimer- I've been drinking this evening.)
You guys have got to be on the right track.
I doubled a recipe in ProMash and when it calculates the dough-in temperature it doesn't compensate for a larger batch.
BP or any other 10 plus gallon brewer- what is your experience with hitting your mash temps with larger batches???
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Old 05-30-2007, 02:51 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichBrewer
I've seen a lot of threads started concerning problems with peoples first all grain brews.

1. Low efficiency.
Something you missed that I don't think has been mentioned yet - proper grain crush. A few folks have mentioned that their HBS-crushed grains aren't crushed quite well enough or that they saw a big jump in efficiency with a finer crush from their own mill at home. Do yourself a big favor and spend the time to make a quality, adjustable two-roller mill (or spend the cash required if you can't make one). A three roller mill is probably overkill for the average homebrewer, and a corona mill, while cheaper, is not going to give you an ideal crush.

What, then is the ideal crush? Don't be afraid of a little flour, but don't pulverize everything into powder, either. You want zero intact kernels, plenty of empty but intact husks, lots of white starchy matter, and a little powdery flour.

Simply refining my grain crush and taking a little extra time with the sparge increased my efficiency by over 10%. My last two brews were easily over 80% efficiency.
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