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Old 01-29-2013, 03:32 PM   #1
NFryan
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So I guess I had the wrong information on mash out temps during a batch sparge. My last 3 brew days I have mashed out with 170-171 degree water which left me at a grain temp between 158- 165. Since I now realize after further research I should be aiming for 168 to 170 degree grain temps, what can I expect from the last 3 batches that I've brewed while mashing out at too low of a temp ? Am I screwed ? Any input would be much appreciated.

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Old 01-29-2013, 03:43 PM   #2
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With batch sparging, a mashout isn't all that crucial in my opinion. I believe the purpose of the mashout is to get the grain temp above conversion temperatures, so that the composition of your wort stays the same throughout your sparge. This is important if you fly sparge since it takes a bit longer, you'd still have conversion going on if you skipped out on this. If you fly sparge for 30 minutes for instance (I'm not sure about times on this, I'm a batch sparger), that extra 30 minutes at conversion temps could change your wort. With a batch sparge, assuming you drain and sparge quickly (less than 10 minutes I'd say), your wort isn't going to change all that much in that time. You're then boiling quick enough, all enzyme activity will be stopped.

I think I made this clear as mud....

Bottom line, I think if you sparged quickly like a batch sparger should, you won't see any appreciable difference whether you mashed out or not.

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Old 01-29-2013, 03:46 PM   #3
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Some people believe a mashout is unnecessary. I'm one of them. Your beer will be fine. I sparge with 170-175*F water and have no issues. I've read that raising the grain temp. is to stop enzyme activity. Since the wort is going right into the kettle to be boiled, enzyme activity will stop there, and the grains will be disposed of. Enjoy!

StoneHands, You beat me to the enzyme point.

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Old 01-29-2013, 04:08 PM   #4
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Okay thanks for the info. My initial running usually take about 20 - 30 minutes to drain. I was told slower was better. I then added my sparge water at 170 ish degrees. Stirred, waited 15 minutes, then drained. I should be okay then ?

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Old 01-29-2013, 04:17 PM   #5
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Okay thanks for the info. My initial running usually take about 20 - 30 minutes to drain. I was told slower was better. I then added my sparge water at 170 ish degrees. Stirred, waited 15 minutes, then drained. I should be okay then ?
That's more or less my process as well, and I have never had a problem. I try to drain both runnings as quickly as possible after I vorlauf. I haven't seen any benefits or impacts of draining quickly over slowly, other than taking less time. The bulk of each running is complete within 10 minutes, though I do collect whatever drizzles out for the next 5-10. My sparge water is usually in the 180F range, which brings the grain bed to ~ 170. You should be fine. Kyle
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:20 PM   #6
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Okay thanks for the info. My initial running usually take about 20 - 30 minutes to drain. I was told slower was better. I then added my sparge water at 170 ish degrees. Stirred, waited 15 minutes, then drained. I should be okay then ?
I think you'll be just fine. But, I think you can go quite a bit faster than you have been. Slower is better for fly sparging. With batch sparging, open it up and let her rip (don't get a stuck sparge though, you'll do that once and hope to never do it again).
This is what I do:
1. At the end of my mash, I have my sparge water ready (175 degrees or so). I first vorlauf and drain my first runnings (I don't add any water to my mash for mashout). This takes 3-4 minutes probably.
2. Once my first runnings are out. I add half my sparge water, stir it well, vorlauf and drain this.
3. Add the rest of my sparge water to hit my volume, vorlauf and drain this.
You just want to rinse the sugars out of the grains.

This whole process probably takes 10 minutes tops for me. And I usually start heating my wort as I collect the last of my sparges in another pot. Saves time, and at a homebrew scale, sacrifices very little (if any at all) efficiency.
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:48 PM   #7
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Okay thanks for the info. My initial running usually take about 20 - 30 minutes to drain. I was told slower was better. I then added my sparge water at 170 ish degrees. Stirred, waited 15 minutes, then drained. I should be okay then ?
The person that told you slower the better is a fly sparger and doesn't recognize any alternative process. Run it off nearly as fast as it will go. When you add your "BATCH" sparge water (at about 185F), stir it in well, vorlauf and run that off fast as well. You don't need to do any waiting after you have conversion. It's just wasting time at that point.
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:52 PM   #8
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Thanks again for all the help. As long as I didn't screw it up too bad and have 15 gallons of wasted beer I'm happy. My next batch being brewed Saturday. I'll make sure to drain fast and have my sparge water heated to 175 -180 degrees.

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