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Old 10-03-2012, 08:01 PM   #1
pixelhussar
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Default efficiency drop, no rice hulls?

Hi guys,

Normally my brewhouse efficiency is around 80% with barley malts. Last time I brewed wheat beer and it dropped down to 60%. Since I still have no rice hulls avaliable, I couldn't use it. Do you think that only by using rice hulls would bring the efficiency up a lot?

Something else:

I tried to add hop pellets in socks like bag. I know it isn't very useful, but still, I tried. When I racked the beer from the pot, there were much more than just pellet particles at the bottom of my pot. It was something cloudy. Is that protein? How can I minimize it? I've lost too much wort just because of this.

The pellets remained in the bag formed a thick ball. Some parts inside of it remained green, may it be a sign of bad isomerisation?

Thanks.

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Old 10-03-2012, 08:39 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by pixelhussar View Post
Hi guys,

Normally my brewhouse efficiency is around 80% with barley malts. Last time I brewed wheat beer and it dropped down to 60%. Since I still have no rice hulls avaliable, I couldn't use it. Do you think that only by using rice hulls would bring the efficiency up a lot?

Something else:

I tried to add hop pellets in socks like bag. I know it isn't very useful, but still, I tried. When I racked the beer from the pot, there were much more than just pellet particles at the bottom of my pot. It was something cloudy. Is that protein? How can I minimize it? I've lost too much wort just because of this.

The pellets remained in the bag formed a thick ball. Some parts inside of it remained green, may it be a sign of bad isomerisation?

Thanks.
For your first question the actual grain bill would help. Yes, rice hulls help filter the sparge and prevent being stuck but also if you were well over 50% wheat then a step mash would have helped with better conversion as well.

As for the kettle, what you are seeing is the hot break material that settles out and this volume should be measured and calculated as a loss in your process so you can be sure to collect the proper amount of pre-boil, then factor boil off and kettle loss so you get the final volume you want.
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Old 10-03-2012, 08:43 PM   #3
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The more likely cause is poor crush of the malted wheat. The wheat berries have no hull and are harder to crush than barley so you might have to crush finer and perhaps even condition them with water to soften them a bit. When you get them crushed fine enough you probably will need the rice hulls. Did you use just wheat or did you mix in some barley? When the maltsters make wheat extract they use barley as part of the mash.

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Old 10-03-2012, 08:46 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by pixelhussar View Post
Hi guys,

Normally my brewhouse efficiency is around 80% with barley malts. Last time I brewed wheat beer and it dropped down to 60%. Since I still have no rice hulls avaliable, I couldn't use it. Do you think that only by using rice hulls would bring the efficiency up a lot?

Something else:

I tried to add hop pellets in socks like bag. I know it isn't very useful, but still, I tried. When I racked the beer from the pot, there were much more than just pellet particles at the bottom of my pot. It was something cloudy. Is that protein? How can I minimize it? I've lost too much wort just because of this.

The pellets remained in the bag formed a thick ball. Some parts inside of it remained green, may it be a sign of bad isomerisation?

Thanks.
I minimize this loss by not using a hop sock, just dump the pellets into the boil pot and then dump everything into the fermenter when it is cooled enough. It doesn't seem to affect the flavor and it all gets compacted with the yeast in the bottom of the fermenter if you give it enough time.
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