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Old 07-31-2009, 01:47 PM   #1
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Default Efficiency Problems

Brewed the PM version of Lil Sparky's Nut Brown ale the other night and it looked, smelled, and tasted awesome.
Grain Bill:
5 lbs 3.8 oz Pale Liquid Extract (8.0 SRM)
2 lbs Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM)
13.2 oz Caramel/Crystal Malt - 60L (60.0 SRM)
14.2 oz Oats, Flaked (1.0 SRM)
6.6 oz Victory Malt (25.0 SRM)
3.3 oz Chocolate Malt (350.0 SRM)

One question though, what would be some reasons for a low efficiency?

Method: DB Easy Partial Mashing
Strike: 168
Mashed around 152 for 60 minutes.
Sparged for 10 minutes at 160.
LME added at 15 minutes left in boil (to increase IBUs).

According to Beer Smith, OG was supposed to be 1.059 and we only hit 1.054, giving us an efficiency of 59% (suck).

Thoughts?

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Old 07-31-2009, 01:54 PM   #2
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The crush is the most obvious culprit without knowing anything else. Who crushed the grain? Did you notice any full, intact kernels?

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Old 07-31-2009, 02:01 PM   #3
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I did not notice any intact kernels. I bought the ingredients from AHS.

What else would you need to know to give other ideas?

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Old 07-31-2009, 02:04 PM   #4
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Before you said you'd start this thread on this issue, i was going to suggest what Bobby_M said. The crush could be one big problem.

Also, it could be that you are not accurately measuring your water volumes. If you have too much water then you might have extracted more sugar, but diluted it before measuring the gravity. There is another thread in this section on efficiency and PM, it might have some insight, as well.

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Old 07-31-2009, 02:06 PM   #5
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Are you topping up with water in your primary? or full boil?

If you are topping up, perhaps you took a reading before properly mixing the wort?

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Old 07-31-2009, 02:12 PM   #6
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I had the same problem when I made the same brew as my 2nd AG. Good crush is important, as already mentioned. Personally I rushed my sparge time. My last AG batch of OktoberFAST I brewed, I slowed down the sparge to run for over 45 minutes, boosted my efficiency by +10%

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Old 07-31-2009, 05:09 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phatuna View Post
Are you topping up with water in your primary? or full boil?

If you are topping up, perhaps you took a reading before properly mixing the wort?
I am topping it off with water in the primary. We took a reading before mixing a few batches ago and quickly realized our mistake; however, it was before the yeast was added and the lid was snapped.

We made sure this time to stir and we usually use the siphon to pull a sample.
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Old 07-31-2009, 05:10 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wscott823 View Post
I had the same problem when I made the same brew as my 2nd AG. Good crush is important, as already mentioned. Personally I rushed my sparge time. My last AG batch of OktoberFAST I brewed, I slowed down the sparge to run for over 45 minutes, boosted my efficiency by +10%
Good idea. Maybe I need to allow it to sparge a little longer. I'm not looking for a great efficiency, just somewhere closer to 70%.
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Old 07-31-2009, 05:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donner View Post
Before you said you'd start this thread on this issue, i was going to suggest what Bobby_M said. The crush could be one big problem.

Also, it could be that you are not accurately measuring your water volumes. If you have too much water then you might have extracted more sugar, but diluted it before measuring the gravity. There is another thread in this section on efficiency and PM, it might have some insight, as well.
Thanks. I will try to find the other thread.
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