My first AG batch is bubbling away in the primary as we speak. It smells delicious and I have no doubt I'll love it (like all my hoppy children), but I screwed up a few things and have a few questions. First the process:
I started with a 100qt cooler fitted with the typical hosebraid filter, 10# of crushed grain and 3.5g of 165F water. This put my mash at 152F. After 60 mins it dropped to ~148F. I then added 1.5g @ 185F for mash out, but that only brought the temp up to 156F. Vorlaufed and drained into the kettle. I then sparged with 3.5g at 170F. I stirred and let it sit for 5 mins before vorlaufing again and draining. My sparge water only brought the temp up to about 158F. As I sparged my pot quickly reached the 6.5g mark and I was forced to close the valve before all the wort was drained. The drain on the cooler is almost 1" above the floor.
The problems that I can identify are as follows:
I left the cooler lid open during the mash out and while boiling the additional 3.5g which caused my sparge water to miss the temp.
I'm using a turker fryer thermometer. It's hard to say how accurate it is and it only has markings for every 5 degrees.
I possibly lost some sugar due to height of drain and not using all the water added.
The main problem is that my OG was about 10 points low. I contribute this to being my first time, but would like to know where the most important improvements could be made.
Sorry about the long post!