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Old 10-28-2009, 07:38 PM   #101
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It looks like you have quite a bit of scorching going on in the pot. The flat bottom and direct heat seems to make for problems trying to brew a pale or pils style brew.

What do you do when you first dough in and run the pump? Do you put the boiler pot lid return line in the mashtun to get any bits of grist cleared from the plumbing and the liquor running clear first before putting it onto the pot?

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Old 10-28-2009, 08:52 PM   #102
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It looks like you have quite a bit of scorching going on in the pot. The flat bottom and direct heat seems to make for problems trying to brew a pale or pils style brew.

What do you do when you first dough in and run the pump? Do you put the boiler pot lid return line in the mashtun to get any bits of grist cleared from the plumbing and the liquor running clear first before putting it onto the pot?
He's gravity draining from the MLT to BK, so he could vorlauf into a pitcher until clear runnings, then drain into the BK, but I'm not sure if he vorlaufs (I know that he said that after it recirculates a while it clears up).
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Old 10-28-2009, 09:40 PM   #103
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It looks like you have quite a bit of scorching going on in the pot. The flat bottom and direct heat seems to make for problems trying to brew a pale or pils style brew.
There is a pretty significant buildup of stuff on the bottom, like a well used cast iron skillet, but this is an aluminum pot so I don't want to clean it off and risk stripping off the protective oxide layer. I don't have any problems with scorching or darkening. My pot has looked like this since the second batch I brewed in it.

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What do you do when you first dough in and run the pump? Do you put the boiler pot lid return line in the mashtun to get any bits of grist cleared from the plumbing and the liquor running clear first before putting it onto the pot?
I just start recirculating through the pot, the wort cleans up nicely. With the recirculation most of the protein break ends up in the mash tun rather than in the kettle so I have very little hot break in the kettle after transferring to the fermenter.

I'm not sure my lines are long enough but if they are I could try recirculating through the MLT and see how that works.
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Old 10-28-2009, 11:04 PM   #104
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Man I'm pretty surprised at your efficiency. Grain is cheap and like you said I'd love to cut an hour or so off my brew day.

Wouldn't this also, theoretically, produce a slightly higher quality wort?

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Old 10-28-2009, 11:52 PM   #105
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He's gravity draining from the MLT to BK, so he could vorlauf into a pitcher until clear runnings, then drain into the BK, but I'm not sure if he vorlaufs (I know that he said that after it recirculates a while it clears up).
Gottcha! So he just needs to vorlauf the mash tun runoff first, to make sure no grist particles get into the boil kettle before sticking the lid on the kettle and running the pump.

My boiler gets beer stone build up but never scorching or carmelization on the pot bottom from boils.

That layer normally comes from trying to use direct heat to the thick mash liquor. That is one of the reasons why the herms systems were developed and took the place of the RMS. The recirculating mash system uses a raised full false bottom in the mashtun, then the liquor was gravity fed to the pump then pumped back over the grainbed. Direct heat was use to maintain or boost mash temps. A very low heat setting had to be used to keep from scorching the liquor, but even then the process would add color to the wort.
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Old 10-29-2009, 12:00 AM   #106
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Man I'm pretty surprised at your efficiency. Grain is cheap and like you said I'd love to cut an hour or so off my brew day.
Recirculation and loading up the whole volume at once is the key, because the only extract that doesn't get into the kettle is in the grain absorption and dead loss. When most folks think of no-sparge they think of first runnings where you only get half the sugars or so. Isn't the case here. In fact, from my yield I can work backwards and determine exactly what my grain absorption rate is, something that I still need to do.

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Wouldn't this also, theoretically, produce a slightly higher quality wort?
That's the claim. Certainly gets rid of issues with pH and over
extraction you can run into with sparging since the whole kit-n-kaboodle is at mash pH and temps.
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Old 10-29-2009, 12:02 AM   #107
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That layer normally comes from trying to use direct heat to the thick mash liquor. That is one of the reasons why the herms systems were developed and took the place of the RMS. The recirculating mash system uses a raised full false bottom in the mashtun, then the liquor was gravity fed to the pump then pumped back over the grainbed. Direct heat was use to maintain or boost mash temps. A very low heat setting had to be used to keep from scorching the liquor, but even then the process would add color to the wort.
Yeah I never would direct fire a mash for exactly this reason. In the no-sparge recirculation the gravity is pre-boil gravity of around 1.050 or so. No chance of scorching here.
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Old 10-29-2009, 12:35 AM   #108
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In fact, from my yield I can work backwards and determine exactly what my grain absorption rate is, something that I still need to do.
That's still my minor challenge. I'm quickly learning absorption isn't a fixed value. I'd been brewing a lot of two-row beers and was seeing .1 gal/lb pretty consistently. Brewed up Shiver me Bitters last, which is primarily MO and Vienna, and it caught me off guard with .15 gal/lb. For small batch brewers, that can be a big difference. I buy all my grain from the same LHBS and use the same mill so the crush isn't different.

More English beers on deck so it'll be interesting to see the absorption data...
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Old 10-29-2009, 03:31 AM   #109
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Saccharomyces,
You brewing again soon in November? I'd like to come and see your setup soon.

Chris

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Old 10-29-2009, 03:31 PM   #110
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I read through this thread last night and saw that someone touched on this point once but it didn't seem to get much attention. My main concern with the no-chill method is that you don't get enough break material out of solution. I actually like getting some trub into the fermenter (after it's been broken out) since the yeast respond favorably to it. But it seems like not breaking it out of solution would lead to clarity and oxidation issues down the road. Maybe those are theoretical problems that don't actually happen in practice so I'd be curious to hear from people who use the no-chill method what their experience has been.

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