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Old 02-20-2006, 09:22 PM   #1
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Default Just so I Have This Right, Using a Cooler as a Mash Tun...

Trying to get the mental picture here for my first actualy Mash/Sparge. So, you add the crushed Grains to the Mash Tun, IE, a cooler that has been retrofitted to also be a sparger. After the Grains, you then pour your water over the grains to get them wet. The water being at a certain temperature that the recipe calls for. One the grain is saturated, you then can add the water, which should be 6-10 degrees higher then your intended Mash temp, your Strike Water, to the grains and mash for about an hour. After this, you add more water from your hot liquer tank (Mine will be a Stainless Steel brew pot) to Mash out to stop the transformation of enzymes. Then, slowly sparge over a period of time into your brew pot. Once Sparge is complete, go ahead and brew the way I have for years on the stove.

Sound about right? I still have not figured out how I am going to go about pouring the water onto the grain bed for the Saccharification Rest or the Sparge and was hoping for ideas from here. Also, I know that the above steps are not dead on right for a Mash and some modifications will be needed. But am I at least along the lines to get started?

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Old 02-20-2006, 09:44 PM   #2
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Sounds about right.

You'll screw up your first 1 or 2 when you are trying to hit a certain mash temp, but just keep adjusting your strike temp to get as clsoe as you can.

Soon you'll have it down to where you won't have to think twice about it.

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Old 02-20-2006, 10:26 PM   #3
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Not really the best procedure.

You might want to consider mixing your grain and strike water in the tun a little at a time. This helps in ensuring that there's no dry spots and no hot or cold spots too, plus allows to make fine adjustments to the thickness of the mash.

The idea, at least for a simple infusion brew, is to have the entire contents of the tun at the desired mash temp and consistancy, then let it sit to allow conversion.

The trick is knowing how hot to have the strike water so that you hit the desired mash temp in your tun. The 6-10 degrees you mention is way too low. Remember, all your grain is at room temp, you need to raise all of it to mash temp, as well as your tun. Because I make no effort to preheat anything, I simply raise my strike water temp accordingly, usually to about 180F.

Once the conversion is complete, as an OPTIONAL step, you can add more water to raise the mash to 170 and deactivate the enzymes. Many (most?) brewers do not find this step necessary.

Either way, you can now start the sparge process. Most people recirculate the intital runnings just to clear out the bigger pieces of junk before letting the wort run into the boiler.

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Old 02-20-2006, 10:30 PM   #4
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This site has proved helpful to many people http://cruisenews.net/brewing/infusion/ .

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Old 03-05-2006, 07:35 PM   #5
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I've heard that cigar smoking NH guys should brew in Barns in central mass. My 2 cents. hehe

Have you read Radical Brewing by Mosher yet? If not, you can borrow my copy. Much useful information on top of the knowledge of some pretty smart people here!

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Old 03-05-2006, 08:28 PM   #6
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My first Lauter went awesome. A Lot simpler then it sounds like it print. Can't wait to do it again.
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Old 03-06-2006, 12:15 AM   #7
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Getting stuck in actually and doing it teaches you far more than reading some of these complex texts as you have found.
I farted around reading up on all grain brewing for a while before I found a book by Dave Line which simplifed the process in a few small pages of large text including pics.
I went ahead had a go and then everything else I had read about fell into place.
Theres quite a good text on 'Listermans' website. http://www.listermann.com/Store/WannaMash.asp

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