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Old 02-04-2013, 10:29 PM   #1
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Default Long batch sparge on first all grain

Did my first all grain this weekend. Probably beginner's luck, but hit my temps on the nose and hit 82% efficiency, and sg was with 2 points of predicted.

I batch sparged. After a 60 minute mash at 152 I vorlaufed, drained, and added another 4.5 gallons of 170 degree water, stirred it, and let it sit for an hour while I fiddled around with a few other brew day chores. Then I vorlaufed again and drained. Seemed like it worked very well.

Was letting the sparge sit for an hour overkill?

Thanks to all those on this forum for their excellent advice. A year ago I was trying to figure out the Mr Beer kit I got for Christmas

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Old 02-04-2013, 10:32 PM   #2
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Letting it sit for an hour isn't "overkill"- it's just not necessary. The beauty of batch sparging is that it's faster than continuous (fly) sparging. If you're letting it sit for an hour you just lose the times savings, that's all.

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Old 02-04-2013, 10:37 PM   #3
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I usually pour in the 170-180 degree water, stir ths sh*t out of it for 5 minutes, let it sit for a few, stir for a few more then vorlauf and pour. 10 minutes total or so. Easy Peesy.

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Old 02-04-2013, 10:37 PM   #4
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Basically what I do, is do a 60 minute mash, vorlauf 2 or 3 times, drain it slow. Once it's mostly empty, then batch sparge and let it sit for about 15 minutes, then vorlauf again 2 or 3 times, and drain it. If I still feel like I need a hair more in my pot, then I fly sparge a little.

You should be fine, but you don't need to do an hour

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Old 02-04-2013, 10:43 PM   #5
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Basically what I do, is do a 60 minute mash, vorlauf 2 or 3 times, drain it slow. Once it's mostly empty, then batch sparge and let it sit for about 15 minutes, then vorlauf again 2 or 3 times, and drain it. If I still feel like I need a hair more in my pot, then I fly sparge a little.

You should be fine, but you don't need to do an hour
True, but you don't have to drain the mashtun slow, either, or let it sit at all. You could vorlauf and let 'er rip, and batch sparge just as quickly, and not have any loss of efficiency at all.


So, you can see that there are lots of ways to do this, and whatever works for each person is what works.

I sometimes batch sparge, and when I do it's to save time. I volauf, and drain the MLT. Then stir in the sparge water vigorously, vorlauf and drain. It's like 5 minutes. If I'm not in a hurry, I'll fly sparge (which takes about 45 minutes). It just depends on how my day is going.
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Old 02-04-2013, 11:33 PM   #6
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True, but you don't have to drain the mashtun slow, either, or let it sit at all. You could vorlauf and let 'er rip, and batch sparge just as quickly, and not have any loss of efficiency at all.
Ok, i was thinking I had to do it slowly to let the grain bed set. So you are saying I can let it rip, and I don't need to do that slowly? I've only get 2 All Grain Brews under my belt so far
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Old 02-04-2013, 11:42 PM   #7
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I did my first AG this weekend as well.

Wish I'd read up more before doing it. I did not do the vorlauf step on my sparge. I did it on the original mash, before draining, but not when I dropped my sparge water in. I just poured in my sparge water, stirred it like crazy, and then drained.

I have no idea how to calculate efficiency or anything, but my OG was dead on after chilling it, so I was happy.

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Old 02-05-2013, 12:53 AM   #8
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I did my first AG this weekend as well.

Wish I'd read up more before doing it. I did not do the vorlauf step on my sparge. I did it on the original mash, before draining, but not when I dropped my sparge water in. I just poured in my sparge water, stirred it like crazy, and then drained.

I have no idea how to calculate efficiency or anything, but my OG was dead on after chilling it, so I was happy.
I wouldn't worry about that too much, as far as the sparge goes. Just do it next time. Now as far as efficiency goes, have you heard of BrewTarget, Beersmith 2, etc? That let's you enter your gravity information, volume amounts, etc for your brew day to help you with that.

BrewTarget is free and is pretty good. Beersmith 2, may be a hair better, but cost a little money, has a trial period so you can try it.
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Old 02-05-2013, 01:08 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aboo View Post
I did my first AG this weekend as well.

Wish I'd read up more before doing it. I did not do the vorlauf step on my sparge. I did it on the original mash, before draining, but not when I dropped my sparge water in. I just poured in my sparge water, stirred it like crazy, and then drained.

I have no idea how to calculate efficiency or anything, but my OG was dead on after chilling it, so I was happy.
What did you brew?
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Old 02-05-2013, 03:08 AM   #10
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Ok, i was thinking I had to do it slowly to let the grain bed set. So you are saying I can let it rip, and I don't need to do that slowly? I've only get 2 All Grain Brews under my belt so far
Yes. Crack the valve open slowly at first, and vorlauf. Then open it wide and let it rip!
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