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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > Mashing tips please?
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Old 08-22-2005, 02:10 AM   #1
Steve973
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Default Mashing tips please?

Hi Everyone! I'm new here, but not new to brewing. I've done several all-grain batches with friends, and I have the following equipment:

Cajun cooker powered by propane
Cooler with phil's false bottom for mashing
Polarware 10 gallon pot
and the other normal brewing stuff.

In a couple of weeks, I'm going to be brewing a belgian dubbel. The list of ingredients are as follows:

5 lbs Dewolf Cosyns pils or pale ale malt (2.3 kg)
3 lbs Durst Munich malt (1.4 kg)
2 lbs Weyermann Dark Munich malt (908 gr)
1.5 lbs Dewolf Cosyns Aromatic malt (681 gr)
0.75 lbs Dewolf Cosyns Carapils malt (341 gr)
0.25 lbs Caramunich malt (114 gr)
0.33 lbs Dewolf Cosyns Special B malt (150 gr)
1 oz Weyermann chocolate wheat malt (28 gr)
1 lb dark candi sugar (454 gr)
1 oz Styrian Goldings hop plugs, 5% alpha acid (28 gr) (1 hour)
0.25 oz Saaz hops, 3.9% alpha acid (7 gr) (15 minutes)
0.25 oz Saaz hops, 3.9% alpha acid (7 gr) (2 minutes)

I would like to get the best mash possible with my setup. The recipe calls for a single infusion mash at 155 degrees F, but is there a way I can get a better yield with a protein rest, and a multiple step infusion? If you mash in a cooler with a false bottom, how would *you* perform the mash to get the best results? It has been over a year since my last batch, and I'm a bit rusty.

Thanks in advance for any help!

Steve

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Old 08-22-2005, 03:43 AM   #2
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Default A couple more things...

I've been reading in this forum for the past several minutes, and I have a few more points with which people might be able to help. Someone mentioned 5.2 ph stabilizer. I am definitely going to look for this - it'll be nice to take the guesswork out of water pH. But speaking of water, how important is it to adjust the chemistry of the water? I was thinking of getting bottles of poland spring water for the batch that I'll be doing. Would any of you recommend adding stuff to it? If so, what would you recommend?

Secondly, is it very important to add some boiling water to mash out at 170? I don't recall if I've ever done this before sparging. I think I've just sparged at the end of the mash after recycling a few times until the wort became clear. Also, my sparge water has always been brought to ~170, but I never thought to take a temperature reading in the mash to be sure that it remained at 170. I'm definitely going to pay closer attention to this. I'll try to get some good thermometer at the homebrew store before we brew.

It's great to have these forums. There are a few seemingly minor details that could make all the difference in an end product. Please feel free to elaborate or comment on any of these things. If anybody has anything that they'd like to add, I'm all ears/eyes. Thanks for taking the time to read my post!

Steve

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Old 08-22-2005, 04:01 PM   #3
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Default mash/lauter tun capacity

I have the round orange rubbermaid cooler for mashing/lautering. I hope it'll hold the ~13 lbs of grain and enough water. I think I've done this before with another batch, but I'm not positive.

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Old 08-22-2005, 06:31 PM   #4
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Default

I just completed my 5th AG, so I'm no expert. I have hard well water that has a ph so high, it's off the chart! It tastes okay and I have a Pur filter. But, I've been using bottled water for my mash water, with nothing added. I plan to buy some of that 5.2 ph stabilizer so I can use my own water and stop having to by spring water. I've read good things about it.

You bring up some good questions; I'm curious to read answers from others here.

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Old 08-22-2005, 10:42 PM   #5
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Steve,

I used the same style set up for my all-grain batches, and did a mash out by adding boiling water, while i recirculated. I didn't notice a difference in ones I did a mash out on, and the ones I didn't. With today's modified malts, you'll have no problem getting a good conversion. I always had good results for that set-up.

The 5 gallon cooler should hold 13-14 lbs. of grain w/ the mash water, but it'll be close. Anything more and you'd need the 10 g cooler for a mash tun. I've done a batch w/ 13.5 lbs, no problem.

I don't bother w/ ph. I use 1 g bottled spring water and go with it. The main problem is sparging over 5.8 ph. Extracts to much tannins from the mash.

I'd go with what you know and use your experience from previous batches.
Good luck and welcome back!

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Old 08-22-2005, 11:15 PM   #6
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There are various ways you can play with the chemistry of your water if it is required. Firstly, you should cook up a few batches and see if you are getting quality beer before you commit yourself to changing anything. When I stayed at a hotel in Ibiza one year the water tasted like it had been piped in from the sea it was that salty. Clearly extreme circumstances as this calls for drastic measures. But complements on the recipe.

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Old 08-23-2005, 12:36 AM   #7
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Default The Recipe

I can't take credit for the recipe, but I thought it looked good. I'm not sure what the policies are on posting links here, but I got the recipe on the bottom of this page:

http://www.specialtymalts.com/tech_center/dubbel.html

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Old 08-23-2005, 01:30 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve973
I would like to get the best mash possible with my setup.
Steve, I would really like to pipe in here but I want to understand your question more thoroughly. What is your real goal in terms of mashing this recipe?
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Old 08-23-2005, 02:16 AM   #9
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Steve,
The First AG I did was Dubbel.. it went off without a hitch, and my setup was very similar to yours. I did a single infusion with the stirke water at 158F, and then recircualted with a grant after the grains steeped for the required time.

Good luck!!

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Old 08-23-2005, 07:52 AM   #10
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Hey Steve thanks for the link. I would gladly try some of those recipes. The only problem is I dont trust my local homebrew shop will stock all of the speciality malts.

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