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twolvesmnfan 10-11-2012 02:39 AM

Milling Grains At Home
So my first all-grain batch turned out to be a complete failure. Was able to keep my mash at the right temp and everything. Boiling the wort went great also and I didn't even spill anything when pouring into my fermenter. But it all went tumbling down when I took my OG reading. 1.022...uh oh!!! Not even close to the estimated 1.048. With a little swearing and then trying to figure out what went wrong it dawned on me. I was so damn excited to do all-grain for the first time, I used unmilled grains!!! Luckily this was only a 2.5 gallon batch. So I'm guessing I'm screwed but is their anything I might be able to do? Also, I've been looking at milling my own grains, how does this mill look? http://www.ebay.com/itm/Tall-Cast-Ir...item53ec6c2ae6

imrook 10-11-2012 02:47 AM

Well, you're not totally screwed. You can boil up 3lbs or so of liquid or dry malt extract, chill it and add to the fermenter and you'll have a regular gravity beer on your hands. It won't be the greatest beer ever, but at least you'll be using some of the grain and all of the hops. As for the mill, the general consensus is that the corona style mills don't work very well and you should get a roller type like barleycrusher or crank and stein. They cost more but work better.

worksnorth 10-11-2012 02:55 AM

Dude I'm so sorry about your first batch, but its a little bit funny too! I really don't think there's anything you can do to make this right. You may as well continue through the process, try and ferment it out, see what you come up with. May learn a few other things along the way. You could add some sugar to bump up the SG but it'll end up tasting not so good maybe?
In regards to the mill, you might look at a mill more specific to brewing, I'm not familiar with the one you linked but I know if you are milling ten or more lbs of grain that one is gonna wear you out!. Monster mills I hear are good and I use a Barley crusher. You can attach a drill motor to these which makes milling MUCH easier. They will be more expensive but they are well worth the money. Good luck! Press on! You'll do good!

kylevester 10-11-2012 02:56 AM

I use a JSP Malt Mill and it's just fine. I get consistent crushes and efficiencies with it. My brother has a Barley Crusher and gets the same overall performance. The Monster Mill is another good choice.

The mill you linked to will work, however I suggest spending the cash to get one you can hook up to a drill or pulley system on a motor. The convenience is worth it to me.

QuaffableQuips 10-11-2012 02:58 AM

Yeah, if you're interested in salvaging it, boil up a few pounds of DME in some water, chill it, and add it to your 1.022 experiment. Worst thing that can happen is you'll be out a few bucks for the DME. Were I in your position, I'd probably be eager to move on, in which case I'd dump it and start with some milled grain. :)

Regarding the mill, if you can afford a fancy roller mill, then definitely go that route. But if you're just starting out in AG and want to mess around, it's worth mentioning that some HBT members have really made the most of those inexpensive Corona mills. Cue the obligatory link to Revvy's world famous Ugly Junk:


twolvesmnfan 10-11-2012 03:08 AM

Hmmm to try to salvage or not. Well I'm gonna have to sleep on it tonight but I have a feeling it is going down the drain. Money is tight right now so I won't be able to buy a nice mill so we'll see what happens. I'm not sure if my LHBS has a mill because it is more of a wine shop but I'll have to give them a call tomorrow. That ugly junk corona mill station looks tempting but I'm pretty sure the girlfriend would kill me if that was sitting anywhere in our apartment. She already gives me enough crap for using half the storage closet for fermenting and conditioning :)

kylevester 10-11-2012 03:18 AM

Well, just order your grains from Midwest Brewing Supplies down in Minneapolis and have them crush it. I bet if you order by Monday evening you'd get the stuff Friday. It's nice to support local businesses, but if they can't crush it then go elsewhere. Plus, Midwest is still local enough. :)

If you have some extract, go ahead and salvage it as noted above.

amandabab 10-11-2012 03:26 AM

Come to the dark side, join the ugly junk club.

twolvesmnfan 10-11-2012 03:50 AM

Well hopefully I have to make a trip down there soon because it's much much cheaper down there. With shipping I'd be paying 9 cents more per lb at the quantity I'm wanting to get. My LHBS better hope they have a mill!!

twolvesmnfan 10-11-2012 04:00 AM

Alright, another question. How long do you all believe I could store milled grain in a zip lock bag with most of the out of it (not vacuumed)? I live in Minnesota so my apartment is fairly dry this time of the year.

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