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-   -   Partial Mash sparging question (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f36/partial-mash-sparging-question-328820/)

ArcLight 05-15-2012 07:36 PM

Partial Mash sparging question
I will be trying my first Partial mash this weekend using the Northern Brewer Outmeal Stout. I have a 18x19 fine mesh Nylon bag, and a colander (as well as various pots).

- 2.5 lbs Maris Otter
- 0.5 lbs Black Malt
- 0.5 lbs English Dark Crystal
- 0.5 lbs flaked oats

The instruction say to mash (with 5 quarts of water) for an hour at 152F, then raise the temperature to 170F for 10 minutes, taking care not to scorch the bag.

1. Do I use low-medium heat? And do you suggest partially suspending the bag so it doesn't touch the bottom of the brew kettle?

After the 10 minutes, I remove the wort, and start sparging with another 5
quarts of 170F water. The directions say:

>>9. Sparge the grain. Using a strainer or mesh bag, hold the
grain over the wort in the kettle. Slowly pour the 170 F
sparge water through the grain, one quart at a time, until
its gone. Collect the sparge water along with the wort in
the boil kettle. When finished, you may discard the grain.

2 - do you hold the bag over the pot for a few minutes before sparging, and if so, can this create a sparge problem as it tightens the grain bed?

3 - Since I have removed the wort, If I use a colander&bag, wont the water not sparge evenly?

4 - If I do not use a Colander, and just place the bag in a pot and slowly sparge, wont the bag end up sitting in another pool of wort?

5 - Or am I supposed to put some kind of false bottom in the pot that the bag rests on?

It seems a bit haphazard to have the grain in a bag, being suspended over a pot (with a bungee cord), and slowly pouring water into it.
I guess it will work, but I'd rather get a decent yield. And there are other fermentables supplied.
- 3.15 lbs Dark malt syrup
- 1 lb Briess Dark dry malt extract

smokinj 05-15-2012 10:00 PM

I haven't done any partial mashes, but have done some small BIABs. What I like to do is use 2 pots. I do my initial mash in my boil kettle. Towards the end of the mash I start heating my sparge water in another pot. I heat it to 168-170. After the mash is done I raise the temp of the boil kettle, with the grains still in it, to 168-170. Once that temp is reached i suspend the grains over it until they are slowly dripping, then transfer them to the second pot for 10 minutes. After that time is up i give them a good stir and resuspend them over the boil kettle, then just dump the sparge liquid into the kettle, not over the grains, and start heating to a boil. I always get efficiency over 80% with this method.

terodox 05-16-2012 12:13 AM

You can do something simple like put a glass plate in the bottom of the pot. This provides a buffer between the heat and the bag. Just pull the plate after your sparge.

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