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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > Rookie efficiency questions
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Old 11-30-2008, 04:49 PM   #1
mangine77
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Default Rookie efficiency questions

I just did my second ever all-grain batch. I set my efficiency on Beersmith to 68% because I'm still learning and I'm using the Zapap lauter tun which I know can cause some loss in efficiency.

I used 11.25 lbs of grains and had an OG of 1049 and my target was 1050. Did I really get that close to my target? So that means that I was at around 70% efficiency right?? Because I was supposed to hit 1050 at 68%.

Is that how this works?

I did have an issue with my sparge because I was supposed to have two seperate 2.5 gallon sparges and after the first one, my kettle was at my pre-boil volume (6.3 gallons).

Is only sparging with 2.5 gallons of water going to be bad for this beer?

I think I started the mash with around 3.75 gallons of water and I added around a gallon of really hot water to the tun to fill up the false bottom. I think this is why my boil kettle was full even before the second sparge.

Sorry for all the basic questions, but I'm learning a lot in a short period of time thanks to the brew nuts on here.

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Old 11-30-2008, 05:10 PM   #2
Bobby_M
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If I use 11.25 pounds of standard 2-row, 1.049 at 5 gallons is actually 61% efficiency.

Your mash ratio with 4.75 gallons is 19qts:11.25lbs = 1.68qts/lb which is a little thin but within reasonalbe limits. The grain will typically soak in about .1 gallons per pound leaving 3.65 gallons to extract. I can understand why the 2.5 gallon sparge was enough.

My MLT also has nearly one gallon of deadspace under the bottom. I shoot for a ratio of 1qt/lb then add one gallon. For your bill, that would be just under 4 gallons. You'd drain out about 3 gallons leaving two batches of 1.75 sparge.

To be honest, if you execute it carefully, you'd likely be able to hit the 1.050 target using 8 pounds of malt because your efficiency will go up because you'll be able to sparge more. Example: 8lbs with a ratio of 1qt/lb is 2 gallons + your 1 gallon deadspace. You'd get out about 2 gallons first runnings leaving two sparge infusions of about 2.1 gallons each.

Yup, the increased sparge volume really does make a big difference. This is why I advocate precise AG techniques because throwing a few extra pounds of malt into the bill isn't always the answer.

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Old 11-30-2008, 05:33 PM   #3
mangine77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobby_M View Post
If I use 11.25 pounds of standard 2-row, 1.049 at 5 gallons is actually 61% efficiency.

Your mash ratio with 4.75 gallons is 19qts:11.25lbs = 1.68qts/lb which is a little thin but within reasonalbe limits. The grain will typically soak in about .1 gallons per pound leaving 3.65 gallons to extract. I can understand why the 2.5 gallon sparge was enough.

My MLT also has nearly one gallon of deadspace under the bottom. I shoot for a ratio of 1qt/lb then add one gallon. For your bill, that would be just under 4 gallons. You'd drain out about 3 gallons leaving two batches of 1.75 sparge.

To be honest, if you execute it carefully, you'd likely be able to hit the 1.050 target using 8 pounds of malt because your efficiency will go up because you'll be able to sparge more. Example: 8lbs with a ratio of 1qt/lb is 2 gallons + your 1 gallon deadspace. You'd get out about 2 gallons first runnings leaving two sparge infusions of about 2.1 gallons each.

Yup, the increased sparge volume really does make a big difference. This is why I advocate precise AG techniques because throwing a few extra pounds of malt into the bill isn't always the answer.
So what specific effects may this have on the beer?
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