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Old 02-22-2007, 01:44 PM   #1
Tophe
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Default Sparging: AG vs PM

Im trying to understand the process of sparging. Is sparging grains from an AG brew the same process as sparging a PM brew? I did a little research and it seems its a little more complex than I thought, but I think they are referring to AG brews.

Do i need a sparging bucket with a false bottom with a sparging arm and what not? I was going to make this PM brew this weekend, but want to make sure I do it right. This is the mash schedule off the recipe.


Mash Schedule: All grains cracked and put in muslin boiling bag, steeped for 20 minutes at @170 degrees F. Then sparge. Add malt extract and honey and bring to roiling boil before adding hops. 1 tspn irish moss at 45 minutes. Ice bath to chill. Top off to 5 gallons.

I thought I could just heat a gallon of water up, put the grains in a strainer and pour the warm gallon of water through the grains....Does this work, or is this not doing the same thing.

I have a couple of spare 5 gal buckets with spigots on the bottom I could use if i need to.

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Old 02-22-2007, 02:31 PM   #2
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The method to which you first refer is for continuous sparging. While you could certainly use it for partial mashing, it is probably too much effort.

It sounds like the alternative you describe is batch sparging, which many people here use (including myself). If you haven't seen it yet, the entire process is detailed here:

http://www.byo.com/feature/1536.html

I suggest following the technique recommended in the article. It is fast, easy, and doesn't require much equipment (sounds like you have it already). It does require that you steep/mash the grains, however (the timing and temperature may be important depending on what grains you are using). You can't just 'rinse' hot water through the grains, if that is what you were suggesting.

Post some more details of your recipe, and I am sure people here can help you out.

Oh -- BTW, the batch sparging technique described in the article can be modified for AG brewing, too (you just need equipment for bigger quantities of grains and water).

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Old 02-22-2007, 02:39 PM   #3
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The process you use for sparging with PM is really a matter of choice and ultimately equipment. With the right equipment, PM sparging can be identical to AG sparging. But since you're dealing with a smaller, more manageable amount of grain, you can use simpler techniques for PM sparging.

On my first couple batches doing PM I did just as you described: kept the grain in a grain bag, pulled it out after the mash, put it in a strainer over top of my brew kettle, and slowly poured my sparge water over it.

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Old 02-22-2007, 02:48 PM   #4
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Couple of thoughts. If you are steeping at 170*F hopefully you are NOT mashing. You will denature the enzymes required for mashing at this temp. If you have a diastatic grain (base malt, i.e. 2-row) you want to steep it between 150*F and 155*F and then the enzymes will actually break down the starches in your grains.

Another thing is I see you are using honey. If you want some flavor and aroma from the honey I would add it at flameout, or even during secondary or after the main fermentation has slowed down. If you boil it you may boil off volatile flavor and aroma compounds and if you ferment it in primary you will likey ferment it all the way out and although it will add alcohol it probably won't add much else.

Best of luck, keep us up to date on how it goes

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Old 02-22-2007, 03:23 PM   #5
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Yes, batch sparging is what im doing I think. I'll read that article later when I get home from work....looks like what I need.

Heres the recipe I was going to follow.

Stout
(Partial Mash) 5 US gallons


Brewing Method: Partial Mash
Yeast: Wyeast Irish Ale or 2 packets good dry ale yeast
Yeast Starter: @ 16-20 oz slurry
Batch Size: 5 US gallons
Original Gravity:
Final Gravity:
Alcohol Content: %
Total Grains: NA
Color: Creamy black with brown tones
Extract Efficiency: %
Hop IBU's:
Boiling Time: 60 minutes
Primary Fermentation: 5 days at 72F
Secondary Fermentation: 10 days at 72F
Additional Fermentation: 10 days in bottle/keg minumium, improves with additional aging
Grain Bill:
8lbs dark malt extract
1 lb clover honey
16 oz 60L crystal
6 oz roasted barley
4 oz black patent
3 oz chocolate malt
3 oz special B
Hop Bill:
1 oz Chinnok (14% AA)60 minutes
1 oz Target (8.0 AA) 40 minutes
1 oz Fuggles (5% AA) 20 minutes
1 oz Fuggles (5% AA)at end of boil
* AA is aproximation.
Mash Schedule:
All grains cracked and put in muslin boiling bag, steeped for 20 minutes at @170 degrees F. Then sparge. Add malt extract and honey and bring to roiling boil before adding hops. 1 tspn irish moss at 45 minutes. Ice bath to chill. Top off to 5 gallons.
Brewers Notes: Very active fermentation, blew my fermentation lock and sprayed scum all over the closet 1st time I brewed it, would recommend using blow off hose for 1st 2-3 days and then replace with fermentation lock. 3/4 cup corn sugar to bottle/keg or force carbonate. At 10 days in bottle was delicious creamy stout with rich roasted flavor balanced by hops. Honey not detectable.

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Old 02-22-2007, 03:32 PM   #6
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Actually what you have there is called steeping. You do not have any grain that needs to be converted. You essentially are making a grain tea. I would ensure that the grains are not packed tight in the bag and let them sit in water for 20 minutes at around 155°. I think 170° is a little high.
You can then take some hot water and pour in through and over the grains for some additional flavor extraction. How big of a boiling pot do you have?

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Old 02-22-2007, 03:43 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tophe96
Yes, batch sparging is what im doing I think. I'll read that article later when I get home from work....looks like what I need.

Heres the recipe I was going to follow.

Stout
(Partial Mash) 5 US gallons


Brewing Method: Partial Mash
Yeast: Wyeast Irish Ale or 2 packets good dry ale yeast
Yeast Starter: @ 16-20 oz slurry
Batch Size: 5 US gallons
Original Gravity:
Final Gravity:
Alcohol Content: %
Total Grains: NA
Color: Creamy black with brown tones
Extract Efficiency: %
Hop IBU's:
Boiling Time: 60 minutes
Primary Fermentation: 5 days at 72F
Secondary Fermentation: 10 days at 72F
Additional Fermentation: 10 days in bottle/keg minumium, improves with additional aging
Grain Bill:
8lbs dark malt extract
1 lb clover honey
16 oz 60L crystal
6 oz roasted barley
4 oz black patent
3 oz chocolate malt
3 oz special B
Hop Bill:
1 oz Chinnok (14% AA)60 minutes
1 oz Target (8.0 AA) 40 minutes
1 oz Fuggles (5% AA) 20 minutes
1 oz Fuggles (5% AA)at end of boil
* AA is aproximation.
Mash Schedule:
All grains cracked and put in muslin boiling bag, steeped for 20 minutes at @170 degrees F. Then sparge. Add malt extract and honey and bring to roiling boil before adding hops. 1 tspn irish moss at 45 minutes. Ice bath to chill. Top off to 5 gallons.
Brewers Notes: Very active fermentation, blew my fermentation lock and sprayed scum all over the closet 1st time I brewed it, would recommend using blow off hose for 1st 2-3 days and then replace with fermentation lock. 3/4 cup corn sugar to bottle/keg or force carbonate. At 10 days in bottle was delicious creamy stout with rich roasted flavor balanced by hops. Honey not detectable.
Wow -- that's a big stout. Sounds interesting though. But, I would be tempted to omit the honey -- I am not sure what its purpose would be if you added it to the beginning of the boil, except to add some sweetness to the finished brew. But I think this one will be sweet anyways, especially if you use Irish Ale yeast.

Ok, so first off, you are steeping the grains (not an actual mash). This is a bit easier. You will want to add about 1 - 1.5 gallons of hot water to your crushed grains (170F is probably OK, but no higher) and then hold it around 160 degrees for 30 mins. The 170F water will lose some heat when it is mixed with the grains, but you may want to add a wee bit of boiling water if it falls below 150F. Dunk the grain bag up and down lots at the beggining to ensure the water mixes in with all the grains and there are not dry spots.

Second, after your grains have steeped, put the bag in a strainer over the pot, and gently rinse with 170F water until you reach your boil volume. This will rinse out any sugars left in the grains.

Now you can begin your boil. You might also want to add your dry malt extract at the end of the boil instead of the beginning to increase your hop utilization, but you will have to rely on the advice of others here on that one.

Let us know how it turns out after you brew it!
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Old 02-22-2007, 04:38 PM   #8
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A couple years ago i used honey in a nut brown brew during the boil, and i couldnt taste it at all.... Won't it be more sugar which = more alcohol?

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Old 02-22-2007, 05:33 PM   #9
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To my *un*expert eye it appears that the hop bill includes the low utilization you would get with boiling 8 lbs malt extract in ~5 gallons water. 1 oz Chinook for 60 mins and 1 oz Target for 40 mins is alot of potential bittering. It is true that you can add your extract late in the boil. This will increse your potential hop untilization and lighten the color. If you reserve some of your extract for a late boil addition and don't change the hop bill the AA utilization will go up and your beer will be more bitter.

I too am brewing an dark beer that includes honey. Boiled it for 60 mins. It's in the secondary right now. So far there's no honey taste to be detected. Maybe as the beer mellows out it'll come out...

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Old 02-22-2007, 08:11 PM   #10
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My boiling pot only holds 4 gals. So you guys think that by adding some DME later in the boil will bring out the hops flavors more than boiling it for the whole boil?? Just want to make sure Im hearing you right,

Oh, I just got back from the store and they were out of target hops. I am not sure if I got a good substitute or not. I got 1 oz of bullion hops instead. The chart said it was used in stouts. I think the AA was a bit higher.

Looks like im gonna brew tomorrow about this time!

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