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Old 11-30-2012, 04:24 AM   #1
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Default Starting to doubt LHBS

So, I've switched to AG brewing and finished my 4th one today. First two were fly sparge because my LHBS said that was the best way, but I did the previous two as batch sparges because after reading on HBT I learned that with a bazooka screen, which I use, batch sparging is the best.

I was at my LHBS tonight asking about something and I said I batch sparged my last two brews and he said I should fly sparge like he told me. I don't want this to turn into a batch v. fly sparge . . . but I'm wondering if maybe my LHBS is giving me misinformation/old school info that I should rely on as much as when I first started.

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Old 11-30-2012, 04:28 AM   #2
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Sounds like the guy is stuck in his methods/ways. Sparge method/style depends a good amount on your mash tun. If it's setup so that batch sparging is better, then batch sparge with it. If you're more comfortable batch sparging, then batch sparge. If you're getting good/great beer in line with what you want with batch sparging, then keep on doing it. Basically [IMO], he's talking out his sphincter.

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Old 11-30-2012, 02:19 PM   #3
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What were you asking him that you got on the subject of sparging methods?

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Old 11-30-2012, 02:27 PM   #4
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There are pros and cons to both sparging methods and neither one is more or less beneficial IMO/IME. Everyone has their own way of doing things based on what works best for his/her individual setup. I batch sparge, I get 82% consistent efficiency with my mash/lauter and save the hour it takes to fly sparge. I have a friend that fly sparges, he operates at 80% efficiency and that's his process and he's happy with it.

I'm not saying you will gain or lose efficiency, I'm just saying different set ups work well for different brewers Find one that works for you and stick with it!

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Old 11-30-2012, 02:32 PM   #5
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Just like here, people have their own ways of doing things, and many folks don't acknowlege that any other methods just might be valid. The Batch vs fly argument is one of those things.

And it's been going on forever.

We're having a pretty good and MOSTLY civil discussion about how there's mutliple ways of doing things in THIS thread- The ever changing opinions of proper techniques in brewing.

It doesn't mean the lhbs person is bad, or whatever, just that he has HIS way of doing things, and you yours...They both work, they're both valid ways of doing things...It's a matter of preference.

This only should upset you, if you have doubts about your knowledge....Does batch work for you? Fine? You wanna experiment? Then Fly and see what works for you....or don't for that matter, it's your beer. Half my brew buddies Fly, the rest of us batch, and we all make good beers.

It really doesn't matter what/how other people do things, if we're happy with what works for us.

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Old 11-30-2012, 02:38 PM   #6
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This is an old argument, and it comes down to this: find a method that works for you. There are as many methods for brewing as there are brewers, and batch vs. fly sparging is one that's been done to death with no definitive evidence that it's better one way or the other. I happen to think that with a braid batch sparging is probably better, but the most important thing is to try things out, figure out which works best for you and try not to tell other people they're idiots for doing something different. Your LHBS guy has his own method, and I've no doubt it probably works great for him. That doesn't mean it has to be YOUR method. Find what works for you and don't worry about what he tells you you "should" be doing.

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Old 11-30-2012, 02:48 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jerrodm View Post
This is an old argument, and it comes down to this: find a method that works for you. There are as many methods for brewing as there are brewers, and batch vs. fly sparging is one that's been done to death with no definitive evidence that it's better one way or the other. I happen to think that with a braid batch sparging is probably better, but the most important thing is to try things out, figure out which works best for you and try not to tell other people they're idiots for doing something different. Your LHBS guy has his own method, and I've no doubt it probably works great for him. That doesn't mean it has to be YOUR method. Find what works for you and don't worry about what he tells you you "should" be doing.
And batch or Fly are actually just TWO ways of sparging. A few years ago the now defunct Australian Homebrewer's Podcast Craftbrewer Radio did a show on sparging, and they actually talked about iirc 5-6 different sparging methods. I wish they hadn't taken down all there files and articles. I can't remember them.

But one of them had to do with using rims and herms setups and having the sparge water flow in from the lower part of the mash tun, as opposed to the water raining down on top of the grain...

And then there was the Hybrid batch/fly method talked about on here.
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Old 11-30-2012, 02:57 PM   #8
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I'd agree with duboman for the most part. It's usually true that fly sparging is slightly more efficient than batch sparging and could even be significantly more efficient on large grain bills. But, we're not talking about 70 vs 90 here, more like a few points, if that. A poorly run fly sparge (one that can create channeling) could turn out even less efficient than a batch sparge, however.

I did a fly sparge on my rig on my second to last brew and barely noticed an increase, if at all. To be fair, I'm getting between 82-88% when batch sparging, so it's hard to eek out a better result from that. Needless to say, I didn't really see a benefit from the additional 45-60 minutes or so that it took, so I'll certainly prefer batch sparging for time reasons. I do want to compare a double-batch sparge to fly sparging on a big grain bill, though, to see if I can hit the high 80's on a grain heavy batch.

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Old 12-02-2012, 01:09 AM   #9
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FORD vs. CHEVY vs. DODGE........ What ever works for the owner is BEST!!!!!

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Old 12-02-2012, 04:15 PM   #10
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check out the beersmith podcast series. There is a great show on batch sparging with Denny Conn. It is on itunes under beersmith podcasts. search for batch sparging or Denny Conn. I think this would be a helpful resource.
This is a very equipment dependent topic.
Cheers

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