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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Extract Brewing > 10 tips to better extract brewing
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Old 01-31-2010, 08:59 PM   #21
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Great tips, I'll be brewing extract for a while, I won't be able to do all grain until I get my own place so I want to make the best beers possible with extract as I can. This article definitely helps. For me the best point was to use as much grains as you can and to steep in a smaller amount of water than add more water for the boil, this is an awesome tip. Now instead of formulating my recipes to include only about 1lb of grain I will try and use 2lbs or more, and it won't be that much harder at all. Thanks again!

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Old 02-08-2010, 04:54 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HSM View Post
Where credit is due:

10 Steps to Better Extract Brewing

Author Chris Colby
Issue October 2005
Chris Colby is the editor of Brew Your Own magazine.


Thanks! I hate not being able to give credit to the appropriate author! I even try to give credit when I "borrow" somebodies one-liners.
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Old 02-08-2010, 05:07 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scotty_g View Post
I think the reason you don't need excess water for steeping/rinsing is because if the pH in your steep is too high, you can extract tannins from the grain. In AG/partial mash/mini mash brewing, the conversion of starch to sugar depends greatly on pH (among other things).
I think that may be it. Although you aren't converting anything in a steep, optimal mash pH is ~5.2. Water is much higher. Grains have a natural buffering ability, and will usually keep a mash in the 1-2qt/lb ratio in the right pH range. 1-2lbs of grain doesn't have the buffering capacity to get 2 gallons of water down to the 5 range. High pH will extract tannins from grain husks, even in a steep. Not sure if this is completely correct, but its my best answer.
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Old 02-12-2010, 03:48 AM   #24
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Ok, so I've been doing late addition extract for a while, but have been steeping around 2 lbs. of specialty grains in 2.5 gal (and boiling the same amount) of water for every brew I've done so far. I think I would benefit from steeping smaller and then boiling around 3-3.5 gals (my pot can handle it).

My question is this - Would I benefit from doing a "mini-mash"? I usually use the whole 6 lb bag of extract for a batch, if I cut that in half I would have to use 4 lbs of 2-row. I don't know if that would fit in my kettle!

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Old 02-26-2010, 07:38 AM   #25
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Talked to the LHBS owner and he helped start doing something akin to partial mash brewing. I've been using steeping grains since I started, but today I substituted some 2-row for a portion of the DME. Came in 0.002 under target but I think that's pretty good for a first try.

Also tried steeping in a much smaller amount of water than usual and boiled in a much larger amount than usual. I made sure to use a kit that I have made recently so that I can compare the product to see if it is any better. Great tips!

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Old 03-02-2010, 06:59 PM   #26
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So, if I'm understanding this right, to steep small and boil big, one should steep in 1-2 gallons, then add a gallon or so and boil at 3 or more?

I had been just steeping/boiling in 2 gallons, then topping off to 5 after the wort had been chilled.

Should I go as low as 1 gallon to steep in, then up to 3 or 4 to boil?

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Old 03-02-2010, 07:31 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dpjosuns View Post
So, if I'm understanding this right, to steep small and boil big, one should steep in 1-2 gallons, then add a gallon or so and boil at 3 or more?

I had been just steeping/boiling in 2 gallons, then topping off to 5 after the wort had been chilled.

Should I go as low as 1 gallon to steep in, then up to 3 or 4 to boil?
I took it to mean that you should steep in at most 1 gallon for 1-2 pounds of grain so that the grain has the ability to lower the PH of the water. Whereas if you steep 1-2 pounds of grain in 2 or more gallons, the grain will not be able to lower the PH to the proper level AND will promote tanins being extracted from the grains.

Then the "boil big" portion is dependent on how many quarts/gallons your brew pot can hold. Basically, max it out with as many gallons as you can.
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Old 03-02-2010, 07:58 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dpjosuns View Post
So, if I'm understanding this right, to steep small and boil big, one should steep in 1-2 gallons, then add a gallon or so and boil at 3 or more?

I had been just steeping/boiling in 2 gallons, then topping off to 5 after the wort had been chilled.

Should I go as low as 1 gallon to steep in, then up to 3 or 4 to boil?
A good rule of thumb is to steep or mash at something between 1 and 3 quarts of water per pound of grain. Adjust according to your recipe is always the smartest approach. I use 2qts/lb in my AG brewing.

Then step up to the biggest boil volume possible, up to around 6gal for a 5gal batch.
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Old 03-02-2010, 08:56 PM   #29
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Interesting, I understand.

Now, why would recipe makers have you boil in 2 gallons, then add later? Just because they're assuming that you'll have a small stockpot and doing it on the stove? Luckily I got a big **** off stockpot and outdoor burner.

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Old 03-02-2010, 10:28 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by dpjosuns View Post
Just because they're assuming that you'll have a small stockpot and doing it on the stove?
These are things nearly everyone has. Anything else would require more money and effort for them to write, upping the cost of your kit.
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