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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Extract Brewing > Constantly short by a gallon or so on batches....
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Old 12-17-2012, 02:10 AM   #1
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Default Constantly short by a gallon or so on batches....

So I have a large outdoor kettle that I use for full-boil batches. I've measured my stir-stick up to the 5 gallon point with a marker and I always measure up to this point before I start the cool-down for the wort, but my last two batches have both come up 3/4-1g short which I noticed both times when I transferred to carboy. What is your technique to making sure you are hitting your targeted batch volume? Please... I am tired of having 10 extra bottles on bottling day!

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Old 12-17-2012, 02:17 AM   #2
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If you are consistently short, try bumping up your target volume. It seems you are miscalculating your final volume with boil off, trub loss, etc.

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Old 12-17-2012, 02:24 AM   #3
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you lose about a gallon during the boiling process.you should be starting with 6 gallons

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Old 12-17-2012, 02:48 PM   #4
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I do stovetop brewing and I learned through a few batches that starting with 2.25 to 2.5 gallons gives me enough for the boil accounting for boiloff.

Then I usually top off to 5.25 or 5.75 gallons depending on the size of the carboy I'm using for that batch. I find I normally lose around 0.5 to 1.0 gallons to trub.

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Old 12-17-2012, 02:58 PM   #5
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I've heard that you also lose some volume (~5%) to the cooling effect. For a 5 gallon batch, that equates to about 1/4 gallon loss, if my calculations are correct. Another 1/2 gallon loss to trub would account for your total 3/4 gallon loss. I aim for 5 3/4 gallons at the end of boil to wind up with about 5 - 5 1/4 gallons to ferment.

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Old 12-18-2012, 01:29 PM   #6
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How much break are you leaving in the kettle?

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Old 12-18-2012, 01:52 PM   #7
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I try to have around six gallons in the kettle after the boil. This way, I can lose a half gallon to trub in the kettle and a half gallon to trub in the fermenter and end up with five gallons to bottle. I find that I lose around two gallons to evaporation during the boil so I always start out with at least eight gallons of wort. It took me several batches to become consistent in this respect. It also helps to learn how to gauge how strong your boil is and try to repeat it from batch to batch.

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Old 12-19-2012, 01:54 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheCrackpot View Post
I try to have around six gallons in the kettle after the boil. This way, I can lose a half gallon to trub in the kettle and a half gallon to trub in the fermenter and end up with five gallons to bottle. I find that I lose around two gallons to evaporation during the boil so I always start out with at least eight gallons of wort. It took me several batches to become consistent in this respect. It also helps to learn how to gauge how strong your boil is and try to repeat it from batch to batch.
It sounds to me like you are loosing an awful lot during the boil. How hard are you boiling? You only need to keep a constant "rolling boil". There is no need to boil the living snot out of it.

For a 5 gallon batch I normally start with 6.25 gallons of water plus my extract. I typically end up with just over the 5 gallon mark into my fermenter with no top off. (I strain down my wort as far as possible). Come bottling day I typically hit 51 12oz bottles (although I keg now). I might only get 49 or 50 if its a heavy ale or I dry hopped the heck out of it.
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Old 12-19-2012, 02:55 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rush View Post
So I have a large outdoor kettle that I use for full-boil batches. I've measured my stir-stick up to the 5 gallon point with a marker and I always measure up to this point before I start the cool-down for the wort, but my last two batches have both come up 3/4-1g short which I noticed both times when I transferred to carboy. What is your technique to making sure you are hitting your targeted batch volume? Please... I am tired of having 10 extra bottles on bottling day!

By "measure up" do you mean that you're adding water to the five gallon mark before cooling??

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