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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Extract Brewing > Converting to Extract - Compensate for Sacharification Temp
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Old 08-26-2013, 04:27 PM   #1
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Default Converting to Extract - Compensate for Sacharification Temp

I need to upgrade my mash tun to handle larger batches. In the meantime, I'm mashing as large a grain bill as my system will handle, and using DME to bring OG up on the finished batch.

The question I have is how do you compensate for higher/lower sacharification temps. i.e., if I have two recipes with identical grain bills, but one calls for sacharification at 149 F and the other at 156 F, how would that affect subbing of DME?

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Old 08-27-2013, 03:03 PM   #2
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I would mash and sparge, check your gravity for the entire volume, then add DME accordingly to reach your pre-boil gravity.

Example:
Pre-boil gravity 1.040 at 6.5 gallons. That's 40 x 6.5 = 260 total gravity points.

If your gravity from the all-grain process is 1.030, that's 30 x 6.5 = 195 gravity points.

DME adds about 45 points per pound per gallon (note: this varies slightly between manufactures).
(260-195) / 45 = 1.44 pounds of DME to reach pre-boil gravity.

This formula applies regardless of your mash temp. In general, the higher the mash temp, the less fermentable and the more body your finished beer will have. Lower mash temps lead to more fermentable and less body in the finished beer. It's conceivable that the gravity reading could be the same between the two mash temps, just one wort being more easily fermented by the yeast.

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Old 08-27-2013, 07:55 PM   #3
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I follow all of that, and definitely thank you for the reply.

What I'm getting at is this:

If I want a thinner, more fermentable wort, adding straight DME makes sense to me. I'm wondering, for cases when I want a more dextrinous/less fermentable wort, if I should be adding something in addition to the DME (like increasing my crystal, munich, etc.)

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Old 08-27-2013, 08:05 PM   #4
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The mouthfeel effect from the mash temp would depend on your percentage of all grain versus extract. In general, yes, adding/increasing crystal will result in a less fermentable beer. Increasing the mash temp will also lead to a less fermentable beer. Truthfully, if you really want to control mouthfeel to the level you seem to want, I would go straight all grain.

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Old 08-27-2013, 08:44 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Pie_Man View Post
The mouthfeel effect from the mash temp would depend on your percentage of all grain versus extract. In general, yes, adding/increasing crystal will result in a less fermentable beer. Increasing the mash temp will also lead to a less fermentable beer. Truthfully, if you really want to control mouthfeel to the level you seem to want, I would go straight all grain.

My wife accuses me of being less than clear all the time, and I think I've managed it again here, lol

I've been brewing all-grain for something like 7-8 years.

I'm currently using a 10gal cooler mash-tun. It's limited to 20ish lb of grain before things start getting frustrating.

I can do 5 gallon batches of high gravity beers and 10 gallon batches of normal brews. For 10 gallon batches of high gravity beers, though, I can't cram enough grain into my mash tun, and have turned to DME to make up the difference.
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Old 08-27-2013, 08:50 PM   #6
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No, that's my fault. You said that in your original post, I just forgot. My wife always tells me I have a bad memory

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Old 08-27-2013, 09:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pie_Man View Post
I would mash and sparge, check your gravity for the entire volume, then add DME accordingly to reach your pre-boil gravity.

Example:
Pre-boil gravity 1.040 at 6.5 gallons. That's 40 x 6.5 = 260 total gravity points.

If your gravity from the all-grain process is 1.030, that's 30 x 6.5 = 195 gravity points.

DME adds about 45 points per pound per gallon (note: this varies slightly between manufactures).
(260-195) / 45 = 1.44 pounds of DME to reach pre-boil gravity.

This formula applies regardless of your mash temp. In general, the higher the mash temp, the less fermentable and the more body your finished beer will have. Lower mash temps lead to more fermentable and less body in the finished beer. It's conceivable that the gravity reading could be the same between the two mash temps, just one wort being more easily fermented by the yeast.
I've asked a similar question before and I got a similar answer but I find the way that you explained it here to be a little more straight forward and easier to grasp. Thanks!

Nice thread by the OP by the way. I'm looking forward to reading some more responses.
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Old 09-05-2013, 03:38 PM   #8
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Let's see if I can nudge the conversation on this with a specific idea that crossed my mind this weekend...

Example: I've got an all-grain recipe that calls for saccharification at 156 F and a grain bill that's about 8 lb too large for my mash tun. This recipe is for a light colored beer.

I can reduce the grain bill by 8 lbs of pale malt and replace it with 5 lbs of DME.

I suspect, though, that DME is more highly fermentable than 8 lbs of pale mashed at 156 F. My concern is that I'll over attenuate and lose body by subbing the DME.

What if I add maltodextrine to the equation? Is there a ratio of MD (or other adjunct) to LME that could be used to approximate the fermentability of pale malt at various mash temperatures?

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Old 09-05-2013, 03:52 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by IvanBrew View Post
What if I add maltodextrine to the equation? Is there a ratio of MD (or other adjunct) to LME that could be used to approximate the fermentability of pale malt at various mash temperatures?
I see your point here, and with the original post in general. I have been wondering about this same topic... mash temp and extract. What I was able to find out is that the fermentability, body, mouthfeel of your extract is going to depend on the type and the manufacturer. With extract, you are subject to whatever the manufacturer mashed at and what ingredients they used.

With the variance from type and manufacturer, I think you have a few possible alternatives:

1: Try it yourself. Try a few different extracts and see what kind of body, mouthfeel you are getting. However, this option takes time, money etc so you might want to skip some steps.

2: Look at the databases or forums posts about the different types of extracts. I am sure people have taken detailed notes on the profiles and mouthfeels from different extracts. My guess is the darker the extract, the less fermentable, more dextrinous it will be. For example, Briess Golden Light (4lovi) vs Briess Light (2lovi... I think).

3: Call the manufacturer. I have thought about doing this and could either be very helpful, or not helpful at all.

4: I guess adding maltodex could help compensate, but I think you would get fine results with the right extract, making that addition unnecessary.

Good luck to you sir, and let us know the results!!
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Old 09-05-2013, 04:10 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IvanBrew View Post
Let's see if I can nudge the conversation on this with a specific idea that crossed my mind this weekend...

Example: I've got an all-grain recipe that calls for saccharification at 156 F and a grain bill that's about 8 lb too large for my mash tun. This recipe is for a light colored beer.

I can reduce the grain bill by 8 lbs of pale malt and replace it with 5 lbs of DME.

I suspect, though, that DME is more highly fermentable than 8 lbs of pale mashed at 156 F. My concern is that I'll over attenuate and lose body by subbing the DME.

What if I add maltodextrine to the equation? Is there a ratio of MD (or other adjunct) to LME that could be used to approximate the fermentability of pale malt at various mash temperatures?
I know that some brands of DME are more fermentable than others, starting from there, I've used Beersmith to convert AG to partial mash by letting BS show me the expected FG of the AG batch, and then match it up to the FG of the new recipe after subbing the specific DME, then adding dextrin malt to the grain bill.
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