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Old 01-27-2010, 08:53 PM   #1
aleiexjr
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Default Beginner's Brewhouse Efficiency

Hello everyone!

I'm getting ready to brew my first all-grain batch. I used the trial version of beersmith to do my recipe, however I'm not sure of how to get an approximate brewhouse efficiency since I've only used malt extracts (getting between 60-75% B. efficiency).

I thought of assuming 100% so that I could learn my actual all-grain brewhouse efficiency using this first time brew as a reference. Although if i actually have less efficiency I won't get the beer I hope for, so... what do you think would be my best approach?

Thank you very much in advance

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Old 01-27-2010, 09:19 PM   #2
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Malt extract gives you 100% into the boiler and then it's reduced only by how much wort you might leave in the kettle as trub.

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Old 01-27-2010, 10:38 PM   #3
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Hit the button and it will give you details on the various parts of brewhouse efficiency.

As far as coming out correctly. I'd assume 60% that way your recipe will come out correctly. If you are better at extracting sugar then at worst you'll end up with a higher og. Not a bad thing. The "potential" increase isn't going to add that much to the og not enough to ruin a beer. So shoot for a middle of the road og according to style. Worst that happens is you end up on th upper end for the style.

The biggest things which effect efficiency are crush, how long you mash, and how long you sparge

Doing a mash badily should get you at least 50% and more realistically you'll end up in the 70s. everything I've read says you want to shoot for mid 70s as that produces a great tasting beer. Its possible to go higher but there are trade offs.

Once you've got a few batchs under your belt you'll know what your process is like and can dial it in better.

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Old 01-27-2010, 11:43 PM   #4
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What equipment are you using for your AG?

Brewhouse Efficiency is two-pronged: first, what percentage of sugars in your grain have been converted through mashing; and second, what percentage of the converted sugars are you able to sparge from the grain.

I would agree with dracus to assume 60% efficiency on your first batch--it wouldn't be unusual to get even lower, and I'd be surprised if you made it to 70. I calculate for 75% myself--remember that an "inefficient" process does not (necessarily) make bad beer!

Your comment about your "efficiency" with extract concerns me, since, as Bobby_M says, there's no efficiency calculation with extract: it's 100% extraction. Do you mean the top-up water after cooling to dilute the boil volume? With AG, you do a full-volume boil--which means if you are doing a 5-gallon batch, you boil approx 5.8 gallons to get about 5-gallons post-boil. But maybe I misunderstand--some more details about your presumed process would help.

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Old 01-28-2010, 03:02 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aleiexjr View Post
Hello everyone!

I'm getting ready to brew my first all-grain batch. I used the trial version of beersmith to do my recipe, however I'm not sure of how to get an approximate brewhouse efficiency since I've only used malt extracts (getting between 60-75% B. efficiency).

I thought of assuming 100% so that I could learn my actual all-grain brewhouse efficiency using this first time brew as a reference. Although if i actually have less efficiency I won't get the beer I hope for, so... what do you think would be my best approach?

Thank you very much in advance
As Bobby_M said, using extract, your efficiency into the kettle will be 100%
If you are only getting 60 - 75% brewhouse efficincy with an extract brew, you are either leaving 25 - 40% of your wort behind in the kettle, or you are not measuring your OG correctly. My guess it that you are measuring the OG after topping off with water, and without mixing the top off water sufficiently with the wort to obtain an accurate OG reading.
For your first all grain brew, I would assume an efficiency of about 70%. You may get more, or you may get less, but you will probably get fairly close to this figure. 100% efficiency is not possible. After measuring your achieved efficiency for the first brew, you can adjust the predicted efficiency for the next brew. It will take a few brews to get the correct efficiency, but if you start at about 70%, none of your estimates will be wildly inaccurate.

-a.
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Old 01-28-2010, 05:02 AM   #6
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Thanks for your comments.

I've been measuring my OG after topping with water, but I thought that was the right way and I guess I've been leaving more worth in the kettle, so I'll also try to get everything now and I'll pay even more attention to my process.

So for this batch I'll assume 65-70% efficiency and I'll keep adjusting this value as I keep brewing more batches.

Anyhow, I'll put my prototype recipe before I start brewing to see what you think about it guys.

Thanks a lot, once again

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