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Old 09-08-2011, 11:37 AM   #1
Dannyjeni
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Default The boil?

Well, I'm taking my first steps outside of mr. Beer world this weekend. I'll be brewing up a "brewers best" extract kit (falconers flight).
This kit has some extra steps (a lot, actually) but I'm not sure about a few things and I was hoping someone could help me out:
1. When steeping the grains, do I leave the heat on and should I cover the pot or leave it uncovered?
2. During the 60-minute boil, how vigorous should it be? A rolling boil, or what? Again, covered or uncovered?

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

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Old 09-08-2011, 11:51 AM   #2
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Good Luck!
1. You can leave the heat on if you can maintain it at a steady temp, and also be careful because you can burn them a bit on the bottom of the pot. Don't rush the steeping grains though. I would suggest getting it to your target temp and turning it off, then cover it up with the grains in there.

2. rolling boil yes, but not too vigorous. UNCOVERED!
Cool quickly!

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Old 09-08-2011, 11:51 AM   #3
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Turn the burner off once you reach 150 degrees, then steep the grains for 30 minutes i used to tie the grain bag to the handle of the pot then after thirty minutes squeeze it with a pair of tongs, a small boil or a rolling boil will be fine but watch out for boil overs!

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Old 09-08-2011, 11:54 AM   #4
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1. heat on/off, just as long as it constant at the temp indicated

2. Rolling boil

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Old 09-08-2011, 11:54 AM   #5
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Welcome to graduation from Mr Beer! Hope you find it as addictive as I do.

1) personally, I don't think it much matters whether you steep with lid on or not. Temp, however, does matter. Based on how well, your pot maintains heat, you'll need to keep the heat on (at least at a minimum setting) to maintain temps.

2). From my experience, I use different types of boils during my brew day. I use a vigorous boil at first when I'm getting started, or when I need to really boil off alot to get down to volume. For most of my day, though, I use a gentle boil.

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Old 09-08-2011, 05:39 PM   #6
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This is what I've gathered:
1. It's ok to cover during the steeping
2. Don't cover during the boil
3. A rolling boilmis recommended during the boil, but not overly aggressive

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Old 09-08-2011, 05:45 PM   #7
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What problems would an "aggressive" boil cause?

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Old 09-08-2011, 05:49 PM   #8
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Do yourself a favour and make a wort chiller first. I did one big boil before going out and making one. Waiting for water to cool sucks, and you'll be tempted to pitch yeast when it's still too hot (I did). Just search the DIY forum for inspiration. It's a really easy project, especially if you can borrow a friend's pipe bender.

I steep with lid on, using it to hold the grain bag off of the bottom of the pot. When I hit target temperature, I just turn off the heat and let it steep for 20 minutes. The wort will only go down about 3* during this time.

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Old 09-08-2011, 06:04 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mychalg9 View Post
What problems would an "aggressive" boil cause?
If your boil is too aggressive you can boil off more water than planed which will lead to a higher OG than planned. Also if you are using extract you can get some caramelization, affecting the overall final product.
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Old 09-08-2011, 06:07 PM   #10
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What problems would an "aggressive" boil cause?
None at all. If you boil your pot dry, maybe youd have a problem but an "aggressive" boil is much better than a simmer!

You want a boil, commonly called a "rolling boil" so that the hops oils can isomerize. The wort needs to be boiling for the oils do isomerize in the wort and provide the bittering balance. Without a rolling boil, the beer will often be too sweet.
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