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Old 05-30-2012, 09:31 PM   #1
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Default Grain crush question

ok...as a newbie, I am gathering all the info, b4 I plung into my first allgrain....question, is the only reason you dont crush too small is to reduce the chance of a stuck drain ,sparge??.....or is there other reasons, that my lil pee brain cant think of?....thankx....Tom

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Old 05-30-2012, 09:35 PM   #2
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shredded hulls can make the brew tannic.

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Old 05-30-2012, 09:39 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by TimpanogosSlim View Post
shredded hulls can make the brew tannic.
+1
Basically you want a crush that gives you a good ability to properly extract and mash but not so fine that you turn the grain to dust which can create the tannins as well as a stuck sparge. If you are purchasing your own mill it's a good idea to start with the factory setting and go from there. If your LHBS is crushing the grains for you then they should do a pretty good job, hopefully

I go by a credit card thickness, if it fits through snuggly I'm good with that.
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Old 05-30-2012, 09:42 PM   #4
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shredded hulls can make the brew tannic.
Is that true? I never heard that before. I thought you'd need some high temps or have ph issues to get tannins.
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Old 05-30-2012, 09:44 PM   #5
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Mostly stuck sparges. The more shredded the husks, theory is the more risk of tannins but in order for that to happen you need higher temps and alkaline PH

I use a Corona style mill and my husks are fairly "shredded" in that they are not whole, mostly halves and thirds of husks. No appreciable differences in quality over two neighbors who home brew with fancy mills, fly sparging, etc..

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Old 05-30-2012, 10:19 PM   #6
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Larger grind is definitely mostly about lautering (preventing stuck mash/stuck sparge), although tannins can be an issue depending on your water chemistry. If you're concerned about breaking up your hulls and will be milling your own grain (not using the mill at the store), you should condition your malt before milling. This involves adding a small amount of moisture back to the malt which makes the hulls much more pliable and much less prone to tearing. Some people use this to improve lautering efficiency and others do it so they can make their crush finer to get more efficiency out of the grain. Doing a quick search for "malt conditioning" should give you all the info you need.

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Old 05-31-2012, 02:00 AM   #7
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thankx for the replies.....love this site!!!

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Old 05-31-2012, 02:14 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tnsen View Post
ok...as a newbie, I am gathering all the info, b4 I plung into my first allgrain....question, is the only reason you dont crush too small is to reduce the chance of a stuck drain ,sparge??.....or is there other reasons, that my lil pee brain cant think of?....thankx....Tom
In my opinion as a newcomer to brewing, I have to say that crushing the grain is one thing you might want to not worry about--just have your supplier do it for you at least at the beginning. You'll have other things to worry about that are more important until you are ready to do your own crushing.
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Old 05-31-2012, 02:42 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TimpanogosSlim View Post
shredded hulls can make the brew tannic.
I think this is not true at all.

I've been overgrinding my grain forever and have not had astringent brews since my first few (oversparging).

In my first year of all grain brewing I tried to maximize my efficiency by sparging many, many times. What I did was lower the gravity significantly and, consequently, increase the pH. The pH increase is what ultimately (I think) caused tannins to be pulled out of the husks.

So, in my experience, the crush has NOTHING to do with astringency. Just don't oversparge. If you batch sparge, don't do more than 2. If you BIAB, no worries. If you fly sparge, watch the pH and keep it under 6 or watch the gravity and keep it over 1.010. Please check these numbers through google as I just invented them.

To answer the OP, milling too fine can indeed cause lautering problems. If you use a braid, you might need to add rice hulls. I have a keggle with a false bottom that I've fiddled with for a while and I can mill as fine as a want and never get a stuck sparge. Ever. Cheers!
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Old 05-31-2012, 04:16 AM   #10
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It seems to me that the only real likely way having shredded hulls would increase astringency is if the hulls got shredded so fine that you ended up pulling them through your false bottom when lautering and then ended up boiling them.

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