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Old 10-21-2009, 10:03 PM   #11
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I follow the method described by cvstrat. Use BeerSmith to figure my mash temperature and volume. After draining, see how much I still need to hit my target volume and that's how much I sparge, divided into two sparges.

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Old 10-21-2009, 10:35 PM   #12
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Even at a 1.5:1 water to grain ratio you aren't going to drain off enough to have a 50/50 split due to absorbtion.

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Old 10-21-2009, 10:57 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by emgesp1 View Post
I thought both runnings need to be equal for best brewhouse efficiency?

Shouldn't the amount of your first runnings that is collected in your kettle be more like 3.75 gallons and then sparge with another 3.75 if your aiming for 7.5 gallons preboil?
Your first runnings volume will be based on the qts/lb used, and grain absorbtion. Many batch spargers use a double batch sparge method and split their sparge water volume equally, and sparge twice.

I don't think that a single sparge would necessarily be more efficient, actually two sparges would rinse more sugar from the grains increasing efficiency. However, some data shows that the wort quality is better with a single sparge, or even a no sparge.

I double batch sparge without mashing out and get ~80% brewhouse efficiency.
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Old 10-22-2009, 12:18 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by emgesp1 View Post
I thought both runnings need to be equal for best brewhouse efficiency?

Shouldn't the amount of your first runnings that is collected in your kettle be more like 3.75 gallons and then sparge with another 3.75 if your aiming for 7.5 gallons preboil?
You also have to calculate your total grain bill. Think of it, there is no way you can get the same volume out of the mash if you have a 20lb grain bill compared to a 10lb grain bill. Unless you want mash soup for the 10lb grain bill.

Yo, cvstrat sweet method for the "on the fly" calculations I will have to try that. I double batch sparge and have never done this I kind of feel like a dufus for not doing so.
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Old 10-22-2009, 01:51 AM   #15
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Then what do people mean when they say you want equal size runnings?

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Old 10-22-2009, 02:08 AM   #16
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Then what do people mean when they say you want equal size runnings?
After the mash, you vorlauf and drain - that is the first running.

Then, many people sparge *twice* - those are the volume amounts that are usually/often the equal in size.

And efficiency isn't your goal - good quality wort at the right gravity and in the right volume is. You can achieve that with 60% efficiency or 80%.
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Old 10-22-2009, 02:23 AM   #17
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I don't know why I thought it meant you wanted to collect just as much wort from your 1st (initial mash) runnings as your 2nd (sparge) runnings.

So, should I uncheck sparge using equal size batches?

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Old 10-22-2009, 02:32 AM   #18
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See why does this guy say different.

"The Basic Batch Sparging Technique"

Using the Batch Sparging method, your goal is to collect two equal volumes of the total wort to be boiled in two mash tun runnings. The first running will be the wort collected from your initial mash. The second will be the wort collected from your sparge.
To achieve this, you will first need to know how much water each step requires. There are lots of formulas that you may have seen that help you figure this out. The water calculation process is a whole article to itself. For now, let me just recommend that you use one of the spreadsheets available on the internet or, better yet, use an inexpensive program like BeerSmith that will help you figure out these exact volumes.

So let's say you have used your BeerSmith program and it says that you need to mash with 4.5 gallons, and sparge with 3.6 gallons in order to achieve two batches of 3.5 gallon wort. Here is how you would procede:

Step 1 - Add your 4.5 gallons and grain together in your mash tun at the correct strike temperature (also calculated in your handy BeerSmith program.) Let it sit for an hour or so.

Step 2 - Open the valve on your mash tun and drain 1 - 2 quarts into a pitcher. Take this and slowly pour it back into the mash tun so as to not disturb the grain bed. Repeat three or four times or until there is no particulate matter coming out and the wort is as clear as it is going to get. This is called the vorlauf and is used to help set the grain bed to be used as a filter when you are draining.

Step 3 - Drain your mash tun completely. Measure the volume for future reference.

Step 4 - Fill your mash tun with the amount of sparge water your calculated earlier. The temperature should be somewhere around 175 degrees. Stir the grain bed to get all those sugars back into solution, and let it sit for about 10 minutes.

Step 5 - Repeat Step 2 by draining and replacing 1 - 2 Quarts at a time until it is relatively clear. You will notice that, this time, your wort has less color than the last step.

Step 6 - Open the spigot and drain this volume into your boil pot. Again, measure the volume for future reference.

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Old 10-22-2009, 03:08 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emgesp1 View Post
See why does this guy say different.

"The Basic Batch Sparging Technique"

Using the Batch Sparging method, your goal is to collect two equal volumes of the total wort to be boiled in two mash tun runnings. The first running will be the wort collected from your initial mash. The second will be the wort collected from your sparge.
To achieve this, you will first need to know how much water each step requires. There are lots of formulas that you may have seen that help you figure this out. The water calculation process is a whole article to itself. For now, let me just recommend that you use one of the spreadsheets available on the internet or, better yet, use an inexpensive program like BeerSmith that will help you figure out these exact volumes.

So let's say you have used your BeerSmith program and it says that you need to mash with 4.5 gallons, and sparge with 3.6 gallons in order to achieve two batches of 3.5 gallon wort. Here is how you would procede:

Step 1 - Add your 4.5 gallons and grain together in your mash tun at the correct strike temperature (also calculated in your handy BeerSmith program.) Let it sit for an hour or so.

Step 2 - Open the valve on your mash tun and drain 1 - 2 quarts into a pitcher. Take this and slowly pour it back into the mash tun so as to not disturb the grain bed. Repeat three or four times or until there is no particulate matter coming out and the wort is as clear as it is going to get. This is called the vorlauf and is used to help set the grain bed to be used as a filter when you are draining.

Step 3 - Drain your mash tun completely. Measure the volume for future reference.

Step 4 - Fill your mash tun with the amount of sparge water your calculated earlier. The temperature should be somewhere around 175 degrees. Stir the grain bed to get all those sugars back into solution, and let it sit for about 10 minutes.

Step 5 - Repeat Step 2 by draining and replacing 1 - 2 Quarts at a time until it is relatively clear. You will notice that, this time, your wort has less color than the last step.

Step 6 - Open the spigot and drain this volume into your boil pot. Again, measure the volume for future reference.

This is another method - single sparge. Some people do no sparge. Cvstrat and I were sharing with you a method many people use - double sparge. They can all work - choose the one that makes sense to you.

In the double sparge method, measure the volume of the first runnings, subtract it from the the total volume you want, divide it in two and that's the amount you use in each sparge. Its very easy.

Edit: I just noticed we both live in Oak Lawn - small world!
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Last edited by Pappers_; 10-22-2009 at 03:13 AM.
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Old 10-22-2009, 04:23 AM   #20
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This is another method - single sparge. Some people do no sparge. Cvstrat and I were sharing with you a method many people use - double sparge. They can all work - choose the one that makes sense to you.

In the double sparge method, measure the volume of the first runnings, subtract it from the the total volume you want, divide it in two and that's the amount you use in each sparge. Its very easy.

Edit: I just noticed we both live in Oak Lawn - small world!
So, I don't have to worry about adding 1/2 gallon of sparge water per lb of grain like someone on the all-grain board recommended?

Beersmith says to add 2.24 gal per sparge. Will I get better extraction this way than the way I was going to do it by just adding all the 3.97 gallons of water?
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