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Old 02-15-2014, 04:49 PM   #11
JediMeister
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Link to recipe of the beer in discussion is in post 5.

I hope efficiency and mash temp is my main problem. They are something I have been working on correcting anyway. Mash temp was just a mistake the calculator I used was taking pre heating into account and I didn't realize that.

I am adding a sight glass to my pot before my next brew so I can measure volumes more accurately.

Any more advice or tweaks to my routine would be helpful. I am thinking of doing a basic cream ale or something simple to get my process down better. Thanks

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Old 02-15-2014, 04:52 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joyceman View Post
Poor efficiency and mashing a little low might account for your problems with this one.

Id look and see what you can do to up your efficiency or factor in low efficiency when putting together your grains next time.
Agreed. I would expect a 3.8% beer that was mashed quite low to taste thin. Definitely make sure your volumes are on. If they were correct it looks like you're down around 53-54% efficiency. I'm not in the group who thinks you should chase ever increasing efficiency, but I would at least try to get up around 65% or so. First I would check our crush. It sounds like a batch sparge, what is temp of your sparge water? You don't need to let it sit long when sparging but do stir really well. What kind of tun are you using, is there a lot of deadspace or did you have a lot of leftover wort?
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Old 02-15-2014, 04:54 PM   #13
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First thing to check is the crush. Next, make sure you're not getting doughballs when you mash in. Stir the hell out of the mash both at doughin and when you sparge.

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Old 02-15-2014, 05:20 PM   #14
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I am pretty new as well but I have been adding my water to my mash bucket first then slowly add the grains while stirring to avoid dry balls during mashing.

Not to hijack the thread or anything but it's given me good efficiency so far. What do you guys think?


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Old 02-15-2014, 05:32 PM   #15
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You're doing a 5 gallon batch in a 15 gallon tun...a 10 gallon tun would be better, as there is likely a lot of empty space. I had a problem with my Igloo cooler not maintaining my temps (over an hour I lost around 3 degrees...and that was with preheating and the lid filled with foam sealant). I have remedied the problem by placing the stainless steel lid of my old 5 gallon pot on top of the mash, then putting on the cooler lid. I now hold steady, even when I brewed last week during snowmageddon.

If you are mashing low and still getting that poor efficiency, you need to check your grind...the grind will affect the body as well. Last resort: add malto dextrin.

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Old 02-15-2014, 05:47 PM   #16
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First, don't get discouraged. We have all had these sorts of problems. The first thing I would do is calibrate your thermometer. My old mash thermometer was reading 8 degrees high and I had the same issue that you have.

If you really want to boost maltiness, I would try brewing the same recipe a few times and experiment with mash temps and different grains. You could try something simple like 2-row 80% and Munich/Vienna 20%. Then brew it again with Maris Otter and Munich. Try mashing at 155 to 158 and see how it turns out. The key is to keep it simple for a while. I would also recommend using Brewing Classic Styles as a good baseline for recipes.

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