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Old 12-09-2008, 06:20 PM   #1
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Default Partial Mash Questions

Does this sound right?

I am using an unmodified 5 gallon igloo water cooler. I add a couple of gallons of 170* water, and let it sit for about 10 minutes, then drain it. Then, I add my nylon grain bag with 2-3lbs of base malts. I pour about a quart of 160* water per pound and put the lid on. Every 10 minutes, I check the temp and raise and lower the bag a couple of times. If the temp drops below 150*, I add a little bit of boiling water, and raise the bag a couple of times to mix it in. After about 50 minutes, I drain the wort and slowly pour 1/2 gallon of 170* water per pound of grain over the bag, then raise and lower the bag several times. Then, I lift the bag and let it drain (NO squeezing).

I put the wort (mash and sparge) into my boil pot and add a muslim bag with my specialty grains. I bring it to a boil, removing the bag before it hits the boiling point.

Sound right?

I missed my target gravity by a bit Sunday and want to make sure I didn't miss anything.

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Old 12-09-2008, 10:21 PM   #2
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Well - it's the hard way but sounds about right. I suppose partial Mash is the correct term as opposed to mini mash. I would put the specialty grains in with the other grains.

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Old 12-09-2008, 10:27 PM   #3
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You want to put your specialty grains in with the mash- no need to steep them separately after the mash.

It sounds like this method will work, but the efficiency won't be great (as you've discovered). A couple of little tweaks might help. One- don't drain the water out of the mash tun after you preheat it. Say you want to mash at 153- add 1.25 quarts of water per pound of grain, and add it at 170 degrees. When the temperature drops to 164 degrees of that water, then add the grain bag and dunk it well, smooshing it around with a spoon so that the grains are thoroughly wetted. Cover, and mash for one hour. Drain it, and then pour half of the sparge water over the grains, stirring well. Drain that and do it again with the second half of the sparge water. You can use up to .5 gallons of water per pound of grain for the sparge, or until you hit your boil volume.

See Deathbrewer's tutorial for pictures of this.

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Old 12-10-2008, 01:30 PM   #4
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OK, I will take your advice for the next batch.

I thought the specialty grains needed to steep at a higher temperature, about 170*.

There is a lot of information out there, some of which contradicts some of the other.

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Old 12-10-2008, 05:45 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cpt_Kirks View Post
I thought the specialty grains needed to steep at a higher temperature, about 170*.
I'm not sure if that's true, I've seen directions that said to steep at 155 - but they'll get the 170* when you sparge anyway. I do my 4-5 lb PMs with a grain bag in a 2 gallon cooler, then for the sparge I put the bag into my brew kettle with the proper amount of 170* sparge water for 5-6 minutes, lifting it up and down a few times to get a good rinse. Best I can tell I'm getting 70-75% efficiency with this method.

There's nothing really wrong with steeping the specialty grains separately, it's just an unnecessary extra step. If you're going to perform a mash, everything can go in - even adjuncts like flaked corn or oats (provided you have enough base malt to convert them).
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Old 12-10-2008, 08:09 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ifishsum View Post
I do my 4-5 lb PMs with a grain bag in a 2 gallon cooler, then for the sparge I put the bag into my brew kettle with the proper amount of 170* sparge water for 5-6 minutes, lifting it up and down a few times to get a good rinse. Best I can tell I'm getting 70-75% efficiency with this method.
Ooo, I like that idea!
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Old 12-10-2008, 08:15 PM   #7
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yeah, steeping grains should go no higher than 170. mash temps are ideal.

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Old 12-13-2008, 08:04 PM   #8
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Well, I am putting the good advice above into practice right now. Brewing an Alt, partial mash.

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