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Old 08-30-2011, 03:58 AM   #281
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Hector, are you certain you are getting full modification of the barley in your initial malting process? If so, how do you know this? I think this is possibly the root of your problem, even crappy barley should yield more gravity points than you are getting.

Also, its kindof hard to measure such small amounts of product consistently, you may try a larger sample.

Also, a big part of the "malty" flavor of crystal comes from the kilning process which caramelizes the sugars within the grain. Your stewed malt should be sweet but it will not be very malty until it is kilned.

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Old 08-30-2011, 10:29 AM   #282
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Hector, are you certain you are getting full modification of the barley in your initial malting process? If so, how do you know this? ....
To see if the seeds are fully modified , I check out small samples of them from different regions on the pan .

When I see most of the Acrospires are 75-100% the length of the kernel , I take them for stewing .

I do not cut the seeds . I can see them growing underneath the husk .

I can make 1.5-2 Ounces each time according to the pan's dimensions .

Besides , I thought that the amount of specialty malt should not be more than 20% of the grain bill .

However , I don't know if that should also be so by steeping grains .

Is it wisely to use for example 3.5 Oz. of crystal malt as steeping grains in a 1-liter-batch ( O.G. = 1.050 ) ?!

After stewing I tasted some of them and noticed the sweetness , then I steeped them ( 1.5 Oz. ) in 1 liter of water at 160F for 30 minutes and then boiled it to reduce the Volume to 500 ml . After cooling , I checked the Gravity and tasted some . It was not so sweet as the seeds and there were just a slight malty flavor . Although , it was not so bitter as the previous batch .

Hector
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Old 08-30-2011, 02:42 PM   #283
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O.K. BUT it would be difficult for me to keep the kiln temperature constant at 176-185 °F for 3-5 Hours .

Besides , then I should rehydrate the pale malt and stew it again !

Or do you mean mashing by that ?!

Hector
Yeah I meant to mash the home made pale malt alone to get an idea of the extract potential of the grain itself. It is an attempt to eliminate the stewing process itself as the culprit of your extract loss. I think you can kiln the green malt in an oven with just the light on, or perhaps two lights (run a cord of another lamp in through the door) You really only need to get to about 90-100f to kiln to pale malt level. If you do 4 oz to a one quart batch you get one pound per gallon and end up with a standard points per pound per gallon(PPG) measure used by maltsters to measure the extract potential of the grain.

Pale malt should be somewhere in the vicinty of 1.038 I believe. and it looks like crystal 60 should have about 34 ppg. course it's not that simple because you have to know the average efficiency of your method. So to determine that you would start by mashing 4 oz of commercial pale a couple of times and getting your average efficiency (save that wort and can it or freeze it for starters).

So If store pale malt gets an average of 1.028 at the 4oz per quart test size you have 73% efficiency in your system.

Then test your home malted 'pale' malt and any difference between your average OG and that of the commercial stuff is attributable to either the grain you are using or your malting technique.

Then mash 4 oz of your home stewed crystal all by itself (I know it won't convert but the OG should be more or less accurate still as the mash process has already happened in the stewing step) and the difference between that average and the average of your home kilned 'pale' malt is attributable directly to the stewing process (when the different PPG is taken into account)

Whew that was long winded.
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Old 08-30-2011, 07:26 PM   #284
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Yeah I meant to mash the home made pale malt alone to get an idea of the extract potential of the grain itself....
Thanks a lot that you show me a way to analyze the grain and my technique .

In fact , I've also thought about making pale malt but I found it more difficult and complicated than crystal malt .

Besides , dealing with mash water is not so easy for me , as it needs adjusting the profile , the pH and so on .

That's why I intended to make and use steeping grains .

As far as I know , making pale malt is not just kilning at about 100F . The green malt should be dried in two stages , first at

about 100-125F until the moisture of the grain gets down to 10% and then at 140-160F until the moisture is at or below 6% .

Then it is kilned at 176-185F for 3-5 Hours to produce standard pale malt .

According to an article titled "Malting Your Own" from "BYO" magazine , it can also be kilned at higher temperatures ( 220-400F ) .

It recommends kilning at 220F for 4 Hours to produce Munich malt . It's also mentioned in the article that more highly kilned malts will

have little or no enzymatic power .

So , for example , is 400F too high for kilning ?!

I would rather kiln at 250F , as it's much easier for me to keep it at this temperature constantly in the Oven .

What do you think about that ?!

By the way , I talked recently to another grain seller and he said that he has gotten some grains with a relatively good quality , but the problem is that he works and lives in another city . He promised to bring some sample for me as soon as he comes to our city for any reason ( may be next Week ) .

I'll try to make some crystal malt using that sample to see if there would be any difference .

Hector
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Old 08-30-2011, 10:35 PM   #285
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I am working on rekilning commercial pale to get 'mild' malt right now, hence my somewhat scientific method oriented thinking right now. I kilned pale malt at 230f for 45 minutes to get roughly 5-6 SRM color. Still awaiting results on enzyme activity. My extract was fine, even a little higher than with the control pale malt but I suspect that is do to inconsistant milling.

You are right about the kilning temp for pale malt. still I imagine you could just dry, mill and mash some of your green malt to get a feel for extract potential related to the malting process v. the stewing process.

The low temp drying process it so ensure that while the enzymes are active in the green malt the are not denatured. then once moisture levels are low enough you can safely go up to 200-250f without losing to much enzymatic activity.

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Old 08-31-2011, 10:40 AM   #286
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I am working on rekilning commercial pale to get 'mild' malt right now, hence my somewhat scientific method oriented thinking right now.
Imagine I'm going to make pale malt using 2 Oz. of 2-row Barley .

After obtaining the green malt and starting the drying process , how can I determine the moisture% ?

I know that it's done by weighing the seeds , and the article gives some reference , but it says for each pound !

How can I do that in a smaller scale ( Ounces ) ?!

Hector
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Old 08-31-2011, 04:02 PM   #287
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I would start by weighing in metric. You would have to the pre malting weight in grams (maybe even miligrams) that is assumed to be around 10-14% (Check me on that) So 2 oz if ~56 grams so 5.6 grams water steep to 35-45% (let's stick with low end for ease) adding 14 grams water total sample weight is 70 grams, malt, dry to about 4% (call it 5% cause it's easier on my head) so we are down to 2.8 grams water for a total sample weight of 53.2 grams. At this scale it is pretty hard to figure these small numbers cause the margin of error is enough to throw things off a lot. but 100 grams starting weight is just about .25 pounds or 4 oz so that might be a little easier to handle then it's just

100 g at 10% = 10 g water
125 g at 35% = 35 g water
94 g at 4% = 4 g water

still you have to work in a margin of error for sampling loss, chaff loss, oops I dropped some down the drain loss etc.

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Old 09-07-2011, 01:31 PM   #288
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I just filled a ziplock bag with 2 Oz. of crystal malt ( not milled ) which I recently made and pushed the air out of the bag and

put it in a Pot , but it stays on the surface of water .

Is it because the seeds are dried ?

Would it be the same with the green malt ?!

Are you sure that I can keep this bag for 1-2 Hours at 160F and no undesired thing will happen to the plastic ?!

Or for example , giving plastic flavor to the seeds ?!

Hector
If you're planning to use plastic bags, I'd highly recommend the "freezer" bags...they generally have a better seal and the plastic is both thicker and a different formula that has more resistance to temps (high and low), less oxygen permeability (to reduce freezer burn"), and more chemical resistance (to store harsh things like acidic tomato sauce). You can actually feel the difference in materials - just rub it between your fingers and you'll notice a remarkably different friction coefficient. Ziploc brand seem to have better seals than the Glad brand, in my experience. If you're concerned about leakage, you can always double-bag....it may take a tiny bit longer to get to temp inside, but not by much.

Any plastic bag full of grain that is not vaccuum-sealed is going to float...you simply cannot squeeze all of the air out that is between the grains. Drop something into the pot to act as a buffer between the bag and the pot bottom (a small plate, a few rocks, whatever) so that any burner heat isn't going to melt the bag, toss the bag in and drop something heavy on top to hold it down.
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Old 07-18-2012, 10:52 AM   #289
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Hey everyone I'm a home malter too so I thought I'd let you know how I go about it. I use feed barley because that is all I have access too and after malting my grain yields about 80% the sugars the commercial stuff does for the same weight. I do a soak for 24 hours at 15 degrees and I use an air pump to aerate the water the whole time, I use 2 big air stones. After this I drain the water off and let sit in the bucket for another 24 hours at 15 degrees. I then put my grain which is now chitting into trays about 10-15cm deep and keep this at you guessed it 15 degrees for 3 or 4 days until its ready (acrospire on average 75-100% length of grain). I will give the malt a turn every day sometimes twice and make sure it doesn't dry out, I just give it a little spray if needed.

I then dry my malt in the sun, its the hard way to do it because of the birds and weather conditions but it works well, takes about 2 days in the sun to dry hard. Anyway I make my beer from it and make my own crystal too - its good beer and I'm happy. I hope this helps. By the way I do all my malting in a fridge with a temp controller, a few kilograms at a time.

Enjoy your malting - it makes for cheap beer and is satisfying!

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Old 08-18-2012, 02:57 PM   #290
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For those of you interested in home malting (And every minute detail of malting) I found a link to the quintessential malting book on google books, there is also quite a bit of brewing history and methods referenced in the book, a ton of reading: http://books.google.com/books?id=s9t...page&q&f=false
Its only $120 for the ebook.
Now all you need are a few free months of reading time

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