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Old 08-15-2013, 06:26 AM   #11
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I love using Beersmith.
I found it took a couple of brews to dial in the equipment profile. I still get some variance in my efficiency, but the beers have been great. You will need to learn what grains go together in what percentages as you can get something that looks good but will not be right by using too much crystal or smoked malt etc.

It is a great tool but it is still that, a tool. If you don't use it right you will not be satisfied with the results.
Yes, BS is a great tool with pro's and cons.
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Old 08-26-2013, 06:32 AM   #12
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Default BeerSmith water volumes way off.

I must I'm doing something wrong, but these are the pitfalls I'm referring to. I'm planning to do an easy cooler mash, (normally I mash and boil in my kettle) and set into BS a 10 gallon cooler-kettle mash with 23 lbs of grist. BeerSmith calls for 80 quarts of water which is ludicrous!!!! I need 40 tops! I enjoy the program as a log and guide, but what major aspect am I missing here to get this kind of doubling! Stupid!

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Old 08-26-2013, 04:10 PM   #13
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I must I'm doing something wrong, but these are the pitfalls I'm referring to. I'm planning to do an easy cooler mash, (normally I mash and boil in my kettle) and set into BS a 10 gallon cooler-kettle mash with 23 lbs of grist. BeerSmith calls for 80 quarts of water which is ludicrous!!!! I need 40 tops! I enjoy the program as a log and guide, but what major aspect am I missing here to get this kind of doubling! Stupid!
Its the No mash out setting, duh.
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Old 08-26-2013, 09:19 PM   #14
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Its the No mash out setting, duh.
No mash out, or no sparge? That sounds a lot more like no sparge.

That in and of itself is a complaint about BeerSmith. The equipment settings can get complicated.
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Old 08-27-2013, 04:53 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by LandoLincoln View Post
Do some research on setting up the equipment profile right.
+1.... An individual equipment profile can take a little bit of work, but once BS understands how YOUR system works, then things start falling into place.
Quote:
Originally Posted by kh54s10 View Post
I love using Beersmith.
I found it took a couple of brews to dial in the equipment profile. I still get some variance in my efficiency, but the beers have been great. You will need to learn what grains go together in what percentages as you can get something that looks good but will not be right by using too much crystal or smoked malt etc.

It is a great tool but it is still that, a tool. If you don't use it right you will not be satisfied with the results.
ABsolutely to this ^. BS can really help a new brewer understand recipe formulation, etc... BUT if you do not set it up correctly then it is complicates it a lot. The program is only as smart as the user.
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Old 09-10-2013, 12:13 AM   #16
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BeerSmith has no flaws.

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Old 09-13-2013, 05:46 AM   #17
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You want some BS pitfalls? I'll give you two big ones:

Efficiency is 'to the fermenter'- Read up on this, and how you would have to deal with changing your efficiency if you adjust your trub loss per recipe, or ever. Or, just set 'trub loss' to '0', and use the much more appropriate 'kettle efficiency' and a batch size of what is in the kettle post boil.

Batch sparge and BIAB efficiency- BS, and most other packages also, don't handle batch sparge or BIAB properly. According to the physical laws of the universe, your efficiency decreases as OG increases, when using these sparging methods. BS has no good way to accommodate these styles, and, even worse, leads you to incorrect values if you leave your efficiency static (as they recommend).
Ok of all my HBT research this is the big one. Thanks. I'm continuing to research and apply your feedback. Thanks again. I've been making beers myself and friends like for nearly 2 decades and I like really software programs. Thanks for participating my thread, I'll let you know what I figure out.
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Old 09-13-2013, 09:33 PM   #18
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Old 09-14-2013, 12:07 AM   #19
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I do BIAB all-grain brewing. It took three brews collecting the volume, temperature, & sg readings at each critical step of the process to dial in the software to a very accurate predictor of my results.

When I changed my set-up recently due to a larger brew pot, incorporating a batch sparge, and increasing my finished volume, it took two brews after changing my equipment set up to again dial it in.


Basically, if you try to use the canned set-ups that come with the program and do not try to customize it to your specific equipment; if you don't alter the mashing schedule to reflect what you actually do then you will be more at risk of not hitting the program targets for your recipe.

The software is my no means perfect and I do have a number of simple work-arounds for doing tasks outside of the brew day. Remember also, it is only a simulation of your possible results! I've tried a couple of the other brewing software packages and they are all the same in that they only can perform according to the information put into them.

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Old 09-14-2013, 12:20 PM   #20
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Please relax and don't take this the wrong way....

I'm a home brewer. I spent $20 on a software package to help me be a better brewer because I'm a home brewer. Not a pro brewer or computer programmer or accountant.
I get that BS software may not be doing what it does correctly and even wrong in some cases. I don't really care because I like to brew. It gets me close enough on my end game that I can comp for the difference. Part of being a brewer.
30 years ago even pro brewers excepting the elite corporate engineering types, wouldn't even know what you were talking about. Being angry about software is pointless to me. There are enough BS threads out there to forewarn people of the shortcomings of BS if they really care.

Being able to feel real changes in the process by successes and failures in the brew house by brewing is part of what I enjoy about brewing and why I consider myself a home brewer and not a beer maker (or beer smith ; if you will ). BeerSmith gets me close enough to make me feel like I got my money's worth.
I; like you, have ways to handle the difference to get me where I want to be if I care enough to do it. Because sometimes; I just don't care.

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