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Old 09-28-2009, 05:08 AM   #1
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Default How accurate is Beersmith?

Recently purchased Beersmith and brewed my third (extract ) batch tonight. I decided on an ESB and didn't use a specific recipe.

According to Beersmith with the extract and hops and late addition boil i should get an OG of 1.054

My actual OG was 1.057. Is this a normal deviation for extract recipes?

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Old 09-28-2009, 05:22 AM   #2
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Yeah, lots of things could contribute to being off, and .003 off would be hard to determine where. Did you steep any grains? Temperature correct for the reading? Hydrometer calibrated correctly? While those all contribute to it, the usual "gotcha" in extract brewing is not mixing the snot out of it after you top off.

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Old 09-28-2009, 10:58 AM   #3
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Yes, Beersmith is very accurate. (With the notable exception of batch sparging temperatures for all grain.)

When I was doing extract, I would usually hit my gravities within a point or so. That's the nice thing about extract; it's very controllable. You essentially outsource the mashing process to the professional malt people and they give you powdered wort. Apparently, they're very good at what they do.

Make sure you're measuring everything accurately, especially volumes. In my experience, good beer comes from good measurements of volume,weight, temperature, time, gravity, karma, ...

You did correct the SG reading for temperature, right?

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Old 09-28-2009, 12:01 PM   #4
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I've been putting a lot of AHS recipes into beer smith and most of the recipes are WAY lower then what beersmith says.

Not dissing AHS - just thought it was odd.

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Old 09-28-2009, 12:27 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grinder12000 View Post
I've been putting a lot of AHS recipes into beer smith and most of the recipes are WAY lower then what beersmith says.

Not dissing AHS - just thought it was odd.

Are you inputting the correct SG for the extract? What if the DME in BS is calcuatled at 1.043 per gallon and the DME that you are using is actually 1.041 per gallon? For example.

Just tossing that out there.
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Old 09-28-2009, 04:54 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RunBikeBrew View Post
Yes, Beersmith is very accurate. (With the notable exception of batch sparging temperatures for all grain.)

When I was doing extract, I would usually hit my gravities within a point or so. That's the nice thing about extract; it's very controllable. You essentially outsource the mashing process to the professional malt people and they give you powdered wort. Apparently, they're very good at what they do.

Make sure you're measuring everything accurately, especially volumes. In my experience, good beer comes from good measurements of volume,weight, temperature, time, gravity, karma, ...

You did correct the SG reading for temperature, right?
Can you elaborate on that? What's Beersmith doing wrong there, and what should I be doing instead?
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Old 09-29-2009, 01:10 AM   #7
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Jif - I assume you're asking about the batch sparge temp comment. I've had a hard time getting Beersmith to calculate the right temperatures for batch sparging, including mashouts. I seem to recall that I've read other posts that say the same thing. I'm following the advice of others and starting with 180F sparge water, then adjust up or down on the next batch until I'm getting 170F grain bed temps during a batch sparge.

Everything else in Beersmith has been awesome, however. I use it all the time.

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Old 09-29-2009, 02:45 AM   #8
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3 points is pretty negligible. I seriously doubt you would notice any difference.

Also, there are so many things that could account for the variance:

1) Your hydrometer reading was wrong because you have not calibrated it using distilled water at either 60 or 68 degrees F.

2) The amount of wort was off slightly.

3) Your measured the wort density at something other than 60/68 and didn't compensate.

4) there was just a slight bit more malt extract than compensated for.

5) The wind blew, the rain fell, and your computer rounded up instead of down.

6) A combination of all the above.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RunBikeBrew View Post
Jif - I assume you're asking about the batch sparge temp comment. I've had a hard time getting Beersmith to calculate the right temperatures for batch sparging, including mashouts. I seem to recall that I've read other posts that say the same thing. I'm following the advice of others and starting with 180F sparge water, then adjust up or down on the next batch until I'm getting 170F grain bed temps during a batch sparge.

Everything else in Beersmith has been awesome, however. I use it all the time.
You need to use the sparge/infusion temp tool when you are brewing in addition to the recipe that it generates- even if you precalculated your sparge/batch temps.
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Old 09-29-2009, 10:58 AM   #9
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Apologies to the OP; we're getting a little off the original topic...

JVD X - I've used the sparge/infusion calculator. The results really didn't make sense (particularly for mash out calcs).

Here's one of the threads I found: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f36/batc...rature-100793/

Take a look at Denny's post.

Of course, it's always possible that I'm doing it incorrectly. Regardless, my AG process is getting pretty consistent including sparge temps.

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Old 09-29-2009, 02:20 PM   #10
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All I believe Denny is saying is that it doesn't do a good job of saying "add x amount of water to y amout of z degree mash to get a temp of aa degrees" when you're using a cooler setup.

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