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Old 06-21-2006, 03:48 PM   #1
uwmgdman
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Default Draining/Sparging

So I'm going to be constructing a simple mash/lauter tun out of a 3 gallon rubbermaid cooler like RichBrewer outlined in a thread for partial mashes. I've read a lot about all-grain a few books and here (didn't realize that all-grain would actually be as simple of a process as it sounds). Anyway, I'm not going to build an all-grain set up simply because I don't have the room. One question I just want to run by someone and get an 'OK'.

After my mash is complete: (batch sparging)
1) Begin draining wort and recirculate until clear; draining all liquid from mash tun into boil pot
2) Close valve, add sparge water, stir water and grains, let sit ~10 mins, repeat step 1

And if I want I can spilt the sparge water into two equal parts and perform two batch sparges.

Also since I'm only going to be doing partial mashes and boiling smaller volumes (~3.5 gals) should I refrain from splitting the batch sparges into two equal sparges because I might not have enough water for each sparge or should I be ok?

Thanks!

Justin


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Old 06-21-2006, 05:28 PM   #2
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I've only done all-grain and I fly sparge, so I can't really answer your question from experience about splitting your small amount of batch sparge water. I would guess however that splitting it would be perfectly OK.

If you're going through all the trouble doing mini-mashes, it seems like taking the step to all-grain is a small one and the impact on space/cost is very small. Just a thought.

Cheers!


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Old 06-21-2006, 05:34 PM   #3
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I too fly sparge. Why not just make them out of 5 gallon coolers? That way you could do all grain if you want...
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Old 06-21-2006, 05:37 PM   #4
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As I said in my last post on the thread you got this from, I would not go that intermediate step. I would stick with steeping because you are not going to increase fermentables a significant amount even if a little base grains are added. Much better to concentrate on late extract additions and full boils and other techniques to improve flavor and body.

However, if you must. I would certainly not bother batch sparging in this case. I would do a simple fly sparge and on that much grain, it wouldn't take long.

My method when I did partial mashes was to put my grain bag in a large coliander and rinse the grains slowly with 170 water.
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Old 06-21-2006, 05:38 PM   #5
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True enough.....I mean all I'd need to do is get a bigger cooler (5 gallon maybe?) to make my mash/lauter tun, a turkey fryer with a nice big pot and probably a wort chiller. It's tempting.....maybe I should think about it a little more before. I guess the up front cost is there, but each batch would be a good deal cheaper I believe.
EDIT: The only thing is to convince SWMBO to spend the cash......I guess the cheaper batches and being in the garage would be a good selling point, although she doesn't mind the brewing in the kitchen. Maybe I should just do it.
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Old 06-21-2006, 05:47 PM   #6
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Quote:
True enough.....I mean all I'd need to do is get a bigger cooler (5 gallon maybe?) to make my mash/lauter tun, a turkey fryer with a nice big pot and probably a wort chiller. It's tempting.....maybe I should think about it a little more before. I guess the up front cost is there, but each batch would be a good deal cheaper I believe.
I wouldn't think going all grain is much cheaper. Not enough to pay out for a long time unless you brew a lot of beer.

Before I went all grain, I already had a turkey fryer and I bought a 32 qt stainless pot and a wort chiller. My first and best step to improve my beer was go full boil with late extract addition. The hops have to be reduced by 50% in most cases on the bittering side because of better utilization - free calculator on the web. This technique is a major step in the right direction. If you are going to mash your partial grains and not go full boil and late extract addition, you will be going through a lot of trouble for little or no gain. Full boil with late extract addition is a significant gain with little trouble and very little more expense.
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Old 06-21-2006, 05:51 PM   #7
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If you are thinking about going all grain you can build a lot of your stuff to save money..

For example my 50' copper wort chiller cost me about $40 and 10 minutes to make..
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Old 06-21-2006, 05:52 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uwmgdman
True enough.....I mean all I'd need to do is get a bigger cooler (5 gallon maybe?) to make my mash/lauter tun, a turkey fryer with a nice big pot and probably a wort chiller. It's tempting.....maybe I should think about it a little more before. I guess the up front cost is there, but each batch would be a good deal cheaper I believe.
EDIT: The only thing is to convince SWMBO to spend the cash......I guess the cheaper batches and being in the garage would be a good selling point, although she doesn't mind the brewing in the kitchen. Maybe I should just do it.
go for it! After 6 hours labouring on a partial mash only to add some dme to the boil afterwards youll eventually go all grain anyways. The best thing about all grain for me is that i dont have to bother with extract. To me that alone is worth it.
You might want to get a 10 gallon cooler though. Thats what ive got and im not limited in anyway as far as space is concerned. ( i could mash a buttload in there, and add as many infusions as i like) Im sure the 5 gallons work fine, but i was looking at one the other day and they seem so puny to my 10 gallon.
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Old 06-21-2006, 06:01 PM   #9
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I'm thinking of upgrading to either a 10 gallon or a rectangle cooler..

Only reason I didn't get the 10 gallon to start with is the cost..

5 gallon coolers are $18 10 gallons are $49 :\
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Old 06-22-2006, 12:57 AM   #10
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I got a 9 gallon coleman extreme at REI for $28.00 and it has a well for the drain. Makes it real nice to get almost every drop of wort out of the cooler.


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