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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > mash water/sparge water ratios
View Poll Results: Do you keep a consistent qt/lb ratio OR a consistent mash water/sparge water ratio?
I keep my mash qt/lb the same 45 67.16%
I keep my mash and sparge water equal 9 13.43%
I don't concern myself with this 13 19.40%
Voters: 67. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-19-2009, 02:10 PM   #1
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Default mash water/sparge water ratios

I wanted to see how alot of you guys adjust your water ratios from batch to batch. I read that alot of folks keep the same mash water ratio (i.e. 1.33 qt/lb) and then I'm assuming just use the amount of sparge water needed to achieve their target preboil. For lower gravity brews this would force you to use a good bit more sparge water than mash water.

I don't do this, rather I aim to equalize my mash water to my sparge water. This gives me mash water anywhere from 1.33 to 1.75 qt/lb or so (1.75 for lower gravity brews). So in effect, the larger my grainbill, the lower my qt/lb ratio is. I don't really vary past those ratios though, if I need to go past it, I just allow the mash/sparge water ratio to drift. 1.25 is the lowest I've gone.

Any opinions? Which general method gives you the most consistent results in theory or reality?


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Old 07-19-2009, 02:27 PM   #2
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Mine is really based more on the capacity of my mashtun. If im doing 20 pounds of grain ive got to lower my qt./lb. ratio to make it all fit. I like 2 qt./ lb. if i can fit it in the tun.

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Old 07-19-2009, 02:27 PM   #3
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I keep the grain/water ratio consistently at 1 gal. h2o per 3 lbs. grain. If I change the ratio I have to consider the change in the strike temp. As far as the sparge water, I will fill the hlt with 10 gals. and will sparge until I have a beginning volume of 13.5 gals. in the boil pot.
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Old 07-19-2009, 02:38 PM   #4
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I keep my mash ratio fixed but I do stay cognizant of the grain bill to avoid over sparging. If I have a really light grain bill, I'll retard my efficiency by infusing some sparge water prior to first runoff and only use a single bulk batch sparge.
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Old 07-19-2009, 06:01 PM   #5
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I keep the mash ratio fixed, but I round off the strike water to an easily measurable volume. I never know what my sparge volume is because I almost always stop the fly sparge when the gravity drops below 1.010 rather than when I reach the required volume.

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Old 07-19-2009, 06:42 PM   #6
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I keep pretty close to the 1.33qt/lb rule, but will go up or down from there depending on the amount of body I desire. I haven't seen a big difference in body between 1.25qt/lb or 1.5qt/lb, but that's just what I do. I've tried mashing with 2.0qt/lb to get better efficiency (from another thread in brew science), but I got worse efficiency. I've gone back to my normal ratio, and that works great for me. YMMV!

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Old 07-19-2009, 07:27 PM   #7
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i do 1.25 to 1.3 and sparge till i hit 1.010 if i need more water that's easy to fix just add it to the boil. once you have your process and you know your equipment not worth messing with much.
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Old 07-19-2009, 11:49 PM   #8
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I use 1.25 and sparge 5 gallons regardless of the brew and sparge to 7.5-8 gallons. It works for me and my efficiency is consistent at around 80%.

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