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Old 09-20-2009, 05:05 PM   #1
sionide21
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Default Direct Heat Mashing

Hello, I learned all grain brewing from a friend of mine who always mashed over direct heat (as in in a pot rather than a cooler). That is the method I have always used as well and it has always worked just fine. It also makes multiple rests trivial.

When I started reading all the brewing articles I could find on the internet I noticed that nobody seems to use this method. Is there a problem I am missing with it?

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Old 09-20-2009, 05:35 PM   #2
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Its not really more problematic than the other methods just a different set of problems but scorching the grain at the bottom from lack of constant stirring seems to be the biggest concern. With constant attention during heating and a well secured false bottom / manifold / braid it works just fine.


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Old 09-20-2009, 06:07 PM   #3
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Ok, that's good to know. Does anyone here use direct heat?
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Old 09-20-2009, 08:20 PM   #4
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I'm a cooler man, cuz I love the ability to walk away for an hour and let the enzymes do all the work.
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Old 09-20-2009, 11:12 PM   #5
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Yes, I use direct heat. My mash tun is a converted keg with false bottom. I also recirculate with a pump during the entire mash. For step mashing this allows me to raise the temperature of the grain bed without scorching. This method provides much control, making steps very easy. It's also less complicated in that I'm not moving wort out of mash tun to a hot liquor tank and back (HERMS) or cluttering my mash tun with a copper manifold for heated water to control mash temps (RIMS). *Disclaimer* please note I did not say direct heat mash is better than these two methods, all are tried and true methods. I simply choose direct heat mash because it works best for my setup and my individual brewing style.
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Old 09-21-2009, 12:40 PM   #6
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I "upgraded" to the cooler method recently, but I've been mashing with direct heat for years in a 5 gallon canning pot on the stove top. A simple and easily controllable way to mash.

Stir when adding heat and wrap the pot with a large towel or blanket when not heating.
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Old 09-21-2009, 12:46 PM   #7
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I use direct heat, I have a 10 gallon MegaPot that I mash in. I have never had a problem with scorched grain. I do not have the heat on constantly, I reach stike temp, dough in then turn off the heat and wrap the pot in a blanket or sleeping bag. I only lose a couple degrees in a half hour, then I apply a little heat and get the temp to where I wnat it and wrap it up again.
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Old 09-21-2009, 01:14 PM   #8
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I love mashing in a brewpot. Even in the winter I only have to add heat maybe twice. After the mash is complete, I pour the grains into a fly sparger and then run back into the brewpot.
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Old 09-21-2009, 01:21 PM   #9
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Cooler just seems simpler to build. That's probably why you see it more and multi rests are not necessarily required very often. I currently use a cooler, but can see the PLus's to DF mashing. Biut also with Herms and Rims it allows multi step mashing with a cooler.
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Old 09-21-2009, 01:32 PM   #10
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I use a cooler, but I mash small batches of "cooking beer" in a large saucepan. It always turns out fine, and I still drink a few bottles of it before my wife gets to use it.

If you have a system that works for you, then go with it!


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