How much water? - Home Brew Forums

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12-29-2006, 09:13 PM   #1
lostforatime

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Jul 2006
Arizona
Posts: 134

How much water do I start with? Is there a number everyone uses to make 5 gallons? Do I start with 7 gallon? Any help would be greatful, I will be brewing a SN celebration.
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12-29-2006, 09:22 PM   #2
Baron von BeeGee
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Jul 2005
Barony of Fuquay-Varina, NC
Posts: 5,397
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It's very much system dependent.
- Are you doing a full wort boil? I assume so.
- What is your evaporation loss (determine empirically)?
- What are your system losses, i.e., deadspace in kettle, cfc chiller losses, hose losses?
- Whole hops? They will absorb some wort, probably around .25-.5 pint per ounce (I think, can't remember off the top of my head).

Your final target volume (5 or 5.5 gallons) plus all of your losses equal your starting boil volume.

12-29-2006, 09:31 PM   #3
Orfy
For the love of beer!

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Sep 2005
Cheshire, England
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If you don't understand it you have a few options

Guess

I boil 30l to end up with 23l
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12-29-2006, 09:46 PM   #4
lostforatime

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Jul 2006
Arizona
Posts: 134

If I buy the software (beersmith or promash) will these do the figuring for me
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12-29-2006, 10:49 PM   #5
Baron von BeeGee
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Jul 2005
Barony of Fuquay-Varina, NC
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Quote:
 Originally Posted by lostforatime If I buy the software (beersmith or promash) will these do the figuring for me
They will do the calculations but you still have to put in figures for the losses. As I mentioned, it's very system dependent and I don't know of any software that can measure it for you.

12-29-2006, 10:51 PM   #6
Onescalerguy
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Sep 2006
Posts: 453
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I start out heating 9 gals of water to end up with 6 gal of wort in the primary.(7.5 gal boiled)
3.5gal mash water
2 gal mash-out water
3.5gal sparge water
Trial and error got me to these numbers.
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12-29-2006, 10:58 PM   #7
Turricaine
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Jul 2005
Bath, UK
Posts: 198

I use about 6.5 gallon to make a 5 gallon batch, using about 6.5 pounds of grain in the mash. However my filament heater can only contain about 5.5 gallons without risking a boil over so I collect the remainder of the wort in a glass demi-john and add it to the boil gradually to replace the water that is evaporated during the boil. The whole process of boiling the wort takes a few hours and my efficiency probably isnt great with the mashing equipment im using.

If you read the book by John Palmer he says to collect as much as you can comfortably handle. However, if u have a hydrometer I think he says something like once the wort you are collecting has fallen to 1.01 then you have already extracted most of the sugars. Ideally you want an 8 gallon capacity boiler for a 5 gallon batch but you have to be fairly lucky to have one of those since they are rather expensive.

12-29-2006, 11:05 PM   #8
Orfy
For the love of beer!

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Sep 2005
Cheshire, England
Posts: 11,732
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It's better to figure it out rather than rely on software.

5kg grain sparge @ 2.6/kg = 13.L sparge water
Absorption of .1L/KG = 5L + mash tun dead space of 2L =7L

So first run of = 6l

Boil evaporation of 10% and Kettle loss + hop absorption means I loose around 7L for an hours boil.

I need 30L to leave 23L.
I have 6L from 1st runnings
So I need 24L sparge water.

I stop at a gravity of 1010 so if needs be I top up the kettle.

I use a 50l/13 gallon Kettle
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12-29-2006, 11:10 PM   #9
Yuri_Rage
Gritty.

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Jul 2006
Southwest
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I now use over 20 gallons of water to wind up with a 15 gallon all grain brew. When I was doing extract brews, I would start with 6-7 gallons to get about 5.5 in the fermenter. 6.5 is probably a good "off the cuff" guess that will net you about 5 gallons in the end.

To eliminate the guesswork, read the suggestions above.
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12-31-2006, 10:19 PM   #10
cwixon
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Dec 2006
Posts: 15

Are you all grain??