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Old 07-20-2010, 06:12 AM   #1
kshuler's Avatar
Mar 2010
Seattle, WA
Posts: 313
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OK, admittedly I am a newbie and will only be trying my 1st all grain batch with my next brew, so hopefully this is just a really stupid simple question.

I note that the recipe that I am using is for a 6 gallon batch. It automatically calculates a boil volume of 6.87 gallons based on a 60 minute boil. The problem that I have is when I look at the brew sheet, it says (using 1.1 qt per lb of grain in an imperial IPA) to do a 20 qt infusion, and then sparge with 4.04 gallons. Doesn't this make 9.04 gallons???? How does my pre-boil volume come out to 6.87 gallons then? If it is retained water in the mash, I really can't imagine 18.25 lbs of grain seriously holding onto 2.18 gallons of sparge water, right?

Anyone know what is going on?

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Old 07-20-2010, 02:27 PM   #2
PintOfBitter's Avatar
Feb 2007
Posts: 1,154
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you're right, it's retaining water in the mash, and yes, it will retain quite a lot. Once the water level drops below the level of the grain mass, it will generally 'set' the mash and runoff will slow considerably or cut off completely, so there's a ton of water left in your MT.

Use beersmith to get a good idea of how much H2O you need prepared, but just sparge until you reach your boil volume. (that's what I do anyway)

Maybe you can use these Grain, Hops, Yeast Reference Charts

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Old 07-20-2010, 02:33 PM   #3
Laughing_Gnome_Invisible's Avatar
Jan 2008
Posts: 12,250
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Originally Posted by kshuler View Post
, I really can't imagine 18.25 lbs of grain seriously holding onto 2.18 gallons of sparge water, right?

Anyone know what is going on?

I know it seems a lot, but take all the confusing math out of it. Pick up your mash tun when it has dry grain, and pick it up when you empty the wet grain. It's easily 2 gals of water heavier.

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