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Old 05-15-2011, 12:19 PM   #1
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Default First All Grain Brew

I've been doing partial mash brews for quite some time now and decided to take the all grain plunge. My first batch was my hop-bursted Simcoe IPA recipe. I ended up with a starting gravity of 1.071 using 14 lbs of pale 2 row.

How's that stack up for efficiency?? I took a 10 gallon Rubbermade cooler, installed a Parker ball valve...took a piece of 3/8'' thick plexiglass and cut it round to fit the cooler snugly and drilled literally thousands of 3/32'' holes in the plexiglass (yeah, I know). I used some West Systems epoxy to attach 4 pvc pipe legs to the plexi false bottom to get it up over the ball valve opening and also made a plexiglass handle for easy retrieval of the false bottom. This set up would have allowed the sparge water to drain at any speed I chose from just a few minutes to much longer. I had to crack the ball valve slightly to keep the flow rate way down. I took a fine screen bag and attached it to the end of the sparge hose to collect any loose grains which ended up being only a finger or two. This system seems to work well.

I let the sparging process go for a good hour and 20 minutes and still was barely tasting a very slight sweetness to the sparge water as I reached the 6 gallon mark which I expect is normal? I noticed a different style of foam on top of the boil compared to the partial mash brews with DME and it also seems the fermenting wort has a lighter color than the previous brews.


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Old 05-15-2011, 01:02 PM   #2
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Sounds like it went reasonably well. Efficiency might be a tad low but perfecting the process is part of the fun...gives you a reason to brew again, and again, and again...
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Old 05-15-2011, 01:52 PM   #3
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What do you suggest, recirculating some? I figured the starting gravity should have been at about 1.075 for efficient results. I'd like to hear some suggestions. That's why I come here...for the experienced member's suggestions, not that I had a problem, I just like to do things right as much as is possible.
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