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Old 09-07-2012, 10:08 PM   #1
TFrankMac
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Default Consistently High Starting Gravities

I am on my 6th AG batch and I have been getting higher than desired starting gravities. I brewed Northern Brewer's Smashing Pumpkin AG kit yesterday. I have been getting very good mash efficiencies of about 76-77% consistently. Finally, my boil off rate is about 1.5 gallons per hour with my 15 gallon MegaPot.

So yesterday I hit an OG of 1.059 instead of 1.054. The previous batch I really killed, a Mild that was supposed to come in at 1.037 and I had a 1.046. I usually don't craft my own recipes per se, as I get all the ingredients as a kit from Northern Brewer. I also wanted to shy away from diluting with water whenever possible.

Any recommendations on what I should do to compensate for this?


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Old 09-08-2012, 08:02 AM   #2
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Three suggestions:

1. Bottle up your efficiency and sell it to people on the site.
2. Reduce your grainBill (less grain less sugar)
3. Buy beer smith or a similar software.

Im not an expert but thats my 2 cents


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Old 09-08-2012, 08:56 AM   #3
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Three suggestions:

1. Bottle up your efficiency and sell it to people on the site.
Money!
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Old 09-08-2012, 11:07 AM   #4
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What is your final volume in relation to what your kit is made for?
Also, maybe you could ask what mash efficiency they aim for with these kits.

You could add water to the batch and thus lower the gravity.
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Old 09-08-2012, 12:01 PM   #5
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If they are kits it's hard to reduce the grain amounts to compensate for your higher than the recipe efficeincy. As suggested, buy a program like Beersmith and then you can take a recipe and adjust it to your efficiency. You'll save money by not buying in kit form, plus you'll save by not needing as much grain. There's nothing wrong with adding a little water if your OG is too high. Many of us do it all the time. I use the small bottles of spring water everyone has around the house (they won't infect your brew, no need to boil). One bottle of water will reduce your OG by only a couple of points and won't have an impact on your brew. (A gallon is another matter all toghether....).
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Old 09-08-2012, 02:49 PM   #6
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Haha thanks guys. I have been really happy with those mash efficiencies obviously anyway I believe the kits are the standard 5 gallon/75% efficiency set-up. I tend to increase my batch size to 5.5 gallons. I do use both Beersmith and iBrewMaster when brewing but as I mentioned previously I usually never craft my own recipes so I am just merely punching in grains, etc to match what I ordered. I will definitely keep the water dilution method in mind.
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Old 09-08-2012, 02:54 PM   #7
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In my experience, kit brews are usually based on an efficiency closer to 70%. Hell, BYO recipes are usually in the high 60s. That's why I hate kits. You just have to 'wing' it and get what you get. But hey....you made beer!!!!
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Old 09-08-2012, 03:04 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Hammy71
In my experience, kit brews are usually based on an efficiency closer to 70%. Hell, BYO recipes are usually in the high 60s. That's why I hate kits. You just have to 'wing' it and get what you get. But hey....you made beer!!!!
Ah ya gotcha! Is it ok to dilute with water during the secondary phase? I have my mild (which really isn't a mild anymore haha) in the secondary and would like to potentially dilute that one just a tad.
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Old 09-08-2012, 05:33 PM   #9
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I'd avoid doing it in the secondary. It can be done, usually with a lite lager. Up to you, but I wouldn't get carried away.
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Old 09-08-2012, 07:17 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Hammy71 View Post
I'd avoid doing it in the secondary. It can be done, usually with a lite lager. Up to you, but I wouldn't get carried away.
When do you typically add the water (if at all)?



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