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Old 08-02-2013, 05:30 PM   #1
DonPritchard
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Default False Bottom Issues

Hey folks.
I just put together a new tun and am currently in the process of christening it. I went to run off the mash and the grain must've gotten underneath the false bottom when I stirred it in. I had to pour my mash (grain and all) into a pillow case and sparge the same way. I threw my back out and I'm a sticky mess. What was supposed to be a nice relaxing brew day has turned into a major headache. Anyone ever have similar issues with a false bottom in a tun? If so, any advice? I'd hate to have to spend more money if I don't need to, but I never had issues when using a bazooka filter. HELP! Thanks.
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Old 08-02-2013, 08:45 PM   #2
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OK, let me probe for a little more information.

What exactly happened when you started collecting the runnings? (The assumption here is that you mashed for 60 min and then started collecting)

You were getting some grain coming along with the wort at first?
How much grain are we talking about? A little bit or a lot mixed with the runnings?

Were you vorlaufing the first quart or two of runnings?
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Old 08-02-2013, 09:19 PM   #3
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Yes, more info please. As much and as specific as you can be too. I can't think of an instance in which a pillow case would be needed.... maybe you didn't recirculate or maybe you needed to recirculate again... or maybe you got a stuck sparge which you could have cleared up. It's possible that you needed to open the valve a bit less with the false bottom than you did when you used a screen and hence you are getting stuck sparge?
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Old 08-04-2013, 11:23 PM   #4
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When I went to run off I got about an ounce of wort with a little grain and nothing I did could get it unclogged. I might need to find a way to keep the false bottom from moving around. Perhaps I stirred to vigorously when adding the grain. Trail and error.
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Old 08-04-2013, 11:49 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonPritchard
When I went to run off I got about an ounce of wort with a little grain and nothing I did could get it unclogged. I might need to find a way to keep the false bottom from moving around. Perhaps I stirred to vigorously when adding the grain. Trail and error.
OK, you had a stuck sparge.
Very common in fact I had trouble the first time I used my false bottom.
The trick is when first starting runoff, GO SLOW!
Get the flow trickling and increase gradually until you get good flow and then vorlauf the first half gallon or so right back into the tun. I run close to a gallon back into the tun before the first drop makes it into the kettle.
Same goes for after my batch sparges and stirs.

Once you figure out how to make it happen on YOUR system, it becomes second nature and just part of the process.
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Old 08-04-2013, 11:52 PM   #6
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Where you using any wheat?

I throw quite a bit of rice hulls in my mash, they are cheap protection and they work very well.
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Old 08-04-2013, 11:56 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by estricklin
Where you using any wheat?

I throw quite a bit of rice hulls in my mash, they are cheap protection and they work very well.
+1 to this.
Wheat can be tricky sometimes.
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Old 08-05-2013, 01:07 AM   #8
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No wheat. I'll be giving it another go in a few days. I'll have to grab some rice hulls and see if that helps out.
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Old 08-05-2013, 01:10 AM   #9
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Can you describe your mash tun for us please?
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Old 08-05-2013, 02:54 AM   #10
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