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Old 01-19-2008, 10:45 PM   #1
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Default Frustrated w/ low gravities

Hey guys. Not sure what the hell is going wrong. Below is my recipe and techniques used. Please help me and give me some ideas on why I am so low on gravity.

Grains -
2.5 lb American 2 row
.5 lb caramel malt

5 lbs liquid extract

Batch size
5.25 gallons

Hops to flavor (doesn't matter for this discussion)

Technique - I have an igloo cooler with copper manifold set up as my MLT. I mashed w/ 1 gallon of water @ 152 for 60 minutes.

Drained and recirculated the 1 gallon. Then did two batch sparges of 1 gallon each at 170 with 5 minutes of rest before I started draining.

I resulted w/ 2.75 gallons with a gravity of 1.020. Not very efficient, but not incredibly terrible for my first try with this MLT. Any ideas on how I can get this efficiency up?

Okay. So on to the boil. I got it all boiling, added hops and 5lbs of liquid extract.

After boil I used my immersion chiller and got it down to 75 in about twelve minutes. I cycloned and syphoned off the wort. Topped off with water to 5.25, aerated, took a gravity reading, and pitched.

The gravity reading came out at a pathetic 1.030. Shouldn't the LE alone get that? Where the hell are my sugars going?


Total run off from the grains was

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Old 01-20-2008, 04:30 AM   #2
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You didn't mix it enough. Partial boils need a solid 10 minutes of mixing to be a uniform solution. So, your hydrometer sample was inaccurate.

Plug your recipe into some brewing software to get your OG, and also calculate your efficiency. 1.020 doesn't seem that bad for 3 lbs of grain and that much water.

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Old 01-20-2008, 05:11 AM   #3
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+1 on not mixing well enough. The heavier wort sinks to the bottom when you add your top-off water so you really have to mix things well to get an accurate reading. I've had readings change by as much as 10 gravity points just by stirring things up.
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Old 01-20-2008, 05:14 AM   #4
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beersmith says you should be around 1.050 methinks malkore is corrrect and the lme didn't mix thoroughly in the wort. check your hydro and make sure you correct for temp.
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grains in pounds(G) X 36(average points per gallon of grains) / batch size in gallons(g) = maximum efficiency(ME)
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Old 01-20-2008, 02:20 PM   #5
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58% on the mini-mash isn't bad for a first try. What was the temperature of the mash just before draining?
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Old 01-20-2008, 05:52 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by david_42
58% on the mini-mash isn't bad for a first try. What was the temperature of the mash just before draining?
I was at 148 when I drained. Should I be a little higher at mash? Or was it a problem with the batch sparging technique?

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