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Old 06-16-2008, 12:48 AM   #1
9/9
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Well, we just put the wraps on our first AG. All in all, it went well, though we hit a few rough spots. If I did the math right, we had a 73% efficiency, which I am pretty happy about.

Now, the problems/questions...

1. We were batch sparging and our first sparge ended up really low, around 164F. I got the second one up to 178F, and this will be easy to fix for the next time around. Any idea what the low temp will do for this brew?

2. The big problem was cooling the wort. The wort chiller just didn't get it below 85F or so. We don't have access to a faucet near the back of the house, so we are pretty much stuck with hose water for the chiller, which is apparently not cold enough. Any suggestions on how to deal with this? Obviously, if the hose water is at 85F, the wort isn't going to get any colder than 85F. Are there other cooling options?


It should only get better from here. We wouldn't have made it this far without HBT.
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Old 06-16-2008, 12:59 AM   #2
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Cause I'm about to Hy jack this thread.

I to did my first AG Today.
I had 10# of grain, 3.25 gallons of Mash water, 3.5 gallons sparge water + 1.5 extra gallons to make 5 in the boil pot. How much water can this amount of grain possibly absorb? I dumped the mash tun after the boil....2 hours from the time I stopped draining, and there wasn't but MAYBE an extra cup of liquid left in the tun.

I used Frozen Coke Bottles to help my water bath cool the wort. Just sprayed them with Starsan before giving them a dunk. Worked like a charm.
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Old 06-16-2008, 01:04 AM   #3
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A lower sparge temp simply reduces your efficiency, not a big deal. If your hose water is 85F, even the best chillers will only get wort to 85-90F in reasonable time. The alternative is to pump icewater into the chiller after getting the wort down to 110F -ish.
On the cheap you can try this by gravity feeding the icewater out of your bottling bucket set up on top of a ladder.
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Old 06-16-2008, 01:23 AM   #4
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You can use a pre-chiller or look up EdWorts recirc with a pond pump to help you out with hose water.

 
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Old 06-16-2008, 01:32 AM   #5
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Thanks everyone.

Good to know that the low sparge temp isn't a problem, and should help boost our efficiency next time. I will have to play around with the wort chiller to see if I can improve it. The frozen coke bottles sounds like a good idea, too.

Congrats on the first brew, BigKahuna. It is good to know that someone else was doing their first AG today as well!
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Old 06-16-2008, 02:27 AM   #6
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I live in Arkansas. It is hot!. I built a simple pre-immersion cooler out of 3/8 soft copper. I placed it in a bucker filled with ice from ice maker. It connected to my IC as short as a length as possible. This cooled 10 g in about 15-20 minutes. This cut the time at least in half. Someone gave me the copper so total cost of joints and coupler less than $10. W/O PIC, the wort may have contaminated the AR heat.
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Old 06-16-2008, 02:37 AM   #7
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Yeah, since the cooling process took longer than expected, the wort was outside post-boil longer than I am comfortable with. I am nervous about the possibility of contamination, but there is nothing that can be done about it now.

Hopefully it all turns out.
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Old 06-16-2008, 02:41 AM   #8
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Ah, brewing in NC in the summertime. I bought a cheap pond pump from Home Depot, that did the trick.
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Old 06-16-2008, 04:26 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 9/9 View Post
Hopefully it all turns out.
It'll be fine.
What did you brew?

I did a bastardization of Ed's Haus Pale.
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Old 06-16-2008, 12:34 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigKahuna View Post
It'll be fine.
What did you brew?

I did a bastardization of Ed's Haus Pale.
My first attempt at an English Bitter / Pale Ale. I was really tempted to go with Ed' Haus Pale as well, since I know it is a kind of tradition around here, but the SWMBO preferred this recipe, and who am I to argue?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Professor Frink
Ah, brewing in NC in the summertime. I bought a cheap pond pump from Home Depot, that did the trick.
Are you under the same water restrictions out in Chapel Hill that we are here in Durham? How do you all deal with the water usage for the wort chiller?
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