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Old 08-04-2008, 08:09 PM   #1
cbird01
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Default First All Grain prep help

Well all the hard work of assembling my AG kit is done. Here is a rundown -

40 qt rect cooler with copper manifold and bulkhead
1/2 barrel converted keggle with bulkhead
1/4 barrel (7.75 gal) converted water pot or 30 qt turkey fryer aluminum pot
25 ft 3/8 copper immersion wort chiller
55,000 btu high pressure Bayou classic burner

My first recipe is attached at bottom. The only instructions I have is:
Infusion 154F 60 mins 10 min mashout batch sparge

Per the sticky on this board, I plan to use 1.25 quarts per pound of grain.
I was going to figure sparge water based on how much more I will need for a 6.5 gallon pre-boil volume

Mash water = 10.25 * 1.25 qts = 12.8 qts = 3.2 gallons - 20% absorbed = 2.6 gallons wort
Sparge Water = 6.5 gal - 2.6 gal = 3.9 gallons

I plan to pour some hot water in to preheat tun. I will bring strike water to 157 and pour in to cooler and let drop to 154, then add grains. (please comment on strike water temp, because I think I need to compensate for grains reducing the temp below 154 and do not know how to calculate proper temp)

I will then let sit for 60 min. Ok, don't know how to work the mashout 10 min part....please help.

QUESTIONS
1) Please comment on my plan
2) Strike water temp?(to end up at 154 in cooler after grain is added)
3) Mashout? (how to?, necessary?)
4) "what to do if you don't hit those targets"
5) Do I need to monitor pH and/or gravities - if so whats procedure?
6) any good ways to track/calculate this stuff without software?

Thanks for your comments!

Craig

RECIPE
========================
Flat Ass Tired

Brew Type: All Grain
Style: American Amber Ale
Batch Size: 5.00 gal Assistant Brewer: Beer Wench
Boil Volume: 6.5 gal Boil Time: 90 min

Ingredients
6.00 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) Bel (3 SRM) Grain 58.5 %
2.00 lb Amber Malt (22 SRM) Grain 19.5 % (home toasted Pale Malt)
1.00 lb Munich Malt (9 SRM) Grain 9.8 %
0.50 lb Biscuit Malt (23 SRM) Grain 4.9 %
0.25 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 10L (10 SRM) Grain 2.4 %
0.25 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L (40 SRM) Grain 2.4 %
0.25 lb Special Roast (50 SRM) Grain 2.4 %
0.75 oz Northern Brewer [8.5%] (60 min) Hops 22.8 IBU *
0.50 oz Williamette [5.5%] (30 min) Hops 7.6 IBU
0.50 oz Williamette [5.5%] (15 min) Hops 4.9 IBU
0.50 oz Williamette [5.5%] (5 min) Hops 2.0 IBU
American Ale II (Wyeast Labs #1272) [Starter 1000 ml]

* Due to hop shortage I am using 1oz Challenger instead of the Northern

Beer Profile Estimated Original Gravity: 1.058 SG (1.045-1.056 SG)
Estimated Final Gravity: 1.014 SG (1.010-1.015 SG)
Estimated Color: 12 SRM (11-18 SRM) Color [Color]
Bitterness: 37.2 IBU (20.0-40.0 IBU) Alpha Acid Units: 2.4 AAU
Estimated Alcohol by Volume: 5.7 % (4.5-5.7 %)


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Old 08-04-2008, 08:56 PM   #2
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It looks like you are ready....use these tools on the internet to help you figure out mash temp and amount of strike and sparge water needed. I use a batch sparge method.

http://www.tastybrew.com/calculators/sparge.html
http://www.brew365.com/mash_sparge_water_calculator.php

Also watch this video series with chris knight...i have watched these 20 times before my first AG and i followed his technique exactly and i nailed my OG



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Old 08-04-2008, 09:07 PM   #3
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Good luck on your first all grain adventure. Your plan looks pretty good. Some things that have worked for me: Do preheat your mash tun with hot water. To mash at 154 with 10.25 lbs of grain requires a strike temp of 167. If you dont hit 154 by a degree or two you can always drain off and heat up a portion of the mash to raise temps, or add cool water to reduce the temp. Mash out by sparging with 170 degree water. Id heat up more sparge water than you think you need just so you dont run out before collecting the required amount for the boil. Plus it is nice to have hot water available for clean up. You measure specific gravity with a hydrometer. It measures the sugar content of your wort after the boil/cool down just before pitching yeast. It is not absolutely required, but I would say a necessary piece of equipment for all grain brewing. I wouldnt worry so much about ph right now.
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Old 08-04-2008, 09:44 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nanobru View Post
You measure specific gravity with a hydrometer. It measures the sugar content of your wort after the boil/cool down just before pitching yeast. It is not absolutely required, but I would say a necessary piece of equipment for all grain brewing. I wouldnt worry so much about ph right now.
Guess I shouldn't have asked procedure for hydrometer...have always used it but had heard of people taking gravity readings during brewing for something.

As far as pH, I was planning on using a big water machine to fill 5 gallon jugs. My home water has a softener on it and I don't know if certain faucets are on it or not.
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Old 08-05-2008, 01:04 AM   #5
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I wouldn't worry terribly about ph on the first brew. And not really about what the gravity runnings are while you're draining either. In my opinion, make yourself a list, shoot for a specific volume in your brew kettle, and enjoy it.

That said, do take about a 1 cup sample of the first runnings, the final runnings, and your total pre-boil gravity. Those sorts of things are going to give you a good baseline of what your system is efficiency wise.
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Old 08-05-2008, 01:16 AM   #6
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+1 on preheating the mashtun and making more sparge water than you predict needing. the first time using equipment you never know for sure how the grain absorption and dead space in the lautertun are going to add up. make sure your thermometer(s) are accurate and you have a good timer for the mash/hop additions. your first AG often takes a long time make sure you have plenty of homebrews and something to eat if the fridge, I always make a few sandwiches the day before.
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Old 08-05-2008, 01:16 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmlavoy View Post
I wouldn't worry terribly about ph on the first brew. And not really about what the gravity runnings are while you're draining either. In my opinion, make yourself a list, shoot for a specific volume in your brew kettle, and enjoy it.

That said, do take about a 1 cup sample of the first runnings, the final runnings, and your total pre-boil gravity. Those sorts of things are going to give you a good baseline of what your system is efficiency wise.
I am very interested in this. When you say first runnings, do you mean after the mash has set for 60 minutes, take the first cup when doing your vorlauf? And would final runnings be just before the mash is done draining? (or while draining your sparge?)

Now after getting those numbers, how do I calculate the efficiency?
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Old 08-05-2008, 01:31 AM   #8
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See my post here.

Brewing software is essential. I use Promash some people use Beersmith. It is a very good investment.
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Old 08-05-2008, 01:46 AM   #9
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You multiply the amount of gallons you collected pre boil by the way.
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Old 08-05-2008, 01:55 AM   #10
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It certainly appears that you have done your homework and you're ready to go. Let us know how it turns out!


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