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  1. McKnuckle

    How to brew no-sparge?

    It's as simple as you describe. It's not rocket science! You just use the entire volume of water and grain in one mash. You vorlauf and drain into the kettle, and you proceed to boil. There is no sparge step because all the water was in the mash. Batch size is another consideration, because...
  2. McKnuckle

    Has anyone ever switched from 3 vessel to all-in-one?

    I don't think it entirely defeats the purpose. People modify their rigs all the time, and the process change I mention is not necessary - it's just a preference. The all-in-ones also provide onboard temperature-controlled electric heat, which seems to vanish once you expand to 3 vessels (or at...
  3. McKnuckle

    Has anyone ever switched from 3 vessel to all-in-one?

    But there is if you use recirculation. In fact it's a continuous vorlauf throughout the entire mash, which creates super clear wort as one would expect. The problem is that pulling the bag (worse) or basket (better) to lauter disturbs the carefully settled grain bed, and may dislodge small...
  4. McKnuckle

    Has anyone ever switched from 3 vessel to all-in-one?

    @Jtvann 's story is similar to mine, only we didn't end up with the same gear - of course! (That's why hobbies are personal) I started with 5 gallons, a propane burner, a cooler mash tun, two kettles, fly sparging, and a DIY gravity-based wood brewstand. That's what the books said I needed, so...
  5. McKnuckle

    Mash times

    Mash recirculation is not a magic pill for extremely efficient results. I think Spike is being a bit misleading in that literature, but even if they are right about their product's performance, I would not follow their advice. Sorry that this gets a little verbose, but: Conversion is...
  6. McKnuckle

    First Real Try At Hefeweizen

    Congrats @RabbitHole ! Link to where you got those custom printed can-glasses, please?!
  7. McKnuckle

    water profile question

    I agree. You can't do much with that water. The chloride, sodium, and magnesium are all in the clouds. Even blending 50/50 with RO water, it's barely an improvement. That sucks to have the town make a switch like that. It seems like pretty extreme water for drinking, to be honest. Most tap...
  8. McKnuckle

    Water profile guesstimate for ESB - hedge bet on a given addditive?

    If you don't know anything about your water profile and you care about this enough, I would suggest buying some distilled water and build the brewing liquor from scratch. Otherwise it's just guessing so you're flying blind.
  9. McKnuckle

    Preparing to make a imperial/sweet stout

    The main purpose of a secondary, if utilized, is to clarify and condition the beer over an extended period. You do not want to intentionally rack solids to a secondary. If you need something in those solids to keep doing something, keep the beer in primary until you no longer do.
  10. McKnuckle

    Fermentable substitutions

    Interesting. Bairds is an English maltster, known for Maris Otter and various crystal malts and such, where the authenticity of the products is best for the style. You can seek similar products from other English producers like Fawcett, Crisp, or Muntons. Avangard is German. Weyermann would...
  11. McKnuckle

    Fermentable substitutions

    Midwest Supply's website has Weyermann's Munich products (classic German maltster) and several Pilsners such as this one. You'll find both of these under the base malts section. Flaked maize is here. What are the brands specified in the recipe? Sometimes they matter, but often they don't.
  12. McKnuckle

    Third Brew, other two great not sure if I have a problem Or need to re-pitch yeast or add nutrient?

    To help un-confuse you :), OG or Original Gravity is the gravity into the fermenter, before yeast begins working on the wort. That would be your after-boil, chilled down reading. Gravity taken at an earlier time is not called OG. It's just the specific gravity, or SG, tagged to a different...
  13. McKnuckle

    Third Brew, other two great not sure if I have a problem Or need to re-pitch yeast or add nutrient?

    You may be a bit confused about how to read the hydrometer. You don't read ABV off the hydro, only specific gravity. Looks like the hydro is reading 1.016. That would be your final gravity, or FG. If your original gravity (OG) was 1.039, this means it dropped 23 gravity points. That's 59%...
  14. McKnuckle

    Whirlpool the sterile wort or cool it down right away after boil is finished

    The main reason to cool wort relatively quickly is to facilitate the creation and precipitation of cold break. But you do not have to do so with exceptional speed. Some brewing traditions include a whirlpool phase that serves to infuse hops into hot wort that's been cooled just off the boil...
  15. McKnuckle

    efficiency vs. conversion

    In other words, the higher the theoretical maximum gravity attainable from a given grain bill and water volume, the less efficient a given process will be at achieving it. Practically speaking for brew day, it means you factor in a lower mash efficiency as the gravity potential in a recipe goes up.
  16. McKnuckle

    Low OG

    That's not a familiar product to Americans. Looking it up shows that it's a Swedish syrup consisting of beet sugar and (maybe, for some brands) salt. Supposed to be similar to British golden syrup like Lyle's. Sounds fine for bumping up gravity, and would be traditional for an English recipe...
  17. McKnuckle

    ph and efficiency

    Well now, I didn't say 65% or lower, I said 70%. I'd prefer higher, but again, the point is to have a reliable process, not to show off a number. And respectfully, I doubt you get 92% mash efficiency*. Most homebrewers don't rigorously follow the calculations...
  18. McKnuckle

    ph and efficiency

    "The pH optima of alpha amylase is also higher at 5.3–5.7 compared to 5.1–5.3 for beta amylase." Source: The Oxford Companion to Beer Definition of alpha amylase Geez, I wouldn't go that far. Consistency is more important. Chasing efficiency as a primary goal can be an exercise in...
  19. McKnuckle

    Mash Temps importance

    The simple answer is that yes, there is benefit to longer mashes even after conversion is supposedly complete. Besides the continuation of beta activity as noted above, there's that whole flavor part! The mash is your only chance to get that. So don't cut corners there timewise. Many, if not...
  20. McKnuckle

    Mash Temps importance

    If you want a KISS approach, here's one: If your goal is low fermentability (FG ends up higher): If your setup doesn't lose more than a couple of degrees during the mash, start at 156F. If your setup loses heat readily, start at 160F. Mash for 45-60 minutes. If your goal is high fermentability...
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