Adding Grist to Water or Water to Grist

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

michael.berta

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 6, 2007
Messages
518
Reaction score
19
OK so as per John Palmer I've been adding my strike water to a pre heated MLT with the grains already there. I've been having issues with not reaching mash temp. I seem to always come out a few degrees low. The MLT I use is a converted stainless steel regular size keg.

It seems easier to just heat the water in the MLT a few degrees above strike temp and then add the grain to the water that's already there. Does anyone do this? Anything I should be worried about if I try this?

Thanks

Mike
 

Revvy

Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Dec 11, 2007
Messages
41,288
Reaction score
3,729
Location
"Detroitish" Michigan
I do grain to water, and preheat my cooler as well..though I dunno if THAT part is really necessary if you overheat your water and let it cool to the right temp.

Then I stir madly wile adding my grain to prevent doughballs.
 
Joined
Aug 7, 2007
Messages
1,110
Reaction score
14
Location
San Jose, CA
Both will work once you know what's going to happen to temperature when you're all in.

I do water to grain, but I know from experience I need 3* - 4* hotter water than Beersmith tells me I need.

I tried grain to water a couple times, but I find I have much more of an issue with dough balls that way. YMMV.
 

giligson

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 1, 2008
Messages
758
Reaction score
4
Location
Vancouver Area - Canada
Grain into water. I mash in a plastic container and use a heatstick to adjust temp if needed - I dump in the grain after the bath temperature is where I want it.
 

vav

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 27, 2007
Messages
234
Reaction score
1
Location
Chicago
I use a 10 gallon igloo cooler, and on my first AG i missed my mash temp by so much going grain into water that i had to do 3 small decoctions...on a double IPA!

Last brew, i calculated my strike water and subtracted 3 quarts. I took those 3 quarts and boiled them to pre-heat my mash tun. I left the lid off and let it cool down to 10above strike temp and added the grain. I then added the strike water. My temp was DEAD on.
 

Cpt_Kirks

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 11, 2008
Messages
3,704
Reaction score
60
Location
Lakeland TN
I had been following Palmer, and going water to grain. My efficiency stunk.

Now, I pre-heat my MLT, dump that water, add the strike water, then add the grain. I add about a third of the grain, stir, add, stir, add, stir. No dough balls, and my efficiency went up into the 80's (more water probably helped there).

:rockin:
 

Saccharomyces

Be good to your yeast...
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jun 17, 2008
Messages
5,438
Reaction score
152
Location
Pflugerville, Texas
In my Coleman 70 for a 5 gallon batch I have to heat my strike water 13*F over my strike temp. I add half the grain to the tun, half the water, stir, half the grain, half the water, stir again for 2 minutes, and then go have a homebrew knowing my temps will settle just right. ;)

The BeerSmith "adjust temp for equipment" works great, if you have a stainless or a small mash vessel. For my big cooler with all its huge head space I created a spreadsheet to calculate my mash temps since BeerSmith doesn't seem to take all that empty volume into account.
 

david_42

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2005
Messages
25,581
Reaction score
189
Location
Oak Grove
I've always pre-heated the tun with near-boiling water, adjusted to strike temperature, then added the grain.
 

conpewter

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2007
Messages
5,076
Reaction score
59
Location
East Dundee, Illinois
I pump to the MLT from the HLT at my strike temp (usually 170 something) let it rest for 5 minutes then pump back to the HLT to heat the water back up to strike temp. I pump back over, add grains and stir. I usually hit my temps, though this weekend I was over by a couple degrees.
 

cactusgarrett

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 8, 2008
Messages
2,161
Reaction score
772
Location
Madison, WI
Grain to water. Add boiling water to MLT to preheat, drain, then add strike water about 10F hotter than calcs tell me to. That way, during the transfer if it cools, i'll still be above my target strike temp. Then, it only takes a couple minutes of stirring/monitoring for the strike water to hit my target exactly.

Also, i actually target a little higher with the strike water, as it seems to take me longer to add grain to water than most people and i fear that temp loss. Worse case scenario: mash starts a couple degrees too high, but stirring with the lid open rectifies that within minutes.
 

HoppyDaze

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Dec 10, 2008
Messages
13,926
Reaction score
4,329
Location
Lake Oswego
I do a hybrid: add half my strike water to the MLT, then grains, stir, rest of strike water then stir again....this is mainly because I have a small 5 gal MLT but it works good!
 

desertbronze

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 26, 2007
Messages
384
Reaction score
3
In my Coleman 70 for a 5 gallon batch I have to heat my strike water 13*F over my strike temp. I add half the grain to the tun, half the water, stir, half the grain, half the water, stir again for 2 minutes, and then go have a homebrew knowing my temps will settle just right. ;)
Yeah - like that. I have a round 10 gallon and a Coleman 70. For both - I heat the strike water to 12 degrees above desired temperature in the summer and 14 degrees above desired temperature in the winter. I start draining the water into the cooler and add grain as it fills. Everything gets evenly mixed - no doughballs and the temp is pretty consistent throughout the cooler.

Somebody else mentioned that is easier to reduce temps if the mash is too hot (than to heat it if is too cool). I keep some ice cubes handy for that - just add 3 or 4 if you need to reduce the temp by a couple of degrees.
 

boo boo

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 6, 2005
Messages
4,164
Reaction score
46
Location
Hearts's Delight, Newfoundland
I preheat my tun with my strike water heated to account for the grain temperture and the loss of heat absorbed by the tun. Promash does the work for me and my mash temps come out right on the money.
 

Homercidal

Licensed Sensual Massage Therapist.
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
33,269
Reaction score
5,695
Location
Reed City, MI
Preheat with boiling water
Dump that
Add the amount and temp of water that Beersmith says
Stir in the grain
After it's all mixed, the temps were dead on.
 

SpanishCastleAle

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 5, 2009
Messages
4,339
Reaction score
45
Location
Central Florida
I mash in a big SS pot which is a lot of thermal mass once heated. If I heat my strike to 100 F and add the grain then it will rest @ 99 F. The grain just doesn't have enough thermal mass to drop the temp much.

Also, I crush my grains in the garage and leave them out there. Then after I've heated the strike water I carry the pot out to the garage and dough-in and stir until all the grain is at least 'wet'. I do this because of that big puff of dust when you dump the grains and I don't want all that dust in the exact same area I'll be bringing the cooled wort to after the boil. It's just a few steps.
 
OP
M

michael.berta

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 6, 2007
Messages
518
Reaction score
19
I just wanted to thank everyone for the insight. Just to make things easier I preheated my MLT with the strike water a bit over target temp. I then added the grain and stirred it like it owned me money to make sure there were no dough balls. Everything worked out great. thanks...
 
Joined
Jan 17, 2009
Messages
709
Reaction score
8
Location
Conroe
Preheat with boiling water
Dump that
Add the amount and temp of water that Beersmith says
Stir in the grain
After it's all mixed, the temps were dead on.
I used to do the same thing. Now I just heat my strike water 10 degrees higher and leave it in the tun until it hits my desired temps. Works great and I don't need to worry about bringing another gallon or so to a boil.
 
Top