Adding strike water...

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bracconiere

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are you supposed to add the malt TO the strike water, or the strike water to the malt?

i'm posting this here, because i think it's newbie kinda thing to ask....

but i started wondering why my effec plumetted because i started adding the strike water to the mash tun full of malt, helped keep my kitchen floor clean. but this batch i just dumpped all the malt into the strike water. and my effec is back up to my normal range (difference between 65% adding strike to malt, back to ~80% just dumping all the malt into strike water...)
 

slayer021175666

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Add malt to strike water. This floats the grain bed and helps avoid dough balls. Effec was most likely negetively effected by dough balls- dry clumps of grain that no sugar is released from.
 
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bracconiere

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Add malt to strike water. This floats the grain bed and helps avoid dough balls. Effec was most likely negetively effected by dough balls- dry clumps of grain that no sugar is released from.


no dough balls in it, i was thinking more slower to mix in the water. and the temp was denaturing my enzymes?
 

slayer021175666

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I suppose that's a possibility. Something else I just thought of though is, if it did have any dry spots in it, it would cause channeling. It would make it where the grain bed wasn't getting evenly rinsed and just had little canals of water running through it at certain spots right out through your false bottom. Who knows but, always add malt to water. Not, the other way around.
 

slayer021175666

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I just thought of something else! Maybe there were no dough balls that you could feel but, it could have caked up the false bottom with dry grain and made it where it only channeled through in one or two spots on the false bottom. That right there is channeling and it would make it where the grain bed is not getting rinsed evenly.
 
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bracconiere

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I just thought of something else! Maybe there were no dough balls that you could feel but, it could have caked up the false bottom with dry grain and made it where it only channeled through in one or two spots on the false bottom. That right there is channeling and it would make it where the grain bed is not getting rinsed evenly.


i use a bazooka tube, and a huge mash paddle....but it was tough breaking up the bottom.....which is why i was thinking as i was slowly adding the 162f strike water...it was denaturing my enzymes.....
 

slayer021175666

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It could have.
I would more suspect channeling. Especially now, that you said you're using a bazooka tube. Whenever you can, get rid of it and get a false bottom. Bazooka tubes are the biggest thing that I can think of to actually cause channeling. Not, alleviate it. By their very design, they can cause the wort to be directed all toward one small spot. That is by definition, channeling.
Just my two cents.
 

marc1

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are you supposed to add the malt TO the strike water, or the strike water to the malt?

i'm posting this here, because i think it's newbie kinda thing to ask....

but i started wondering why my effec plumetted because i started adding the strike water to the mash tun full of malt, helped keep my kitchen floor clean. but this batch i just dumpped all the malt into the strike water. and my effec is back up to my normal range (difference between 65% adding strike to malt, back to ~80% just dumping all the malt into strike water...)

I wouldn't think that it matters, that surprising! I think people do it both ways. For my system I add grain to the water.
 
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bracconiere

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It could have.
I would more suspect channeling. Especially now, that you said you're using a bazooka tube. Whenever you can, get rid of it and get a false bottom. Bazooka tubes are the biggest thing that I can think of to actually cause channeling. Not, alleviate it. By their very design, they can cause the wort to be directed all toward one small spot. That is by definition, channeling.
Just my two cents.


man, with store bought malt i pull 90+% effec.....and never a stuck sparge.....when i used a false bottom, i had to dump too many mash tuns full of grain into something else to stick a scrunchy under to pick up tube....

but i'm thinking for new brewers there's gold in this.....


always add malt to water. Not, the other way around.

honestly that's what i wanted to say...just because i just learned it, and only did it out of habbit before.....and now i have something more to contribute to the "my effec sucks threads"!! ;) :mug:

i'll remember to ask if they add their strike water to the grain or vice versa.....
 

marc1

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yeah, and i always did too.....try it the other way and report back! lol it's just one batch, something to try....

That would be way too much trouble. :D I BIAB so my water gets heated in my boil kettle, and I add the bag and then the grains to that.

A giant whisk makes mashing in unbelievably easier. If you have dough balls then the whisk is the way to go.

:mug:
 

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i'd need a big one, i use a 10 gallon cooler....but my SS mash paddle has speed holes! ;) 🤣 :mug:

I have this one. It works on my 15 gallon boil kettle with a Wilser bag in it. The difference in how quickly I could mash in was shocking. I ended up way overshooting my mash temp the first time I used it.

 
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bracconiere

bracconiere

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overshooting my mash temp



don't you mean undershooting? or do you mean strike temp?
 

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If you are going to add the strike water to the grain it should be "underlet", meaning feeding the water in from the bottom of the mashing vessel. This is a technique used particularly by low oxygen (LoDO) brewers. It is said to not have dough ball issues, if the fill rate is not excessive.

Please do not start discussing LoDO here - it is not the appropriate place.

Brew on :mug:
 

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I just had my efficiency suffer on a doppelbock where I added water to grains. I can't think of a single scientific reason but I should try making a big RIS and adding the grain to water to see if it works better.
 

marc1

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don't you mean undershooting? or do you mean strike temp?

No, my mash temp was too high. I was used to stirring in the grain really slowly to make sure it broke up easily, a scoop at a time, so my strike water temp was relatively high; all that stirring and slow addition lost a decent amount of heat.

When I used the whisk and mashed in completely in just a couple minutes, the mash temp ended up being too high. My pils ended up with an FG that was waaaayyy too sweet. I actually messaged you about how I saved the beer with gluco based on your advice :D
 
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bracconiere

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based on your advice :D

☺ (i always wonder if all i do is waste people's time)

No, my mash temp was too high. I was used to stirring in the grain really slowly to make sure it broke up easily, a scoop at a time, so my strike water temp was relatively high; all that stirring and slow addition lost a decent amount of heat.

what was your effec when you did it that way? did it go up with the new method? because that sounds like what i'm doing adding the water to the 'top' of the malt? and not just like all the sudden cold crashing the strike water?
 

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☺ (i always wonder if all i do is waste people's time)



what was your effec when you did it that way? did it go up with the new method? because that sounds like what i'm doing adding the water to the 'top' of the malt? and not just like all the sudden cold crashing the strike water?

The mash/lauter efficiency was about the same as before for similar grain bills - mid-high 80s. I never add water to the top of the malt, always malt to the water.
 
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bracconiere

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always malt to the water.



hmm, maybe there's something to that..kinda like making crystal malt.. i always did before also out of habbit, but then wondered if adding the water to the grain was why effec tanked...i just want to make this thread like for newbies learning chemistry, always acid to water, never water to acid simple stuff....
 

marc1

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hmm, maybe there's something to that..kinda like making crystal malt.. i always did before also out of habbit, but then wondered if adding the water to the grain was why effec tanked...i just want to make this thread like for newbies learning chemistry, always acid to water, never water to acid simple stuff....

I don't see a reason why it should make a difference, unless the grains aren't getting thoroughly mixed in.
 
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bracconiere

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I don't see a reason why it should make a difference, unless the grains aren't getting thoroughly mixed in.


me either really, but i don't know why a drop of water in acid splatters, and acid into water dissolves smooth....


but for me it makes damn near a 20% difference....so i guess if i have similar luck with subsicent batchs, always malt to water, never water to malt....just a good rule of thumb for new brewers....
 
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