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Brulosophy Grain Crush Comparison

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Weezy

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The difference is the time required to mash. A mash essentially does two basic things..(1) you're cooking the grain to extract starches, and (2) you're cooking it at a certain temp so that the enzymes can convert the released starches. Enzymatic conversion is practically momentary once starches are available.

Very small grain are willing to release their starches very quickly. How long would you have to mash whole dehusked grain?
 

dyqik

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If you do everything else right, and get a fine enough crush to keep your efficiency, but not so fine that a stuck sparge doesn't prevent you using your prefered temperature control (if you rely on that in a HERMS, RIMS or other recirculation setup), or make you miss your pre-boil gravity or volume, then there are unlikely to be any significant differences. In this case, a simple infusion mash was used, so there were no issues with recirculation or temperature control. The coarse crush here was still fine enough to get good efficiency, so again, no difference should be expected.

Astringency etc. that is sometimes associated with too fine a crush can be prevented by sparge water pH control. In this case, no-sparge was used, so that doesn't apply at all. If sparging had been done with low-mineral water, I'd expect some differences to show up.

There seem to be several Exbeeriments done now that vary a single factor with everything else being near ideal. They mostly show no effect. IMO, it's when multiple things are off that problems and differences show up, and some simple things like crush and sparge water pH should be controlled in case of mistakes elsewhere.
 

slym2none

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I know my efficiency became more consistant after I started having my LHBS double-crush my grain...
 

petrolSpice

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Another poorly thought out experiment from Brulosophy. He should have computed the mash efficiency rather than the post-boil gravity. The grain absorption and boil off will introduce further variations in gravity between post-mash and post-boil. And he should of measured the mash gravity during the mash to determine the effect on mash time (as mentioned above) since this is one major benefit of a finer crush. The "coarse" gap of 0.030" is perfectly fine for BIAB, anything smaller is not going to have an appreciable effect on OG.
 

JONNYROTTEN

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Another poorly thought out experiment from Brulosophy. He should have computed the mash efficiency rather than the post-boil gravity. The grain absorption and boil off will introduce further variations in gravity between post-mash and post-boil. And he should of measured the mash gravity during the mash to determine the effect on mash time (as mentioned above) since this is one major benefit of a finer crush. The "coarse" gap of 0.030" is perfectly fine for BIAB, anything smaller is not going to have an appreciable effect on OG.
Wasn't this just a test for grain crash and not mash time? I thought he stated he did a 60 minute mash because that what most people do. All things being equal with the amount of grain and heat would equal the same grain absorption and boil off. Both of his grain crushes gave the same SG. I thought that was the point of the test and not a test for different grain crushes for conversion time... that's what I got out of it...I could be wrong
 

Savagejair

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Have you had a chance to share this with Brülosophy. I would like to know this data as well. They may have not wanted this data or maybe they hadn't thought of it?
 

petrolSpice

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Wasn't this just a test for grain crash and not mash time? I thought he stated he did a 60 minute mash because that what most people do. All things being equal with the amount of grain and heat would equal the same grain absorption and boil off. Both of his grain crushes gave the same SG. I thought that was the point of the test and not a test for different grain crushes for conversion time... that's what I got out of it...I could be wrong
Yes, you're correct. But the benefit of a finer crush, at least from my perspective, is a faster mash, not necessarily a higher OG. Given a full hour to mash both the fine crush and a very fine crush are pretty much guaranteed to completely convert.
 

JONNYROTTEN

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Yes, you're correct. But the benefit of a finer crush, at least from my perspective, is a faster mash, not necessarily a higher OG. Given a full hour to mash both the fine crush and a very fine crush are pretty much guaranteed to completely convert.
It was a course crush vs fine crush but regardless I'm sure the reason for the test was because there are so many threads that mention not hitting there OG and the first comment is always your crush is off. So he put it to the test. Personally I'm surprised it came out the same.
 

petrolSpice

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It was a course crush vs fine crush but regardless I'm sure the reason for the test was because there are so many threads that mention not hitting there OG and the first comment is always your crush is off. So he put it to the test. Personally I'm surprised it came out the same.
His "coarse" crush was 0.030" (credit card width), which is relatively fine and normally recommended for BIAB. It is also much narrower than than the 0.045" that his mill's manufacturer recommended. If the goal was to truly test a coarse crush he should have used a gap of at least 0.045" if not larger to represent a poorly adjusted mill.
 

dyqik

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It was a course crush vs fine crush but regardless I'm sure the reason for the test was because there are so many threads that mention not hitting there OG and the first comment is always your crush is off. So he put it to the test. Personally I'm surprised it came out the same.
But the "coarse" crush here was actually a standard 0.030" crush, which is nearly always fine enough (maybe not with Maris Otter or some wheat grains?), so you wouldn't expect the OG to change at all. Particularly with no-sparge as done here where efficiency is already being sacrificed.
 

JONNYROTTEN

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But the "coarse" crush here was actually a standard 0.030" crush, which is nearly always fine enough (maybe not with Maris Otter or some wheat grains?), so you wouldn't expect the OG to change at all. Particularly with no-sparge as done here where efficiency is already being sacrificed.
Thats my normal tight crush so ya, doesnt prove much
 

Weezy

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It was a course crush vs fine crush but regardless I'm sure the reason for the test was because there are so many threads that mention not hitting there OG and the first comment is always your crush is off. So he put it to the test. Personally I'm surprised it came out the same.
Where are all these posts?

And why is anyone surprised at these results? Why do people think 60 minute mashes are the most common?????????? Um, maybe because that time frame is a pretty safe bet on full conversion for a normal grain crush?
 

JONNYROTTEN

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Where are all these posts?

And why is anyone surprised at these results? Why do people think 60 minute mashes are the most common?????????? Um, maybe because that time frame is a pretty safe bet on full conversion for a normal grain crush?
The posts come up on a regular basis. That's why I'm surprised it made no difference. I've never had an efficiency issue but the crush always comes up as the main concern when then someone post "low OG" That was before It was brought to my attention that the course crush was at.030 which I don't consider course. Missing your point on the 60 minute mash comment?...I feel like we're about to enter a pissing competition which was not my intent.
But since you asked this one took a Nano second to dig up.
http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=...398438&usg=AFQjCNGeFoiWeEGK5EK9YiqXSWqh2Hv7GQ
 

Weezy

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Nah, I don't care. I don't have time to argue anyways. Captain Obvious and myself have to get back to our test of which tires, bald or new, handle better at 5 MPH.
 

TheMadKing

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I got into a debate with a guy who was claiming that another variable that Brulosophy missed was the RATE of grain crush and it's impact on "crush quality" i.e. shredded husks. It's not something that has been extensively researched, but I started a thread on the topic anyway. https://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=598719

FWIW Marshall didn't conduct this exbeeriment himself, this was a guest brewer and article writer. I agree that his course crush was too fine, and that likely obscured any potential difference in gravity. I think the 60 minute mash length was appropriate since that is, in fact the most common mash length, but since both crushes allowed complete conversion in that amount of time, there was naturally no difference in the beers. It is interesting to note that there was no difference in lautering efficiency due to the difference in particle size.

He also probably should have performed this experiment with a malt-forward style instead of a hop-forward APA.
 

myelo

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He also probably should have performed this experiment with a malt-forward style instead of a hop-forward APA.
A couple of years ago they did a big stout and compared 1 mm and 0.5 mm gap settings. It made a difference in OG (1.080 vs 1.090) and not surprisingly, the final beer.
 

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dmtaylor

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I wasn't too surprised since neither crush was truly "coarse". Hence my comment on the Bru.com page saying "you should have" followed by "oops, I see now that you already did". Of course when they truly milled coarsely at 0.045" like a crappy LHBS would do, then the OG took a 10-point hit, and actually I'm surprised that it wasn't much higher than that, should/could have been. But at 0.030", and for 60 minutes, yeah, the mash is 95% done after about 45 minutes in my >10 years experience so you're not going to see any impact there. Do a crappy crush and you'll see a huge effect, especially if you mash shorter than 60 minutes. If you know your crush is really crappy, then you probably should be mashing for 90 minutes or more, if you care about efficiency. And that's a whole 'nother thing..... efficiency doesn't always matter.

Don't take our word for it. Do your own experiments, and do whatever you like. Cheers.
 

pricelessbrewing

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Agreed petrol and dmtaylor. The "coarse" crush was adequate, and they controlled mash ph, and did a good dough in. As such they got good conversion and extraction. Crushing finer isn't going to do anything if your conversion is already great, although it might mean that you can do a shorter mash due to faster conversion rate.

Copy Pasta from my reddit comment

There are several things that affect conversion, grain milling being the biggest one. If you're getting good conversion, then milling finer won't really do much, which is what's going on here. If you have less than ideal dough in practice, too thick of a mash, or poor mash PH, then milling finer should help compensate for those non-ideal mash parameters.

Not too surprised
 
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W

WiscBrewer

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Agreed petrol and dmtaylor. The "coarse" crush was adequate, and they controlled mash ph, and did a good dough in. As such they got good conversion and extraction. Crushing finer isn't going to do anything if your conversion is already great, although it might mean that you can do a shorter mash due to faster conversion rate.

Copy Pasta from my reddit comment

Makes sense! It does seem to me, though, that many think that a double crush is almost a BIAB requirement. It might be one of those conventional wisdom things that needs to be taken with a grain of salt.
 

pricelessbrewing

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Makes sense! It does seem to me, though, that many think that a double crush is almost a BIAB requirement. It might be one of those conventional wisdom things that needs to be taken with a grain of salt.
My guess is that double crushing at the lhbs is easier to do as a newer brewer than buying a grain mill and crushing properly, and monitoring mash ph.
 

TheMadKing

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I BIAB and never double crush. I always hit or I'm above OG

Do you mill you own grain?

Double crushing is used by people who get their grain crushed at lhbs because they can't control the gap setting.

The other solution is to just mash longer.
 

JONNYROTTEN

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Do you mill you own grain?

Double crushing is used by people who get their grain crushed at lhbs because they can't control the gap setting.

The other solution is to just mash longer.
I do mill my own grain set with a credit card. When I first got my mill and BIAB going there was lots of talk of " I always double crush with BIAB" (with a home mill)So that's what It did the first few batches. I was a pain so I stopped and it made no difference.
 

TheMadKing

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I do mill my own grain set with a credit card. When I first got my mill and BIAB going there was lots of talk of " I always double crush with BIAB" (with a home mill)So that's what It did the first few batches. I was a pain so I stopped and it made no difference.
I never realized that was a misunderstanding that some people had.

Double crush is supposed to create a finer crush, but if you can already get a fine crush with a single pass, there's no point. Glad you're not wasting your time anymore!
 

JohnSand

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One could look at it the other way around. Instead of "should you crush fine", "can you crush fine". The answer is yes. But we already knew that in HBT/BIAB.
Meaning that a blender works well.
 

JONNYROTTEN

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I never realized that was a misunderstanding that some people had.

Double crush is supposed to create a finer crush, but if you can already get a fine crush with a single pass, there's no point. Glad you're not wasting your time anymore!
The idea was you could practically turn the grain to flour without having to worry about a stuck mash. So grind the crap out of the grain to get the best efficiency
 

eric19312

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He showed that there was no astringency introduced by pulverizing the grain.

He also confirmed pulverizing to this level was easy in his mill.

Results should ease speculation about whether there is some point between credit card and sheet of paper that would improve efficiency.


Validation of experiments comes from repeatability. That earlier grain crush experiment with different attenuation is harder to understand than this one. I'd like to see more repeats.
 

Weezy

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People have been confirming all of that right here for years. Tannins come from too high of apH on the grain, typically from over sparging. What logic suggests the size of the husk pieces makes any difference whatsoever?
 
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