Converting recipes to partial mash/partial boil in Beer Smith

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ChshreCat

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I've never liked the automatic conversion in Beer Smith, so I've worked out a procedure I use when converting a big all-grain recipe to my partial boil partial mash system. As an example, I'm using Mr Wort's excellent Rye IPA recipe.

First, I load up the entire recipe as it is, matching the batch and boil volumes and adjust efficiency so the OG matches what's listed in the recipe.
convert-1.jpg

I make note of the OG, Color and IBU stats for the recipe, then I adjust the batch size to what my boil size will be and reduce the amount of base malt until the OG is the same as it was to start with.
convert-2.jpg

At that point, I put the batch size back to the original number, and lower the boil volume to my number (the same as I used for batch size a moment ago).
convert-3.jpg

Next, I add some extract. In this case I used extra light DME. You want to add enough extract to bring the OG back up to where it should be according to the recipe. You want to specify that the extract will be "added after the boil", so you'll add the extract at the end and heat the wort just long enough to get it incorporated.
convert-4.jpg

You'll notice the color is still the same as I had for the original recipe. That is because I'm boiling the same density of liquid as I would with a full boil of the original recipe. The IBU's are a little lower, but if you want them to matchexactly, it's just a minor adjustment. In this case, a quarter ounce of hops.
convert-5.jpg

I like this method because I can keep the specialty grains the same as the original recipe and keep the hops as close to the same as possible, because I'm not changing the concentration of wort in the boil.

I use a 5-gallon igloo beverage cooler for my partial mash, so I'm able to do quite a bit of grain. Folks mashing in their spaghetti pot might not be able to do this with all recipes since some convert to larger grain bills than others.
 

Mike613

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This is awesome. Exactly what I was looking for. Most of the recipes I want to try are all-grain and am not ready to make the jump yet.

I noticed that the DME is added after boil. Is this a function of the recipe conversion or personal preference? I typically add DME at the start of the boil.
 

barrog

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Cool post, ChshreCat. My set up is much like yours it seems. I'm doing PMs with 5 gal igloo and I have to convert alot of recipes. Only it seems I have been doing it the hard way. (I don't like the auto converisons either) Going to have to play around with this later. Thanks.
 
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ChshreCat

ChshreCat

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I noticed that the DME is added after boil. Is this a function of the recipe conversion or personal preference? I typically add DME at the start of the boil.
Both, actually. I started doing late extract additions just because they worked better, but with this conversion method you're shooting for your boil to be the exact same density of wort as the full boil recipe. To do that, you have to add the extract at the back end.

Baiscally, what I'm doing is making a smaller batch of the original recipe. Then adding some extract at the end to let me top up to the full volume after chilling.
 

Mike613

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Thanks. Another question regarding your mash tun. I am assuming that the 5 gallon cooler is unmodified and you are using a grain bag to hold the grain. Is that correct? I currently use a 2 gallon cooler w/ grain bag but see no reason I couldn't use a 5 gallon and mash more grain.
 
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ChshreCat

ChshreCat

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I took off the spout and added a ball valve, but that's it so far. I'm eventually going to add a braid or false bottom, but for now I'm just rockin' the paint strainer bags.
 
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