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Do you mash out?

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plumber

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I had a 20 qt round mlt and just built a 50qt cube mlt. Now that I have the space to do a mash out should I. Just wondering what everyones opinions are. Does it make a difference for anyone? Btw I batch sparge but thinking of trying a fly sesion.
 

bradsul

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I don't bother when I batch sparge. You drain and get the wort on the fire so quickly I don't think it's really necessary. When I fly sparge though I always do a mash-out decoction of the thin part. Otherwise you'll get a much more fermentable wort than you may want.
 

ajf

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I mash out when fly sparging. The mash out and using hotter sparge water increased my efficiency by 10%. I don't mash out when batch sparging. I did try it, but my efficiency seemed to drop a bit with the mash out.

-a.
 

Mutilated1

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I don't bother when I fly sparge. You drain and get the wort on the fire so quickly I don't think it's really necessary. When I fly sparge though I always do a mash-out decoction of the thin part. Otherwise you'll get a much more fermentable wort than you may want.
what does "mash out decoction" mean ?
 

Bernie Brewer

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I mash out when fly sparging. The mash out and using hotter sparge water increased my efficiency by 10%. I don't mash out when batch sparging. I did try it, but my efficiency seemed to drop a bit with the mash out.

-a.

/\ Ditto. What he said.
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Mutilated1

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What does "mash out" mean too ?

Usually what I do is just heat up another 3-4 gallons of water ( hotter this time ) and dump it in there and let it drain. Maybe even repeat one more time if I've got a big grain bill and still have room in the kettle.

This may sound stupid, but when you say "mash out" do you mean that you're like taking the mash paddle and squeezing the wort out of the grain or something ?
 
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plumber

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So when batch sparging it does not seem to make a difference? I guess I can understand for fly sparg so the grain bed is 165-170 at the begining of the sparg.
 

TexLaw

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what does "mash out decoction" mean ?

What does "mash out" mean too ?
"Mash out" is the step when you bring your mash up to a higher temperature (typically 165ish) before lautering. The idea is to increase the solubility of your wort liquor and the viscosity of your wort to aid both efficiency and lautering. Some folks do it; some don't. Reviews are mixed, to say the least, but do what works for you.

A "mash out decoction" is when you decoct to bring your mash to a "mash out" temperature (as opposed to an infusion or direct firing).


TL
 

richkev

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I use 10 gallon round (igloo) coolers and fly sparge. I don't usually mash out. I just make sure my sparge water is ~170F and I give my mash a good stir with my paddle before I vorlauf. Seems to work just fine. I've tried mashing out, but it didn't seem to make a difference, plus, with the plastic coolers, the only way to mash out is to add more (hotter) water to your mash. I will probably consider it if I ever upgrade to a Brutus type system.
 

Kaiser

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I'm in slight disagreement with the reasons for mash-out that are commonly given by home brewers. Although it matters little, but mash-out doesn't denature all enzymes. Its temperature is actually chosen such that the alpha amylase is not completely denatured. It is still needed to convert rouge starch that is released during lautering. Not so much a worry of home brewers, but bigger brewers do seem to worry about that. But mash-out does fix the fermentability by denaturing the beta amylase. While a-amylase can create fermentable sugars, it is not very good at doing that and the fermentability increase during mash-out is quite low. The benefits of the mash-out are increased protein coagulation which increased the size of the flocks and the lowering of the wort viscosity. Both help the run-off speed which is especially important in fly sparging.

If your sacc rest didn't convert all the starches, you may see an improvement of the efficiency when doing a mash-out. This is because the a-amylase becomes more active at the higher temp and is able to convert some more starches more quickly. But most of that efficiency gain will be unfermentable dextrins so you should not rely on a mash out for good efficiency. Just today I saw a jump from 90% to 95% conversion efficiency through the mash-out. After lautering this translated into a 3-4% efficiency boost.

ajf, I'm surprised to read that your efficiency dropped with a mash-out. Was that for the same recipe?

Kai
 

CBBaron

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I often mashout when batch sparging just to add the extra water to the mash to make both drainings of the MLT equal in volume. I figure if I am adding the extra water at the end of the sac rest I may as well mashout.

Craig
 

ajf

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ajf, I'm surprised to read that your efficiency dropped with a mash-out. Was that for the same recipe?

Kai
I always used to fly sparge, and my efficiency (with mash out and no stupid mistakes) always came out at 84 - 86% The first two batch sparges I tried, I used a mash out, and got efficiencies in the mid 70's. Then I dropped the mash out and increased the sparge water volume and temperature. Efficiency increased by about 5%
Was this because of the mash out or because I had a bit more experience with batch sparging? I don't know. That's why I posted "my efficiency seemed to drop a bit with the mash out"
Yes, all the batch sparge attempts had identical grain bills.

-a.
 

FireBrewer

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If you're batch sparging you don't have to add additional water (in addition to your batch sparges) to mash out...just heat your second sparge water such that it will bring the grain bed to 168. It'll probably depend on your system. With mine, water around 195 will hit 168 for me.
 

Denny

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So when batch sparging it does not seem to make a difference? I guess I can understand for fly sparg so the grain bed is 165-170 at the begining of the sparg.
It seems to make a very small improvement in efficiency for me, due to reducing the viscosity of the wort. Although usually a "mashout" is used to denature enzymes and stop conversion prior to lautering. In batch sparging that really isn't needed. In fly sparging, it can be useful.
 

AnonyBrew

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If you're batch sparging you don't have to add additional water (in addition to your batch sparges) to mash out...just heat your second sparge water such that it will bring the grain bed to 168. It'll probably depend on your system. With mine, water around 195 will hit 168 for me.
What temp. are the mash runnings if you don't do a mash out for batch sparging? I would think they are < 168F during the time you batch sparge. Why is that not a concern?
 

ajf

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What temp. are the mash runnings if you don't do a mash out for batch sparging? I would think they are < 168F during the time you batch sparge. Why is that not a concern?
With a 5g MLT and a grain bill of about 8 lbs, I found that 2 infusions of 3g at 185 degrees, the first infusion raised the mash temp to about 164, and the second infusion raised it to about 168. With a 10g MLT, a slightly larger grain bill and the same sparge water temp. left the temp. way short.
The optimum sparge water temp. depends on the grain temperature, the amount of grain, the thermal mass of the MLT, the temperature of the MLT, the free space in the MLT, and the amount of heat lost while stirring, as well as the volume and temp of the sparge water.

-a.
 

Bobby_M

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My first runnings are exactly whatever the mash temp was ~152ish. My first sparge infusion at 185 gets me into the low 160's and the second infusion of about 180F gets me to 168ish.

Well, that's how it was before I got a direct fired mash tun. Now I just crank up the burner at the end of the mash and stop heating at 165F. THEN I run off and sparge with 170F.
 

FireBrewer

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What temp. are the mash runnings if you don't do a mash out for batch sparging? I would think they are < 168F during the time you batch sparge. Why is that not a concern?
Once I start recirculating I'll start losing heat, so < 150* for the first. If I add water at 168* I'll probably see somewhere in the 150s. ~194* sparge water on my system brings the grain bed to 168*.
 

Jakeintoledo

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I did a recipe WITH and WITHOUT the mashout. Couldn't tell the difference, really.
 
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