fly sparging

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Grimsawyer

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Going to start fly sparging instead of batch sparging. How long should it take to sparge. Aboput 45 min for a 5 gallon batch? Also, if you mash out do you have to worry about tannins from over sparging?
 
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Grimsawyer

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shafferpilot said:
So long as you keep the temp right, you're good. Out of curiosity why the switch?
March pumps are a serious pain in the @$$!!! Tired of priming the pump. As for the enzyme question, what temp do you kill enzymes? The main reason I batch sparged is because I diddn't want to to get tannins from the grain. I get greedy with sparging so I feel the need to mash out and sparge at a higher temp. What precautions can I take to prevent leeching of tannins?
 

jdoiv

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The main thing to watch when your fly sparging to avoid tannin extraction is going to be mash pH and temp of your sparge water. Use some 5.2 in your mash (base it upon the amount of pre-boil volume you expect) and don't worry about the sparge water. The 5.2 should buffer the pH during the sparge just fine. Keep the sparge water around 170*F and you'll be fine. Run the sparge for an hour and stop when you either get to 1.008 or your pre-boil volume, which ever comes first.
 

Lil' Sparky

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Grimsawyer said:
March pumps are a serious pain in the @$$!!! Tired of priming the pump.
Man, that's too bad. I love my new single-tier + pump w/ QDs! Batch sparging was a breeze and priming the pump wasn't too difficult, although I agree, it would be really nice if we had a hi-temp/food safe/self-priming pump we could use.
 

ajf

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In my experience, fly sparge times depend on the gravity of the brew. Higher gravities require longer sparges, or result in lower efficiencies. With my beers, I sparge for about 60 minutes for beers with an OG of about 1.050 (I hardly ever go below that), but I extend it to 90 minutes for beers with an OG of 1.065, and longer for higher gravities. I try to stop the sparge when I get the required volume into the kettle, or when the gravity of the runnings drops below 1.008 (whichever comes first). Usually, I get the required volume by the time the gravity of the runnings drops to about 1.008 - 1.012, but I do screw up occasionally.
Tannin extraction depends on three factors:
Temperature (higher temps extract more tannins)
pH (higher pH allows more tannins to be extracted)
Time (longer sparge times tend to extract more tannins if the temperature and pH are too high).
Stopping the sparge when the gravity drops to about 1.008 - 1.010, not only stops you wasting time, but also helps to control the pH of the sparge. By the time the gravity drops to this point, the pH of the sparge has increased to the point where excess tannin extraction is a definite possibility. Acidifying the sparge water with gypsum or pH 5.2 makes this less likely.
For temperature, I try to keep the sparge between 165 - 170 degrees. This is hot enough to effectively rinse the sugars out of the grain, but not so hot that it extracts excessive tannins.
Paying attention to the gravity / pH, and temperature seems to work very well for me, and I have not noticed tannins in the brew even with 2 hour sparges.

Hope this helps.

-a.
 

EinGutesBier

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Uh oh. 60-90 minutes for fly sparging? May I ask why it would take that long? Is it because of vorlaufing?

The reason I ask is that I did a beer that had a projected OG of 1.068 and I must've done my sparge, vorlaufing included, in about half an hour. I just vorlauf until the wort runs about as clear as I can get it, then try to replace the wort I'm transferring to the kettle with water at an even rate.

Have I done something wrong? :(
 

ajf

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EinGutesBier said:
Uh oh. 60-90 minutes for fly sparging? May I ask why it would take that long? Is it because of vorlaufing?

The reason I ask is that I did a beer that had a projected OG of 1.068 and I must've done my sparge, vorlaufing included, in about half an hour. I just vorlauf until the wort runs about as clear as I can get it, then try to replace the wort I'm transferring to the kettle with water at an even rate.

Have I done something wrong? :(
The vorlauf only takes me a few minutes. If you achieved your projected OG, then obviously you haven't done anything wrong. :)
All I can say is that with my equipment and procedures, I couldn't achieve an OG of 1.068 without a sparge of about 90 minutes, and would leave a large amount of unextracted sugars if I completed a fly sparge in 30 minutes with that amount of grain.

-a.
 

EinGutesBier

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I recall when I cleaned out my MLT, most of the grain had its sweetness leached from it. To extend the the fly sparge, you'd just trickle the water in more slowly or would you simply give it more time to sit before draining the wort?
 

ajf

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Trickle the water in more gently, and try to balance the inflow with the outflow. I need to check about once every 10 - 15 minutes, as the outflow increases as the sparge progresses.

-a.
 

jdoiv

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Yeah, go slow. I use a stainless steel yard stick and watch the speed of the sparge by estimating how many inches of wort should be in the kettle in 15 minute increments. Sometimes you go a little too slow and some times a little too fast, so you can adjust it to compensate. It does take a little more attention to detail, but my efficiencies with fly sparging are usually 8-10% better than they are when I batch sparge.
 

The Pol

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I just set up my single tier system with a march pump... I am really not having any problems priming the pump. I DID orient my OUTlet upward, with fluid flowing IN from the bottom... I also do not allow my pump to cavitate... if there is no fluid flowing in, the pump is off... no problems yet! The pump is nice and quiet, so when I can relax and have a brew while it is doing all the work. Here is my march setup...

 

tgrier

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I use this calculator.
I fly.
And if you notice that if you up your grain bill your mash in water goes up but your sparge water decreases and vice versa.
I take it nice and slow. well. my sparge arm does the nice and slow part for me.. I just monitor the water level in my cooler to make sure it is above the grain and let it roll.
I also do recommend and use the PH2.5 stabilizer stuff.
I set a timer when I fly just to kinda of see... and I am around 45 -60 min depending on the volume.

I enjoy the ease of fly - I am able to heat my sparge water during the mash and get it in my top cooler and let the temp stablize to where I need it... and when I am ready.. just hook up the arm and let it go.

It may take more time but I am not that huge of a rush and it gives me to rack other beers or clean the garage or shot the bull with my neighbor who has wandered over.. or kick back and drink a beer.

I use "phils sparge arm" for what it is worth.

So there you go.. my 2 cents.
 

drayman86

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I've heard Palmer and other recommend about 1 quart/minute for a fly sparge. I used a timer to set my fly sparge rate and got about 83% efficiency.
 
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Grimsawyer

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The Pol said:
I just set up my single tier system with a march pump... I am really not having any problems priming the pump. I DID orient my OUTlet upward, with fluid flowing IN from the bottom... I also do not allow my pump to cavitate... if there is no fluid flowing in, the pump is off... no problems yet! The pump is nice and quiet, so when I can relax and have a brew while it is doing all the work. Here is my march setup...

Very nice and tidy! Looks alot like what mine looked like. Loved mine for awhile. Uhh, say. I had tubing that looked just like that. I want to say mine was PVC witht the nylon braid... looks just like yours. On my system I tried pumping progressively hotter water through it to see what the limits were and I found that around 170*F it started getting reallllllly gooey and bendy. I had to tighten down on all the hose clamps REALLY quick because my system was suffering from catastrophic failure. hehehe Lots of water all over, and some burn marks to boot! I ended up going to silicone tubing. After I took mine apart I discoverd lots of gunk that built up that I believed I was getting when I cleaned mine.... ugh... Until I get QD's that I can fit a brush into it's hose barbs and hose clamps for me, hehe. Does orienting a pump that way really release the bubbles upward? Is the the trick? Anybody else have better luck with their pumps with the out straight up?
 
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