Quantcast

Mash Out Questions

HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

New2HomeBrew

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2007
Messages
86
Reaction score
0
Cheers All!

I am about to embark on my 2nd attempt at AG, and I have a couple of questions regarding the mash out.

When I made my first AG 10 Gallon batch, I used an initital infusion of 1.5 quarts per pound. With a grain bill over 20 Lbs, I ended up infusing with over 6 Gallons. When I went to do the mashout, I put as much boiling water in the mashtun as I could fit (I have a 10 Gallon Home Depot Construction type Cooler Tun), but there was not enough room for all the water, and I did not get the temp up to 170.

Now my questions is, could I start off with an initial infusion ratio of 1 quart per pound of grain instead of the traditional 1.5 quarts? This would give me more room for water in the tun when performing the mash out.

Does anyone know from experience how much water you can fit into one of these cooler tuns with a 20 pound grain bill? I am looking for a total, as I want to get my cooler as close to full as possible.

Also, How much water will I loose due to grain absorbtion?

All in all, I am looking for the right balance of infusion Vs. mashout water to get me right up to the 10 gallon mark before collecting my first runnings.

Thanks in advance for the help!:mug:
 

CBBaron

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2007
Messages
2,780
Reaction score
21
Location
Cleveland
You can go as low as 1qt/# with your mash if desired. I find that 1.25qt/# works well for me which will still give you quite a bit more room.
Also I don't believe it is completely necessary that you get your mash temps to 170F with a mashout. If your goal is to stop the enzymes, then you need to do that, but if you are just trying to improve the sugar viscosity and lauter efficiency then just raising the temp as much as possible (but not above 170F) is sufficient. You can then add slightly too hot sparge water to complete the task after draining your first runnings. This is what I do when my beer is small enough to allow any room for a mashout in my 5gal cooler.
Craig
 

Bobby_M

Vendor and Brewer
HBT Sponsor
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
24,827
Reaction score
3,502
Location
Whitehouse Station
Are you fly sparging? If so, I can understand the reason for using the mash out. In that case, yes, back off your strike to 1.2qt/lb or so.

If you batch sparge, skip the mashout completely.
 
OP
N

New2HomeBrew

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2007
Messages
86
Reaction score
0
JDOIV- That is a handy tool. Thanks for the link!

CBBaron - So I only need to hit 170 with the mash out if I want to stop all starch conversion to sugar? Just raising the temp will help rinse the grain bed better?

It seems kind of funny to me that you use boiling water to raise the temp of the mash, would that have an imediate affect of releasing the undersidered tannins until the temperature stabalizes?

Just so I am clear, what temp water do you use for your mashout? you say slighly hot sparge water? what something around 180?

One other bone head question. When you mash out, do you stir the grainbed after adding the water?
 

Professor Frink

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 20, 2006
Messages
3,100
Reaction score
30
Location
Beacon, NY
Bobby_M said:
Are you fly sparging? If so, I can understand the reason for using the mash out. In that case, yes, back off your strike to 1.2qt/lb or so.

If you batch sparge, skip the mashout completely.
I agree with Bobby. If you're batch sparging and draining your first runnings right to your kettle, they'll get to 170 degrees in virtually no time, negating the need for a mashout.
 
Joined
Jul 24, 2006
Messages
14,278
Reaction score
855
Location
Southwest
New2HomeBrew said:
All in all, I am looking for the right balance of infusion Vs. mashout water to get me right up to the 10 gallon mark before collecting my first runnings.
This statement makes me wonder about your sparge technique. Exactly how are you sparging?
 

Blender

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2006
Messages
3,106
Reaction score
8
Location
Santa Cruz, CA.
Professor Frink said:
I agree with Bobby. If you're batch sparging and draining your first runnings right to your kettle, they'll get to 170 degrees in virtually no time, negating the need for a mashout.
+2-3- or whatever. I like ro raise the temperature with an absorbtion addition after the mash but don't sweat that it is not @168.
 
OP
N

New2HomeBrew

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2007
Messages
86
Reaction score
0
I am batch sparging with a mashout. I found out the hard way that I loose roughly 2 gallons during a 60 minute boil, and my first two batches ended up at just over 4 gallons.

My main reasoning for the mashout is that it helps we me collect more wort from my first runnings, and allows me to only batch sparge once instead of twice.

So what you guys are suggesting is to skip the mashout completely, collect the first runnings then do two rounds of batch sparging to collect enough wort?
 
Joined
Jul 24, 2006
Messages
14,278
Reaction score
855
Location
Southwest
It sounds like you either need to go back to 5 gallon batches or get a bigger mash tun. There's nothing wrong with batch sparging several times, but I think the overarching issue is that your mash tun just isn't big enough for 10 gallon brews.

Also, trying to do a step infusion all the way up to mash out temperatures is pretty difficult. You need quite a bit of volume to achieve a temperature step that large. If you really want to mash out effectively, look into a RIMS, HERMS, or steam system that can heat your mash without significantly affecting its volume.
 
OP
N

New2HomeBrew

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2007
Messages
86
Reaction score
0
My mushtun is plenty big enough to fly sparge a 10 gallon batch, and mostly big enough to batch sparge a 10 gallon batch. I would liek to know the answers to these questions though.

So I only need to hit 170 with the mash out if I want to stop all starch conversion to sugar? Just raising the temp will help rinse the grain bed better?

It seems kind of funny to me that you use boiling water to raise the temp of the mash, would that have an imediate affect of releasing the undersidered tannins until the temperature stabalizes?

One other bone head question. When you mash out, do you stir the grainbed after adding the water?
 

Bobby_M

Vendor and Brewer
HBT Sponsor
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
24,827
Reaction score
3,502
Location
Whitehouse Station
Any new infusions (aside from a fly sparge) needs to be stirred in and that includes mash out.

You can infuse water that is hotter than 170 as long as you stir to stablize quickly to under that theorhetical 170F mark. That includes boiling water additions for mashout too.

The key point I want to convey is that I've consistently have gotten higher efficiencies (on the order of 3-5%) from doing what I call a NMODBS (for all those brewers that love acronyms). No mash out, double batch sparge.

I have plenty of theories as to why this is the case, but suffice to say that the first runnings of the mash are already about as saturated as possible. Adding new water on top of this has very little net gain since you're only slightly diluting it. The more "fresh" water infusions, the better and I find two sparges are a good compromise between labor and efficiency. You're already doing the two infusions (mash out and one batch) but the NMODBS just adds one extra vorlauf and drain to the process. By the way, the "hotter" batch sparge temp is like 180-185F.
 

Professor Frink

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 20, 2006
Messages
3,100
Reaction score
30
Location
Beacon, NY
I hit 78% my last brew with the double sparge method. The last few before that, I did single sparges, I was in the 60's. I really think that double sparging can increase your efficiency a lot.
 
OP
N

New2HomeBrew

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2007
Messages
86
Reaction score
0
Ok, I hink I'll give the NMODBS method a try this time. What temp water should I sparge with? Should I stil be trying to reach the 170 degree mark by using the 2nd infusion calculation, or just using 170 degree waer?
 

cd2448

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 21, 2007
Messages
601
Reaction score
4
Location
Haddonfield, NJ
hate to ask a slightly OT question here, but when you add the batch sparge water, you are stirring the grain. how long before you vorlauf?
 
OP
N

New2HomeBrew

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2007
Messages
86
Reaction score
0
I have heard differnet things from different people on that.

Some say to vorlauf right away, some saywait for 10 minutes. That is a good question though.

What say you batch spargers?
 

Bobby_M

Vendor and Brewer
HBT Sponsor
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
24,827
Reaction score
3,502
Location
Whitehouse Station
If my mash ends in the low 150's, a split batch sparge infusion of 185F usually gets the bed up to 162F the first time and 168F for the second. That's pretty comfortable for me. You can use those calculators to be sure you're not going over 170. I use Beertoolspro and it tells me the resulting temps. You could actually go hotter for the first one to get it up to 168 immediately and then use 168F for the second infusion but I don't want to wait for the water to cool in between.

Obviously vorlauf right before draining the initial mash runoff.
First sparge infusion, stir until smooth, maybe 5 minutes straight then vorlauf and drain immediately.
Repeat for the second sparge infusion.

Based on my crush, waiting any longer than it takes to stir the water in well is just a waste of time as it has never yielded any better efficiency. Frankly, I don't want to do better than 90%.
 

Kaiser

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 1, 2005
Messages
3,895
Reaction score
166
Location
Pepperell, MA
New2HomeBrew said:
So I only need to hit 170 with the mash out if I want to stop all starch conversion to sugar?
It's actually a common misconception, one that I had as well, that mash-out is supposed to stop all conversion. Quite the opposite is true. mash-out is intended to stop beta amylase (which pretty much fixes your limit of attenuation) and accellate alpha amylase to make sure that any starch released during lauering is converted on its way into the kettle. You are not supposed to go above 176 b/c that would kill the a-amylase. But I don't think the starch release during lautering is a major concern for the home brewer. The higher temperature does also helps to reduce the viscosity.

If you don't have room for a hot-water infusion to mash-out, just run-off wort into your kettle, bring it to a boil and add it to the mash to get to mash-out. Basically the simplest decoction there is.

Kai
 
Top