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McKBrew's First AG

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McKBrew

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Starting now

Edit: It's 1:30 PM Pacific Time and I have just started a 60 min mash. With the help of Beer Tools Pro, I almost came within 1 degree of hitting my target temperature. Smell so good right now.

Equipment:





Start of the Mash:
 
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McKBrew

McKBrew

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Getting ready to start the boil



Cooling the wort

 
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McKBrew

McKBrew

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Filling the primary



Liquid Goodness

 
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McKBrew

McKBrew

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Just started the boil about 30 minutes ago. Looks like my efficiency may have sucked using the formula from How to Brew.

My first runnings was about 2.5 gallons.
I added sparge water 4.5 gallons and ended up with a boil volume of 7 gallons.

Gravity of 1.033 X 7 gal/11lbs of grain gives me a value of 21. 25 or better is supposed to be good.

I'll see how things are after the boil, but have some DME just in case.

What did I do wrong? Not sure, but probably didn't read enough How to Brew.

Edit: Maybe I should increase to a 90min boil???
 
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McKBrew

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It's done. 4.75 gallons of 1.052 liquid nectar. I'm not complaining a bit. Definately satisfied for a first try.
 

blacklab

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Hey did you drill that pot yourself? Is it aluminum? If so, I have a very similiar one and have been thinking about drilling it in a similiar fashion.

How'd you go about it, was it tough?

I already posted in the other thread, but you're gonna love the LWPA. Simcoe + Amarillo = mmmmm
 
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McKBrew

McKBrew

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blacklab said:
Hey did you drill that pot yourself? Is it aluminum? If so, I have a very similiar one and have been thinking about drilling it in a similiar fashion.

How'd you go about it, was it tough?

I already posted in the other thread, but you're gonna love the LWPA. Simcoe + Amarillo = mmmmm

My pot is aluminum. Very easy if you are willing to invest 40 bucks on a step drill bit. Done in a matter of minutes. My step bit was a bit small, so I had to widen it up little with a dremel.

The biggest challenge was stopping the leak. Wrap teflon tape alot farther back on the inside than just the threads.
 
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McKBrew

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Lessons learned.

1) Poor efficiency: Could have been caused by a number of factors, but I realized at the end that my thermometer probe had gotten wet, which probably meant my mash temps were off the whole time. Need to make the whole cord water resistant, just trying to protect the connection at the probe was not enough.

2) Cooler or pot with ball valve for sparge water. It's a bitch to measure/regulate water when trying to pour hot water into a pitcher.

3) Pre-heat MLT for longer.

4) Depending on weather, I might need additional insulation for my MLT so that I can keep the whole process outside. It's a pain to mash indoors then carry 7gal of wort outside/bring sparge water inside etc.... Measuring out everything and just setting it up on the back porch would be optimum.

5) It didn't take much more time than making an extract batch, and had I planned better and had everything ready the night before I could have been much more efficient.

6) Basically the whole process was alot of fun and I enjoyed doing it quite a bit.

Time to start planning the next brew.
 

njnear76

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Congratulations on your first AG.

I suggest increasing your mash time to 90-120 minutes. The increased time will guarantee that you get the best efficiency out of your grains. This could easily add an extra 10-25% onto your efficiency.

My First AG: 60 minutes 55%
My Second AG: 90 minutes 80% (I also used 5.2 ph stabailizer on this one because it was a pale brew.)
 
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McKBrew

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njnear76 said:
Congratulations on your first AG.

I suggest increasing your mash time to 90-120 minutes. The increased time will guarantee that you get the best efficiency out of your grains. This could easily add an extra 10-25% onto your efficiency.

My First AG: 60 minutes 55%
My Second AG: 90 minutes 80% (I also used 5.2 ph stabailizer on this one because it was a pale brew.)

Thanks for the advice. I had actually considered a 90min mash, but started later in the day and was trying to finish quickly (which may have been the source of some problems). I think I will do a 90min next time. More time to take care of other stuff.
 
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