Missed OG in Hefeweizen

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TheHalfDime

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OK, so I am a bit of a newbie to partial mash and just made a MLT from a 2 gallon Rubbermaid cooler and took a shot at my first PM batch tonight. I took the precaution of padding my recepie a bit in the event that I had some issues and it was a good thing that I did. Currently, I am rehashing all the steps and notes to see where I went wrong. Here is the bill:

5lb Wheat LME
1.25lb Red Wheat
1.25lb German Pils Malt
0.5lb Cara Pils Malt
+ 1lb 2-Row German Pils (Pad)

OK, so I started with heating up 4qts of water to 170 to prime the MLT and let it stand for 5 min or so. I also have been reading that the ratio of strike water to grain should be between 1-1.5qts per lb, so it hit it in the middle.

Strike water was 165 and settled to 155 and held for at least 20 min. At the end of the 45min mash the temp was down to 145-147. I sparged with 4qts at 170, which really just pooled up on top of the grainbed and I just drained it out through the bulkhead.

I added this to 2.5 gal of hot water in the boil pot and brought to a boil and added the LME. I did have a little bit of a boil over at first, but I didnt think that it would have a huge effect. It may have been 4-5oz at most. (~3.5 gal in boil at this point).

Finished the hoping and cooled. Added water to reach 5.25 gal and pitched.

Just before I pitched I measured 1.0475 OG which is lower than what I expected. The guide from the LHBS showed a target of 1.05, but that was without a 1lb pad.

Theory:
Boil over coupled with too little sparge volume or should have started with a higher strike temp.

Any thoughts aimed at theory or practice would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks
 

TipsyDragon

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you may have poor drainage in your MLT somewhere. if you can give us a picture. you should try to hold your mash temp at 155 for an hour. if you have to add more hot water, just be careful adding to much will lower your efficiency. don't forget to stir the grain every 20 minutes or so to make sure they are all getting the same temp and aren't clumping. then drain the MLT into your pot. next you want to sparge at 170ish for 15 minutes. again mix the grain. then drain that into your brew pot.

was the recipe for a 5 gallon batch or a 5.25 gallon batch?
 
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TheHalfDime

TheHalfDime

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Well I have been reading a bit more and I have made a few mistakes along the way.

1. I didn't stir the MLT during mashing and I remember some clumping and temperature pockets.
2. I didn't soak the grain during sparging. I did a fly approach and it was maybe 3 min. Basically the water was standing on the grain bed and I just let it drain slowly.

I tried to cut some time by boiling some water (2.5 gal) and getting the LME rolling then add the wort from the MLT to it; which produced a 3.5ish gallon boil volume. I think that I should just start with the MLT and sparge a couple of times rather than once.

The recipe that I followed is for a 5.25 gal batch, but maybe 5 gal finish would have been more appropriate.
 

TipsyDragon

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there is nothing wrong with fly sparging. as you can tell i don't do that so i cant say if your technique was wrong or not.

but thinking about it. your mash plus what you used to for sparging should add up to more than 1 gallon. doing the bare minimum on the mash you should of had .75 of a gallon. seeing as you did 1.25 quarts per pound you should of been just shy of 1 gallon. so the 2.5 of LME plus that volume should of been about 3.5 gallons. then you would add your sparge water which would up the volume and sugar content of your wort. one of us is missing something somewhere.
 
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TheHalfDime

TheHalfDime

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your mash plus what you used to for sparging should add up to more than 1 gallon.doing the bare minimum on the mash you should of had .75 of a gallon. seeing as you did 1.25 quarts per pound you should of been just shy of 1 gallon.

1.25:1 is 6 quarts which is 1.5gal.

Then a sparge with 1qt per 2lbs of grain (noted in the LHBS direction)

so the 2.5 of LME plus that volume should of been about 3.5 gallons. then you would add your sparge water which would up the volume and sugar content of your wort. one of us is missing something somewhere.

I am actually adding in water after the boil to get the total batch volume. So really all I am concentrated on at the MLT level is getting the mash/sparge right I guess. Overall, I think that is where my issue is...

I have another thread about the same batch that has questions focused on Brew Pal; I am using it to try and trouble shoot.

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f36/brew-pal-question-180765/
 

brew starter

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Try hitting 1.038 og after doing everything right and than you will have something to worry. 1.048 is very good og
 
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