Question for all you fly spargers

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MrSaLTy

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When you fly sparge I know the general rule is to keep about 1" of liquid above the grain bed as you sparge. My question is.... do you use enough sparge water to keep the grain covered all the way till you collect your full volume of wort or do you just use enough to run the sparge tank empty and run the mash closer to dry to get your full volume? Or does it even matter?
 

PT Ray

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I have never heard of any negative effects. I figure about .5gallons per pound of grain for sparge water volume. Once the last of the sparge water is in the lauter tun, I will let it run dry. When the grain bed starts to compact, the last runnings tend to pickup some solids but leaves the spent grains ready for pitching in the backyard.
 

RichBrewer

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I've gotten to the point where I use an extra gallon of sparge water above what is required. I test the gravity of the wort when the liquid level gets low and stop when, it gets to about 1.012. I usually end up draining most of the liquid from the tun.
 

ajf

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I always prepare at least two gallons of extra sparge water because my HLT has about 1/2 gallon of dead space, and because I need about 1.5g in the HLT to spin the sparge arm.
Draining the mash dry can cause the grain to compact, and result in a stuck sparge, but I really don't think it makes any difference at the end of the sparge.

-a.
 

pokey

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MrSaLTy said:
When you fly sparge I know the general rule is to keep about 1" of liquid above the grain bed as you sparge.

Uh-oh. I thought that the Listermann mashing manual that came with my sparge arm said to keep the water level just below the top of the grain bed. I can't find the manual tonight though, so maybe I read it wrong. Is 1-2 inches above definitely the standard? Does it really make a difference?
 
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MrSaLTy

MrSaLTy

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I don't know if it makes a difference when you get to the point where you are draining the last bit out but it does for the majority of your sparging. If you keep the wort level above your grain bed it should allow it to drain properly. If the level gets too low... your grain bed will collapse and you will not get any flow and you will have a stuck sparge.
 

Musthavbeer

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I am only on my 4th A. G. but I read alot on the subject. Always keep 1-2" above the grain bed. Mash volume varies according to grain types,(all barley or some wheat) but is generally 1.25 - 1.5 quarts per pound of grain. They say do not sparge below 1011 SG or you pick up harsh flavor from the hulls. I assume this means SG corrected for temp, so if you are getting wort out at 160 dg., 1.011 would show .989 on your hydrometer. Hope this helps.
 

Monster Mash

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I keep the water level even with the grain bed or about 1/2" above. When Im getting close to the end of the sparge I stop the HLT and just run off the liquid.
 
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