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Brews & Views Bulletin Board Service * Brews and Views Archive 2005 * Archive through March 25, 2005 * Batch Sparge: when to Mash-Out < Previous Next >

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damon
Junior Member
Username: Nomad

Post Number: 75
Registered: 07-2004
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 08:19 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I typically conduct a mash, infuse a few to a lot more quarts to reach mash-out temp., and then drain. Then I add the batch of sparge water, maintaining mash-out temp., and I'm done.

What about the other way... Mash-in, drain it without adding an infusion to reach mash-out temp., and then rely on the batch sparge to get it near 170F?

Obviously, it will greatly increase the volume of the sparge addition, but does it really matter which way and when I achieve mash-out for the grains? Furthermore, and I'm guessing it won't, but does it effect efficiency?
 

Roger Herpst
Junior Member
Username: Roger456

Post Number: 68
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 08:33 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I'm no expert, but I've read that hitting the mash-out temp is not necessary.

On one side, I've read that one of the alleged benefits of hitting the mash out temp(denaturing/deactivating/somesuchthing about enzymes) is not needed when batch sparging because the lautering process is rather short, and you will be boiling much faster than if you were fly sparging. (I believe this notion was mentioned on Denny's Cheap & Easy batch sparge page.)

On the other, when I took a short seminar with Byron Burch, he asserted that mash out temps did no such thing as deactivating, etc. the enzymes in the mash, but that the primary benefit of mashing out temps was to make the sugars more soluble and therefore the lautering more efficient. That said, he was flysparging.

All things being equal, however, I don't know but I'd like to read others observations. I'm just trying to help frame the debate: deactivate vs. solubility vs. ??

Oh, and for what it is worth, I batch sparge, and generally do raise the bed temp to 165-170 before the first runnings and target the same temp before the second.

(Message edited by roger456 on March 17, 2005)
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 2718
Registered: 01-2002
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 08:45 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

More recent research, which I suspect Byron Burch is citing, suggests that it takes a longer time and higher temperatures than occur during mashout to significantly denature the malt enzymes. Therefore the real benefit of mashing out is to ease the sparge and extract the maximum sugars. However, mashing out is hardly essential, and many brewers do very well without it.

My own considered opinion is that mashing out is even less important when batch sparging. The mash is heated by the charge of sparge water, largely accomplishing the same thing as mashing out.

The purported increase in efficiency from mashing out, as with fly sparging, is offset by other factors in the mash technique, to the point where it's difficult to say for certain which method results in the greatest extraction.

It's a case of doing what works for you. These are minor issues overall and not worth agonizing over.
 

damon
Junior Member
Username: Nomad

Post Number: 76
Registered: 07-2004
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 08:48 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

True, but my question is not about whether mashing out should be done (that debate is over in my experience) - its about the timing of added volumes and that effect on the amount of sugars extracted.

I think I'm missing a link in my understanding of the batch sparge process vis-a-vis extraction.

(Message edited by nomad on March 17, 2005)
 

Hophead
Senior Member
Username: Hophead

Post Number: 1277
Registered: 03-2002
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 08:59 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I believe your 1st choice will give slightly better efficiency, but either choice is fine.
 

Denny Conn
Senior Member
Username: Denny

Post Number: 4358
Registered: 01-2001
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 09:17 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Damon, like others have said, it just doesn't matter. The only time I add water to the mash before the first runoff is when I'm going to be significantly short of 1/2 my total boil volume in the first runoff. I do the addition for the volume, NOT for a mashout per se. If I'm close to 1/2 my boil volume on the first runoff, I just use sparge water hot enough to get to mashout temps. I'm not concerned with trying to denature the enzymes (see Bill's answer), but I do like to try to reduce the viscosity of the sparge runoff. But in reality, I've found that it only makes a very small difference to my efficiency to do that.
LIfe begins at 60...1.060, that is.
 

Roger Herpst
Junior Member
Username: Roger456

Post Number: 69
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2005 - 09:20 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Whoops, missed the point of your question.

I agree with Hophead. I mash in to hit the desired qt/lbs ratio of water to grain, add a bit more water 10-15 min before the first runnings to accomodate for absorption and so that I get as close to 50% of my desired pre-boil volume from the first runnings.

Frankly, I'm not sure why I do this for any other reason than that is the way I first read how to batch sparge. If pressed, I would justify my method by saying that it seems logical that maximizing the volume of both runnings will increase extraction efficiency, and the highest volume you can have for each of the two runnings is 50% of your final volume. Also, the solubility notion.
 

Bill Moore
Intermediate Member
Username: Bill_beerman

Post Number: 287
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 01:11 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Like Denny, I only mashout in order to get the first runnings at about 1/2 the boil volume.
I adjust the mashout temp to make sure that I don't exceed 170 in the mash.
 

Wortgames
Junior Member
Username: Wortgames

Post Number: 77
Registered: 06-2003
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 01:35 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

A neighbour's friend's cousin once read somewhere that some of the big guys mash out at 82C, which is just about 180F. I always mash-out and fly-sparge at 80C / 176F (purely for efficiency, the enzymes meet a nasty end soon enough) and I only ever detect tannins at the very end when the runoff contains nothing of value anyway.

Is 170F just the conventional wisdom or are there good reasons to keep it at that?
Wortgames is an independent home brewer, and has no commercial interests in the brewing arena. In fact, brewing is largely a gadget-based obsession that places a significant burden on his resources.
 

Kevin Davis
Intermediate Member
Username: Ktdavis98

Post Number: 260
Registered: 12-2003
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 01:44 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Like HH said your first choice will / should give you a little better efficiency. At least it did for me. I picked up 3 to 5% by adding the water for your grain absorption at mashout (I use boiling water). Other benefits as mentioned, very close to 1/2 your boil volume, and easier sparge run off.
Kevin
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 2724
Registered: 01-2002
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 02:35 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

There are indications that temperatures above 170 F tend to extract tannins from the husks, especially at the higher pH and lower gravity that occurs as the sugars are rinsed from the grain.
 

J. Steinhauer
Advanced Member
Username: Jstein6870

Post Number: 600
Registered: 03-2002
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 05:15 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

BUT, if you keep your pH below 6 and your runoff gravity above 1.010, you should have no trouble with tannins.

IMO, batch spargers have no need to mash out.
 

kevin bower
Junior Member
Username: Kevbower090

Post Number: 32
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 01:02 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

So... now that i have the volume in my mash ton to reach my pre-boil volume in 2 "batches", it isn't nessasary? Is there a benefit to sparge with all of the needed water, or do you get the same results with just half and top up to desired amount??
 

Colby Enck
Member
Username: Thecheese

Post Number: 161
Registered: 06-2003
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 01:59 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

When batch sparging, are both run-offs done as quickly as possible? Is there a benefit to going slower?
 

Gretz
New Member
Username: Gretz

Post Number: 24
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 04:44 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I typically mash at 1qt/LB and calculate sparge volume after trial and error as 2.6 qts x LB of grain. This gives me 3 sparges and I stay just above 1.010 at the end. I am constrained by a 5 gallon MT and 6.2 gallon batches. Any final volumes are adjusted by varying boil time or make-up water.
 

Hophead
Senior Member
Username: Hophead

Post Number: 1280
Registered: 03-2002
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 05:17 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have seen NO difference in running off slow vs fast (other than time...), so I would run off as fast as you can without compacting the grain bed and getting stuck near the end. Similarly with grinding the grain, go as fine as you can without getting a stuck sparge...
 

Denny Conn
Senior Member
Username: Denny

Post Number: 4359
Registered: 01-2001
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 05:37 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

5 stars for Hophead!
LIfe begins at 60...1.060, that is.
 

damon
Junior Member
Username: Nomad

Post Number: 77
Registered: 07-2004
Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 08:57 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Post something and then got busy... Sorry for not getting back, but all I wanted has been answered by Denny (and some others, too!)

Thanks. Sometimes the really small things confuse me, but, ya know, Special Relativity I understnand right away
 

Jonathan Henderson
Member
Username: Henderson1966

Post Number: 173
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Wednesday, March 23, 2005 - 12:02 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

All I have ever done is batch sparge and I always sparge as you have suggested (no mashout). My highest efficiencies (80%) have been when I used two batches to get the boil volume after initial run off (I was forced to do this when I went to 10 gallon batches because my mash tun did not have a large capacity.) I just add a little phosphoric acid to the sparge to prevent leeching tannins, althoug this may not be necessary. YMMV
Jonathan