Author Topic: trying to understand BeerSmith spare instructions  (Read 3573 times)

Offline azgringo

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trying to understand BeerSmith spare instructions
« on: July 08, 2015, 01:55:31 PM »
I can't understand why when I select single infusion, batch sparge with one step it is telling me to use two steps (0.89gal, and 4.06gal).  Why would I spare with less than a gallon?  I hope this isn't too stupid of a question!
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Offline Oginme

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Re: trying to understand BeerSmith spare instructions
« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2015, 06:27:15 PM »
You need to customize the mash profile for your system.  Chances are that you do not have the box for 'drain mash tun before sparging' checked.  You can also set the batch sparge to 100% of volume to help avoid having two sparge steps. 

Given the small volume first, probability is that you do not have the drain mash tun checked.
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Offline Scott Ickes

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Re: trying to understand BeerSmith spare instructions
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2015, 09:48:52 PM »
You need to customize the mash profile for your system.  Chances are that you do not have the box for 'drain mash tun before sparging' checked.  You can also set the batch sparge to 100% of volume to help avoid having two sparge steps. 

Given the small volume first, probability is that you do not have the drain mash tun checked.

This answer is correct.

To further explain, the way you have it set up now, BeerSmith is telling you to add .89 gallons of water to your mash before draining.  This should allow you to drain approximately 4.06 gallons for your first runnings.  Then you sparge with 4.06 gallons of water and drain, giving you a preboil volume of about 8.12 gallons.

Set up the way you currently have it, is so that you get first and second runnings of equal volume.  You may be thinking, "Why don't I just add that .89 gallons into my strike water and mash with the full volume?"  (This is what Oginme explained)  When you check the "drain mash tun before sparging" box, BeerSmith will

The answer is that BeerSmith's software has calculated the water to grain ratio that is required to get the most efficiency out of your mash.  If you mash a little thinner, your efficiency might suffer slightly.  Or if you mash a little thicker it might suffer a little bit.  However, I doubt that the difference would be that great on your efficiency, unless you're brewing a really large or very small beer when it comes to starting gravity.  So, checking the box will change your water volumes, but allow you to not have to add water to your mash before draining your first runnings.

I don't check the box, since I figure I'm already heating up my sparge water anyhow.  For your example, I'd be heating up 4.95 gallons of sparge water.  Then I'd take about .89 gallons out of it and add it to my mash before draining my first runnings.

I hope this helps.
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Offline azgringo

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Re: trying to understand BeerSmith spare instructions
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2015, 12:49:01 PM »
Thanks you guys!  The last thing you said about adding the small amount of water into the mash before first runnings had me wondering though...what does that do as opposed to adding it at the beginning of the mash or with the rest of the sparse water? Does that temp added right before draining do something I'm not aware of?
~AZGringo

Offline Scott Ickes

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Re: trying to understand BeerSmith spare instructions
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2015, 02:14:18 PM »
Thanks you guys!  The last thing you said about adding the small amount of water into the mash before first runnings had me wondering though...what does that do as opposed to adding it at the beginning of the mash or with the rest of the sparse water? Does that temp added right before draining do something I'm not aware of?

The reason it's added after the mash and before draining, is so that your mash process has the correct water to grain ratio.  If you add it at the beginning of your mash, your mash will be too thin. 

If you drain and then add it with the last sparge water, your first runnings won't be able to dissolve as much sugars into solution.

BeerSmith is trying to get the wort volume of the first and second drainings as even as possible in volume.
Kegs:
 Red IPA
 ESB
 Saison Solera
 Dubel (Aged in Malbec Wine Barrel
Aging:
 80 Shilling (In bourbon barrel)
Bottled
 Peppermint Patty Stout
 Wee Heavy

Scott Ickes
https://creativebrewing.wordpress.com