Author Topic: 2 step Batch sparge?  (Read 23023 times)

Offline Johncmug

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2 step Batch sparge?
« on: April 15, 2012, 10:34:16 AM »
I am relatively new to all grain; today is my 3rd all grain batch (I've done extract for years).  I typically make session beers between 1.035 and 1.044. 

In the brewing steps, BeerSmith always seems to tell me to Batch sparge with 2 steps.  For example, in today's american wheat recipe, I mash in with 11.71 qt of water and then Batch sparge with 2 steps, 1.69 gal then 3.5 gal. 

Why the 2 step sparge?  Can I just add it all to mash tun (10 gallon cooler), let it sit for 15 minutes, recirculate and harvest the wort? I know I can since I just did :) but is there a negative side effect to doing this?

Thanks in advance for all replies!

Offline merfizle

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Re: 2 step Batch sparge?
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2012, 10:40:31 AM »
You can.  You probably have the check box checked that says use equal batch sizes.  Uncheck that and make sure your "batch sparge using batches that fill" box is big enough.  90% there is common.

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Offline ArtCox

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Re: 2 step Batch sparge?
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2012, 10:44:05 AM »
Use the:  single infusion, no mash out option.. that way you can sparge and recirculate at the same time.  My set up is that I use a pump to send the wort run off back to the mash tun as the sparge water is going in. when I have the correct amount of water for the sparge in the tun, I circulate that for about 10-15min and then check my pre-boil gravity if it's right send it to the boil pot and start that process.

Offline Johncmug

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Re: 2 step Batch sparge?
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2012, 05:10:23 AM »
Yes, the check box was checked that says use equal batch sizes.  Thanks for the help!

Offline ml2brew

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Re: 2 step Batch sparge?
« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2012, 09:33:13 AM »
Interesting...Do you see a drop in your efficiency when you do this.  I almost always drain my tun and sparge twice.  Can I actually get away with only one rinse or can I even mash then add all the rest of my water without losing efficiency?  If so this could save me some time.

Offline tom_hampton

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Re: 2 step Batch sparge?
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2012, 10:01:22 AM »
See this page for an analysis of efficiency vs. the number of batch sparge steps:

http://braukaiser.com/wiki/index.php?title=Batch_Sparging_Analysis

The short version: 

There is about a 10 point improvement going from no-sparge to 1 sparge step.
There is about a 05 point improvement going from 1 sparge step to 2 sparge steps.
There is about a 02 point improvement going from 2 sparge steps to 3 sparge steps.

These were measured in a 6.5 gallon batch.  I picked off the 10 lbs of grain points. 

No sparge = fill the mash tun with all water for the batch and drain the mash-tun.
1 sparge = drain the mash tun and refill with remaining water, drain 1st batch.
...etc...

Your numbers, of course, will be different in absolute terms, but the relationship will still hold.

There is very little benefit to 3 steps.  Even 2 steps is arguable, unless your MLT is just too small (like mine).  Besides, the time involved in 2 or 3 steps starts to approach the time required to fly-sparge.  So, if you have a small MLT, you might as well fly-sparge. 

Batch sparging makes the most sense with a MLT that is 2x or bigger than your target batch volume (10+ gal MLT for 5 gallon batch).  That said, I violate everything I've just said.  I have a 5 gallon MLT, I make 6 gallon batches, and batch sparge in 3 steps.  I only do that because I've always batch sparged...and my volumes and gravities have increased over the years such that I can't get it done in less.  I'm contemplating upgrading my MLT to a 60 qt ice cube, so I can go back to 1 batch sparge. 

I'm not after efficiency, I'm after good beer.  :-)

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Offline ml2brew

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Re: 2 step Batch sparge?
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2012, 02:27:28 PM »

Offline Slurk

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Re: 2 step Batch sparge?
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2012, 07:02:14 AM »
Tom, great link!
Regards,
Slurk
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