Author Topic: Batch sparging and Mash Profiles  (Read 3625 times)

Offline mjurban

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Batch sparging and Mash Profiles
« on: January 29, 2017, 02:02:29 PM »
Greetings.  I am new to BeerSmith, but have been home brewing for many years.  I have worked my way through some of the tutorials, and think I have a pretty good handle on how the program works.  There has obviously been a large amount of incredibly good work put into the development of this software, and I am highly impressed.  That said, I can't help but express disappointment in some aspects of the way mash profiles work, and in the way BeerSmith handles batch sparging.

In my process, all infusions are done with boiling water.  The thought of bringing my hot liquor tank to a specific temperature less that boiling, and having it ready at that temp at the moment it is needed, is very daunting.  With that in mind, when I design an infusion step I want to be able to specify the infusion temperature, and then have BeerSmith tell me (a) how much water to add to achieve a specific mash temp, or (b) what mash temp will be achieved by adding a specified amount of water.  Please correct me if I've got this wrong, but BeerSmith will not allow me to specify the infusion temperature.

Regarding batch sparging, I think that the batch infusions, vorlauf, and runoff steps should be included as steps in the mash profile.  The main reason for this is so they will appear on the Timer tab, with appropriate time budgets.  Denny Conn taught a lot of us how to do a batch sparge several years ago, and the instructions are still on his website.  My process is very close to his.  In general, I find Beersmith very difficult to adapt to that process.

I've attached a .pdf file containing what I think a proper mash profile ought to look like, along with some specific comments regarding areas where I think BeerSmith could provide better support.  The file is more than one page, and has 9 total steps. 

Please take all of this as constructive criticism.  Like I said, I am highly impressed overall, and I think I can make BeerSmith work within my process, although a number of workarounds are necessary.  If I am missing the easy way to do some of these things, I would love to be set straight.

thanks,
Mike

Offline BOB357

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Re: Batch sparging and Mash Profiles
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2017, 04:51:03 PM »
When you go into the mash section you have the option of adding steps. You can also double click on a step and edit it as you wish. You can specify the infusion temperature and the program will adjust the volume. It takes some time to play with the software and get used to it. I find that you can customize almost everything you want.
Bob

Offline mjurban

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Re: Batch sparging and Mash Profiles
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2017, 05:56:55 PM »
Hi Bob, thanks for your reply.  I am familiar with adding mash steps, and I'm familiar with how to edit them.  In the edit window, there are 6 numerical fields:  Step Temp, Step Time, Rise Time, Water To Add, Water/Grain Ratio, and Infusion Temp.  I can edit all of them except Infusion Temp.  That field will not accept input.  I find it strange that this is the only field that behaves this way.

Maybe I have something set up wrong.  Could I ask you to go to one of your mash profiles and verify that you can edit the infusion temp field?  I would find it very interesting if you can, because I definitely can not.

thanks,
Mike

Offline BOB357

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Re: Batch sparging and Mash Profiles
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2017, 03:20:45 PM »
When you change the infusion volume the infusion temperature will change accordingly.
Bob

Offline Oginme

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Re: Batch sparging and Mash Profiles
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2017, 07:28:41 AM »
BeerSmith uses the infusion water volume to solve for the infusion temperature which is very common to maintain consistent grain to water ratios throughout the mashing process and make the process more repeatable.  What you appear to be doing is using the infusion temperature to solve for the water volume.  I have never run across this method of infusion mashing and working it through the mash profile by hand, can not figure out how you can be consistent using this process given differing grain bills.  Applying a step mash profile set for infusion of boiling water to different recipes means that I need to reset the water volumes at each step in order to keep the infusion temperature at boiling.

However, if this works for you that is great.  But it is not the way the software is set up to solve the infusion step requirements.

Recycle your grains, feed them to a goat!

Offline ihikeut

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Re: Batch sparging and Mash Profiles
« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2017, 06:50:00 AM »
Just my two cents worth but I'm confused why you want to use boiling water in your mash steps,  All my readings and research recommens that water to grain ratio and temperature are the main factors for maximum conversion. Beer Smith allows you to set your ratio and factors the temperature requied,