Author Topic: Batch Sparge suggestion  (Read 3009 times)

Offline dontblake

  • BeerSmith Apprentice Brewer
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Batch Sparge suggestion
« on: March 06, 2010, 01:16:43 PM »
I have a suggestion for the batch sparging area.

first some background:
Long before I migrated from Promash to Beersmith, I created a simple spreadsheet to calculate batch sparging requirements.  This has become an invaluable tool for me in brewday planning.   I was stoked to see that Beersmith does indeed calculate batch sparging amounts, etc (one of the reasons why I did migrate).  However, I feel that in planning a recipe, things are a little cumbersome.   By this, I mean that to find out the amounts of strike and batch sparge water, you need to refer to the "preview brewsheet" as the water listings are not included on the main recipe / mash steps page.   

The reason why I find having the numbers right in front of you to be helpful is that you can tweak certain amounts to make things easier.   For example, I will tweak the water to grain ratio to be a more reasonable number.  In one case, I have a recipe that calls for 12.5 lb of grains, and I usually start out with a ratio of 1.25.   This yields a strike volume of 15.625 qt or 3.91 gal, which is impractical to measure IMHO.   So I tweak the w/g ratio up or down slightly to find a more pragmatic, measurable volume.   In this example, I iterated the w/g ratio to 1.28 which yields a strike water volume of 4 gallons.  Now this is much more straightforward to measure and I really doubt that there will be any substantial difference in the mash going from 1.25 to 1.28 qts/lb. 

And now, the suggestion:
What I think would be sweet for beersmith is to have a feature (most likely integrated with the "mash profile" page (when you select "details" on the main recipe page.   Show the default calculations, but then allow the user to tweak things like the w/g ratio and even show the total batch size and desired boil volume for reference.  When the optimal, easy to measure volumes show up, hit save or ok, then these are shown on both the "details" page as well as the recipe page.  Tied in with this suggestion is to show the amounts of each addition on the main page in the mash section (currently it only shows the dough-in amount, but no sparging amounts - you have to go to "preview brewsheet" to see them).

A secondary suggestion is to have the mash schedule details show up on one form.   currently, you have to open up the Mash profile page and certain key parameters can be entered.   then if you need to change other mash parameters, you have to select the step and make the changes.   It would be nice to have all this in one form that can be edited on the fly and have all parameters available so that you can see what affects what.   Also, on this form, and in line with the above suggestion, have the mash-out and 2nd batch steps show up.

I've attached my calculator if anyone is interested.  it's pretty simple, all the math was found at Denny Conn's batch sparging page, but I've tweaked things to be incredibly useful for me (and to teach others the relative simplicity of batch sparging). 
To see the beauty of things, change the value in cell reference [2] from 1.25 to 1.26, 1.27, 1.28.  Look at the Results area and it becomes pretty clear

Those results that show up in blue are the 3 numbers that I use on brewday.   I typically copy these to my beersmith brewsheet and more or less bypass the values that beersmith generates.

Thanks for reading