Brew Day Two

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Mercs Own

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Second all grain brew day for me today. I woke up at 5.45 thinking about firing up the B3 again and eventually dragged my self out of bed and up to the servo to fill up the gas bottle at 7.15.

So far so good. Doughed in at about 77 degrees and the mash is sitting at 68 according to the mash tun probe and 70 according to my thermometer - is that too high?

I am brewing an American style Amber Ale: pale, munich and some crystal 10.25 kilo total grain bill. Hopping with Pearle - bittering and Willamette and Tettnag and then using some 1056 saf yeast.

I dont mean to bore anyone but I thought I would include a few more photos just so as you can enjoy the process along with me.


Channel Seven wouldnt let me brew in my nice green shirt from last weeks show but as requested here is a photo of me brewing in a green shirt anyway!


Glutton for punishment eh? :lol: 70c should be OK. Nothing wrong with a bit of body in your beer. :beerbang:

Wouldn't let your mash sit any higher than this. If you find your temps are a little uneven try stirring the mash a bit more to better distribute the temps.

Good luck with the day. Sounds like you're hooked. :)

Warren -
I can't get over how pretty the B3 is, great looking system.

NO bore from the pics, good to see. When I first started brewing the camera was snapping away big time, it's a good way to reassure yourself that things are flowing smoothly...

Good Luck with it all..
68-70 will be fine for an amber and will put some body in the brew. Better to be a degree or 2 higher than way low, otherwise will turn out a bit thin and dry for the style. What SG and IBUs are you planning?

I myself am brewing a weizen atm(wearing a yellow shirt :D ), and is sitting at 68. Must get back to the tun for first run off.

keep the photos coming

sg 1056 and ibu 35

The mash tun probe is now showing 65 but after a good stir my thermometer is reading 68. I think I might start to recirculate - set the bed and hopefully keep the temp at 68.
Roach what are you mashing in and how do you keep your temp constant?
Just using a 10 gallon round esky(Keep Cold brand) and temp drop is about 1 degree over the 60 minute mash. So rely on insulation of tun to keep temp constant rather than using a neat recirc solution like in your B3.

Gets the job done.

Okay I am sparging now. My mash started at 70 and over the hour it dropped down to around the 67.5ish or so.

I recirculated to set the bed and am now doing a slow sparge - unlike the last time.

A question if I am supposed to sparge at 75 I assume that means the liquid running on top of the mash should be that temp. My hlt is reading about 81 degrees but the water coming out of the sparge ring and sitting ontop of the grain is not getting over 68 on my thermometre?? A reading deep in the grain bed is also 68 degrees.

That would seem like a lot of heat being lost in the tubing for the recirculation. Pic below.




Sparge temps sound OK. :beerbang: You'll always get a bit of a drop from the HLT to the top of the grainbed. First half of the sparge is OK on the high side. Just let your HLT temp drop a little ambiently over the course of the sparge to about 75.

Keep up the good work. Good to see that even turnkey systems can suffer temp inconsistencies. :lol:

All will be well. :beerbang:

Warren -
Warren, are you saying that sparge temp is about the HLT temp and not the temp that hits the grain bed?

As long as the water hitting the grainbed is about 75c + or - a degree or two won't hurt. So if it's say 73 or 77c I wouldn't worry too much about it. This becomes a little more critical though when the gravity of your runnings are starting to drop. The likelihood of leaching husks and tannins into your wort become more of a reality. So with the second half of your sparge (when you're past about 20 litres in your boiler) make sure your sparge water temp (on the grainbed) doesn't get any hotter than 75c. ;)

Generally I like to keep the water in the HLT at or about 80c. By the time it hits the grainbed it loses a couple of degrees YMMV.

Warren -
Another thing Merc.

When one comes your way grab a refractometer. They make checking the gravity of your runnings a really easy job. Just a teaspoon of liquid on the lens and you're away.

Checking the final runnings with a hydrometer is a real PITA. <_<

Warren -
Thanks Warren. What I am concerned about is that the water temp on the grain bed didnt seem to get over 68 even when the HLT was up at 85.
Something you may have to experiment with to a degree Merc. :unsure:

Looking at your setup HLT on the bottom and the mashtun on the top it appears your sparge water has quite a way to travel. :eek: You may be experiencing a fair bit of a temp drop. I'd just keep taking notes and maybe just compensating on your next brews. :beerbang:

You may find you have to keep your sparge water at least 5 degrees hotter than what it should be to allow for temp drops.

Warren -
I dont mean to bore anyone but I thought I would include a few more photos just so as you can enjoy the process along with me.

Pictures are great.. keep them coming :D
Drool, Drool, where can one get a hold of that plant. Am a newcomer to AG, is it a turnkey system? Where do I go, who do I call? Would love to give a home to a complete system like that new or SH.
Boil is almost done. Efficiency calc came out at 82% but it will be intersting to see how the boil eff is and what I get in the fermenter.

SG before boil was 1059, taken with two readings one from top and one bottom of boiler after a good stir.

Screw top if you do a search on my name you will find the posts where I go in to detail about the system and costs etc.
all done! Every thing seemed to go okay. Just got to sort out my sparging temp problem and I think I am on track.

Final volume after the boil was 38.5 litres. I lost 3.4 to trub and hoses/chiller which means I got 35 litres in the fermenter. SG in fermenter is 1066. My planned was 1059 but with the mash efficiency and sparge coming in at 80% last brew and 82% this brew I will have to change from my cautious 68% that I have worked it out on.

Pitched two packs of saf ale us56 cleaned up and had another beer.




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