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Does It Matter If It Takes Along Time To Reach Boil

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The Gas Man

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Was brewing an APA the other night.

Due to the cold wind, it took about 90 mins to reach the boil (70L batch). It got to 90C within about 45 min, but took forever to finally reach the boil.

Currently I use a 4 ring gas burner, but was thinking about adding an over the side electric element to speed things up.

My question is, does it matter if it takes 90 mins to reach the boil? Especially if I was adding first wort hops to the boil.
 

ekul

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Was brewing an APA the other night.

Due to the cold wind, it took about 90 mins to reach the boil (70L batch). It got to 90C within about 45 min, but took forever to finally reach the boil.

Currently I use a 4 ring gas burner, but was thinking about adding an over the side electric element to speed things up.

My question is, does it matter if it takes 90 mins to reach the boil? Especially if I was adding first wort hops to the boil.

Some people say when it takes ages to get to the boil its actaully better. To be honest i've noticed a difference. The first hops will only be slightly more bitter. In short i reckon you're good to go.
 

Kranky

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It doesn't matter. Maybe you should get out to Clark rubber at Shellharbour and get some rubber matting to shield your vessels.
 

Wolfy

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My question is, does it matter if it takes 90 mins to reach the boil? Especially if I was adding first wort hops to the boil.
Yes it matters, and yes - especially if you use FWH - it will have an impact on hop utilization.

Most all IBU calculations work on boil-time, however it's safe to assume that hop isomerization does not stop and start only when the wort reaches the exact boiling point, and that the chemical reactions start at temperatures below boiling (and continue after the boil is stopped as the wort is cooled down). With a slower boil you will have your FWH in the heating liquid longer and so you should expect more isomerization and more bitterness. In a way you are doing the opposite of what no-chillers do, in their case the hops continue to isomerize as the wort cools down (so they adjust for bitterness in their late hop additions), in your case you would expect more isomerization and hence more bitterness as the wort heats slowly.

But having said all that, the better question to ask is if the long time it takes to reach boiling will have a negative impact and how much difference it will make to your hop utilization and other factors. It might be that those factors end up being negligible or something you'd only notice in a side-by-side comparison.
 

ekul

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I would've thought difference between 60 mins of boiling and say 150mins of boiling would be marginal in regards to IBUS. In BM if the hops @60 required to achieve 25IBUs are boiled for 150mins it only gives an additional .3 of an IBU.

When i was starting out i used to throw my bittering hops in straight away and then boil until i reached my target gravity. This was because i didn't have my water volumes down pat and would always overshoot it. So sometimes my hops would be boiled for 60mins and sometimes 90. Can't say i ever noticed much of a difference in bitterness.

And his hops aren't even boiled, they're just hot!

Yes it matters, and yes - especially if you use FWH - it will have an impact on hop utilization.

Most all IBU calculations work on boil-time, however it's safe to assume that hop isomerization does not stop and start only when the wort reaches the exact boiling point, and that the chemical reactions start at temperatures below boiling (and continue after the boil is stopped as the wort is cooled down). With a slower boil you will have your FWH in the heating liquid longer and so you should expect more isomerization and more bitterness. In a way you are doing the opposite of what no-chillers do, in their case the hops continue to isomerize as the wort cools down (so they adjust for bitterness in their late hop additions), in your case you would expect more isomerization and hence more bitterness as the wort heats slowly.

But having said all that, the better question to ask is if the long time it takes to reach boiling will have a negative impact and how much difference it will make to your hop utilization and other factors. It might be that those factors end up being negligible or something you'd only notice in a side-by-side comparison.
 

Kranky

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Sorry I missed the bit about FWH (I've had a few already). It's not something I've tried so I don't know.
 

iralosavic

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For those of us with underpowered systems, best thing ever is this:



Use whatever floating device you like, so long as the material is foodsafe. My 2200w element went from being unable to even maintain a boil with the lid off (and my keggle IS insulated), to being both able to get to the boil quicker AND able to maintain a sufficiently vigurous boil too.

I'd definitely look at insulating the pot as well, if not first, as you lose a fair bit of energy efficiency through the sides and it's cheap to fix - no where near as much energy as through the liquid surface and no where near as cheap as a disposable pie tin (if that were the path you chose) though!

I have no personal experience FWHing, but I agree with Wolfy in that the longer exposure to mash+ tempuratures will have a measurable impact on the end result. However, this doesn't mean to say that you can't work around it. If, even after trying out my suggestions (if you like), your ramp to boil time is still slow, you simply take tasting notes against your recipe and adjust your hop quantities accordingly the next time -and take note of the disparity between expected and actual (perceived) bitterness to apply it to other recipes.
 

Wolfy

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I would've thought difference between 60 mins of boiling and say 150mins of boiling would be marginal in regards to IBUS. In BM if the hops @60 required to achieve 25IBUs are boiled for 150mins it only gives an additional .3 of an IBU.
That difference is less than 1%, so it would be interesting to see how BM calculates its bitterness.
The actual hop bitterness calculations and tables (referenced here) indicate you'd expect a bigger increase in bitterness than that - but that is not to say it would be overly noticeable or ruin the beer in any way.
 

mkj

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For those of us with underpowered systems, best thing ever is this:

[Floating cake tin?]

Use whatever floating device you like, so long as the material is foodsafe. My 2200w element went from being unable to even maintain a boil with the lid off (and my keggle IS insulated), to being both able to get to the boil quicker AND able to maintain a sufficiently vigurous boil too.
Huh, how's that work? Reduces the surface area?
 

eviljesus

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Huh, how's that work? Reduces the surface area?

Yeap, keeps the heat trapped in the fluid itself, better than a lid as no airspace to warm as well.

Almost a lid, on a lid?
 

QldKev

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As ekul pointed out, the difference in IBU is not worth worrying about. I would be more worried about all the DMS and other shit left in the brew, if it takes that long to get to the boil, it wont be a decent boil.

QldKev
 

chunckious

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Would a teflon cake tin be suitable as a floatie or would it have to be stainless?
 

The Gas Man

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If the recipe calls for a 60 min boil. Does the clock start from the moment a boil is achieved and then boil for a futher 60 min?
 

chunckious

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Yes Gas, you cant count your boil time while the water is heating. Count starts at ther time of rolling boil.
 

mje1980

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60 minute hops are boiled for 60. I always do 90 minute boils, and the 60 minute hops don't go in for the first 30 minutes.
 

QldKev

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If the recipe calls for a 60 min boil. Does the clock start from the moment a boil is achieved and then boil for a futher 60 min?
I always get to a decent boil, and past the protein break. Then I start the boil timer and add hops (unless I'm FWH'ing)

Otherwise if you time while heating to he boil you are not effectively boiling of DMS and that other shit for long enough.

It's you beer, but to me I want to ensure what I make is great.

QldKev
 

eviljesus

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As far as I am led to believe yes.

Clock starts when the boil has actually been achieved. Hops etc. go in at this stage.
 

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