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Water To Grain Ratio

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sluggerdog

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Hi,

I was wondering if someone could explain the dealing with water to grain ratio within your mash tun.

like for example would you always want a small ratio (2:1 - water:grain) or a larger (3:1) or do you want different ratios for different beer styles.

If the last example, how does a lower ratio effect the mash compared to a higher ratio.

Thanx!

SD :)
 
J

Jovial_Monk

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Grain/water ratio has minor effects.

Thick mash = more dextrins. I do 2L/Kg, but sometimes end up adding more hot water, so 2-2.5Kg/L

I would not like to go over 3L/Kg

Jovial Monk
 

sluggerdog

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Thanks JM

For some reason I thought that your first amouont of water would get more sugars in it then your sparge water.

So I was thinking if you had 15 litres of mash water then you might get more sugars out then if you only had 10 litres of mash water.

Thanks for clearing that up for me!
 

Gulf Brewery

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Sluggerdog

I have some notes I got from somewhere on this
A stiff mash (around 2l / kg ) favours protein and starch breakdown
A thin mash (3l / kg or more) takes longer to break down the carbohydrates as it is more dilute.

Cheers
Pedro
 

sluggerdog

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Cheers Pedro,

One other reason I was asking this is I mashed today with a ratio of 2:1 and I got a lot lower efficiency then I have in the mast with a ratio of 3:1 but looking at this it must be some other reason why I got the low efficiency.
 

Kai

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With a thinner mash, the mash takes longer as there's more empty space (ie water) between the enzymes and the carbohydrates, so the two physically do not run into each other as often. In a thicker mash they are closer and as such work faster, but as the enzymes work the increased sugar increases the osmotic pressure and inhibts the enzyme action. I don't know much about how the ratio affects protein breakdown.
 

Kai

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Slugger, did you make up for your lower ratio of water in the mash by increasing the amount of sparge water you used?
 

sluggerdog

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yeah kai, I had it worked out with the extra sparge water.

I could have done a number of things wrong, it's only my 4th mash so I am just learning the basics at the moment still.

It might be something to do with how I was brewing.

I only have a 20 litres pot so I was only boiling 15 litres for a full batch and hopping the 15 litres accordingly. Then topping up with water at the end.
 
J

Jovial_Monk

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Hmmmmm, Kai. Don't see how osmotic pressure would effect enzymes. They are molecules, not cells?

Jovial Monk
 

Dunkel_Boy

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Jovial_Monk said:
Hmmmmm, Kai. Don't see how osmotic pressure would effect enzymes. They are molecules, not cells?

Jovial Monk
[post="58744"][/post]​

Somebody will probably come up with the 'moving through dense scrub' analogy.
Thick mash is 2-3L/kg and thin can be 4-5L/kg, if you want.
I always think this is good because when doing a protein rest, your mash is generally thicker, then you go to a thin mash to finish off.
 

Darren

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Slugger,
Thick mash will also be more difficult to sparge out all available sugars.
Hence your drop in efficiency
 

sluggerdog

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Thanks Darren, sounds like I might try a thinner mash next time and see the differance..

Cheers!
 

Ross

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Darren said:
Slugger,
Thick mash will also be more difficult to sparge out all available sugars.
Hence your drop in efficiency
[post="58753"][/post]​
Why's that Darren?
 

Dunkel_Boy

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I think it would be easier to get through the manifold, but more difficult to rinse.
I've never really sparged under 3.5l/kg though.
 
J

Jovial_Monk

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Stiff mash, add spargewater = thin mash

JM
 

jayse

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sluggerdog said:
Hi,

I was wondering if someone could explain the dealing with water to grain ratio within your mash tun.
[post="58648"][/post]​
I'll give it a go.
sluggerdog said:
like for example would you always want a small ratio (2:1 - water:grain) or a larger (3:1) or do you want different ratios for different beer styles.
[post="58648"][/post]​
Different ratios can be used for different styles but don't have to be. I ussually just stick to 2.5litres for most beers. Thick works best at the very high end of the temp while thin is for a low temp mash.

Thick is said to be more optimal for a dextrinous wort. But its the temp which is most important, if it was under 67c than i don't pressume it will be any more dextrinous than if it was thinner. Even if it was say 70c iam not sure how much extra attenuation you would get out of it if it was a thinner mash. Anyway the common things to remember is a thick mash is supposedly better for a more dextrinous wort.

In a thin mash it is claimed to beable to get that extra bit of attenuation out of your wort, because it is more optimal for beta amylase. Although it is destroyed more quickly in a thin mash it is said to work faster and more effectively to get the job done.
It may only last all of half a hour in a very thin mash though.



sluggerdog said:
If the last example, how does a lower ratio effect the mash compared to a higher ratio.

Thanx!

SD :)
[post="58648"][/post]​
In attenuation, in theory at least.
Thick and hot for dextrinous.
Warm and thin for max attenuation.

As far as effiency than there is no evidense anywhere that i can find that a thick saccharification rest will lower the extraction.
Thats more than likely the difference in your sparging techniqiue because you had less water in the mash rather than the rest itself giving you less extraction. does that even make sense?

Misty Moutain Hop
Jayse
 

sluggerdog

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Thanks Jayse yeah I get ya... I think I will still try a thinner mash next time and see how things go.

Will try a 2.5:1kg
 

Ross

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Slugger,

I believe your low extraction rate is more to do with your volume of sparge water than your mash density. I've tried all different densities & they have little effect on final effiency.

You would be better off IMO doing a double boil if you are limited to a 15L boil. Only sparging with just enough to fill a 15L pot & then adding 10L of top up water at the end is the real problem...
 

Kai

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Jovial_Monk said:
Hmmmmm, Kai. Don't see how osmotic pressure would effect enzymes. They are molecules, not cells?

Jovial Monk
[post="58744"][/post]​
You're right, they're not directly related. There is a correlation though, as high sugar concentration does inhibit enzyme action.
 

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