Confused about water quantity for mash and sparge

Discussion in 'Beginners Brewing Forum' started by madhatter44, Mar 4, 2019.

  1. madhatter44

    madhatter44 New Member

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    Hey everyone,

    New brewer here. I've just made the switch from extract to all grain. I'm doing one-gallon batches currently. Below is the recipe I want to use for my next batch and but I'm confused about the water quantities.

    It says the infusion is 4 quarts and sparge is 4 quarts. I take that to mean that you add 4 quarts of water to the kettle, bring it up to strike temperature and infuse your grains at 150f for one hour. At the end of that hour, you sparge (I plan on batch sparge) with four more quarts of water at 170f. That would leave me with two gallons of water when I start the boil. If I boil for one hour as it says, and we assume we boil off one gallon of water during that hour, I'd be left with one gallon to go into fermentation, which is where I want to be.

    So what does it mean by the boil size being 1.5 gallons?

    Is the 1.5 number coming from the expected water loss from evaporation during the mash?

    https://www.brewersfriend.com/homebrew/recipe/view/231072/simple-citra-ipa-one-gallon
     
  2. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Boil size 1.5 gallons simply assumes you have a boil-off rate of 0.5 GPH. This comes from your profile - can be changed there once you have some experience as to what your boil-off rate actually is.
     
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  3. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    Yup, it assumes 1/2GPH boil off. If you know you boil off a full gallon you will want to update your settings.
     
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  4. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    Your total volume of 2 gallons won't leave you with 2 gallons in the boil pot. The grain will have absorbed some of your spare volune. You'll have to do some educated guessing to get close to your preferred volumes the first few times and and make adjustments as you brew more batches. Keep some malt extract on hand to boost the gravity if you end up not boiling off enough and your wort is too weak. If your volume is too low after boil and the wort is a little strong you have the option of just adding clean water to make up the difference.
     
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  5. madhatter44

    madhatter44 New Member

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  6. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    Under "Tools" click in quick water requirements, that will give you some idea of where the water goes (grain and hops absorption etc.)

    You noted infusing the grains i to the strike water, are you mashing in the kettle? Or do you have a mash tun?
     
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  7. madhatter44

    madhatter44 New Member

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    @Craigerrr the first two times I used my kettle. I'm thinking about making a mash tun soon though because maintaining the temperature was a pain.
     
  8. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    Are you using a bag in the kettle?
     
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  9. madhatter44

    madhatter44 New Member

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  10. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    Maybe change your recipe from All Grain to BIAB, see what difference it makes in the water requirements. With BIAB you should have a thinner mash, than with all grain. A lot of people go full volume mash with BIAB, no sparge.
     
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  11. madhatter44

    madhatter44 New Member

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    I didn't realize the website did that, thanks!
     
  12. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    Water requirements will be based on a particular brewer's system profile. Yes, I suppose that the default might change when choosing between BIAB and all grain, but all those defaults will be part of the information entered in profile and equipment settings. And any recipe listed in the data base will have been put together using another brewer's profile so those amounts and volumes will be reflected in the recipe when it's copied and edited.
     
  13. Ward Chillington

    Ward Chillington Well-Known Member

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  14. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    The mash hacks water calculation video was the light switch for me for water volumes. Google "how to calculate water volumes for brewing", you should find the mash hacks video by Ben Cull.
     
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