Dry hops vs oxidation

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Markok, Jul 19, 2020.

  1. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    I tend to get in the neighbourhood of 65-70% efficiency regardless of what I do with my mash so it being that low seems super odd.
     
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  2. BOB357

    BOB357 Well-Known Member

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    My thought exactly. You'd almost have to suspect the crush as being at least part of the problem. Try increasing the mash rest time to 90 minutes and see what you get. Even with a good crush I mash 75 minutes when mashing at 152 or lower. Not sure whether you posted it or not, but I assumed you were batch sparging.
     
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  3. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Are you talking about conversion or brewhouse? Conversion has become this odd thing where you enter all your strike water as the volume and the first runnings gravity as the gravity. When I started doing that, my conversion efficiency jumped into the low 90's. My brewhouse efficiency is in general 70% - 75%.
     
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  4. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    Brewhouse. Conversion I get all over the damned place.
     
  5. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Good! If that were conversion, I'd be wondering what was going wrong.... I use 72% as my default. As with everything brewing, it's a matter of getting equipment and processes dialed in.
     
  6. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

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    I do conversion tests with iodine once in a great while if I have some concerns about conversion. Most of the time I can tell if it's going well or not from doing so often. I often check gravity during the mash to see how conversion is coming along. The gravity should hit between 1.070 and 1.080 with a grist to liquor ratio of 1 pound to 1.5 quarts within 45 minutes. I strain the wort through a paper towel to remove the grist and then measure it with a refractometer. The line on the refractometer becomes very clear when conversion is complete or nearly complete.

    Normally I hit 85% extraction rate, but lately it bumped up to 88-92%. I think this has to do with watching the pH more closely. A good pH for extraction seems to be at 5.4 (room temperature, which equals 5.2 @150F) for SRM of 6 or less. This pH can change with different base malts or even different lots. I circulate the entire mash and this not only gives you great extraction but also clearer wort. The acid and salt additions are also uniformly blended into the mash very quickly when the wort is recirculated.

    Bob did bring up an important point about grain crush. Mill as fine as possible. You'll know when you go too fine, you will get a stuck mash/lauter/sparge, which completely sucks. Stop just short of that.

    Lastly, don't be discouraged if your not hitting some super high number. Just keep brewing, take notes and play around with the crush, pH, temperature or whatever. Eventually you will figure it out and your numbers will improve, and even when things don't go perfectly, you still get beer.
     
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  7. Markok

    Markok Member

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    Yes batch sparging. I may have to start crushing my own grain. I’m not sure when it’s purchased from my local supply store that they are able to change their setting or at least willing. I’ll have to inquire.
     
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  8. Markok

    Markok Member

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    I’m new to this software. I have only figured out so far that if I make my equipment profile efficiency 58% then I achieve my OG. It will take time for me to learn the rest.
     
  9. Markok

    Markok Member

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    Thanks again HighVoltageMan
     
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  10. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    That's brewhouse - the amount of sugar you actually got in a brew session compared to the theoretical maximum you could get. Brewhouse that low means you're leaving a lot of sugar somewhere, like the bottom of a mash tun or trapped in trub in your kettle. You lose some to conversion - we can usually get about 90% of the sugars out of the grain, some doesn't convert and some gets left behind in the draff. After that, you lose sugar by losing wort. So take a good close look at your system: Are you leaving wort in a mash tun? Are you doing BIAB or no-sparge - both tend to leave more sugars in the grain. Do you leave wort in the kettle? All are opportunities to reduce your efficiency, even samples cost you efficiency! Track those down and you'll find your efficiency losses.
     
  11. BOB357

    BOB357 Well-Known Member

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    Unless you've got a sizable loss in your mash tun or are leaving a lot in your kettle, I'd say it would be worth getting a grain mill. Have you ever checked your mash/lauter efficiency? (pre-boil in the kettle)
     
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  12. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    72% when I batch sparge was achievable but I no sparge so it hovers 3-5% lower for no clear reason. The variability is the annoyance, not the lower efficiency.
     
  13. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    That's a tip I am very happy to see. I get frustrated by floaties in the refractometer quite a bit with my preferences. Thanks!
     
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  14. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    They really don't want to change things, especially at the volumes they're doing it affects the longevity of the device. Most places will mill it twice if you ask, though they may charge you a little more for it. And they will often forget to do it (at least that's what I was telling myself and my wife when I bought the mill).
     
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