Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

As the home-brewery turns


  • Please log in to reply
11 replies to this topic

#1 HVB

HVB

    No Life

  • Patron
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 16267 posts
  • LocationPalmer, MA

Posted 08 January 2021 - 12:17 PM

Looks like it is time for some changes … again.  As I prepared for this, I thought back to the various breweries I have had …there have been a few variations.

-all extract stovetop

- Partial mash with a turkey fryer

- All grain cooler and turkey fryer

- all grain cooler, electric HLT and turkey fryer

- all grain three vessel (converted kegs) all electric with a HERMS – in my garage

- all grain three vessel (Bayou Classic 62qt kettles) all electric with a RIMS  - in my cellar

- all grain two vessel (Spike 15g kettles) with a RIMS

- all grain BIAB with a RIMS

 - All grain BIAB single kettle- currently building

 

I know my new setup will have some issues hot side for low-DO brewing (if you are into that) but I am not getting rid of my RIMS or second Spike kettle so I can always go back to it if I want.  My control panel will still have room if needed. 

I decided to go with an Auber Industries DSPR320 to run my single kettle BIAB.  Amazing what can be done with a OTS controller for under 100 bucks.  You can set this thing up to run mash programs, have alarms for hop additions etc.  At this point I think I will just have it set up for step mashing and run my boil as I have been, 75% output for 30 minutes then off.

I had to re-work my existing control panel and change out the thermocouple on my kettle to make this all work.  Along with that I decided I wanted to have the recirculation hit both top and bottom for the best temperature management.  That resulted in building a simple diverter and adding a T-valve with a separate small valve after it.  I tested that all out before taking the panel apart and it was all good.

 

I need to print out the vinyl labels for the control panel but for now tape works.

 

I am currently running a water test where I start at 100 and  move to 120 – 140- 160 with a 10-minute rest at each step and just hold at 160 till I shut it off.  So far it is working great and the temps are spot on.

I hope to get everything buttoned up and give it a test run next weekend with a simple Mild.

 

IMG-08012021-135431-320-x-480-pixel.jpg

IMG-08012021-135702-1080-x-566-pixel.jpg

IMG-08012021-140103-480-x-864-pixel.jpg

Here is the old panel

IMG-08012021-140421-480-x-864-pixel.jpg


  • 0

#2 neddles

neddles

    No Life

  • Patron
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 13271 posts

Posted 08 January 2021 - 12:20 PM

Are you finding the step mashing to have any impact on the absurdly consistent but low-ish efficiency you had?


  • 0

#3 HVB

HVB

    No Life

  • Patron
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 16267 posts
  • LocationPalmer, MA

Posted 08 January 2021 - 12:29 PM

Are you finding the step mashing to have any impact on the absurdly consistent but low-ish efficiency you had?

 

A little but not much.  I think it comes down to my crush but I do get better efficiency with BIAB, aroudn 75-76%, then I was with my 2 vessel system.  The losses did not help there.  Where I see myself using the step going forward is mash in about 140 then go up to 148-152 for 45 minutes and then go to 170 and hold till I am ready to pull the bag out.  I have been starting at 140 so when I lower the bag in I reduce dough balls, at least for me.


  • 0

#4 Mando

Mando

    Anti-Brag Queen

  • Patron
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 47871 posts
  • LocationLimbo

Posted 08 January 2021 - 07:43 PM

For a little while my efficiency wasn't as good but now it seems better again. Only thing I can think of is that I'm on new grain.
  • 0

#5 HVB

HVB

    No Life

  • Patron
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 16267 posts
  • LocationPalmer, MA

Posted 08 January 2021 - 07:54 PM

I have just accepted I have low efficiency. I may try adjusting my mill tighter. I also think I had some temp stratification issues. The second return in the top will address that.
  • 0

#6 djinkc

djinkc

    Comptroller of Non-Defending Defenders of Inarticulate Twats

  • Patron
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 30864 posts
  • LocationKC - Kansas side

Posted 08 January 2021 - 09:00 PM

I've forgotten but Kai (sp ?) had a way to test only mash efficiency.  I did it and mine was pretty good. Maybe someone here has a link to it. This was mash efficiency, not what you end up with in the kettle.  If you can find that and see what you are doing it may help. I think Denny posted about it here.  I know I have system losses that could be lessened a bit but I haven't done it.  The online calculator I'm using now gives me what I expect for an OG.  Supposedly I'm around 85% doing sort of a fly sparge (there is usually water above the grain bed until I'm about done sparging).  I honestly don't have much faith in that number but I know what to expect for an OG since most of my brews are now around 1.050 OG almost all of the time.

 

Anyway, I still occasionally have a few in a row that my OG is off by enough that I'm scratching my head.  Then it goes away for no good reason.  A few times my mill has simply slipped and needed to be reset - it happens.  That's about all I have for now.


  • 0

#7 Mando

Mando

    Anti-Brag Queen

  • Patron
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 47871 posts
  • LocationLimbo

Posted 09 January 2021 - 05:22 AM

That equation is pretty easy. You just need to know your grain to water ratio and then check a sample. For a given ratio and potential you can predict what 100% conversion gravity would be so you just check to see what percentage of that gravity you hit.

I think kai just had a table of ratios so you'd have assume your grain had about the right potential.

Edited by Mando, 09 January 2021 - 05:24 AM.

  • 0

#8 HVB

HVB

    No Life

  • Patron
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 16267 posts
  • LocationPalmer, MA

Posted 09 January 2021 - 05:52 AM

I have the Kia chart printed out and hanging in the brewery. I have a new fancy toy on the way for gravity reading so I plan to take several samples during the mash to see where I stand.

I am just happy to simplify my brewday.
  • 0

#9 denny

denny

    Living Legend

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 8861 posts
  • LocationEugene OR

Posted 10 January 2021 - 12:38 PM

I have just accepted I have low efficiency. I may try adjusting my mill tighter. I also think I had some temp stratification issues. The second return in the top will address that.

It's almost always the crush.  Start there before you go crazy on other stuff.


  • 0

#10 HVB

HVB

    No Life

  • Patron
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 16267 posts
  • LocationPalmer, MA

Posted 10 January 2021 - 01:19 PM

It's almost always the crush. Start there before you go crazy on other stuff.


I have tried many settings over the year. Not sure what it is at now but I just eyeballed it to as tight as it would go. It boggles my mind because I really never seen a huge change when I adjusted.
  • 0

#11 djinkc

djinkc

    Comptroller of Non-Defending Defenders of Inarticulate Twats

  • Patron
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 30864 posts
  • LocationKC - Kansas side

Posted 10 January 2021 - 01:46 PM

Checking your scale would be easy


  • 0

#12 HVB

HVB

    No Life

  • Patron
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 16267 posts
  • LocationPalmer, MA

Posted 10 January 2021 - 01:56 PM

Checking your scale would be easy


That's a good suggestion and something I have not done. I have some 10# sugar packages I can use.
  • 0


0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users