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Fly Sparging question
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Ozarks Mountain Brew



Joined: 22 May 2013
Posts: 746
Location: The Ozark Mountains of Missouri


PostLink    Posted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 9:15 pm    Post subject: Fly Sparging question Reply with quote


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Ive just switched from batch to flysparging, I went through a water test, worked great then 2 brew sessions but Im not getting any good consistent time on when the fly sparge water empties, so question: how far open or closed is your ball valves to achieve a 1 hour fly sparge

just a little info I have a set up with 3 pots and 2 pumps similar to Kals but use a rims not a herms
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kal
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Drinking: German Lager, Electric Creamsicle, London Pride, Kolsch, Belgian IPA, Red IPA, Russian Imperial Stout, Black Butte Porter

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PostLink    Posted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 9:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Try and aim for between 60-90 mins for the fly sparge regardless of the batch size.

How "open" is the valve? Well, that's the one thing that requires some playing with the first time to get a feel for the flow rate and will vary based on your pre-boil volume/batch size. Try a small trickle and measure how much wort you get in your kettle over 15 mins and extrapolate. The first time you'll be shooting in the dark a bit. It's also not overly critical I find. As long as it takes at least 60 mins you're good. If it takes 75 mins vs 90 mins or even 120 mins your mash efficiency will likely not be affected if using the kettles and false bottom I recommend (I haven't seen that happen myself).

I brew 10 gallon batches (12 gallons post boil, usually 13.9 or 14.9 gallons preboil). You can see my flow rate to get around a 90 min fly sparge by watching my videos in my BREW DAY STEP BY STEP article. The sparge step is here:

http://www.theelectricbrewery.com/brew-day-step-by-step?page=8

Good luck!

Kal

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Ozarks Mountain Brew



Joined: 22 May 2013
Posts: 746
Location: The Ozark Mountains of Missouri


PostLink    Posted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 9:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

my pump is heaving when I get too small of a trickle although Im using a ball valve attached to the boil kettle and mash tun not attached right after the pump to adjust, which one do you use for your adjustment?
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kal
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PostLink    Posted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 10:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm assuming you're using a magnetic drive pump like the ones I recommend here: http://www.theelectricbrewery.com/pumps

The pump's magnetic drive acts as a clutch allowing you to put backpressure on the pump to control liquid flow. You do this by placing a ball valve on the output (never the input!) of the pump. This is one major advantage of a magnetic drive pump: They are perfectly safe to run with the output completely blocked, completely stopping the flow of liquid. You won't harm the pump motor.

Never throttle the input side (ie: close the valve on the kettle feeding to the pump). You can damage the pump.

Kal

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Ozarks Mountain Brew



Joined: 22 May 2013
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Location: The Ozark Mountains of Missouri


PostLink    Posted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 10:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

yes I agree, I use the valve after the pump but was referring to down the line not attached to the pump but I get your point thanks
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kal
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PostLink    Posted: Sat Mar 12, 2016 12:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anywhere down the line is ok (usually). These pumps don't have the power to bloat up silicone hose usually.

Kal

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David_H



Joined: 13 Nov 2013
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Drinking: Dry Irish Stout, Electric Pale Ale, American Amber Ale, Irish Red Ale


PostLink    Posted: Fri Apr 08, 2016 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kal, et al. I am going to hijack this thread slightly.

Near the end of the Sparge do you stop the flow of Sparge Water into the MLT and allow the wort/water level in the MLT to decrease.
or
Do you maintain the Sparge Water flow the entire time and keep the grain covered in water?

David

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kal
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Drinking: German Lager, Electric Creamsicle, London Pride, Kolsch, Belgian IPA, Red IPA, Russian Imperial Stout, Black Butte Porter

Working on: Weizen, Belgian Quad, Wit, English Pub Ale, Electric Creamsicle


PostLink    Posted: Fri Apr 08, 2016 3:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't stop the flow from HLT -> MLT. Eventually the HLT runs out, so I turn off the water pump at that point. At that point the MLT level will start to drop since there's no new water being added. The MLT continues to drain into the boil kettle until the pre-boil volume is reached. Any extra wort in the MLT is then discarded. It's very close to water at this point (very low gravity).

Kal

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David_H



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Drinking: Dry Irish Stout, Electric Pale Ale, American Amber Ale, Irish Red Ale


PostLink    Posted: Fri Apr 08, 2016 3:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Kal,

That's makes sense. I have been using 15 gallon pots and I have been adding more water to the HLT after mash in and therefore I have more than 20 gallons total in the HLT side of the brewery. I have 3 brand new 20-gallon pots on order, due it a couple of weeks. Very Happy . I'm working on my process worksheet.

Again Thanks, David

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kal
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Drinking: German Lager, Electric Creamsicle, London Pride, Kolsch, Belgian IPA, Red IPA, Russian Imperial Stout, Black Butte Porter

Working on: Weizen, Belgian Quad, Wit, English Pub Ale, Electric Creamsicle


PostLink    Posted: Fri Apr 08, 2016 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

IMHO, I wouldn't add water to the HLT after you start. Doing so cools down the water already in the HLT which in throws off the mash temp. Stopping HERMS recirculation to wait for the HLT water to heat back up doesn't work either as the mash cools off that way too.

Kal

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mcl



Joined: 11 Oct 2011
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PostLink    Posted: Fri Apr 08, 2016 4:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My step-by-step is different than Kal's but I only have 15 gal containers. If I am doing a 10 Gal brew (on some beers) I wouldn't be able to hold enough water in the HLT for both dough in and sparge. What I do is I heat my mash water in my BK. This also allows me to take that water higher than mash temp so when I dough in I am right at mash temp without any re circulation. I can heat BK and HLT at the same time as I have a 50 amp system. If you don't you can still do it but you will have to heat one vessel at a time.
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kal
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Drinking: German Lager, Electric Creamsicle, London Pride, Kolsch, Belgian IPA, Red IPA, Russian Imperial Stout, Black Butte Porter

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PostLink    Posted: Fri Apr 08, 2016 6:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For those with smaller vessels where you can't fit your strike + sparge water all in the HLT, and can't heat two vessels separately, try this trick:

1. Put the strike water in the MLT
2. Put the sparge water in the HLT
3. Start recirculating both (as if you're mashing) and start heating the HLT
4. The MLT will heat up as well through the HERMS coil

No need to transfer anything or heat the MLT separately. You can overshoot both a bit if you like to reduce the time to back back up to temp after dough-in.

Kal

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jcav



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PostLink    Posted: Sat Apr 09, 2016 1:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's what I do with my keggles when I make ten gallon batches (which is most of the time). I just put my strike water in my mash tun and then fill up my HLT and I recirculate both like you suggested, and heat them both up at the same time. Works great, saves time, and nothing cools off while waiting to heat up more water, cause you already have the amount you need for your brew day at the beginning.
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dp Brewing Company



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PostLink    Posted: Tue Sep 20, 2016 3:37 pm    Post subject: Increase in Efficiency Reply with quote

Yesterday I made a maple beer and took my time extracting the sugar from the mash tun. It took exactly 90 minutes and my efficiency went up to 88%. Previously I was always getting 72% with a 45 minute sparge.

My only problem was keeping the flow consistent. It seemed like the ball valves would work fine for a bit with the slow flow but then would trickle down to not flowing. I would have to bump them up a bit to get it started and then tapper down the flow back to were it should be.

Anyone else experienced this issue?

FYI, I have the standard SS 1/2" ball valves.
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kal
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Working on: Weizen, Belgian Quad, Wit, English Pub Ale, Electric Creamsicle


PostLink    Posted: Tue Sep 20, 2016 3:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Increase in Efficiency Reply with quote

shadowpaige64507 wrote:
Yesterday I made a maple beer and took my time extracting the sugar from the mash tun. It took exactly 90 minutes and my efficiency went up to 88%. Previously I was always getting 72% with a 45 minute sparge.

My only problem was keeping the flow consistent. It seemed like the ball valves would work fine for a bit with the slow flow but then would trickle down to not flowing. I would have to bump them up a bit to get it started and then tapper down the flow back to were it should be.

Anyone else experienced this issue?

No, never had any issues like that with my Blichmann G1 boilermaker & false bottom when milling at 0.045 - 0.050" mill gap. Sounds like a stuck sparge of some sort. Either milling too fine, poorly performing false bottom, or a combination of the two.

Kal

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dp Brewing Company



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PostLink    Posted: Tue Sep 20, 2016 3:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've set my mill up at .045". Maybe I'll adjust to .050" and see if that helps. Either way I'm extremely happy with the increase in efficiency. A year ago I was at 60% with a igloo cooler and homemade manifold. Once I got the new mash tun I went up to 72% but had hoped to be at 85+%. I know we say the number doesn't really matter as long as your consistent but the number kind of does matter when you trying to make a strong beer with a smaller system IMHO.
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Ozarks Mountain Brew



Joined: 22 May 2013
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Location: The Ozark Mountains of Missouri


PostLink    Posted: Tue Sep 20, 2016 3:59 pm    Post subject: Re: Increase in Efficiency Reply with quote

shadowpaige64507 wrote:
Yesterday I made a maple beer and took my time extracting the sugar from the mash tun. It took exactly 90 minutes and my efficiency went up to 88%. Previously I was always getting 72% with a 45 minute sparge.

My only problem was keeping the flow consistent. It seemed like the ball valves would work fine for a bit with the slow flow but then would trickle down to not flowing. I would have to bump them up a bit to get it started and then tapper down the flow back to were it should be.

Anyone else experienced this issue?

FYI, I have the standard SS 1/2" ball valves.


your not alone I have the same issue, one brew day the wort out almost stopped and the water in didn't and filled the mash tun almost to the top while I was away from the area, Ive learned to just sit in front and tweak it a bit
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kal
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Location: Ottawa, Canada

Drinking: German Lager, Electric Creamsicle, London Pride, Kolsch, Belgian IPA, Red IPA, Russian Imperial Stout, Black Butte Porter

Working on: Weizen, Belgian Quad, Wit, English Pub Ale, Electric Creamsicle


PostLink    Posted: Tue Sep 20, 2016 4:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

shadowpaige64507 wrote:
I know we say the number doesn't really matter as long as your consistent but the number kind of does matter when you trying to make a strong beer with a smaller system IMHO.

One thing you can do to help counter that is to collect more and then boil longer to compensate (my barleywine recipe has a 2 hour boil, partially for this reason).

Kal

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Ozarks Mountain Brew



Joined: 22 May 2013
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PostLink    Posted: Tue Sep 20, 2016 4:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do the same
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rickysa



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PostLink    Posted: Tue Sep 20, 2016 9:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
These pumps don't have the power to blo(w)at up silicone hose usually


No, but house pressure damn sure does!! Very Happy

And, boy oh boy, that'll get your attention right quick Shocked
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