Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Are you considering the purchase of a Braumeister? Please enter and we'll convince you to bite the bullet!

Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby jwalk4 » Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:54 pm

I’ve been looking at “automated” brewing systems for about a year and I am ready to buy one.

Due to some assumptions about the Braumeister, which I now realize were false, I had not considered it until recently – I had been considering the Zymatic, Brewie and other systems of that type – but now I am thinking that the Braumeister may be the right system for me. At the present time it and the Zymatic are discounted for the holidays, so I plan to make a purchasing decision soon. However, I have a few remaining questions that I am hoping that someone can help me with.

I am an experienced homebrewer. I normally brew 10 gallon batches. I have both a cooler mash tun based system and a 10 gallon Blichmann BrewEasy system. I want to get a system that does smaller batches (2.5 gallons would be optimal) for test/experimental purposes. I need the ability to do step mashes, and I need the process to be repeatable. (I’m in the US so the fact that I already have a 240 outlet for my BrewEasy, and that a converter cord for the Braumeister seems to be readily available, is a plus for me.)

A big issue for me is that I make an effort to minimize oxygen uptake when brewing light lagers, etc. This has ruled out certain smaller systems for me (for example, I have ruled out the Brewie because it seems to violently churn the wort when moving it from one segment of the system to another). I have spent hours researching the Braumeister and I have seen a few posts on low(er) DO brewing with the Braumeister, but I still have some questions.

Specifically with respect to the Braumeister, I was thinking about getting the 20 liter system but also getting the short malt pipe, which would allow me to brew 2.5 gallon (approximately) batches, and as a bonus I could also brew 5 gallon batches if I wanted to.

With respect to oxygen uptake, based on some other posts it seems that I could calculate the water such that it would come right up to the top of the mash pipe – and maybe even slightly submerge it – which would avoid having the water cascade and splash down the side of the mash pipe. I have seen that some people have drilled holes in their 20 liter mash pipe (possibly before the “short” mash pipes were available?) mainly to allow them to do smaller mashes, but a few people seem to have done this to avoid wort splashing and oxygenation too. Does this make sense to people? Would using the short malt pipe in this manner allow me to limit the splashing/churning of the wort?

Can you treat and heat your mash water in a separate vessel and then pump it into the Braumeister through the spigot with the grain already in place? Is it necessary to prime the pump before doing this? Is there a way to prime the pump without introducing oxygen into the wort?

I am concerned with how to best avoid oxygenation when lifting out the malt pipe. I guess you just have to lift it out very, very slowly? (I don’t plan to sparge.) Comments or other ideas in that regard? Any system-specific questions regarding oxygenation that I didn't ask but that I should be asking?

Thoughts on any of the above would be very useful. Although I have spent a considerable amount of time trying to research these issues, it is very possible I missed some preexisting information, so pointing me to other online sources would be appreciated as well. The community here looks very helpful, so thanks in advance for any assistance you can provide.
jwalk4
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:28 pm

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby LMoerkens » Wed Dec 14, 2016 3:00 am

Wow, a lot of questions.

First of all I never have been worried about it, when the worth flows over the malt pipe it is very gently and I have never seen any bubbles, which would indicate oxygen getting into the worth.

If you are used to brewing 10 gallon batches, why not go for the 50 ltr BM, makes it sooo much easier with one vessel, and the step mashing is absolutely easy and controlled.

What I do with with sparging is to heat water to the required temperature and slowly wash it over the malt pipe when lifted out of the vessel, but looking at your post, you don't want too sparge.

As far as lifting the pipe, it is heavy so you do it automatically slowly and I have never seen any splashing that would get additional oxygen into the worth, the worth flows out from the bottom, which is under the fluid level.

IMOO the BM is the ideal system to experiment with different recipes and have the ability to control each aspect of the brewing process.

I am relative new to using the BM, only 2 years, so you might want to look at one of our more experienced members like Dicko, dinnerstick or nesto to get better advise.

Good luck and let us know what you decide :beer:
LMoerkens
 
Posts: 291
Joined: Mon Apr 27, 2015 5:14 pm
Location: Oxford, CT, USA
Model: 20 litres

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby homoeccentricus » Wed Dec 14, 2016 12:42 pm

I have tried to brew my first full lodo beer on the 20L BM a couple of weeks. Still too early to judge whether the quality is much better than before. The BM is notoriously difficult to brew lodo beers with because of the mashing procedure with the pump and the lifting of the mash pipe. However, I think one can get quite far. I brewed lodo with the 10L pipe, and the trick is indeed to make sure that the wort level is higher than the pipe level. But if you do that it's difficult to brew beers that are stronger than around 1.055, as there are limits to the amount of grain that can be put in the pipe. The lodo procedure worked for me with 20L of water (resulting in around 16L of wort). My guess is that this will not work for a 3 gallon batch size, as there will not be enough water to cover the malt pipe completely. First preboil the water, add sodium metabisulfite (I used 60 ppm of sulfite, using no-sparge) and brewing salts, chill to dough-in temperature and then transfer enough water (order of magnitude 5L) to a pot until you are sure you can add grain to the pipe without overflowing it. Then seal the pipe and re-add the water. It's best to add some kind of mash cap at this point. I used a very thin silicone cooking mat. As to lifting the malt pipe out of the wort: I see no way to avoid that. Just do it very carefully. You could add some additional sulfite if you have sulfite strips to measure the level.
homoeccentricus
 
Posts: 151
Joined: Sat May 21, 2016 8:01 pm

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby jwalk4 » Wed Dec 14, 2016 3:11 pm

LMoerkens – Thank you very much for your response. To clarify one thing: I am specifically focusing on getting a smaller system so that I can experiment with different recipes without having to make 10 gallon batches of those recipes which is wasteful when the recipes don’t work out well.

Homoeccentricus – Thank you for your excellent response which has a great deal of information that I was hoping to hear. There were a few things that I am not sure I understood completely because I have never used a Braumeister.

Particularly, it seems that you are saying that in a 20L Braumeister, even if you are using the 10L pipe, if you want the water level to be even with the top of the 10L malt pipe you need to have about 20L of water in the system to cover the 10L malt pipe, which results in about 16L of wort in the end? Am I interpreting that correctly?

I had assumed that less water could be used with the 10L malt pipe, but if I this technique requires me to end up with 16L (approx. 4 gallons) at the end then, although that is more than I would like, that isn’t necessarily a deal killer for me.

I don’t know how the spigot works on the Braumeister and how the liquid flows in the Braumeister internally so I do wonder whether it would work to preboil and treat the water in a separate pot, add the grain to the Braumeister then transfer the water (after cooling to mash temperature) into the Braumeister through the spigot, but I would be interested in any thoughts on that. (I understand that to those who use the Braumeister that may seem to be a crazy thought, but I have reasons for asking which I will not bore anyone with.)
jwalk4
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:28 pm

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby tcncc » Wed Dec 14, 2016 5:01 pm

homoeccentricus wrote:I have tried to brew my first full lodo beer on the 20L BM a couple of weeks. Still too early to judge whether the quality is much better than before. The BM is notoriously difficult to brew lodo beers with because of the mashing procedure with the pump and the lifting of the mash pipe. However, I think one can get quite far. I brewed lodo with the 10L pipe, and the trick is indeed to make sure that the wort level is higher than the pipe level. But if you do that it's difficult to brew beers that are stronger than around 1.055, as there are limits to the amount of grain that can be put in the pipe. The lodo procedure worked for me with 20L of water (resulting in around 16L of wort). My guess is that this will not work for a 3 gallon batch size, as there will not be enough water to cover the malt pipe completely. First preboil the water, add sodium metabisulfite (I used 60 ppm of sulfite, using no-sparge) and brewing salts, chill to dough-in temperature and then transfer enough water (order of magnitude 5L) to a pot until you are sure you can add grain to the pipe without overflowing it. Then seal the pipe and re-add the water. It's best to add some kind of mash cap at this point. I used a very thin silicone cooking mat. As to lifting the malt pipe out of the wort: I see no way to avoid that. Just do it very carefully. You could add some additional sulfite if you have sulfite strips to measure the level.


Is DO really an issue after an healthy fermentation?
tcncc
tcncc
 
Posts: 44
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2015 12:21 pm
Model: 20 litres

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby jwalk4 » Wed Dec 14, 2016 6:36 pm

"Is DO really an issue after an healthy fermentation?"


That's a debate that is as old as homebrewing itself and a detailed answer is outside the scope of this discussion. However, if you want to explore some current thinking on the issue a good place to start is here (scroll a bit down the page after you go to the link): http://www.germanbrewing.net/

Some people believe that DO is an issue in the mash itself and affects the malt character of the finished beer. There are currently several experiments taking place to try to determine if this is true. Of course, if this is true, then the fact that the yeast scavenges the oxygen during fermentation is not meaningful to the discussion because damage from DO has already been done in the mash and that damage can't be undone later in the process by the yeast.

I am not a true believer yet because I haven't done enough blind taste tests to reach a definitive conclusion, but over the last year or so I have been taking extra steps to minimize oxygen uptake on the "hot side" of my process. That being said, you can make extremely good beer without being overly concerned about such things, and this isn't something that many homebrewers are going to worry too much about - at this stage only a very small subset of homebrewers are concerning themselves with this.
jwalk4
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:28 pm

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby tcncc » Wed Dec 14, 2016 7:02 pm

jwalk4 wrote:"Is DO really an issue after an healthy fermentation?"


That's a debate that is as old as homebrewing itself and a detailed answer is outside the scope of this discussion. However, if you want to explore some current thinking on the issue a good place to start is here (scroll a bit down the page after you go to the link): http://www.germanbrewing.net/

Some people believe that DO is an issue in the mash itself and affects the malt character of the finished beer. There are currently several experiments taking place to try to determine if this is true. Of course, if this is true, then the fact that the yeast scavenges the oxygen during fermentation is not meaningful to the discussion because damage from DO has already been done in the mash and that damage can't be undone later in the process by the yeast.

I am not a true believer yet because I haven't done enough blind taste tests to reach a definitive conclusion, but over the last year or so I have been taking extra steps to minimize oxygen uptake on the "hot side" of my process. That being said, you can make extremely good beer without being overly concerned about such things, and this isn't something that many homebrewers are going to worry too much about - at this stage only a very small subset of homebrewers are concerning themselves with this.


Horst Dornbusch take on it:
https://www.tapatalk.com/topic/1388873- ... wing-paper
tcncc
tcncc
 
Posts: 44
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2015 12:21 pm
Model: 20 litres

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby jwalk4 » Wed Dec 14, 2016 7:58 pm

Mr. Dornbusch is a somewhat controversial figure in certain circles, of course, but regardless of his or any other person's view on the matter the real issue is whether or not these techniques will result in a statistically significant noticeable difference in the beer. There are several groups engaged in testing this now and their results will be interesting.

As I said above, I'm not advocating these procedures, and I'm not yet a believer myself, but I'm not comfortable with a system that massively aerates the wort on the hot side because I don't see how that could be good for (and it could be bad for) the finished product. The thing that pushed me toward the Braumeister is that the motion of the wort is gentle without a lot of splashing, even if the system isn't filled up to the top of the mash pipe. Of course, any time you automate the process (such as with the ability of the Braumeister to change the temperature to accomplish step mashes) you give up some control over the process, so the process won't necessarily be optimal, but I'm willing to give up this control for the sake of convenience and repeatability.
jwalk4
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:28 pm

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby Wobbly » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:02 am

Hi Jwalk4

Not sure if this will be helpful but some time ago I did a bit of work in excel to be able to determine the volume of water required to be used in both the 10lt and 20lt Braumeisters but not the short (10lt malt pipe) in the 20lt unit and it can be found about a third of the way down in this topic viewtopic.php?f=8&t=2021&p=19163#p19163

The spread sheet enables you to enter grain volumes and target volumes into the fermenter and your various losses etc. There are a number of scenarios such as min vol and flooded malt pipe etc

Have a look and play to see if it answers some of your questions

On the issue of LODO I'm also not totaly convinced of the benefits on the home brew scale and concentrate my efforts on ensuring that I don't expose the wort to "ANY" oxygen once fermentation has commenced through to consumption and I achieve this by fermenting under pressure and maintaining the fermented beer under Co2 pressure at all times through to final consumption. There are a number of ways you can do this and in my case I use a Williamswarn Personal Brewery to process the all grain wort I produce in a 20lt Braumeister

Cheers

Wobbly
Wobbly
 
Posts: 86
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2014 8:57 am
Location: Bibra Lake Western Australia 6163
Model: 20 litres

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby homoeccentricus » Thu Dec 15, 2016 10:30 am

jwalk4 wrote:
Particularly, it seems that you are saying that in a 20L Braumeister, even if you are using the 10L pipe, if you want the water level to be even with the top of the 10L malt pipe you need to have about 20L of water in the system to cover the 10L malt pipe, which results in about 16L of wort in the end? Am I interpreting that correctly?

I had assumed that less water could be used with the 10L malt pipe, but if I this technique requires me to end up with 16L (approx. 4 gallons) at the end then, although that is more than I would like, that isn’t necessarily a deal killer for me.


The 16L is batch size in the kettle. When you transfer to the fermentation vessel you will loose between 1 and 4 liters from trub, depending on how much you want or have to leave behind.
homoeccentricus
 
Posts: 151
Joined: Sat May 21, 2016 8:01 pm

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby homoeccentricus » Thu Dec 15, 2016 10:50 am

Wobbly wrote:Hi Jwalk4

Not sure if this will be helpful but some time ago I did a bit of work in excel to be able to determine the volume of water required to be used in both the 10lt and 20lt Braumeisters but not the short (10lt malt pipe) in the 20lt unit and it can be found about a third of the way down in this topic viewtopic.php?f=8&t=2021&p=19163#p19163

The spread sheet enables you to enter grain volumes and target volumes into the fermenter and your various losses etc. There are a number of scenarios such as min vol and flooded malt pipe etc



The spreadsheet is interesting. However: when I used to 10L malt pipe in the 20L BM in my previous brew, the malt pipe was under the wort level with 20L of water and around 3 kg of malt. I don't understand how that can be so different from the 25L of water you have calculated for the 10L BM?
homoeccentricus
 
Posts: 151
Joined: Sat May 21, 2016 8:01 pm

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby homoeccentricus » Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:37 pm

jwalk4 wrote:I don’t know how the spigot works on the Braumeister and how the liquid flows in the Braumeister internally so I do wonder whether it would work to preboil and treat the water in a separate pot, add the grain to the Braumeister then transfer the water (after cooling to mash temperature) into the Braumeister through the spigot, but I would be interested in any thoughts on that. (I understand that to those who use the Braumeister that may seem to be a crazy thought, but I have reasons for asking which I will not bore anyone with.)


I guess there must be some way to add the water after the grain, but you have to make sure the efficiency doesn't go down. Also, it seems a bit complicated because at some point you need to close up the malt pipe to avoid overflowing. And I'm not sure whether it would make that much of a difference wrt oxygen introduction. When you're transferring the water you're also introducing oxygen. I'm not going to make that a priority for now
homoeccentricus
 
Posts: 151
Joined: Sat May 21, 2016 8:01 pm

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby jwalk4 » Thu Dec 15, 2016 9:53 pm

Great information here. I just wanted to thank everyone for their responses. Very helpful.
jwalk4
 
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:28 pm

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby Wobbly » Thu Dec 15, 2016 10:08 pm

Wobbly wrote: the volume of water required to be used in both the 10lt and 20lt Braumeisters but not the short (10lt malt pipe) in the 20lt unit

Must have been having a senior moment as the spread sheet is based on the using the short 10lt malt pipe in the 20lt unit and NOT the 10lt Braumeister.
homoeccentricus wrote:
Wobbly wrote:

The spreadsheet is interesting. However: when I used to 10L malt pipe in the 20L BM in my previous brew, the malt pipe was under the wort level with 20L of water and around 3 kg of malt. I don't understand how that can be so different from the 25L of water you have calculated for the 10L BM?

Not sure I understand you statement.

Also as stated on line 15 of the spread sheet:- "The value's used for the 10lt Malt Pipe are estimated only based on my understanding of min and max amounts of grain that can be accommodated both in the malt pipe and without wort fountains" so if you have different experiences based on actual brews I would be glad to hear about them and adjust the spread sheet accordinglCheers

Wobbly
Wobbly
 
Posts: 86
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2014 8:57 am
Location: Bibra Lake Western Australia 6163
Model: 20 litres

Re: Potential Buyer - Questions re: Low DO

Unread postby homoeccentricus » Fri Dec 16, 2016 2:06 pm

Let me rephrase the question: what is the minimum amount of water that needs to be added with a 10L malt pipe filled with 3 kg of grain to make sure the pipe is flooded (and hence there is only movement of water below the surface? This is what is required for low oxygen brewing.
homoeccentricus
 
Posts: 151
Joined: Sat May 21, 2016 8:01 pm

Next

Return to Potentials owners

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

cron