20L vs 50L?

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20L vs 50L?

Unread postby Griffin » Sun Feb 08, 2015 7:35 pm

based on what I have read, I think i am going to order a BM with the new controller in March. I really enjoy making DIPA and big beers so I am concerned about the limits of the 20l machine. I also have an issue with fermenting space. I have a Williamswarn machine and it only holds about 23l of wort (maybe 24 but thats pushing the system.)

My question, can I use smaller amount of grain in the 50L machine to make 23l of wort without using the short malt pipe? If no, does the 50l with the short pipe hold more grain than the 20L with the standard 20l pipe?

My main goal is to be able to make about 23L of wort in the 1.070 to 1.080 ranges. what would be the best options as far as the BM machine?

I really appreciate any feedback!

Have a great Sunday,

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Re: 20L vs 50L?

Unread postby martingale » Sun Feb 08, 2015 8:55 pm

The malt pipe limits the amount of grain that can be used, but it also requires a minimum amount of water so that the heating element is submerged under liquid. What this means is there is a similar upper gravity limit when using both the 20L and 50L, though people experience different limits due to difference processes. A couple things you can do to overcome this limit is to double mash, add malt extract, or longer boil. That said, I think you can comfortably make a IIPA doing a normal mash.

tldr; the size of the system and their respective malt pipe sizes are independent of the upper gravity limit.
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Re: 20L vs 50L?

Unread postby bierfest » Fri Mar 27, 2015 12:23 pm

Hi Griffin,
I have been using the 50l with long malt pipe to make 25l high gravity beer.
Here is what I have been doing:
1. add in 9 - 10 kg of grain
2. Add about 46l of water
3. Mash - depending on your efficiency you will get around 1.048 - 1.055 gravity wort
4. Boiling for about 190 minutes should bring you somewhere in the 1.080 range depending on everything else above
5. You should end up with about 25l of high gravity wort

so basically i am using a long boil rather than sugar to achieve a high gravity wort. It works well for me so far with strong stouts and porters. I have yet to try a double IPA using this technique.
Last edited by bierfest on Fri Mar 27, 2015 2:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 20L vs 50L?

Unread postby kahobro » Fri Mar 27, 2015 2:02 pm

Do you have any head space left if you fill the williams warn with 23 l? If not you would be really pushing it with a yeast that is a real top cropper like the westmalle yeast.

The 20 l BM can make 20 l 0f 1.070 wort all-grain if you're pushing it. If you're adding sugar 23 l is easy with the 20l. I would go with the 20l BM if I were you.

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Re: 20L vs 50L?

Unread postby Dicko » Fri Mar 27, 2015 7:34 pm

Hi Griffin,

I am opposite to you where by I only do big beers occasionally but I have done a bit of experimenting and made a Dopplebock recently on my 20 l BM without using sugars or malts to up the gravity.

It was a little bit more mucking around than doing a normal brew but I had good success and I am actually drinking the Dopplebock now as I have it on tap and I have even bottled a half a dozen to see how it ages.

Anyway have a read of how I did it....viewtopic.php?f=8&t=845

The worst thing that can happen if I die is that my wife will sell all my brewing equipment for what I told her I paid for it
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Re: 20L vs 50L?

Unread postby BrauTim » Sat Mar 28, 2015 4:24 pm

I've recently made 21l of 1.075 beer with the short malt pipe and 6.5 kg of grain on an overnight mash, I used yeastbay dry Belgian which has got it down to 1.005 giving me 9.5% abv. I've only just started cooling it but initial taste has some sweetness and doesn't seem too dry but only time will tell. Mash efficiency is over 90%.

To brew or not to brew, that would be a stupid question !
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