grain limits

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grain limits

Unread postby chris172 » Sun Feb 08, 2015 10:36 pm

Have ordered my BM which due in a few weeks... getting really excited.

I have won a AG Mash Kit on another forum I frequent and plan on doing this as my first brew in my 20ltr BM. It's a "Proper English IPA" the instructions say it's based on a pre boil volume of 26.5ltrs but they also say mash in 26.5ltrs but no mention of sparging... they are very vague and say a starting gravity of between 1.050- 1.075!

The grain bag is weighing in at 6.3kgs.... the plastic bag the grain is in is quite a thick one so guessing that has to be about 150/200grams so am I going to be very close to the max point of 6kg if not over by 100gms... also it's not a BM specific kit so unsure of how fine/course the grain has been milled although there doesn't seem to be much 'flour' in there so perhaps its quite a course mill. Do you think I should leave 500gms or more out of the kit to be on the safe side? or do you think it can take it all?

Early days but looking ahead..

TIA

Chris
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Re: grain limits

Unread postby Nesto » Mon Feb 09, 2015 12:31 am

chris172 wrote:Have ordered my BM which due in a few weeks... getting really excited.

I have won a AG Mash Kit on another forum I frequent and plan on doing this as my first brew in my 20ltr BM. It's a "Proper English IPA" the instructions say it's based on a pre boil volume of 26.5ltrs but they also say mash in 26.5ltrs but no mention of sparging... they are very vague and say a starting gravity of between 1.050- 1.075!

The grain bag is weighing in at 6.3kgs.... the plastic bag the grain is in is quite a thick one so guessing that has to be about 150/200grams so am I going to be very close to the max point of 6kg if not over by 100gms... also it's not a BM specific kit so unsure of how fine/course the grain has been milled although there doesn't seem to be much 'flour' in there so perhaps its quite a course mill. Do you think I should leave 500gms or more out of the kit to be on the safe side? or do you think it can take it all?

Early days but looking ahead..

TIA

Chris

Welcome to the club Chris! You can probably get away with it. Although I haven't gone over 6kg myself, a few other users have reported going up to 6.5kg. When I was at 6kg, the malt pipe was pretty full, but I know I could have fit a little more in it. One trick if it ends up being a tight fit is to put the top filter plate on upside down - with the sleeve downward - to allow wing nut to fit.

You probably want to plug the particulars of your grain bill and volumes into your favorite brewing software. 6kg of grain will absorb ~4.6 liters of water, so you will either need to sparge or start with more than 26.5 liters of water to get to a pre-boil volume of 26.5 liters. Your software should also give you a much better idea of what the real starting gravity should be - 1.050 to 1.075 is an absurdly large range! But I guess you shouldn't look into a gift horse's mouth ;)
:beer:
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Re: grain limits

Unread postby dinnerstick » Mon Feb 09, 2015 7:19 am

The 6kg number is a guideline rather than a hard cutoff. Cramming that much grain in is possible but does indeed depend on the crush of the grain; it needs to be quite coarse to get good flow in my experience. Of course the content also matters a lot, some malts and adjuncts are gummier than others, and even some base malts are better than others for reasons I don't quite understand, maybe grain size. There is not problem holding some of it back at first, you can always add more early in the mash if it's flowing well. The pump can be paused (by pressing the up and down buttons simultaneously, at least on older models, is this still the case?) at any point, the grain bed checked, and some more malt mixed in. If it were me and my first BM use i'd start conservative, mash in maybe 5 to 5.5 kg, do a short protein rest, and check how it's flowing during that rest. If ok, try with another 500g, mix it in well and give it a few minutes with the pump running to completely moisten, check again. You don't want a stuck mash on your first go. It's a pain in the backside and you get really low efficiency.
The gravity range they give is indeed absurd, how can the give the same hopping for a 1.050 beer as a 1.075??
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Re: grain limits

Unread postby chris172 » Mon Feb 09, 2015 8:28 am

Might have given myself a tough one to cut my teeth on so might wait a while until I have perfected using the BM until I brew this one.

Thanks for the feedback...
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Re: grain limits

Unread postby McMullan » Fri Feb 13, 2015 4:25 pm

I brewed my favourite stout (again) today with Haandbryggeriet Ardenne blonde for refreshments (got to brew some saison :wink: ) It fills the malt pipe to the extent that I need to cold steep the crystal and black malt. But I've noted the system runs better than 'normal'. No threatening wort fountains at all, which I usually get, although they disappear after a pump break or two.
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