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A question on extract kits and boil volume

Hi All, Most if not all of NB’s procedures for extract ale kits direct to boil 2.5 gallons of water to brew a batch and then add remaining water to make 5 gallons. If I have a boiling kettle that can accomodate all 5+ gallons, can I add the whole amount? Would it mess with the anticipated OG etc?
Thanks, Mike

It’s ok to do full volume boils but if you have specialty grains, be sure to steep in only 3 gallons of water as the recipe says and then add more water to get your full volume. Also, be sure to add to the volume for boiloff. OG will be the same.

Thank you kindly.

One other question, typically I put a pot on the stove with my specialty grains at 1.4 quarts per pound and steep to temp and then add that to the boil kettle and… even sparge out the sack. Is this helping me get what I need out of the grains rather than steeping in the kettle?

Yes! You aren’t getting much but depending on the specialty grain(s), you can get a few extra gravity points.

What I do is steep them at 153F (mashing temp) for 30 minutes to extract as much sugar as I can. Then I raise to 170F and take them out. Then I pour about 4 qts of the steeped water over the grain bag to get a little more out. Then I (shhhhhh!) squeeze the bag.


Squeeze it, exactly.
Much obliged.

Squeezers! Burn them at the stake!

Should we start a squeezers anonymous group?

I was squeezing once and got allot more than I was expecting, nuff said about that one =-)

Hi. My name is Michael and I’m a bag squeezer. :smiley:

I am still in denial

The only other consideration that I can think of is that you will be getting much higher hops utilization with a full boil. If you are trying to hit the kit recipe IBU’s, you may want to tone down the amount of hops that you use. There are a lot of free sources on the web that can help you figure that out. Hopville comes to mind because you can adjust the boil volume when plugging in your recipe.

All great advice, thanks gents. I squeeze too.

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