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Mash Help!

Im new to All-grain yesterday will mark the third batch that I have done. I do have BeerSmith2 for some of the mash help, but every batch I’m not hitting numbers at all. Yesterday i was shooting for a 5 gal 1.060 and I got 6 ish gal at 1.052. I know it is because im adding too much water in the mashing stage. I really need some tips and advise on how to get the correct amount of water into the mash tun with out measuring cup by cup.

Thanks for all your help

Beersmith does a pretty good job on the water calculations, I am always within a point or two. Do you end up with a lot of extra water in mash ton when you run off?

Where do you get your grains crushed? My first guess would be you are getting lower efficiency than the 70% that is default on Beersmith. I found that when I got my grains crushed at my brewshop I would end up with 60-65% efficiency. Easy fix is lower the efficiency Beersmith uses to calculate your estimated original gravity then increasing the amount of base grain you are using.

Another thought is boil off. Are you ending up with the pre-boil volume that Beersmith estimates for you you when you drain off? Do you end up with the volume that you want at the end of boil? If you boil and are shooting for 5.5 gallons but end up with 6 gallons, your gravity is going to be lower.

[quote=“jadedude289”]Im new to All-grain yesterday will mark the third batch that I have done. I do have BeerSmith2 for some of the mash help, but every batch I’m not hitting numbers at all. Yesterday i was shooting for a 5 gal 1.060 and I got 6 ish gal at 1.052. I know it is because im adding too much water in the mashing stage. I really need some tips and advise on how to get the correct amount of water into the mash tun with out measuring cup by cup.

Thanks for all your help[/quote]

Your boil volume should be a lot more than 5 gallons. For extract, with top-up water, a 5 gallon boil volume is fairly common. For all-grain, your boil volume is going to be in the 6-7 gal range for a 5 gallon batch. You’ll end up boiling-off enough to leave you with perhaps 5.25 - 5.5 gallons into the fermenter, which after accounting for trub loss, will leave you with about 5.0 gallons, even, to bottle/keg.

Hope that kind of arithmetic step-through for the volumes in the process helps.

[quote=“jadedude289”]Yesterday i was shooting for a 5 gal 1.060 and I got 6 ish gal at 1.052. I know it is because im adding too much water in the mashing stage.[/quote]Since you know you’re about a gallon over on pre-boil volume, try sparging with a gallon less next time. Boil times aren’t written in stone, so if you’re looking at a higher volume towards the end of the boil, just boil longer.

Like mentioned, you are not calculating your boil off rate properly and such are starting with to much liquid.

Does Beersmith calculate boil off by a percentage or volume? Percentage is a bad way to figure it. Boil off rate will vary by the diameter of the pot, humidity, wind and ambient temp. Volume plays very little in the calculation.

Start with figuring 1g/hr for evaporation at a steady boil. Higher if you do a violent boil.

JT’s Mashwater3.3
http://gnipsel.com/beer/software/beer-software.html
has been very effective for me to calculate the water I need.

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