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Mash Thickness

Hey all. I’m fairly new at all grain brewing. I’ve done a few batches with mixed results, not following any specific recipes.

I’m going to try to make my first clone beer and have a question on the “Mash guidelines” in the recipes. This is for a 5.5 gallon recipe with 16.8 lbs of grain. It says 3.5 gallons, Infusion, 75 Min…but under that it says Starting Mash thickness is 1.5 qt/lb.

I’m confused by the Starting mash thickness and Gallons…1.5 qt/lb would be equivalent to 6.3 gallons. Does anyone know what the 3.5 gallons is?

3.5 gallons is not enough for almost 17 lbs of grain. Also 16.8 lbs of grain for a 5gal batch seems like alot. Post the recipe and we can figure it out

Here is the link! Let me know if it doesn’t open for some reason

Ok at 70% efficiency I get it I get 80-85 so I would use less. The 3.5 is probably what’s left after the mash. What size is your tun

10 gallon. So how much water would you use during the mash?

That’s strange. I’ve never used this program so I’m not sure if it calculates it for you or if you can enter a starting amount.
At 3.5gals your mashing in at .8qts/lb which is going to be super thick.

I would target 1.25-1.5 myself. Can your MT hold that amount of grain at those volumes? If not you could get away with a little bit thicker of a mash but .8 is super thick.

There used to be a calculater I used that told you what size tun you would need. I’ll bet 17# of grain would take up 3 or 4 gallons off volume plus 6 gallons of water. Going to be tight.

Not sure I haven’t tried that much yet! Also I have an amateur question. I always seem to have soooo much wort that it takes more over 2 hours to boil it down. I’m always afraid I’m going to miss my target fg so I put a lot of extra water in. Any tips u can give me?

You can use less water and top up. Adding boil time messes with your hop additions

How do I know I got enough sugar to hit my og tho

Do u know of a goood place or video to explain the whole process more? I used the northern brewer YouTube video but I still feel I’m not doing it exactly correct

What you can do do a iodine test. See if you had conversion. Of your grains. And take a preboil grav sample. With that gravity number. You can use this to calculate your target grav. Brewers friend has a calculator for that. I would redo the calculation for your. Recipy. 16 lbs and 3.5 gal mash water does not seem right

After you have your first running test the gravity. This is your preboil gravity. It should be estimated for you In the Brewers friend recipe. Then use a calculater to determine how much water to sparge with to hit youy target OG. Go for your target og not voluy because your volume may be different becay of your efficiency. Then just do the boil.

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Here is the calculator that @brew_cat is speaking of. Not sure about your setup but keep in mind that this does not account for any space under a false bottom.

So, for example you said you have a 10gal pot. If you’re running a false bottom with 2gals under it you only have 8gals available.

As for your other questions. You’re over thinking it and you need to dusk in YOUR system. The main focus should be figuring out your efficiency and boil off rate. If I were you I would:

  1. Use a tried/true recipe
  2. mash as you normally would
  3. collect only 6.5gals (for 5gal batch)
  4. boil for 1 hour and see what you have with volume and OG
  5. brew it again following the above steps
    A brewing program will help you determine efficiency. Be as precise as you can with your volumes. Once you have these numbers and can brew consistently it will become easier.
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I agree. That’s to big of a beer for a beginner. Brew some smaller simple beers to dial in your system. You very rarely can make someone else’s AG recipe without tweaking it to your system. Like @loopie_beer says don’t over think. This something that is much easier to do than it is to explain

Indeed keep it simple become fam with your. Brew system. Make notes. Check your system brew same beer again. Should be the same as the one before. Dont over think to much. Read ask questions.

And don’t forget about yeast health in that high gravity wort… A beginner can do it, but I suspect it will stahl about 1.030… Then what?
I would jump on board with the others and suggest to do several smaller brews… Sneezles61

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