Author Topic: Completely confused. Please help!  (Read 480 times)

Offline storytyme

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Completely confused. Please help!
« on: September 13, 2018, 02:17:59 PM »
Yesterday I brewed a Dortmunder Export.  I have used Beersmith for 60+ batches and have things pretty dialed in which is why what happened yesterday I cannot explain and need some help.

1) When I mashed in I mashed in a few degrees over what Beersmith called for like I usually do. Got a good mash in, but missed my temp by 8 degrees! I'm usually 1/2 a degree spot on. I noticed my mash seemed pretty thick, but I just added some hot water and got to around 150. I was shooting for 155.

2) I continue on and mashed for 90 min since my temp was a bit lower than I wanted, so then I sparged and missed my pre-boil volume by about 3/4 a gallon. I'm usually dead-on for the volume. So I add a bit of RO water and continued on.

3) I take my pre-boil gravity to get my efficiency and low and behold I was at 110% efficiency! Shooting for 1.042 and was at 1.061. I am usually at about 70-73%. So now all these things are starting to add up, but I didn't want to draw any conclusions until I get my OG.

4) I took the OG . Shooting for 1.060 , but instead it was 1.089! So now I have a beer that was supposed to be at 5.8% will now be at close to 10%.

5) My thought was the grains were misweighed.  I realized that I had the grains from the homebrew shop still in their bags so weighed them to see which one I put too much in and guess what....neither. I did weigh right.

Here is the recipe:

5.5 gal
9 lbs Pilsner (German)
4 lbs 5 oz (Munich)
2 oz Melanoiden

6) I put the grain bill into a couple online calculators and got OG of 1.076 (brewedbyus) and 1.067 (brewers friend).

7) Just did it on pad and pencil and it worked out to 1.087 which is what I hit. Yet Beersmith is 1.060.

I know it is a simple fix, but I am baffled.  Need some guidance as I am going to be brewing again very soon. 

I tried to attach the screen shot of the recipe page so hopefully you can see it.

Online Oginme

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Re: Completely confused. Please help!
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2018, 05:16:21 PM »
Like you, my process is pretty well dialed in.  Every once in a while I get a really weird brew day, maybe not quite as off as yours seems to be but quite different from my normal results.  In every case, I have been able to track it down to something that I did:  forgot to reset the gap on my grain mill after cleaning it, grossly mis-measured by water, ditto with grains -- double added a fairly sizable amount because I forgot to check it off and then was called away by SWMBO -- came back and measured it out again, etc.

These things happen.  Unless you made some change in the program or equipment profiles, don't panic.  In many years as a process engineer and process control engineer I have learned never to jump at one excursion from normality.  It will almost always backfire on you.  If you cannot trace back to something you did this time, make sure you pay attention next time to catch what might have gone wrong.  Look at everything that might have been different from how you normally brew as you complete the next one.  Sometimes it comes back to you and sometimes you just have to chalk it up to a bad day.

On you point number 7, if you calculated the potential from the grains at 87 points and BeerSmith gave you 60 points, then this jives with about a 70% brew house efficiency. 
Recycle your grains, feed them to a goat!