Author Topic: Questions about scaling a recipe  (Read 1001 times)

Offline MTBrewer

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Questions about scaling a recipe
« on: January 02, 2019, 12:10:48 PM »
I just found a commercial-type recipe for a 3 BBL system. I'm curious if it can be reduced to a homebrew size. I don't even know if I would make it, but I just wanted to ask the question from the experts!
2 questions:
1. Will BeerSmith scale such a large recipe down to a 5 gallon recipe and keep it true to the amounts of grain and hops, & OG, FG, IBU, SRM, ABV? (I know I'll probably have to 'guess' at the mash time and temp, etc.)
2. How would I devise such a large 'equipment profile' since I have no idea of what equipment is required for that large a system?

Any help or advice would be appreciated!
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Online Oginme

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Re: Questions about scaling a recipe
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2019, 12:28:11 PM »
I've scaled a lot of recipes from modest sized 20 to 30 bbl to 5-gal home brew recipes down to my standard 10 liter batch size.  I gave up on trying to develop an equipment profile for entering in these recipes.

So here is what I do with the assumption that I have targets for OG, FG, color and IBU:

1.  Open up a blank recipe in BeerSmith complete with my equipment profile
2.  Type in the recipe AS IT IS WRITTEN and entering all the components.  Do not worry about the ending values right now.  If like me you work in metric and the recipe is in lbs, just enter it as '### lbs' and the software will convert it.
3.  Once the recipe is fully entered, click on the slider for OG below the ingredient box on the design tab
4.  In the pop up window, enter in the 'desired OG' to match the target for the recipe
5.  Repeat this for the IBU and color sliders.
6.  For ingredients which do not contribute to gravity or IBU, I scale them according to the volume ratio between starting recipe and desired target.
7.  I then adjust the mash profile to either the specs from the recipe, or more often to attain the desired FG from the printed recipe.

And there you have it!  the recipe will be scaled to accommodate your equipment and efficiency all in one shot.

Recycle your grains, feed them to a goat!

Offline GigaFemto

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Re: Questions about scaling a recipe
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2019, 05:16:14 PM »
There is also a simpler way, using the Scale Recipe tool. I don't know if it gives exactly the same result at Oginme's approach because I haven't tried either. Enter the recipe quantities, mash temperature (using your equipment profile if you don't have one in the recipe), etc. and save it. While the recipe is open, click on the Scale Recipe button on the top left of the ribbon. You then get a dialog box that allows you to select your equipment profile, new batch size and brewhouse efficiency. There is a checkbox to match OG, color and bitterness. You match them all or none, you can't individually choose. Then save the scaled recipe, perhaps with a different name in case you want to refer to the original later.

I haven't tried this to see how well it works, but I would be interested in hearing from someone who has done it because I am sure I will use it someday.

--GF

Online Oginme

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Re: Questions about scaling a recipe
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2019, 05:29:43 PM »
The scale recipe tool works great if the recipe is already in BeerSmith.  If not, then you need to create an equipment profile based upon a real limited amount of process information to enter the recipe first.  Too much guess work; too much trouble.
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Offline GigaFemto

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Re: Questions about scaling a recipe
« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2019, 06:48:16 PM »
OK. The one time I tried the tool it was on a recipe downloaded from the BeerSmith cloud that had a full equipment profile and everything else in it. I never brewed it, but the results of the Scale Recipe tool seemed to be fine.

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Online Oginme

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Re: Questions about scaling a recipe
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2019, 07:08:54 PM »
I use the tool all the time to scale recipes between my various systems.  It works really well, mostly because i have the equipment profiles down pretty tight.
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Offline MTBrewer

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Re: Questions about scaling a recipe
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2019, 06:30:40 PM »
Thanks for the responses - so, from what I gather, I don't need to know what equipment is required for a large batch, just as long as I know how to use the gravity/bitterness/color adjusters and the scale tool (which I've been using a lot since moving down south to Tenn, into a tiny cabin where I can only do 3 gal and less brews -  (my last one was 1.5 gal, since I have four of those Midwest/Northern Brewer "Little Big Mouth Bubblers") and I have been wanting to experiment with up-sizing a 1 gal recipe. It worked out great, BTW, and I ended up with almost a half-rack of an old English Winter Stout from the 1800s!
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Online dtapke

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Re: Questions about scaling a recipe
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2019, 01:12:08 PM »
You'll want to adjust your hops up ever so slightly, as larger scale brewing operations usually have increased hop utilization over homebrew setups.
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Offline MTBrewer

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Re: Questions about scaling a recipe
« Reply #8 on: January 20, 2019, 02:32:24 PM »
@ dtapke - When you say "adjust your hops up ever so slightly" are you saying add more hops or less hops? OR, in the alternative, would this just be a trial and error experiment? It works fine with small scaling, but I'm wondering if you are saying it will be too low IBUs or too bitter. Would that be percentages like 5% or 10%?
TIA
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Online dtapke

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Re: Questions about scaling a recipe
« Reply #9 on: January 21, 2019, 09:43:15 AM »
3bbl isn't going to differ TOO significantly from a 5g batch, but i would adjust hops 5-10% by weight scaled. If you know the IBU's of their recipe and not the Hop quantities, than you should be able to target that instead of the scaled weight of hops if that makes sense.

example 50 oz of hops to 2.2 oz of hops would be less accurate than targeting 80ibus.

this would be more difficult for complex hopped IPAs as you would need to know their calculated IBUs per each hop charge.

worst case you end up a little under hopped. with legitimate large scale brewhouses their hop utilization can be much higher than we can achieve especially when using things like Calandria heat exhangers.
32g eHERMS
Drinking: Cassia Stout, Dopplebock,Cream ale,
Primary: Brut IPA
Next Brew: Brut V2

 

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