Author Topic: Developing a profile for the Anvil 6.5G Brewing System - Part 3  (Read 650 times)

Online Oginme

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Initial Brew Day:

For the first brew, I selected a fairly simple recipe, Sweet Gale Golden Ale, which recently won a gold medal in competition.  This will be the third version of the recipe based upon the feedback from the judges and my own personal preferences. 

Since this recipe calls for a limited boil, I scaled the recipe to the new profile using the BeerSmith scaling function.  I then reduced the boil time to 60 minutes, since the initial hop addition is at 45 minutes.  This time will allow me to adjust the boil time to compensate for better or worse mash efficiency by increasing or decreasing the boil time to some extent. 

This gave me a starting water volume of 14.82 liters (hot).  My actual measured water in was 14.85 liters measured at strike temperature.  Rise time from initial temperature of 67F to 159F was 53 minutes with the system on 115v power.  I mashed in using my brew bag to line the malt basket.  I was concerned that the top diffusion plate of the malt basket would not fit into place easily enough, but it snapped right in without difficulty.   

After doughing in, I noticed that the temperature had dropped down to 153F compared to my target of 154F.  For right now, I will be keeping this part of the profile the same since the difference was quickly made up by the Anvil system heating coils and that 1 degree F is within the standard variability of the controller. 

I mashed for one hour and adjusted the recirculation for a slow rate through the mash bed.  Some of the users recommended to rake the top half of the grain bed several times during the mash to increase mash efficiency and prevent channeling.  I did not do this, as my normal brew day has me out in the barn during the mash and I wanted to duplicate this process to see what I achieved.

Once the mash was done, I slowly pulled the basket to allow the wort to drain.  I measured 12.75 liters collected from just allowing the natural drainage to occur.  My gravity measurement was 1.042 versus a target of 1.038.  Pulling the bag out of the mash and squeezing the way I would normally with my BIAB system, I ended up with another liter of wort collected.  The gravity of the wort did not change.
So the natural system mash/lauter efficiency ended up being 75.8%.  With the additional volume collected, this increased to 81.8%.  I was 4 gravity points higher than prediction with the collected volume matching the estimation. 

Due to the higher than target gravity reading, I reduced the boil time by 10 minutes to 50 minutes. 

I ended up with a post boil gravity of 1.047 and volume of 12.4 liters (hot at 210 F) before chilling.  Equilibrating the volumes to 158 F, I ended up with a reading of 2.2 liters.  This is also confirmed with my cold measurements of volume into the fermenter and trub loss being 12.2 liters at the same system temperature of 158 F with thermal expansion.  This double check ensures accuracy of the volume measurement since I calculated out the volume both ways.

Now being fairly confident of my volumes and gravity measurements, I can recalculate the critical parameters for the Anvil brewing system.

My grain absorption was 1.1 liters based upon my strike volume of 14.85 liters and collected volume of 13.75 liters.  With my grain bill of 2.24 kg, this gave me a water absorption of 0.49 liters/kg or 0.472 oz of water per oz of grain.  My current setting is 0.32 oz/oz based upon my previous BIAB set up.

My boil off was 1.75 liters in 50 minutes, giving me a rate of 2.10 liters/hr. 

I ended up with 10.6 liters in the fermenter and 1.15 liters of wort left in the Anvil system.  My BHE ended up calculated at 70.3% which when normalized to 10 liters is would be 66.3%.

As a check and balance of the data and calculations, I had a pre-boil volume of 13.75 liters at 1.042 gravity and ended up with a volume of 12.01 liters at 1.047 gravity.  Using the gravity point balance to determine the amount of error in the numbers, I get:

13.75 L * 42 gravity points = 577.5 sugar points

12.2 L * 47 gravity points = 573.4 sugar points

The difference of 577.5 ? 573.4  = 4.1 sugar points. 

Error is 4.1 / 577.5 = 0.7% error which is well within my measurement error.

I can now update my system profile to get closer to my actual results as follows:
Recycle your grains, feed them to a goat!

Online Oginme

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Re: Developing a profile for the Anvil 6.5G Brewing System - Part 3
« Reply #1 on: August 19, 2019, 09:38:17 AM »
Long overdue update on the second brew on the Anvil system.  Went in to brew a Scottish Ale as my second test on the unit running at 120v. As with the first brew above, I made the batch size at 10 liters and used the updated equipment profile.

My starting volume was 15.00 liters (hot) at strike temperature of 160 F.  Grain weight was 1.78 kgs and I was aiming for a target gravity of 1.029 (pre-boil) and 1.037 (post boil), based upon my standard 90 minute boil time.  My actual reading was 1.030 gravity, but I ended up being over volume at 14.68 l versus target of 13.77.  Since I was over target gravity, I decided to let her ride and deal with a bit more volume at the end of the process.

From here, I F*'d up and accidentally closed the recipe in BeerSmith while making some notes in the software (Lesson One:  I have the notes on paper, wait until brew is done to do updates away from the session and timer tabs.)  I took a quick refractometer reading and estimated that I was 60 minutes in leaving me with 30 minutes to go.  I forgot to figure in on the point of gravity I was over from the pre-boil target (Lesson Two:  use real numbers to calculate where I am at, not the targets).  In the end, when I looked at the clock, I estimated that the actual boil time was 70 minutes, so I ended up with 12.23 liters at 1.036 gravity at the end of the boil.  My target post boil volume should have been 11.41 liters so I was over by around 0.82 liters. 

The other thing I messed up on was the squeezing of the grains. Seeing that I was already over in volume, I didn't squeeze as hard as I usually do which left more water behind in the grain.  This came out in the balance confirming the volume left if I had achieved 98% conversion (a typical number for me). 

Anyway, given the errors involved, I still ended up at 80.4% mash efficiency which is dangerously close to the value I obtained on the initial run on the Anvil system.  My balance worked out as follows:

Pre boil:  14.68 liters at 30 gravity points = 440.4 sugar points

Post boil: 12.23 liters at 36 gravity points - 440.3 sugar points

Well within acceptable measurement error and given my other mess ups, I am not making any further adjustment to the equipment profile. 

Next brew will be a different Scottish ale recipe at 240v and I have transferred the values for the grain absorption and loss to trub and chiller over to the profile I made for running the Anvil at 240v.

Note:  I used the excess volume from the brew to restart a harvested yeast from a brew 6 weeks ago, so all was very good in the end.
Recycle your grains, feed them to a goat!