GF - Starting boil as I sparge?

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Re: GF - Starting boil as I sparge?

Post by Cobnut » Fri Nov 01, 2019 4:10 pm

My sparge water heater is a cheap 30L tea urn I bought when I was doing BIAB.

I modified it with a proper tap, but if it's only for sparge water, I don't think I'd bother if I were to do it again; and insulated with a £5 foil-backed camping mat from Tesco (Other supermarkets available).
Photo is from a few years ago in pre-GF days and probably shows it approaching boil.

It has a theremostat in degrees C and is not far out at 75C which is what I usually sparge at.
Fermenting: Summer ale
Conditioning: Quickie Voss Kveik IPA, Make American Stout Great Again
Drinking: 100% Vienna Malt Faux Helles, SMASH Keeping Ale (Chevallier, First Gold, Voss Kveik), Haflinger (rather odd weizenbock), 'Ol 'Enry Brut IPA, Cherry Chocolate Dubbel Trubbel, A Galaxy Far, Far Away Black IPA (or maybe it's an American Stout?)
Planning:Witbier, Oatmeal Stout IV, Brown Ale, etc.

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Re: GF - Starting boil as I sparge?

Post by Kev888 » Sun Nov 03, 2019 11:21 am

Robhaigh wrote:
Wed Feb 07, 2018 3:46 pm
I have a GF and a sparge water heater.
I mash, then I lift the basket and start to sparge from the sparge heater.

Question... can I start the boil timer immediately? or do I have to wait till all the sparge water has gone through the grain?

I only ask as it takes an age to sparge (roughly 20 mins) and if it makes no difference I could be using this time to start the boil.
Continuous sparges in 3+ vessel systems can take much longer than that, so for decades homebrewers have been turning on the boil kettle as soon as there is sufficient wort in it. There is no reason to wait, and raising the temperature sufficiently to denature the enzymes stops the sugar profile in the collected wort continuing to change whilst waiting for the sparge to finish, so it can even be slightly beneficial for consistency.

The only real difference with the GrainFather is the grain basket partially blocking the kettle's opening, so setting to just below boiling until that is removed is probably prudent - just to avoid boil overs.

There is a theoretical possibility of steam from the nearly-boiling wort overheating the bottom of the suspended grain. But at least in my tests this hasn't happened in practice, the sparge liquor running through (and the thermal mass of the wet grain) prevents it gaining too much temperature. So all seems fine to me.

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Re: GF - Starting boil as I sparge?

Post by lord.president » Thu Nov 07, 2019 1:08 am

I’ve always done this- does it not say in the instructions to do this?
Getting Carlisle United into the First Division,is possibly the greatest football achievement of all time-Bill Shankly

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