From the HBD Archive
From: polstra!larryba@uunet.UU.NET (Larry Barello)
Subject: Fast Sparge Truth & Consequence
Date: 1992-06-22 20:52:58 GMT

I brewed a vienna lager this weekend. Since I was rushed for time I just
trimmed here and there. In particular I sparged 6.25 gal in 20 minutes.
In spite of the fast sparge time I achieved near 100% extract efficiency, as
compared to Dave Miller's numbers. (8.5lb of grain, about 50:50 pale
malt and lt munich/crystal, OG = 1.050/5.75 gal = 34 pt/lb/gal final)

My sparge technique is to open the drain cock wide and recirculate until
the flow rate slows down (compact the grain bed). This typically takes 10-
20 minutes. Then the sparge settles down to about 6-8 min/gal. With the
lager the sparge never seemed to slow down that much.

Anyway, I have always maintained that my extract efficiency seems to be more
related to the quality of my crush (the sparge rate as well!) than anything

Many questions:

a: are there any negatives associated with fast sparging, other than loss
of efficiency?

b: Anyone have any opinions/data regarding the treatment
of sparge water vs mashing water? I always have measured out the
proper amount of water for my entire brew and treated it prior to
mashing. Hence the sparge water is treated with salts as well.

c: Do others on the net use Calcium Chloride? THe vienna lager was the
first beer of mine to use CaCl2 along with Gypsum. Even the small amount
I used (2 gm/7gal) seemed to make the resulting wort sweeter. Perhaps
it was the reduction of sulphate dryness? I used only 3gm of Gypsum in the


- Larry Barello

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