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Author Topic: Hot Rodding your mash tun.  (Read 2200 times)

Offline fakr

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Hot Rodding your mash tun.
« on: March 30, 2012, 11:42:17 AM »
Just thought I'd share a technique I used for the first time during my last brew session.

The technique involves maintaining your mash temp using a hot or heater rod.  I acquired a 1000W lab grade glass heating element, in the shape of a long 1/2" tube.  When I noticed my targeted 154F mash temp fall below 151F, I thought I'd try using the heater rod to heat the mash back up by continually stirring the mash with the rod until the mash temp came back up to 154F.  

I did this twice in the 60 minute mash in, and it worked great.  Took maybe 5 minutes of stirring each time.

So I'm going to continue using this method to keep my mash temps more consistent and hopefully more efficient due to the stirring.

This will definitely do until I go herms or rims...
"If God had intended for us to drink beer, He would have given us stomachs."

Offline Chris Craig

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Re: Hot Rodding your mash tun.
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2012, 11:45:16 AM »
Quote from: "fakr"
Just thought I'd share a technique I used for the first time during my last brew session.

The technique involves maintaining your mash temp using a hot or heater rod.  I acquired a 1000W lab grade glass heating element, in the shape of a long 1/2" tube.  When I noticed my targeted 154F mash temp fall below 151F, I thought I'd try using the heater rod to heat the mash back up by continually stirring the mash with the rod until the mash temp came back up to 154F.  

I did this twice in the 60 minute mash in, and it worked great.  Took maybe 5 minutes of stirring each time.

So I'm going to continue using this method to keep my mash temps more consistent and hopefully more efficient due to the stirring.

This will definitely do until I go herms or rims...


What are you using for a mash tun?  I use a 48 qt Coleman cooler, and for a 12-14 lb grain bill, I notice maybe a 1 or 2 degree drop after 60 minutes.

Offline fakr

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Re: Hot Rodding your mash tun.
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2012, 11:48:53 AM »
I'm using a big coleman xtreme cooler.  Not sure why, but I get about a 4 degree drop in 60 minutes.  Could be the size....not sure.

I've mashed 30lbs of grain in it before.
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Offline Richard

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Re: Hot Rodding your mash tun.
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2012, 11:52:03 AM »
I'd be willing to bet that drop happens fairly soon in the 60-minutes; check this thread out:

viewtopic.php?f=9&t=1077
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Offline fakr

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Re: Hot Rodding your mash tun.
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2012, 11:59:22 AM »
yeah it does, usually in the first 5-10 minutes or so.

I'm happy with this heater rod as it seems to raise the mash temp throughout the mash tun in a uniform way.  It was also gradual.

I'm going to keep it handy especially if I hit below my target temp.   No more having to add extra hot water to raise the temp and mess with my watergrain ratios.

I should look up a cost on these rods...if they are cheap I would recommend them, otherwise I might have lucked out with it being given to me.
"If God had intended for us to drink beer, He would have given us stomachs."

Offline Chris Craig

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Re: Hot Rodding your mash tun.
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2012, 12:02:08 PM »
Do you pre-heat your tun?  I add a couple litres of hot water (180ish) for a few minutes while my strike water is heating up. Seems to work well for me.  No messing around with stirring either.

Offline jeffsmith

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Re: Hot Rodding your mash tun.
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2012, 12:06:21 PM »
Quote from: "ChrisCraig"
Do you pre-heat your tun?  I add a couple litres of hot water (180ish) for a few minutes while my strike water is heating up. Seems to work well for me.  No messing around with stirring either.


I do the same. I use a 70qt. Coleman Xtreme and when I'm doing a smaller 5 gallon batch I lay a sheet of tinfoil on top of the mash so less heat is lost to the air in the headspace. Usually keeps me within a degree or two, even with a 75 minute mash.

Offline fakr

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Re: Hot Rodding your mash tun.
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2012, 02:18:31 PM »
yeah, I preheat my mash tun as well, but I still get a 3-4 degree drop over the 60 minutes.  

Anyways, just a little something I'm doing now when I see a drop in mash temp.  It allows me to maintain the temp I was aiming for and might just help with efficiency....maybe.
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Offline Dave Savoie

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Re: Hot Rodding your mash tun.
« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2012, 03:13:24 PM »
I to have heal loss with the colman xtreme cooler
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Offline Kyle

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Re: Hot Rodding your mash tun.
« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2012, 04:00:50 PM »
thats good to know, since I will be using one of theose for my 10g batches. I can recirculate with a pump and PID temp control though as needed  :D
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