Meditations on malt conditioning before milling

Wort making

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lupulus
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Meditations on malt conditioning before milling

Postby lupulus » Fri Jun 23, 2017 10:47 pm

After two side-by-side tests conditioning the malt with 2% water w/w vs. no conditioning, I noticed that no conditioning creates much less problems for recirculation vs. conditioning in my system.
The reason I did the test is that since I started conditioning, I have to constantly watch the recirculation flow to avoid a vacuum. Recirculation problems never happened before I started conditioning the malt.
Non-conditioned malt goes to the bottom and makes a good filter bed in 10 min. Conditioned malt creates quite a bit of floating husk shells that refuse to sink (that is my explanation to this moment, and it may be overcome with a different mill...)
Revising the rationale for conditioning, Künze does not appear to be an accurate reference as he is clearly not referring to two (or three) roller mills.
Here are the questions:
- Why do we condition malt in a homebrew setting?
The LOX explanation does not make much sense to me as malt is dry, so until it touches the water, I cannot see that 10-15 min or less from milling to dough-in will make a big difference. Yes, PPO can oxidize fruits very quickly when exposed to oxygen but fruits are mostly water; grains at 5% moisture cannot oxidize that fast.
- I changed many things but my cheap Barley Crusher keeps doing the job, so I have not considered changing it; will a different mill make conditioned malt better as a filter bed vs non-conditioned malt?
Thoughts?
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Bilsch
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Re: Meditations on malt conditioning before milling

Postby Bilsch » Fri Jun 23, 2017 11:07 pm

Personally I think conditioning is only warranted when you have a two roll mill and need to set it tighter to get a proper crush. Having a 3 roll mill I gave up on it a while ago, set my gap coarser and haven't looked back.
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Re: Meditations on malt conditioning before milling

Postby wobdee » Sat Jun 24, 2017 7:19 am

I don't see this problem with my system. I always condition my grains for my 2 roller mill and the grains immediately sink. What's your gap setting? Maybe crush finer?
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Re: Meditations on malt conditioning before milling

Postby Techbrau » Sat Jun 24, 2017 7:40 am

I use a MM2-pro with the gap set at 0.026". I condition with about 1.5% water. I find that it helps keep the husk intact instead of getting shredded, which then forms a more effective filterbed for my system.
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Ancient Abbey
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Re: Meditations on malt conditioning before milling

Postby Ancient Abbey » Sat Jun 24, 2017 4:33 pm

When I began conditioning, the crush became extremely coarse. It flowed extremely well, but came at the expense of a bit of efficiency. I eventually squeezed the final roller gap (3-roller) and everything when back to normal. Depending on the temp of the water you use, you supposedly can denature a bit of LOX during the conditioning as well. At the same time, I see less shredding of husks, so there is theoretically less surface area of bran and husk substrate for LOX to begin attacking cellular lipids.
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Big Monk
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Re: Meditations on malt conditioning before milling

Postby Big Monk » Sat Jun 24, 2017 5:04 pm

I think the only method that would subject the malt to 80 °C long enough to deactivate LOX would be a steep.


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mchrispen
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Re: Meditations on malt conditioning before milling

Postby mchrispen » Sat Jun 24, 2017 6:26 pm

Ric. I have a 3 roller. Let's brew again!


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lindh
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Re: Meditations on malt conditioning before milling

Postby lindh » Sun Jun 25, 2017 1:25 am

I also stopped conditioning when getting a three roller MM3. Dry malts accrually givs me less flour than wet malt. The core cracks when dry into 4-5 pieces but the wet core can get squashed like a ripe mushroom (in lack of better comparison) with mealy contents and flour. Perhaps shorten wet times (done 10-15m befor) could help but I get a perfect crush with a three rolles dry so why bother?

Here is my blog post of the MM3 with close up of wet vs dry malt (press english in menu for translation): http://www.lindhcraftbeer.com/2017/04/m ... milll-mm3/
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lupulus
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Re: RE: Re: Meditations on malt conditioning before milling

Postby lupulus » Sun Jun 25, 2017 9:56 am

wobdee wrote:I don't see this problem with my system. I always condition my grains for my 2 roller mill and the grains immediately sink. What's your gap setting? Maybe crush finer?

My gap is 0.75 mm. I did not mean to imply grains are floating. Most of it sinks but a layer of some husks floats. The key point is that the filter bed is slower when conditioning. This is of course with my mill.

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Ancient Abbey
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Re: Meditations on malt conditioning before milling

Postby Ancient Abbey » Sun Jun 25, 2017 7:27 pm

Seems odd that with a coarser crush you have more trouble flowing wort through the bed. Or by chance do you mean the bed is not setting up and filtering properly?
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