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The Brewing Forum • View topic - Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk
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Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk

PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 14:59
by Eli_D
Folks,

I'm directing this one at the clever folks out there who calculate their recipes using a pencil and paper and don't use software. I really want to learn to do this but don't even know where to look to learn to.

Any kind soul out there with the patience of a saint who fancies showing me the ropes?

Re: Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk

PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 15:38
by mark1964
I would imagine it would be pretty hard to work out. Hop additions throughout the boil give different ibus also colours from grain would be pretty difficult to work out. Commercial breweries use the software to create recipes also to monitor mash ph temp and even during the fermenting stage. I suppose you could make a beer using just 3 malts and one hop addition if you know roughly where the ibu of the finished beer will be. I wouldnt like to risk it though

Re: Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk

PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 15:40
by Dennis King
I never use software but but not quite sure how to guide you. As an old fart I know what most ingredients do for my beers so I tend to do it in my head. For example certain dark malts I know the maximum quantity I prefer. I tend to mull over the recipe for the week before the brew starting with a pale malt base to give me an approx strength then add extra malts to achieve the style I'm after. Same with the hops I have an idea of their strengths and what they will bring to the beer and will plan the hop schedule with what I have in stock. Hope this helps if you need to know anything more specific please ask

Re: Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk

PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 16:23
by Springer
It is not hard to work out at all, its just simple formula, they are in the early Graham Wheeler book if I remember rightly. My old brewing mate put them into a simple spreadsheet, not rocket science.
Nice to know how it works, I suppose, but who want to learn long division or 7 figure logarithams, remember those, when you can have a calculator?
S

Re: Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk

PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 16:51
by Eli_D
:) Thanks Springer. I think I actually have that book somewhere.

Re: Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 19:36
by brugen
Eli,

Another couple of sources are

How to Brew - John J Palmer

Designing Great Beers - Ray Daniels

The second is a fantastic resource if you want to experiment rather than clone.

brugen

Re: Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 21:49
by supersteve
I only really like beers between 4 - 5.5% so I know with my set up I only need about 4 - 5KG of malt.
then it's 15L to mash and 20L to sparge.. I no chill so use a calculator to determin my 90 minute IBU and i'm done.

Re: Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk

PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2016 06:11
by jkp
I think if you want to calculate it to some accuracy, rather than just guestimating from experience, then you'll need to use a spreadsheet rather than pen and paper. I've written a spreadsheet which does most of the calculations I need, colour, gravity, abv, volumes, temperatures, IBUs, and is scalable (I did this mostly out of curiosity but also because I can design it the way I want). Unfortunately I didn't keep a very good account of where I got all the formulae but here is one good resource to get you started,



For other interesting calculations you might look at these






Re: Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk

PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2016 09:53
by Eli_D
Wow thanks guys.
I found a couple of good resources online so been working my way through them. Practicing getting my grain bill worked out at the minute before I move onto hops and IBU.
Actually quite enjoying the learning.

Re: Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk

PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2016 10:03
by LeithR
Excellent couple of links there jkp. I knew some of it but its handy to have it all "under one roof" so to speak. Thanks

Could we think of making this sticky?

Re: Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk

PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2016 10:06
by Kyle_T

Re: Brewing without software - pencil and paper folk

PostPosted: Thu Jan 14, 2016 10:35
by Springer
Just had a look at those links, brilliant, lots of info :D
S
Thanks all