Category Archives: Malting times and temperatures

More Kilning Schedules- Notes from The Handy Book

Kilning schedules according to the American Handy Book of the Brewing Malting and Auxiliary Trades by Robert Wahl and Max Henius published in 1902:

Finally a description of Vienna malt!, well it’s missing a few key details but it will have to do. Even though this book is online I thought I’d share these schedules with the Celsius temperatures added. (Makes my life easier) There are a lot of details in this section I have left out. I just tried to include essential information useful for malting on a small scale. (There is an interesting paragraph on the differences of drum malting as opposed to floor malting worth the read if you’re set up that way.) These schedules describe kilning in a 2 story malt kiln where the two floors could be loaded simultaneously with the lower floor being hotter as it would be closer to the heat source.

Kilning of American malt for pale beer: total 48 hrs.

Green malt loaded on upper floor of 2 floor kiln.

Temp raised during 10 hours to 90 F or 32 C

Raised during the next 4 hrs to 120 For 49 C and maintained for 10 hours.

Lower floor

Malt moved to lower floor where the temp is raised over next 4 hours to 130 F or 54.5 C

Raised over the next 12 hours to 150 F or 65.5

Next three hrs to 180 F or 82 C held for 3 hrs.

Unloading and loading accounts for the last 2 hours.

Kilning American malt for extra pale beer: total 48 hrs.

Same upper floor schedule as pale

Temp raised over the next 4 hours to 125 For 52 C

And during the next 12 hours to 130 F or 54.5 C

Then raised within 3 hours to 145 F or 63 C and held for 3 hours.

Kilning American malt for dark beer: total 24 hrs.

On the upper kiln the malt is heated in 5 hrs to 90 For 32 C

In the next 2 hrs to 120 F or 49 C  and held for 5 hrs.

Lower floor brought in 2 hrs to 140 F or 60 C

In the next 5 hrs. To 180 F or 82 C

In the next 2 hrs. To 220 F or 104 C and held for 2 hrs.

English Malting :

According to Thatcher- Steeping liquid 50-54 F  10-12 C

Grain depth on floor 2-10 inches temp 50-54 F  10-12 C turned every 3-5 hrs.

Germination takes 10-15 days

“Sprinkling, if done at all…should not be later than the fifth or seventh day after the grain has left the cistern (steep tank).

Germination is arrested by withering. Malt is spread very thinly on the floor to dry out

Kilning: depth 4-6 inches

First day – 95-100F 35-38 C

Second day raise slowly to 120F 49 C

Third day raise slowly to 140-150F 60-65.5 C

Fourth day 185-200 F 85-93 C for pale malts 200-225 93-107 C or even 230F  110 C for “high-dried” malts 5-6 hrs.

With all malts it is recommended to store for 6-8 weeks before being used.

Unfortunately, the recommendations for crystal malt are disappointing in that he describes the practice of “moistening the malt during the drying process with a solution of sugar and then drying it off at a high temperature” (cheaters)

Malting in Germany:

Three types of malt are distinguished in Germany: Bohemian (Pilsner), Wiener(Vienna), and Bavarian (Munich).

“As to the taste and aroma of the malt, that of the Bohemian type should have no caramel and very little aroma; the Vienna malt , on the other hand , should possess it distinctly, and in the Bavarian this aroma should be very strong, without a bitter empyreumatic” (burnt organic matter) taste. (Had to look that one up)

According to Leyser–Heiss:  Steep water 48-54.5 F 9-12.5 C renewed every 12 hrs. Under unfavorable circumstances the water should be renewed every 6-8 hrs.

Floor depth 11.8-19.7 inches. Turned every 12 hrs.

Maximum temp.of grain bed 70-72.5F 21- 22.5 C

Germination period 6-8 days then spread to a depth of 2 inches to wither.

Malting descriptions taken from Michel’s “Lehrbuch der Bierbrauerei”

Bavarian (Munich): 44-45 % moisture. Steep temp. 54.5F 12.5 C  time of steeping 90-120 hours

Floor depth 8-10 inches turned every 12 hrs. Or more depending on temp.

5-6th day allowed to lie 15-18 hrs in order to mat. Generally malt is allowed to mat twice and the temperature allowed to rise to 72 F or 22 C 

Temp. of germination room at 48-50 F  9-10 C and the temp. of grain rises gradually on it’s own over the germination period.

Kilning: 48 hrs

Upper floor first 24hrs not stated

Lower floor 12 hrs at 104-111 F 40-44 C Drafts or dampers then closed

Raised over 6 hrs to 133-140 F  56-60 C

Temp raised for 3 hrs held for last 3 hrs. Air temp in kiln rises gradually from 140F -183F   60 -84 C  over the 6 hrs.

      Interestingly the temps. For under the lower kiln floor are included for the last 6 hrs which goes from 207 -250 F  97- 121 C for the first 3 and maintained at 250F or 121 C for the last 3.

Temperature in the malt goes from 180 – 223 F  82- 106 C. Quite a difference from the air temperature.

Moisture content during kilning:

On reaching upper floor …37-40%

After the first 12 hours on lower floor……20-24%

After next 6 hours…………..10-14%

After last 6 hours…………….5-6 %

Finished malt (after cooling) 1.5-2 %

Weiner (Vienna) malt

Moisture 38-42 % Couch temp. No higher than 66 F or 19 C

Germination period 9-10 days malt never allowed to mat depth 4.5-7 inches

Floor record example:

Temp. Day 1 50-57 F 10-14 C  7- 6.3 inches deep

Day 2 57-63.5F  14-17.5 C 6-5.5 inches deep

Day 3 66-68F  19-20 C  Next 5 days temp maintained at 68F or 20 C 4.7-5.5 inches deep. Turned every 6-8 hrs. Never allowed to mat.

Kilning: 24 hrs.

The malt is loaded on the upper floor  at 95-100 F  35-38 C all draughts being open until it is “air-dry” Unfortunately it does not state what the moisture content is at this point.

“The draught is checked and temperature raised to 144-156F  62-69 C” 

However, an example of a  kiln record  is shown which states that the air off temperature goes up to 183 F  84 C during the final 2 hrs. and the malt temperature goes from 149 – 212 F  62-100 C during the last 6 hours.

The last 6 hours of malt temperatures go like this: 149F 65C, 156F 69C, 171F 77C, 185F 85C, 200F 93C, 202F 95C, 212F 100C.

Malt for Bohemian Beer (Pilsner Malt)

Moisture 38-42%

Germination room temp. 50-54.5 F  10-12.5 C. 8 inch depth turned every 12 hours when roots develop turn every 6-8 hours and spread lower. Max temp. 68 F 20 C

Time of growth 9-10 days

Kilning 24-36 hours

The last 15 hours of a 30 hour kilning record is shown as an example but the temp. of the first 15 hours are not stated. As kilning would have been done in a two floor kiln we know that the temperature would have gradually increased up to 37.8 C or 100 F during the first 15 hours.

Last 15 hrs – Hours 1-12  Malt temperature raised from 37.8 C – 67.2 C or 100 F-153 F.  Draft holes  open.

Last 3 hours malt temperature at 81.1 C or 178 F Draft holes gradually closed.


Posted by on March 11, 2015 in Malting times and temperatures


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Malts, times and temperatures

I thought I’d post all my malting procedures in one easy to access page. These procedures are based on the research I’ve done so far.

Amber Malt: From Malt and Malting: An Historical , Scientific and Practical Treatise. H Stopes 1885 p. 159-161

Germinates as a pale malt

  • Kilning: First 12 hrs. below 80F  26.6C
  • End of hour 18  85F  29.4 C
  • End of hour 20 125F 51.6C
  •          ”          21  140F  60C
  •          ”          22  160F  71C
  •          ”          23  180F  82C
  •          ”          24  200F  93C
  •          ”          25  220F  104.4C
  •          ”          26  240F  115.5C
  •          ”          26.5  250  121.1C

Stopes also recommends that the final curing stage (last 5-6 hrs) can be carried out with dry beechwood in the kiln for the best flavour.

Caramel malt:

Steep grain until it reaches 42%-44% moisture ( see my video on how to calculate this)

Germinated until acrospire reached 3/4 length of grain. Keep between 10-15C or 50-60F during steeping and 15-18C 59-64F during germination.

Stew in a large heavy cast iron pot with the lid on or on a cookie sheet covered with foil at 50C 122 F 3 hrs

Raise temperature to 65-71C 150-160 F for 3 hrs.

Kiln at 80C 175 F for 12 hrs to dry (this is now carapils or dextrin malt)

Cure at 250F to darken 1-2 hrs depending on colour desired.

New (more accurate):

  • Total kilning time: 12 hours.
  • Hour 1: 140F 60C covered
  • Hour 2: Increased slowly to 158F covered, (stewing)
  • Hours 3 and 4 -158F signs of liquefication at end of hour 4.
  • For Carapils or Dextrin uncover and put on screens to dry at 131-140°F 55-60°C.
  • For other Caramel malts dry for 3 hours at 158F 70C until moisture is down to 10%
  • Temperature then increased to 225 for 3 hours. Moisture down to 2%  First sample taken (20-25L)
  • Temp. increased to 250F 30 minutes Second sample taken. (20-25L)
  • Additional samples taken every 30 min. at 250F. Third – 1 hour at 250 F approx. 60L
  • 4th – 1 1/2 hours 250F approx. 100L
  • 5th-2 hours at 250F approx. 140L

Pale and Pilsner malts:

Steep 8 hrs. rest 8 hrs and repeat until moisture content is 42-44% (usually takes 2-3 days) Pilsner 38-42%

Germinate until acrospire is  3/4 the length of the grain and starch becomes like a chalky paste when rubbed between your fingers. Can extend time up to 10 days for well-modified malt, usually 5-7.  Keep between 10-15C (50-60F) during steeping and 15-18C 59-64F during germination.

Kiln with ventilation at 35-38C 95-100 F for 22 hrs (or when grain moisture content has reached 10%).  Or keep on screen with a fan at room temp. overnight then kiln at 45-50C.

Raise temp. to 45- 50C 113-122 F for 12 hrs

Option for maltier flavour but less diastatic power- Raise temp to 60C 140F when moisture content is between 35-25%

Cure malt at 90-95C 194F-203F for 2-3 hrs to create pale malt

Cure at 70-80C  158-176F F 2-3 hrs to create pilsner malt.


Modern Brown malt:

This malt differs from other roasted malts in that it has a higher initial kilning temperature. Whereas chocolate and black malts start out as pale malts which are then roasted, brown malt is kilned at a higher temperature from the green stage. Procedures vary but here’s what I did:

From the green stage I kilned it at 212 F for 5 hours

Cured at 350 F for 40 minutes

Chocolate Caramel malt (my own creation):

Green two row with the acrospire at 75 to 100% the length of the grain stored in a bag with no oxygen for 24 hrs at 5-10 C  40-50F ( I had to do this because I was kilning my pale malt during this time and there was no more room in the oven. Removing the oxygen and replacing it with CO2 if you can, will halt the growth of the barley. This is called couching.

Stewed it at 49-54C 120-130 F in a dutch oven type pot with the lid on for 12 hrs. Also kept it damp by spraying water on it 3 times during the 12 hrs.

Raised the temperature to 65-71C  150-160 F for 3 hrs. Still in the pot.

Dried it on a screen at 175F with a fan for 10 hrs. The temp. went up at the beginning to 200 F for 1 hour accidentally.

Cured it at 325 for 1 hour.

Light Chocolate malt:

Soaked 6-row pilsner malt for 30 min

Put it in the oven at 65-71C  150-160 F for 2 hrs.

Raised temperature to 250 for 30 min to dry grains

300 F for 20 min

325 F for 15 min

Then 380 F for 1 hr.  This is low for chocolate malt. 425-480 F is normal, also for 1-1 1/2 hr.

Brumalt, Melanoidin, Honey type malt:

This is the closest I’ve come so far to Honey malt, this will give you a sweet yet sour malt (low pH) that’s around 30L and maintains some diastatic power.

Steep until 48%

Germinate at least 6 days at 13C, acrospires at 3/4  then 24 at room temp. 22C (acrospires on average are now the full length of grain)

Couch (lactic acidification phase) in a zip-loc bag sealed for 16 hours at 37C. For less sourness: Use less time here or do not seal in a bag but cut off ventilation instead.

ramp up temp to 50C (proteolysis phase) and hold for 8-10 hours for about a 30L colour, Add more time for more colour 16-18 hrs.= very dark

Kiln at 40-45C for 24 hours or until moisture is below 10%


1 hour at 175F  79C

1 hour at 185F  85C

3 hours at 190C  88C

Special B:

Used the Conlon barley –  45% moisture content. Germinated  at 15C (59F)

Brought inside when acrospire =3/4

Last 24 hrs of germination at room temperature. Acrospire =full length of grain

Placed in a pot with a tight lid in the oven for 12 hrs. @ 50C or 122F

Temp. then increased to 149-158F for 4 hours

Taken out of pot and put on to drying screen in the oven @ 200F for 5 1/2 hours

I did not spray any additional water on it at any point. It seemed wet enough. Also I did plan to increase the temperature even more but when I tried the grains started to snap, so I kept the temperature at 200F and pretty soon the insides of the grain were very dark.

Diastatic Brown malt:

Green malt air dried for 2 days- room temperature

Kilned in an offset smoker with pecan wood pellets burned in paint can wood gassifiers 115F for 3 hours (one gassifier)

Cured 3 hours at 175-250F Temp varied but stayed mostly at 215F.

This created a beer the colour of a darker pale ale. I will be doing this one again sometime this year (2014) to get a darker coloured malt.

Munich and Aromatic malt: 

Steep until moisture content is 47-48% (8 hrs soaking, 8 hrs. resting for 3 days) at 10-15 C (50-59F)

Germinated at 15-18 degrees until acrospire reached 1/3 length of the grain, 3-4 days. Brought inside at 20 C (68F) for last 24 hrs.

Last 24 hrs inside, acrospire reached the full length of the grain. Grain temperature reached 25 C (77F)

Another option is to germinate between 20-25C for the duration

Kilned with little to no ventilation increasing temp. up to 50C 122 F  until moisture is between 20-25% 12 hours

Raise temperature to stew at 60-65°C 140-149°F with no ventilation for 4-6 hours, then ventilate until moisture is below 10%

Cured at 195 F for 3 hrs. Can be cured at 185-200F 3-5 hrs. depending on the malting company and colour desired.

It’s a light Munich at this point and has that sweet rich toasty flavour. I took half of it after kilning to make Aromatic malt. This can be cured between 220-235F for 3-5 hrs.

Here’s a different schedule for Munich from Briggs Malts and Malting describing an old method on a two tier kiln.

  • Steep to 45% with a long warm germination
  • 24 hrs at 38C with a slow airstream for limited stewing. Moisture down to 15-25%
  • Temperature then raised to 75C (167F) for 12 hours
  • Cured at 189-212F (87-100C) or even 221F (105C) for 2 hours


Roasted Barley:

6-row barley roasted between two cookie sheets at 480F for 1 hour turning every 10-15 minutes. Be warned it gets very smokey.

Acid malt:

Start with green malt sealed in a ziploc bag, warm to 35C or 95F for 36 hours. sqeeze out any air or carbon dioxide during the process. Dry at 95F for 3 hours.


  • 42% moisture content
  • 4 days germinating 13C (55F)
  • 24 hrs with fan 28C 82F
  • Moisture at or below 10%
  • Cured at 175F 2 hrs (79C)
  • 180F 1 hr. (82C)
  • 185F 2 hrs. (85C)


  • 42% moisture content
  • 6 days germinating 13C (55F)
  • 24 hrs at 24C 75F with fan
  • Moisture below 10%
  • Cured 170F 1 hr. (77C)
  • 175F 1 hr. (79C)
  • 180F 1 hr. (82C)
  • 185F 2 hrs. (85C)
  • 190F 2 hrs.  (88C)

Khorasan (Kamut)

  • 40% moisture content (recommend higher moisture like 45%)
  • 6 days germinating (Also recommend longer germination if possible)
  • 24 hrs at 21C 70F with fan
  • 4 hrs 35-40C 95-104F ventillated but no fan
  • 2 hrs 40-50C 104-122F
  • 3 hrs 50C  122F
  • Cured 1 hr 175F  (79C)
  • 1 hr. 180F (82C)
  • 1 hr. 185F  (85C)
  • 2 1/2 hrs. 190F  (88C)

Caramel Khorasan (Kamut)

  • 40% moisture content (recommend higher moisture like 44%)
  • 6 days germinating (Also recommend longer germination if possible)
  • Covered with tin foil on baking tray
  • 2 hrs. 140-158F (60-70C) (malt temperature) expect kiln to be 160-175F (71-79C)
  • 2 hrs  158F (malt temp) still covered (70C)
  • 2 hrs. 175F (kiln temp) uncovered and on a screen for airflow (79C)
  • 1 hr. 225F  (107C)
  • 30 min 250F  (121C)

Happy Malting!


Posted by on October 22, 2014 in Malting times and temperatures

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