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Old 08-02-2011, 10:36 PM   #1
Rivercat96
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Default Natural fiber grain bag material?

Going to do my first BIAB this weekend and wanted to know if anyone has tried using any natural fiber materials/bags like tight nit burlap, meslin, cotton, etc. for a grain/mashing bag. The recomended material for BIAB is nylon voile cloth but I'm trying to elimanted as much plastic from touching my beer as possible. The catch is that the material has to also be strong enough to hold wet grain. Has anyone noticed any change in the flavor of their beer using natural fiber bags like burlap? Thanks.



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Old 08-02-2011, 11:55 PM   #2
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You can use a natural fiber bag, but it more than likely won't last very long. I've used cotton bags for hops in the boil but have to toss them. Never used Burlap, seems like it might absorb too much liquid.

More than likely the alcohol will do more damage to your body than the Voile fabric.



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Old 08-02-2011, 11:58 PM   #3
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I have used these http://www.hanes.com/Hanes/Products/Men-Hanes/Men_ShopByCategory-Hanes/Men_Tshirts-Hanes/Men_Tshirts_TaglessTShirts-Hanes/102630.aspx, tie the arms will hold #14 wet grain
thew also work for dry curing hams

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Old 08-03-2011, 12:13 AM   #4
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7 Bridges sells cotton hop bags www.breworganic.com. The largest size is pretty big, it might be large enough for you.

These bags are plenty durable, I'm still using the first one I bought.

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Old 08-03-2011, 01:19 AM   #5
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Thanks for the ideas on natural fiber bags. I'm trying to find a bag or possibly just by the material so I can use it with my keggle. Unfortunately the one 7 Bridges sells is a little small for that I think. I may try a few different materials and let the BIAB community know which work the best. A lot of the BIAB brewers use nylon voile cloth from the fabric stores but it's not food grade nylon and who knows what chemical compounds are leaching out of that. Maybe nothing significant but better safe than sorry.

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Old 08-03-2011, 02:45 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by certaut View Post
I have used these http://www.hanes.com/Hanes/Products/Men-Hanes/Men_ShopByCategory-Hanes/Men_Tshirts-Hanes/Men_Tshirts_TaglessTShirts-Hanes/102630.aspx, tie the arms will hold #14 wet grain
thew also work for dry curing hams
Great information...I'd love to try the ham. I believe the "advised" BIAB material is polyester voile...as in hdPe as in polyethylene. Cotton seems like a choice as well.
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Old 08-03-2011, 07:54 PM   #7
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Wilserbrewer you are correct, Swiss Voile is polyester. After talking with the fabric experts at my local fabric stores the best material seems to be unbleached muslin cloth (much nicer/heavier than the muslin/mesh grain bags at most LHBS). After looking at the fabric it appears to be the same material that many of the cotton grain bags are made out of that you can buy online, e.g. Seven Bridges. I can buy a yard of this fabric for $2.50 so it's very cheap and if taken care of should last a couple years at least. I'll have the old lady make a bag for my keggle this week with double stitched seams and post a follow up after my first all-grain brew Sunday.

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Old 09-30-2011, 03:29 PM   #8
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River, how did the muslin work?

I've been using organic cotton cheesecloth, and it has worked for 9lbs of grain, but after about 10 batches, I don't know how much longer it will last.

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Old 03-06-2013, 02:20 AM   #9
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Default May be a longshot...but

Any updates here? I am interested in BIAB, and not feeling the polyester either.

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Old 03-06-2013, 02:35 AM   #10
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Cotton pillowcase. Might have to reinforce the seams.

But voile is indestructible, markedly less absorbent, you can hose it down to clean & won't go mouldy.

Voile is polyester AKA PET = what they make soda & miniature spirits bottles out of.



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