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Old 12-10-2012, 09:01 PM   #11
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Well,after having done my second partial mash last Saturday,I've noticed some things. The crush for biab is better when fine vs "normal average" crush. I got better efficiency from a fine crush. but I must also add that I used the muslin grain sack provided. Good for hops,but not so much for grain mashing.
I went to empty the grain sack & found clumps I believe y'all call dough balls or the like. And this after the guy at the lhbs showed me a paint strainer bag that measured like 18" x 32". Twice as long as I really needed. DOOOOHHHH!! STUUUPIIID! I should've bought it. I'm liking the idea of having a biab bag bag that stays open at the top,drapped over the lip of the BK. That way I can use my 2' plastic paddle to stir the grains. Better efficiency,according to the beersmith podcast #29 I posted elsewhere. Even had a couple words with Denny in my thread. Cool.
The next thing is getting my mash temps stabilized. The old stock electric burners were great for stable temps,but took forever to heat up 2.5-3 gallons of water/wort. The new aftermarket burners heat up faster & more evenly,but don't maintain temps very well. Need some input there.
The big thing was the crush though. Biab seems to like the finer crush to get good efficiency.
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Old 12-10-2012, 11:25 PM   #12
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I have been doing small batch BIAB using a paint strainer and two pots. I do the mash in my small pot and heat my sparge water in my boil pot. At the end of the mash i just take the grain bag and dunk into the sparge water, stir and drain. Then I add the wort from the small pot and boil. Beer has been good but I'm looking to build a cooler MLT once I get my turkey fryer and go to 5 gal batches.

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Old 12-11-2012, 01:11 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zman View Post
Death brewer did a great writeup on this. I am going to do my first BIAB AG this week. I like using my cooler but this might be a good way to go since winter is on its way and I have a 72 qt cooler and a smaller kitchen.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/easy...ng-pics-90132/
That is a good thread.
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Old 12-12-2012, 12:00 PM   #14
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When I do BIAB I found it's best to use the large course nylon bags to maximize the surface area of the grains to water and thus reducing the dough ball effect. A few stirs over the mash process and the grains are all separated. I have recently seen videos where people skip the sparge and dunk the grains after mashing into a sparge water pot but I have not tried this method yet. It looks like it could be easier than pouring 180 degree water over 10+ LBS of grains through a colander. That’s why these discussions are helpful, we hear what others are doing, there success and if there results would work in our own setup.

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Old 12-13-2012, 12:12 AM   #15
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BIAB is a great way to get into all-grain on the cheap. I found it a great way to learning most of the brewing principles without investing a lot of money. It does have limitations though, as a grain bag can only hold so many pounds of grain. I also found it hard to hold my mash temps using just a pot. I found my batches tasted better when I started using a cooler with a copper manifold.

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Old 12-13-2012, 12:16 AM   #16
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BIAB is a great way to do all grain. Efficiency is not a problem; the key is to use a very fine crush (since you're relying on the bag to filter, not the grain itself. I ask my LHBS to double crush the grains for me and get ~80% efficiency with a full volume, no sparge BIAB. There's no "adjusting" of a recipe you need to do, besides efficiency considerations and of course a different mash/sparge schedule.

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Old 12-13-2012, 12:27 AM   #17
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I keep a little DME on hand and toss a little in if I fall short when I biab. Of course, this would mean that it isn't technically be AG, but no can taste 6oz or so of DME.

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Old 12-13-2012, 01:34 AM   #18
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No adjusting needed, but as others have said, you should have a little finer crush. My eff has been about 70 to 72% but I've never hit the 80 to 85% that some people say they get. I've done it with and without a sparge, and it never really made much difference for me. I've been doing BIAB for about 2 years now,(probably 40+ batches) but since I'm going to 10gal batches, I converted my BIAB pot into a mash tun, and have a keggle for the boil.

The best part of BIAB is the limited equipment, and the fact that all the equipment you buy for BIAB can be used for any other brewing techniques if you decide to change your process.

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Old 01-01-2014, 01:16 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrookdaleBrew View Post
Depends on if you sparge or not. If you do not, you'll want to use more grain to hit your OG, although I couldn't tell you exactly how much, that is going to depend a lot on your process.

I've been doing BIAB with a sparge for a while and usually hit 80%+ efficiency on normal sized beers.
what are you exactely talking about spargeing ?
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Old 01-01-2014, 02:05 PM   #20
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I've since gone back & bought the nylon paint strainer bag at the lhbs. Course mesh with my crusher set at .039 works very well. Less floury stuff to strain out going into the FV. I sparge my 4=6lbs of grains with 1.5 gallons of 170F spring water for 3.5 gallons boil volume in my 5G kettle. My efficiency has been as high as 80% since. Generally 70-75% on average. Doing partial boil,partial mash is about the cheapest way to go with the equipment I have. I only had to buy the nylon bag for the grains. Being able to stir the mash & sparge properly raised efficiency.

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