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Old 09-29-2012, 12:21 PM   #1
rcp197
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Default First BIAB

Im getting ready to brew my first all grain brew in a bag this weekend and had a few questions. Im doing the BYO Dragons milk clone. Thanks in advance for any help!
1. I've been using store bought water. Is this still ok for a mash? Should I stay away from RO and get spring? Or does it not matter?
2. I'm making my first yeast starter. I'm planning on 1.5 L on a stir plate. Is it best to decant and pour in only the slurry? Or does it matter if you pour in the whole thing? Will there be off favors from the starter wort?
3. I'm planning water absorption of .1gal per lb of grain. 1.25-1.5 qts of strike water per lb of grain. I'll likely mash with 5 gal given the grain bill and another 2.5 gal for sparge given boil off and absorption. Does this all sound right?
4. To squeeze or not squeeze the bag?? Most people seem to say they squeeze with no tannin problems.

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Old 09-29-2012, 12:39 PM   #2
Larso
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1. Store bought should be fine. If its RO or DI then you should treat it to get your mash Ph in the right region. Search for 'Brewing Water Chemistry Primer' on here in the Brew Science forumJust read the first post to get started and follow the 'very simple' guidlines.
2. I prefer to chill, decant and pour only slurry but many dump in the full starter. In 'Yeast' by Chris White he says to avoid pouring in a starter thats more than 5% the volume of the finished batch.
3. Cant really help here as I dont sparge. I usually mash in about 30Litres with a 4.5~5Kg grain bill and end up with about 21L in fermentor but stuff like boil off is dependant on your vessel and youll want to accound for dead space, loss to hops, grain etc.. Someone else will give you more scientific advice on this but I'd just wing it and enjoy the brew day!.
4. Heat to about 78degC while stirring vigorously. Lift and squeeze the sh1t out of the bag. You wont have a tannin issue.
Check this out http://biabrewer.info/ those guys have all or most of the BIAB answers

L

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Old 09-29-2012, 12:44 PM   #3
aiptasia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcp197 View Post
1. I've been using store bought water. Is this still ok for a mash? Should I stay away from RO and get spring? Or does it not matter?
That depends on your local water. Is there a way that you can find your municipal water report? Your water company is required to publish one a minimum of yearly if you live in the USA.

Yeasts do better in tap water with adequate nutrients and minerals in it. If you do use R/O, D/I or distilled water, consider going with a 50/50 mix of tap to bottled. If your tap water is just too freaky, then definitely use some yeast nutrient in the wort to help feed your yeasts what they need for successful fermentation.

Quote:
2. I'm making my first yeast starter. I'm planning on 1.5 L on a stir plate. Is it best to decant and pour in only the slurry? Or does it matter if you pour in the whole thing? Will there be off favors from the starter wort?
Decant, and pour in the slurry. Yes, you can have off flavors but more importantly, you'll be adding alcohol (which is actually toxic to yeast) and water/beer to your wort (thins the mix).


Quote:
3. I'm planning water absorption of .1gal per lb of grain. 1.25-1.5 qts of strike water per lb of grain. I'll likely mash with 5 gal given the grain bill and another 2.5 gal for sparge given boil off and absorption. Does this all sound right?
Depends on the grain. That might be fine for an all barley brew, but adding grains like rye or wheat are going to absorb at different levels. For example, flaked rye turns into a gruel-like mush sponge if you're not careful. What's the grain bill?

Quote:
4. To squeeze or not squeeze the bag?? Most people seem to say they squeeze with no tannin problems.
Heat is more of a danger to tannin release than the big squeeze. Don't be aggressive with it, just raise up the bag and let it drain into the hot wort. I use a metal spoon to push against the side of the bag against the pot.
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