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Old 10-17-2011, 12:48 AM   #341
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I would skip the probe. It's only going to get in the way and possibly tear your bag

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Old 10-17-2011, 11:58 PM   #342
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So if I miss my starting gravity when and how much dme do I add. I am drinking my first BIAB and it is a 2.3% Cream ale. Taste pretty good but missed the 3.5% I was shooting for.

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Old 10-18-2011, 03:58 AM   #343
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brewitt
I'm making myself a keggle out of a 15.5 gal keg. It will have both a spigot and a Bilchman thermometer. I am planning on putting the spigot as low as possible with a short siphon tube situated off-center so I can whirlpool. The thermometer I would like to have at about the 3 gallon height for accuracy, to avoid overheating and for convenient reading.

I have several concerns:

First, my plan is to use the top cutout as a removable false bottom to avoid scorching my bag. I am thinking to put a slot in it to get it past the probe from the thermometer and the siphon tube. Any thoughts?

Second, I am wondering whether the probe from the thermometer is going to poke holes in, or otherwise interfere with, my bag. Any thoughts?

Finally, I would like to thoroughly clean the keg, inside and out. It has some old colored plastic labels wrapped in bands around it and old adhesive. Inside it is grungy on the bottom and the metal is pretty discolored. I don't want to trash the surface of the stainless steel. I have heard overnight soak in a strong oxyclean solution and a scrub with bar keepers friend will do it. Any advice on that topic?

EDIT: I should add that I am also concerned about how to get my wort chiller past the probe from the thermometer. Maybe not difficult. Have to play with that too. So much to consider.

Thanks in advance for your help.
I'm kind of in the same boat.I've done 2 BIAB with my keggle but was thinking about buying a 4 inch " probe " weldless thermometer. As of now I've been using the floating kind.As long as you stir the balls out if it I get a true reading.Glad I read this thread, never thought about the probe getting in the way.
As far as cleaning it Bar Keepers Friend and a clean scotch pad.I washed the hell out of the keggle NO SOAP remember there was once beer in there...right.
.
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Old 10-18-2011, 04:59 AM   #344
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Well, various posts have gotten me on my way. I haven't gotten everything solved but I have resolved to soak the whole keg overnight in a trashcan of PBW to remove grunge inside and out. Several people told me that they don't worry about the probe on the thermometer and it hasn't been a problem so I'm not going to worry. I'm going to modify the false bottom I made out of the top of the keg so it will slide past the spigot by cutting a slot in it. I am going to adjust the chiller to slide past the probe but having it sit above the spigot won't be a problem. Finally, I have also resolved to make a finer bag out of voile, I am currently using a pretty coarse bag from AHS and it lets through more trub than I like.

Any input in support of, or to the contrary is welcome.

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Old 10-18-2011, 01:33 PM   #345
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I removed the temperature probe from my kettle to avoid snagging the bag or basket. All I need are the strike and mash temps and I can get that easily with a portable thermometer. I haven't missed the built-in kettle thermometer at all.

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Old 10-18-2011, 02:49 PM   #346
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Quote:
Originally Posted by itzkramer
BIAB FOR LIFE! Did my first BIAB yesterday and hit 70% brewhouse eff. Brewed another today but ran the grains through the blender, and hit 80%. Easiest AG ever.
Grains in a blender? This sounds like a genius idea. I have a monster of a blender. Does anyone else do this?

I also have a big motorized meat grinder. I wonder if this would work. Anyone tried it? Thoughts?

I also just came up with another idea. People are talking about coolers for their Biab. I was thinking about just insulating the kettle.

Step 1. Wrap kettle in aluminum foil

Step 2. Spray several coats of spray foam insulation on the foil and allow to dry.

Step 3. Cut the foam down two sides of the kettle to make two halves of a shell.

Step 4. Remove the pieces of foam.

Now you should have a removable insulator for your kettle. Stick on some straps with clips to attach the foam together or just tape it on.

Thoughts in this?

I figure this will work well in the winter here. And I dont have to clean a cooler.
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Old 10-18-2011, 03:11 PM   #347
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Be easier to buy some Reflectix from HomeDepot or a water heater insulation blanket.

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Old 10-18-2011, 04:18 PM   #348
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samc
Be easier to buy some Reflectix from HomeDepot or a water heater insulation blanket.
Probably but I don't know how much those cost.

How about the blender or meat grinder?
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Old 10-18-2011, 08:00 PM   #349
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seven
STEP 3: Mash-in

[*]Once you have reached your target strike temperature, turn off the heat and slowly add your grains while stirring the mash. If possible have someone help with this so one can pour grains while the other stirs. Stir well so there are no grain balls or clumps.
<img src="http://cdn.homebrewtalk.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=22035"/>
[*]Once all the grain has been added and stirred, you should be at or near the required mash temperature.
<img src="http://cdn.homebrewtalk.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=22036"/>
[*]If your mash temperature is too high, add cold water to lower the temperature. If it's too low, add hot water or heat to raise the temperature. It may take some practice to hit your mash temperature and hold it. This can change based on many factors such as the weather, your equipment, etc.[*]The long stemmed thermometer will allow you to monitor the temperature inside the mash. Short stemmed thermometers will only give you a temperature reading for the top of the grain bed and this could cause problems since the top can be much cooler than the bottom or center of the mash.[*]I found that here in Florida I am able to maintain a constant mash temperature for at least an hour during the warmer months, but when it’s very cold outside it is a bit trickier. Wrapping the mash kettle with a towel or blanket or sleeping bag will help maintain a constant mash temperature.
<img src="http://cdn.homebrewtalk.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=22037"/>
[*]Cover the kettle and monitor with your thermometer and maintain the required mash temperature.[*]Once the mash is completed remove cover and stir gently.
Quick question where did you get your thermometer?
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Old 10-18-2011, 10:10 PM   #350
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tizzomes View Post
Quick question where did you get your thermometer?
I got the long thermometer from the BBQ section at Home Depot. I've since been using one of these and simply stirring a lot to get an even temperature distribution throughout the mash.
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