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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > Changing my process, how does this sound?
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Old 02-14-2013, 08:08 PM   #1
iheartbeer81
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Default Changing my process, how does this sound?

Hey all -

I have been all grain brewing small 1 gallon batches for over a year and now want to step up to 3 gallons. I'm very happy with the beer I've made recently, so I'd like to keep the process as close as possible to what I've done in the past (the process is from the book Beer Craft if you've ever read it, love it!). Basically it's a BIAB with a sparge in a second pot. I'm a little afraid of mashing in the full volume of water as some BIAB methods use, mainly because of possible ph and temperature fluctuation issues. My idea is this:

- Get the 3 gallon BIAB kit Northern Brewer sells. This is a 7.5 gallon pot (would be my sparge and boil vessel), and the bag I need.

- Get a 5 gallon (not sure if that's big enough, or if I should go bigger?) cooler and mash in that (using the bag).

- After the mash is done, pull the bag from the cooler, sparge in my second pot, and add the wort from the cooler to the sparge pot and boil.

Does this sound good? I've run through it a couple times and it seems close to what I'm already doing but wanted to be sure I didn't miss anything...

Thank you!

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Old 02-14-2013, 08:56 PM   #2
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What you are doing will definitely work, but you're kind of unnecessarily complicating the process. You can do full volume 3 gallon batches in the single 7.5 gallon pot. The cooler is unnecessary.

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I'm a little afraid of mashing in the full volume of water as some BIAB methods use, mainly because of possible ph and temperature fluctuation issues.
I have been mashing in the full volume of water with no issues with PH and fluctuation, and making good beer. Can you explain what you are talking about here?
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Old 02-14-2013, 09:03 PM   #3
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Agreed that you don't need a cooler. If you are worried about the temp, turn your oven on to it's lowest setting while your water is coming up to strike temp. As soon as you mash in, put the lid on your pot, put the pot in the oven and turn off the oven. It should hold the temp very well that way.

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Old 02-14-2013, 09:25 PM   #4
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When I first started, I just wrapped the kettle in an old shipping blanket held in place with some bungee cords...on the floor, of course. I would typically lose 1-2 degrees max over a 60 min mash.

Lots of stovetop BIAB guys will also just set their oven to the mash temp and throw the whole kettle in the oven for 60 min.

I would do one of those methods before I used a second vessel. If you are going to have a HLT/Boil Kettle and a cooler mash tun, you might as well go head and do traditional brewing, which BTW, can be done with two vessels

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Old 02-15-2013, 09:12 PM   #5
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What you are doing will definitely work, but you're kind of unnecessarily complicating the process. You can do full volume 3 gallon batches in the single 7.5 gallon pot. The cooler is unnecessary.


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Originally Posted by TopherM View Post
I have been mashing in the full volume of water with no issues with PH and fluctuation, and making good beer. Can you explain what you are talking about here?
Thanks so much everyone for the replies!

I was just a little worried about mashing in such a high volume of water (with my sparge process I was using around 1.25 qt / lb of grain). I thought maybe the high grain / water ratio may cause astringency. Also, I failed to mention in my original post that I'll be brewing outside using a propane burner, so that's why I was also was wondering about temperature fluctuation issues.
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