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Old 02-25-2012, 06:04 PM   #1
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Default Confused with BIAB regarding mash volumes

I'm getting ready to step into AG brewing and I was interested in BIAB due to the fact that you don't need additional equipment other than the bag itself compared to getting a dedicated mashtun, valves, more tubing...etc.

I've read How to Brew, the Joy of Homebrewing, various BYO and Zymurgy articles and countless messages on forums that highly suggest the 1-1.5 qt/1lb of grain for mashing due to keeping the pH in the 5-6 range. I'm reading articles on BIAB though in which all the water is put into the kettle and then the grain added. Won't the pH be too high if the whole water volume is used to mash? Or are the books by Palmer, Pap...etc wrong? I'm just confused on the whole water pH thing when mashing.

If this whole thing of keeping the initial mash water volume in the 1-1.5 qt range is not founded and there are no consequences of putting the full preboil volume in with the grains for the mash - then there is no need for me to get a seperate cooler either the round and use a bag (no stuck sparges) or getting a cooler with a screen/braid and do batch sparges.

I'm so confused between BIAB as well as BIAB mods and using a dedicated mash tun like a cooler but using batch sparging. You hear that you should go over 2qt/lb of grain for mashing and then you see people doing that in BIAB. It's just very confusing. Any help?

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Old 02-25-2012, 11:32 PM   #2
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Just get yourself a pot big enough to mash with the full volume of water. Put everything in one pot, that is what I do and it works great. BIAB rocks.

Of course there are many ways to brew. Just do what works for you.

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Old 02-25-2012, 11:52 PM   #3
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I am not about to say that the brew gods are wrong, however...

Since I switched to all grain, I have exclusively used BIAB, full volume, no sparge. The only batch I have ever significantly missed my numbers on was a PM! (don't ask ) I ALWAYS mash-out and I ALWAYS press out my grains to get as much of the sugars as possible.

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Old 02-25-2012, 11:59 PM   #4
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I plan on a 6 1/2 gallon after boil using BIAB; roughly 8-9 gallons of water and 11-12 lbs of grain. Means my 10 gallon mash tun (and boil kettle ) is absolutely full to the rim.

When I check my PH ~it's 5.4 during Mashing. I compensate for all the water I add with two tablespoon Gypsum since my City Water is 8.5PH.

Trust us BIABer; Don't fear the Bag !

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~ BIAB : All Grain Made Easy ; Mash, Sparge, Boil all in the same Kettle ~ all you need is a bag and a hook!

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