• We have a new forum and it needs your help! Homebrewing Deals is a forum to post whatever deals and specials you find that other homebrewers might value! Includes coupon layering, Craigslist finds, eBay finds, Amazon specials, etc.

Ultimate BIAB rig - Build Thread

HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
A few months ago I posted this thread https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/biab-stand-electric-winch-pump-353869/ about building a BIAB rig. This week I finished the project. I’ve also built a 15.5 gallon kettle, mini-fridge ferm chamber, Monster Mill rig, and 75 ft. 3/8” wort chiller to go with the set up. This was my first endeavor with metal fabrication and I think it turned out pretty well. I’ll start with the parts list:

Frame: 60ft 2x2 .065 tube steel = $109.00
Sheet metal / all thread / steel bar = $10.00
Burner: Taken off my SQ-14 Bayou Classic = FREE
Hardware: Nuts, bolts, pop rivets = $30.00
Harbor Freight hand winch = 20.00
Pulleys = $10.00
Paint: Rust-Oleum Professional / High Temp paint = $25.00
Plywood = $20.00
Stain / Polyurethane = $20.00
Wheels = $10.00
March pump = $120.00
Stainless fittings = $80.00

TOTAL = $454.00

I also bought some tools along the way. The way I see it they are more of an investment than part of the total cost, but I’ll include them as well:

Harbor Freight 14” chop saw = $60.00
Harbor Freight 4.5” angle grinder = $20.00
Harbor Freight drill guide = $20.00
Harbor Freight welding gear (wire brush, 90 deg magnet, gloves, auto-darkening helmet) = $50.00
DeWalt 18v drill/driver = $99.00 (on sale at Lowes)

I’ll also list other tools that I already had, but are worth mentioning:

Flux-Core welder 115v
Levels, squares, tape measure, rulers
Tin snips
Pop-Rivet gun
Table saw
A nice set of high speed drill bits

Let get started with the build!

A Bayou Classic 15.5 Gallon kettle with basket. I added the valve and sight glass.

0.jpg

The monster 75’ chiller. I bought two 50 ft. sections and connected them with a compression fitting. A 50 ft. section was $50.00, and a 60 ft. section was $100.00. I bought the two 50’s and had some left over for a whirlpool tube.

0a.jpg

The tube steel. From Spee-D-Metals, 20 minutes east of Cleveland, OH.

1.jpg

Making the initial cuts on the Harbor Freight chop saw. I know it’s a cheap saw, but it worked well and I didn’t have any issues.

2.jpg
3.jpg
 
OP
itzkramer

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
Instead of moving the saw guide round, I moved the steel with wood blocks. It helps to start on the corner of the steel.

4.jpg

Various cuts for the frame.

5.jpg

I bought this welder off a friend for $100 a while back. It gives off a lot of splatter, but worked ok. I did a lot of grinding due to the weld quality.

7.jpg

Welding up the top of the frame

8.jpg
10.jpg
 
OP
itzkramer

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
Grinding down the corners so the vertical legs will sit flat.

11.jpg

The frame coming together.

13.jpg
13A.jpg

The welds are kind of crappy, but they served their purpose. I wish I had a nice MIG welder.

14.jpg

Tacking the pot supports in place.

15.jpg
 
OP
itzkramer

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
The second bar on top will provide an air buffer to prevent the plywood work surface from burning.

16.jpg

I cleaned these up with the angle grinder.

17.jpg

Using masking tape to center the burner placement and height.

18.jpg

I made this burner support from 1” flat steel bar. I bent it by hand in a vice.

19.jpg
20.jpg
 
OP
itzkramer

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
Using a level on the burner before I tack the support in place.

21.jpg

The mounted burner.

22.jpg
23.jpg

The mast, which will raise and lower. It attaches with ½” bolts to the mast support. The pulleys have ½” washers seated behind them to give them space from the mast.

24.jpg
25.jpg
 
OP
itzkramer

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
The frame painted. 1 can Rust-Oleum Pro primer, 2 cans Rust-Oleum Pro red, 1 can High-Temp black. The wheels are attached with ½” x 5” bolts.

26.jpg
27.jpg

Bending all-thread in the vice for square brackets to mount the March pump. Bent by hand.

28.jpg
29.jpg

The pump mounted. I used some gasket making sheet between the frame and pump to damped vibration and help keep it in place.

30.jpg
 
OP
itzkramer

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
I cut some ½” plywood up, stained it with Walnut, and topped it off with 2 coats of polyurethane. Sorry, no pictures.


All done! Here you can see the rig in the storage position. Notice the sheet metal wind screen and heat shield for the ball valve and sight glass. The sheet metal is zinc plated.

31.jpg
32.jpg
33.jpg

And here it is in the raised position.

34.jpg
35.jpg
 
OP
itzkramer

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
The hand crank. I placed a piece of ¾” foam between it and the frame to dampen vibration and noise.

36A.jpg

A front view showing the storage space.

37.jpg

The bottom shelf. I cut an 8” hole to accommodate the propane tank and keep it from rocking or falling over when moving the stand.

38.jpg
39.jpg

A close up of the burner area. I tempered the paint by starting at low temp and slowly raising it over a period of 30 minutes. It seemed to work pretty well.

40.jpg


Well, that’s it folks. I hope you liked the build. I still have to add some stainless fittings and silicone tubing, but I’ll knock that out next brew day.
 

HeavyKettleBrewing

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2011
Messages
577
Reaction score
71
I have never done BIAB so excuse me if I sound naive. Do you not have to sparge the grain bag? Seems like another burner would help. The build is very nice though, good job.
 

andycr

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 18, 2012
Messages
308
Reaction score
45
WOW, amazing rig. Hope I have something half that nice in a few years.
 

241

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 6, 2012
Messages
710
Reaction score
93
Location
San Diego
Wow that thing is sweet. Love the hoist and pully with height adjustment. Good job
 

tlg779

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2012
Messages
55
Reaction score
6
Im working on something similar but going all electric hoping to be able to do all my brewing indoors without tbe propane fumes
 

limulus

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 22, 2009
Messages
1,524
Reaction score
119
Location
ATL Burbs
I have never done BIAB so excuse me if I sound naive. Do you not have to sparge the grain bag? Seems like another burner would help. The build is very nice though, good job.
No, BIAB is no sparge brewing. Most people start with the full amount of hot liquor. Some will save some hot liquor for a mashout or a small sparge, but in concept, BIAB is no sparge.
 

clintopher

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 4, 2007
Messages
50
Reaction score
1
Nice build. Only thing I would have done differently is build the davit out of 1 1/2" that way it fits inside the 2" support.

One word of caution in case you don't know already...be wary of fumes from that zinc coating on the sheet metal. It's pretty bad stuff. The wind guard is probably a non issue but the heat shield could be.
 
OP
itzkramer

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
Thanks for all the great replies and input. As per requests, I will take some pictures on brew day and post them up with notes.

Clint, I thought of using 1 1/2", but unless it was powder coated it would have been scratched to all hell from sliding it up and down. I don't think the zinc will be an issue since I only brew outdoors. If I brew in the garage the door is always fully open.
 

HeavyKettleBrewing

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2011
Messages
577
Reaction score
71
No, BIAB is no sparge brewing. Most people start with the full amount of hot liquor. Some will save some hot liquor for a mashout or a small sparge, but in concept, BIAB is no sparge.
Thanks for clarifying. Probably need a big kettle for the larger batches. Building and brewing with BIAB process seems much easier than the other AG systems. I'll have to do a little more research.
 

clintopher

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 4, 2007
Messages
50
Reaction score
1
Yeah, you're right about it getting scratched up...didn't think of that. Even powder coat would take a beating over time.

As long as you're well ventilated the zinc fumes can be mitigated. After a burn or two it should be a non issue anyway, just wanted to make sure you knew not to stand too close or on the leeward side for the virgin brew.
 
OP
itzkramer

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
Thanks for the info. I'll probably do a dry run (water but no beer) before I brew on it to burn most of it off.
 

bad67z

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 6, 2009
Messages
1,869
Reaction score
111
Location
Columbus
Great looking build! I have never used the BIAB method, is the pump for recirculating whirlpool during cooling or have I missed something.
 

JeepDiver

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2009
Messages
1,318
Reaction score
156
Location
Highlands Ranch
Great looking build! I have never used the BIAB method, is the pump for recirculating whirlpool during cooling or have I missed something.
Not speaking for the OP, but while a pump isn't need for BIAB if you have one you can use to recirc for cooling and or during the mash for adding heat or just keeping temps even.

The original biab doesn't need a pump but like anything else in brewing you can adjust to what works for you
 

ScubaSteve

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 21, 2007
Messages
3,673
Reaction score
89
Nice use of plywood. I love how cheap materials can be made to look classy!
 
OP
itzkramer

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
I did have a bit of heat from the burner reach the propane tank. I will add a small heat shield (about 4x4") directly under the burner where it mounts to the burner support.
 

jammin

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jun 19, 2011
Messages
2,957
Reaction score
972
Location
Meridian
I did have a bit of heat from the burner reach the propane tank. I will add a small heat shield (about 4x4") directly under the burner where it mounts to the burner support.
Great build.

Almost looks like you could simply go end for end on the plywood to move the propane tank away from the burner (just a thought as I can't really see if the cut is reversible).
 
OP
itzkramer

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
I didn't make any build plans or anything. If I recall, its is 4' long, 20' wide, 20' deep, and 3' high. If I did it again I would take another 2" off the height (I'm 5'7", so you'll just have to find what works for you). Remember though, you still need enough height to properly fit the propane tank.

The work surface is just the right size.
 

HopHeadGrady

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2011
Messages
354
Reaction score
7
Location
Stittsville
Awesome. Its very similar to mine but I don't have a crane to hold up the grain bag. Instead I just use a heavy duty stainless oven rack. I lift the bag out, put the oven rack over the pot and set the back on that. Gently press the remaining wort out with the lid. I do not sparge. BIAB is an excellent way to do AG. I need to paint mine now, yours looks slick! Great work.
 
OP
itzkramer

itzkramer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2011
Messages
189
Reaction score
29
Location
Cleveland
@ HopHead

Everybody knows that a slick paint job and stickers = more horsepower (or better beer, in this case)!
 
Top