BIAB and trub

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by mingo jct, May 26, 2016.

  1. mingo jct

    mingo jct New Member

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    Due to my equipment limitations with my grinder and kettle size of 6.5 gallon I find it hard to get 5 gallons to the
    fermentor. I get about 75% efficency with my BIAB method but have a large amount of trub. If I stepped up the
    grain and hop amounts slightly could I top off the fermentor with water to get the desired volume?
     
  2. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    You'll risk infection by adding water to the fermenter. I design my BIAB recipes to be 6.5 gallons at flame out. I will let a bit of trub into my fermenter to get the volume I desire. It will compact, and I do the same thing at secondary. I usually get the full 5 gallons packaged.

    Do you live in Mingo Junction? I did for a bit.
     
  3. oliver

    oliver Well-Known Member

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    i do tiny batches, and like jeff says, i designed it to do 3 gallon boils, 2.25 of wort and trub go into the fermenter, and i pull out about 2 gallons every time.
     
  4. jmcnamara

    jmcnamara Well-Known Member

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    I've always topped off my full batches with store bought water. Spring water I think. I agree if you use straight tap water though. You gotta boil that first at least.

    I've dabbled with hop bags and running the wort through a strainer, but it's all a bit of a hassle Imo. I just pour the whole kettle into the fermentor, maybe I'll leave the last little bit of goop in the kettle.

    Like Jeff said, it'll settle in time, you can cold crash it too to speed it up. I'll usually put it in secondary too.

    And some research/ experiments have shown the true to have little to no effect taste and appearance wise in the final product, and may even be helpful in small amounts in the fermentor
     
  5. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    VERY low risk of contamination from tap water - the standards for bacteria are quite high.
     
  6. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Interesting considering there are quality standards in place for tap water but not store-bought water.... Basically, if you can get contamination from tap water, it's likely the tap or hoses themselves, not the water, providing the bacteria.
     
  7. jmcnamara

    jmcnamara Well-Known Member

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    that's very interesting then.

    i've always done it out of practicality and the thought that it's fine because it's in a bottle. i'm wondering if boiling tap water and cooling it might be the better option.

    or are you suggesting to use it straight from the tap? (if i can trust my lines and such?)(i probably can't)
     
  8. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    I did a few batches in small fermenters and left a lot of break in the kettle to keep it cleaner in the primary. Since I've been doing 5-gallon batches and have a 6 1/2 gallon bucket, I just dump it all in and rack off the break and trub for secondary. It does compact better than you think, especially with cold-crash in secondary.
    I've been topping off batches out of my 6-gallon boil pot and so far no problem at all. I've run both jug water and filtered tap water. I suppose it could cause a problem some day, but it doesn't seem that likely.
     
  9. DanC

    DanC Active Member

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    Earlier in my brew life I was brewing Partial Mash and not full volume boils. I always topped off with tap water and had no problems, that I know of.
     
  10. jmcnamara

    jmcnamara Well-Known Member

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    did you boil / filter it first or was it literally straight from the tap?
     
  11. DanC

    DanC Active Member

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    Straight from the tap but I forgot to mention I have well water so there is no municipal water treatment so chlorine is not an issue. The water does not lay in the pipes long enough to create a huge, if any, bacteria problem.
     
  12. mingo jct

    mingo jct New Member

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    Hey all-thanks for the opinions and sharing of experience. I think I'll do a pre-boil of any water I might add and
    also not be afraid of some trub in the fermenter. P.S.: my wife is from Mingo Jct. We lived there awhile-good
    people.
     
  13. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    That trub will compact fairly well. Even if you plunge your racking can, it'll siphon clear after a bit, if everything is still. You can always discard the first runnings, maybe half a quart. If you siphon the brew into a secondary doing the same, you'll barely have any sediment by the time it hits your bottling bucket. That's probably the biggest reason I secondary. Nobody else does!
     
  14. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    In my case, even today if I need to top up a batch, straight from the tap. The folks at Aurora Water do a very good job of keeping our water very clean. Just because I've never had contamination problems from topping up doesn't mean you won't but check the water report. There's a section for "coliform bacteria." If that's high (above the standard, provided with the report), you have danger of contamination but even then, we pitch so much yeast, even if you underpitch, it overwhelms anything else that might get started, the usual beer spoilage microorganisms excluded.
     

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