BIAB Brew Day

Discussion in 'Beginners Brewing Forum' started by BrainYYC, May 26, 2020.

  1. BrainYYC

    BrainYYC Member

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    Allrighty folks, super excited for brew day this weekend, will be my first time brewing where I am trying to not just "wing it" lots of super helpful tips and advice given directly and mined from these forums indirectly. Sorry for the mega post.

    Have a read below and any further comments, tips, advice, would be most welcomed!

    Some of the changes for me going down this weekend:
    Moving from lauter straining/spilling/scalding myself/kids/cat to BIAB
    Moving up from 1G to 2.5G batches
    Got myself a wizzy immersion chiller
    Going to try some Campden for the chlorine
    Going to try some finings because why not.
    Got myself a wizzy refractometer,



    Here is what I intend to brew, IPA, 75ibu-ish, 6.5%ish:

    Amount Fermentable PPG °L Bill %

    6 lb Pale 2-Row 37 1.8 92.3%
    0.40 lb Caramel / Crystal 60L 34 60 6.2%
    0.10 lb Caramel / Crystal 20L 35 20 1.5%
    6.5 lb Total


    Hops

    Amount Variety Type AA Use Time IBU Bill %
    0.50 oz Chinook Pellet 14.2 First Wort 0 min 34.37 20%
    0.50 oz Citra Pellet 14.5 Boil 15 min 28.76 20%
    0.50 oz Chinook Pellet 14.2 Boil 6 min 12.11 20%
    0.50 oz Citra Pellet 14.5 Boil 1 min 2.27 20%
    0.50 oz Citra Pellet 14.5 Dry Hop 5 days 20%


    Mash Guidelines
    Amount Description Type Temp Time
    9.22L (2.4 USG) Temperature 152 °F 75 min
    7.57L (2.0 USG) Sparge 170 °F --



    Other Ingredients
    Amount Name Type Use Time
    ?? Carrageenan Fining Boil 10 min.

    Yeast: Smack Pack Wyeast London Ale III 1318

    Couple of specific questions:
    1. For this volume of water would I use ¼ tab Campden on the mash water and another ¼ on the sparge water once they are close to temp? First time using Campden tabs for our local chlorine water.

    2. Looks like the recipe estimates one gallon of loss of liquid for the 6.5lbs of grains in the bag, does this jive with other brewers experience?

    3. 1/2 Tab Carrageenan for approx 2.5 gallons of Wort, with 10 minutes left in the boil time?

    4. Strike temp for a 152F mash temp? 160F?

    5. OG Target 1.062 / Final Gravity 1.013, I see my refractometer wont read gravity once alcohol so is this just typically assumed.

    6. For aerating my 2.5G of Wort, just hulk out and give it a good shaky shaky?


    Thanks all!!!
     
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  2. Herm_brews

    Herm_brews Well-Known Member

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    @BrainYYC
    I use BIAB for all of my brews, and have a few times used a sparge . I have found that my efficiency is higher when mashing with the full volume, rather than sparging. Another tip to increase efficiency (the amount of sugars extracted from the grains) is to double mill the grains. You might not need to mash for 75 minutes, if you monitor the mash using your new refractometer. You will likely find that your pre-boil gravity is in the right range at 60 minutes, or even at 45 minutes. When mashing, I stir, check temperature and take a refractometer reading every 15 minutes. Except for one brew where I used harvested slurry from a previous batch, I have used Safale US-05 dry yeast - all of my brews are Pale Ales or IPA’s.

    I cannot address all of your questions, but I will put in my 2 cents worth where I have some experience. I do not add anything to my water, but I have gotten in the habit of using between 2% to 4% of my grain bill as acidulated malt. That step alone helps get my mash pH in an acceptable range. My home tap water is chlorinated, so I use a Brita filter pitcher, which seems to remove the odor. However, your intent to use Campden tabs as stated should be fine. Concerning the amount of water lost to the grain, your estimate seems high to me. I am in the practice of squeezing the bag “like it owes me money” in an effort to get all that I can out of the grain.

    Just yesterday, I had my mash target at 152F and mashed in with strike water at 156F. Given that your grain bill is quite larger than mine, strike water at 160F should get you in the ballpark.

    Given the small volumes that I brew (typically 1.5 gallons in fermenter), it would be wasteful to take measurements for final gravity. Luckily, I’m a patient man, so I just let my fermentations run for 3 weeks, minimum. Then I bottle, and wait another couple weeks before I start enjoying my handiwork.

    And finally, when it comes to aerating you’re wort, go hulk out and shake that fermenter.

    Have fun, enjoy the process, take good notes, and RDWDAHB.
     
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  3. Bubba Wade

    Bubba Wade Well-Known Member

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    What type of yeast are you using? I have quit aerating when using dry yeast, particularly on a 2.5 gallon batch where I use an entire 11 g yeast packet.
     
  4. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    IMHO that at 1062 you don't need to try and aerate your wort when using dry yeast. Much higher and you would. I met the North American Rep for Safale last fall, he said that you don't need to aerate with an OG of 1060 or less when using their dry yeast. I have not taken any steps to aerate since when pitching dry US-05, even up to 1063. Caveat, I do pump my wort into the fermenter, and do splash it pretty good, hence going higher than 1063 without shaking etc.
     
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  5. Herm_brews

    Herm_brews Well-Known Member

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    But the shaking is good, fun exercise. That is why I aerate.
     
  6. Herm_brews

    Herm_brews Well-Known Member

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    The OP posted:
    Yeast: Smack Pack Wyeast London Ale III 1318
     
  7. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    On the recipe, and this is just my preference, but I'd move the 6 & 1 minute additions to 0 minutes. Turn off the heat, add the citra and chinook and wait ten mnutes. Then start pushing the water through your chiller.

    For the questions, grain absorption looks high to me (but that might just be me struggling with that weird 18th century measuring system you use:p). BIAB can really screw around with the absorption number depending on how hard you squeeze the bag. I used to get around 0.8 lt/kg grain absorption (google says around 0.4 qt/lb) by being relatively polite to my bag. You can get a lower absorption if you use Ben's advice and squeeze it like it owes you money, maybe around 0.5 l/kg (0.25 qt/lb?).

    When I'm playing with a new system I'll try to undershoot the water, which should lead to a higher OG than planned. Then I can just boil the kettle once I've got my final gravity and add enough water to dilute it to the correct OG - https://www.brewersfriend.com/dilution-and-boiloff-gravity-calculator/. Much easier than adding extra DME or sugar to get the gravity up.

    That's the theory, anyway. Brewed yesterday on a relatively new system and ended up with 3 litres too much wort. So now I'm fermenting a session version because I can't be bothered stuffing around with adding extra fermentables after the mash.

    The brew session feature here will adjust your refactometer reading to account for the alcohol when you add a log entry. Or you can use https://www.brewersfriend.com/refractometer-calculator/. Just need to add in your OG.

    The other questions seem reasonable assumptions or I have no idea.
     
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  8. Semper Sitientem

    Semper Sitientem Well-Known Member

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    I aerate using a $4 do-dad called a siphon spray wort aerator. It attaches onto the end of the kettle transfer tube and fans the wort into the fermentor. As mentioned in a previous post, it might not be necessary but psychologically it makes me feel better. After and hour boil, it just seems my wort would be oxygen deficient.

    Regarding campden, I use a different approach to remove chlorine and other potential nasty things in my brew liquor. This only works if you have a fridge with an external water dispenser which has a filter. I took a 1/2” I.d. tube and cut two notches on opposing sides The water dispenser tube on my fridge is right up against a plastic guard. The tube locks onto this guard so the dispenser tube shoots water into the tube by manually pushing the lever and thus into my kettle. You do have to hold the tube the entire time.

    Fridge water dispensers have a perfect flow rate to remove chlorine, about 1/2 gallon per minute. The dispensing mechanism will most likely have a safety feature that shuts off after 1 minute. You just hit the lever again. I’m a small batch BIAB brewer and I know this might take a few minutes, but with beer being 90%+ water I believe it’s important to start with a good base.
     
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  9. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    Oops, I actually missed that, definitely shake shake with liquid yeast
     
  10. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    Again referring only to dry yeast from Fermentis, because I haven't met and spoken to any other yeast producer. The North American Rep explained to me that yeast only need oxygen to get started (paraphrasing), everything the yeast needs is in the package for wort up to 1.060. They don't pay this guy big bucks to travel all over the US and Canada to misinform people. Dried yeast has gone through many advances in recent years. I have fermented 6 or 8 batches without aerating up to 1.062. Have not had an off flavor, and could not detect a difference in the beer.

    Do what you must, but it has honestly become one of those myths of home brewing.

    Sorry to ramble on.
     
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  11. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    Sacchyromyces uses any dissolved oxygen to build sterols for cell structures like walls. They also need other materials like lipids that come from break material or yeast nutruient or other dead yeast cells. If the right materials are available in the right forms they can create the sterols without oxygen, but they love using it if it's there. If they end up creating enough sterols they'll reproduce via budding.

    Healthy yeast are less likely to have problems fermenting and finish fermenting faster. They use up some of the resources as part of fermentation, so a long enough fermentation will turn a healthy cell unhealthy. To stop the fermentation going on too long you need to pitch enough cells, or enough cells plus those that are created via budding.

    So if you pitch enough healthy cells you don't need budding and you don't need oxygen. The yeast will just complete the job and become dormant. Problem solved, No oxygen needed, just pitch enough healthy yeast.

    Except that's hard to do with most yeast sources we use. So we oxygenate or add yeast nutrient or build up starters all to make sure that if we don't pitch enough healthy yeast at least they'll be healthy enough to reproduce and we can ferment out before the yeast stress out so much they start throwing weird flavours or die and throw other weird flavours.

    Dry yeast add a layer of materials for building sterols and they also pack a lot more cells in than standard yeast sources. So that layer helps with cell health and budding, which is why they don't care about oxygenation.

    London Ale III comes in Wyeast's smack pack, which is their attempt at giving you something similar to dry yeast. It has a couple of extra sachets of yeast nutrients that when you break starts mixing with the yeast to allow the yeast you pitch to be healthy. So oxygenation wouldn't be that important if it wasn't such a small cell count for standard 19 L/5 gallon batches.

    Luckily this is a 2.5 gallon batch, so should work well. Feel free to oxygenate by shaking the crap out of it. It will not hurt and it may do some good. Though there's every chance it won't make a difference.

    And Craig, you thought you were rambling...
     
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  12. BrainYYC

    BrainYYC Member

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    #12 BrainYYC, May 28, 2020
    Last edited: May 28, 2020
    All, thank you so much for the responses.

    Herm, I certainly like the idea of doing a full volume no sparge as I believe that should be simpler, Ill amend my process.

    Sounds like no downside to aerating so I will do that.

    Mark F, am I correct in assuming that if my water loss to grains estimate is high, Ill simply end up with a little too much wort, which I will tragically pour down the sink?
    Also the suggestion on moving the hop timing is that for less bitterness, more punch you in the nose aroma (which is what I am after).

    Any further thoughts on the Campden? The Google seems to settle on 1/2 tab for 5ish gallons of water. Assuming I will add a few minutes before I submerge the grains. near strike temp.

    Last question, I see in one of the BIAB step by steps it actually says drop your immersion chiller in during final few mins of the boil...is that to sanitize? or heat soak the copper?

    THANKS!!!
     
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  13. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    Yep, if your water loss estimate is too high you'll end up with too much wort at a lower gravity.

    Moving the hop timing is a little bit about reducing iso-alpha acid bitterness and a little bit about stopping some of the hop materials being lost to evaporation. This will make things a little hazier, but also give your dry hop more things to attach to and hopefully give you a stronger dry hop flavour. Not a big deal either way as the timings aren't that different.

    Think you'd only need 1/4 for your batch size, but cutting them into quarters is a pain in the arse and it's pretty small amounts either way, so half tablets make sense.

    Adding the chiller to the boil is to sanitise. Your boil may dip for a little bit due to the metal being cold.

    And I'm with Herm, full volume mashing is so much simpler.
     
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  14. BrainYYC

    BrainYYC Member

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    OK couple more almost done....

    Mash out, assuming this is a part of standard operating process, always do a flame out ~ 170 deg.

    Also Im a little confused on the gravity readings, I believe the 1062OG is my target gravity after the boil. Assuming gravity immediately after the mash will be less, and gravity will come up through the boil process as water comes out of the wort via steam. Is this generally correct, gravity too low keep boiling, gravity too high add water?

    Finally on the boil, I've always done 60 mins, this recipe called for 60 mins. This is more just my sheer curiosity - why is it 60? I would think it would be a product of target gravity rather than a fixed time?

    :D Thanks guys.
     
  15. Herm_brews

    Herm_brews Well-Known Member

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    I don’t do a mash out step. I think I read somewhere that mashing out is not necessary with BIAB. Besides, turning on the flame with the grain bag still in the pot could lead to disaster.
    At completion of the mash, I lift and hang the bag over the kettle until a stream of wort reduces to a drip. Then I put the bag in a colander over another pot, and using my big metal stirring spoon, push on the grains to extract as much wort as possible - usually I get a few cups (16 ounces , give or take out of a grain bill usually around 3 pounds) - then add this extra wort to the boil kettle. If your kettle has sufficient volume, you could place the colander there for less mess/cleanup. Measure your wort volume at this point. Give it all a good stir, and collect your pre-boil gravity sample, then crank up the heat to start the boil. After you check that sample for gravity, add that liquid back into the boil kettle (if measuring gravity with a hydrometer).

    Check your recipe, it should give you a pre-boil target gravity (this is the target you are shooting for at the completion of the mash). This pre-boil gravity will be lower than your post-boil gravity (aka Original Gravity, or OG) - it looks like your target OG is 1.062; as you boil off water, the gravity will increase toward target OG. I don’t know how or why the 60 minute boil seems to be the standard, but have seen recipes with boil times of 30, 45, 75 and 90 minutes.

    Good luck, have fun and keep good notes.
     
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  16. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    I don't do a mash-out using conventional mashing. Sure, there could be a minor change in the wort but then I batch sparge, so the time for any residual enzymes to do their work is very limited. I should test it - take a gravity reading on the first runnings early, then just before sparging to see if there's any measurable gravity change.
     
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  17. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    For boil length you've also got your hopping schedule so that you get the right amount/type of bitterness and the possibility that your light coloured grains may contain precursors to DMS that you need to boil off. You can defnitely change hopping schedules to account for shorter boils, DMS is a much more complicated question.

    DMS is an unappealing aroma that people will describe as cooked vegetables like corn, cabbage. There's a lot of to and fro on DMS and so here's far more information than you'll probably want - http://scottjanish.com/how-to-prevent-dms-in-beer/

    I don't do a mashout. They're probably really important for big systems with long transfer times. With the average homebrew system you're probably starting the boil before the last enzymes turn up their toes from the mashout. Especially with BIAB.
     
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  18. BrainYYC

    BrainYYC Member

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    Sorry quick final final does it matter if you aerate before or after yeast addition to fermenter?


    Understanding the ongoing debate about aerating....
     
  19. Herm_brews

    Herm_brews Well-Known Member

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    I aerate before adding yeast.
     
  20. BrainYYC

    BrainYYC Member

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    Thanks again boys, brew day is going :)
     
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