I might become a BIAB convert

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Myndflyte, Oct 16, 2017.

  1. Myndflyte

    Myndflyte Active Member

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    So I brewed an oatmeal stout this weekend (https://www.brewersfriend.com/homebrew/recipe/view/550086/vanilla-oatmeal-stout) and it was just a partial mash kit. So with only 5 lbs of grain, I decided to use my paint strainer bag and just BIAB instead of doing my normal mash. My initial mash was pretty thick (6 qts in my 10 gallon mash tun) so I was pretty worried how it was going to go. I ended up getting almost 70% conversion, which is better than I normally get with my setup since I'm still figuring it out.

    But it was just so easy. Lift the bag out, squeeze it a bunch and dump the runnings into my boil kettle. It's really making me consider switching to BIAB for my all grain batches.
     
  2. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    Much less hardware for sure! I don’t see myself ever giving up space to store a traditional 3 vessel setup.
     
  3. Myndflyte

    Myndflyte Active Member

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    Yeah I couldn't house a 3 vessel setup either so I'm constantly juggling pots to heat water and because of that, I just batch sparge. So it wouldn't take much to just remove the false bottom from my mash tun, get a large bag and a pulley setup and just BIAB.
     
  4. Gledison

    Gledison Active Member

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    I´ve started directly with a BIAB due to space/logistics. Im always getting a very good mashing Efficiency (>75%).
    I think that might be only a hurdle if you brew large Batches. Have you seen the hooks and pulley People install? or you Need 2 persons to lift the wet grains. As im doing max 10 Liters, everything is fine :)
     
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  5. BoomerBrian

    BoomerBrian Active Member

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    I do 3 gallon BIAB. So easy at that size. I don't see myself ever changing.
     
  6. Myndflyte

    Myndflyte Active Member

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    Yeah I've looked into that before. I'm already brewing in my garage so hooking up a pulley system would be pretty easy.
     
  7. chub1

    chub1 Active Member

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    I,m like gledison and boomer, i do small batches biab and some partial mashes and usually get 70%, that is with dunk sparging which is easy for small batches.
     
  8. jimmyz

    jimmyz Member

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    I cant knock three vessel but I love my BIAB set up. Average 73% brewhouse efficiency. 3.5 hours start to finish for a 5 gal batch. I couldnt give 6 plus hours to a brew day so for me it allows me to brew.
     
  9. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    I'm doing full mashes but the thought is occasionally there to try a BIAB as I use a brew bag in my mash tun so I probably have the relevant materials.
     
  10. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    If you have the capability to do a full volume boil extract, the only other thing you need is a bag large enough to hold your grains.
     
  11. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    I have a 16 gallon brew kettle so it shouldn't be a big deal. I just kind of like mashing.
     
  12. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    If I do extract and mini-mash, the mini-mash is generally BIAB. Works well for the smaller volumes, given my procedures.
     
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  13. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    I consistently average 80% brewhouse on the BIAB method and extraction wise high 90's. I think the trick to good efficient extraction is fine mill a little granular than flour and a nice high mash out temp to get them sugars free from the grains. As for the pulley there are some cool ratchet pulleys out there it's just a matter of finding what works for you.
     
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  14. Myndflyte

    Myndflyte Active Member

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    Yeah I think I could have had a much better efficiency of I used a slightly thinner mash and had a bigger bag. 5lbs of grain was really pushing the limit of the bag and the grains didn't have much room to move around.
     
  15. BoomerBrian

    BoomerBrian Active Member

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    I have never been able to get that high of efficiency using BIAB. I am almost always at 70%. Wonder if the mash out is the difference? I have consistent efficiency which is the important thing but I am going to try a high mash out because I am curious now.
     
  16. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    most bib brewers that get a lower efficiency just aren't washing enough sugar off the grain or grinding the grain fine enough, instead of doing a full water cut it down to just an inch or two over the grain, after draining, dunk the bag up and down in a bucket of water or even two then use that water to fill your levels
     
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  17. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    i think it's the sparge that makes the big difference. Ozarks nocked it on the head. If I do a full volume no sparge BIAB brew I'll get low seventies high 60's efficiency. With a sparge I'm gaining another 10% efficiency :eek::).

    And I don't sparge with a lot of water I use about 75% of my brew liquor to mash with I'm sparging with just 5 literso_O!
    I used to just hoist the brew bag up over the kettle and sparge down through the bag but I found some water would just run around the bag and drip into the kettle (not doing anything there). So I tried the colander trick placed upon the opening of my keggle but again the bag was to fat and water would run even down the outside of my keggle creating a hissing sticky mess:mad:.

    So my latest trick and promise me you won't laugh is a plastics cone shapped bucket/bin that I've drilled a heap of holes in the bottom (yes I'm looking for a stainless version) so it funnels all my sparge water right through the entire grain bed and into my kettle no mess and no liquid getting lazy on me!:) I place this bucket on me colander and trickle my 75c acid adjusted sparge water cup by 500ml cup through the grain whilst the flame is lit bringing the brew to the boil..

    It works a treat like a plastic malt pipe.
     

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  18. Myndflyte

    Myndflyte Active Member

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    So just a question for the BIAB'ers here. Does the thickness of the mash really matter? Like are you still using 1.5 qt/lb or like Trialben said, just use the majority of the water for the mash?
     
  19. KenK

    KenK Member

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    Nothing to laugh at there kid -- looks like a good workable idea.
     
  20. BoomerBrian

    BoomerBrian Active Member

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    Do you guys still squeeze the bag after sparging or just sparge?
     

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