Mashing

Discussion in 'Beginners Brewing Forum' started by Steve21, Mar 24, 2018.

  1. Steve21

    Steve21 Member

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    So I had a thought and would like to run it past whomever feels like reading it.

    I use a rectangular cooler for my mash tun which has your classic pvc pipes in it. I was thinking what if I used my BIAB bag to cover it. As in pvc goes into it and I tie it off at the end hook it up as per normal and basically give myself a filter. Do my mash and sparge as per normal.

    Feel free to correct me but I see no downside to this only a bonus as I wouldn't need the vorlof step. Am I wrong?
     
  2. BOB357

    BOB357 Well-Known Member

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    I just did my first mash with a bag in my igloo cooler. I took the braid I normally use out and turned the outlet nipple so it draws from very close to the bottom. After running off and sparging I squeezed the bag before removing it and poured the wort remaining in the cooler into the kettle. My goal, as I think most who mash in a bag, is to reduce losses to dead space and grain absorption. If you still have your manifold in place and the grain isn't contained in the bag I don't see any real gain outside of no vorlauf.
     
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  3. Steve21

    Steve21 Member

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    Are you wrapping your bag around the top of your cooler as a standard BIAB looks like? I googled igloo coolers in the hopes of not sounding like an idiot but hey here i go, both rectangle and the standard orange round ones pop up. Mines the rectangular one and my bag won't stretch that much. Or are you putting your grains in the bag, doing a knot and tossing it in?

    I fear that the grains in the center wouldn't get their goodness extracted as it would want to be more of a ball then anything. I do like the idea of turning the inside nipple down to get more from the bottom though.

    I guess I should mention as well I crush my grains with an old coffee grinder with a mod so that it doesn't turn them to powder but doesn't leave the husks as full as a proper grain mill.
     
  4. BOB357

    BOB357 Well-Known Member

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    I have the 10 gallon round cooler. The bag wraps around the top of the cooler and the lid is on for the mash. It sounded as if you were just wrapping the bag around the manifold. Is this what you are doing?
     
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  5. Steve21

    Steve21 Member

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    #5 Steve21, Mar 24, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2018
    That's what I had planned on trying. It's pvc tube not a false bottom.

    Yet if it's a goofy idea I am willing to hear that too.
     
  6. Hogarthe

    Hogarthe Well-Known Member

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    It could keep more fine particles from ending up in your wort. If you are having slow runoff due to your grain crush, go ahead and try it. Worst case you have to remove the bag and runoff as normal.
     
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  7. BOB357

    BOB357 Well-Known Member

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    As Hogarthe says, it might filter out some of the finer particles and reduce the risk of a slow or stuck lauter, which sounds like something you might need to do. That would depend on how fine the fabric is.
     
  8. Steve21

    Steve21 Member

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    Not sure how fine it is, just a biab I bought from the brew shop. I think I'll give it a round since no one yet has said it's a stupid idea.

    I appreciate the response from both you guys. We'll see how the stout turns out......
     
  9. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    I biab in my kettle for starters ive brewed like this from the get go bar 2 brews i did in a cooler with copper manifold. simply put just make sure your enture grain bill is contained withing the brew bag it doesnt matter if it doesnt drape out the top of your cooler as long as the grains are contained on the inside of the brew bag.

    its taking the place of your filtration system (your manifold). only thing i can think of would be placing a soace between the bag and outlet of cooler to stop the bag sucking up against the outlet and restricting flow.

    you know you can just go traditional biab and mash in your bag directly in the kettle.
     
  10. Steve21

    Steve21 Member

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    I was going to put my pvc tubbing(manifold) inside the bag and hook it up that way. Maybe I'm just making it more complex then it needs to be but I was wanting to filter it when I collect my runnings. Figured it would eliminate the need to vorlauf.

    I suppose I could toss the bag into my kettle and do the mash in there and tie the top so the grains don't spill. I like the fact that I can mash in the kitchen with the cooler and bother the rest of the family with the glorious smell while watching tv.
     
  11. DanC

    DanC Active Member

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    Steve I have been mashing in a bag for a few years now. I have a 10 gallon Igloo with a dip tube only. If the material of the bag is fine enough there should be no reason for the manifold. My wife makes my bags from shear curtain material.
     
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  12. Mark D Pirate

    Mark D Pirate Well-Known Member

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    Vorlauf is just to take only the clearest wort , it isn't mandatory and can be as simple as running off into a jug and pouring back over the grainbed .
    I currently use a single vessel ebiab and simply pump to recirculate while mashing which did improve my efficiency and ensure consistent temps throughout the mash .
    What mash thickness are you running ? Bag over manifold shouldn't be a problem at all but id avoid PVC
     
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  13. Hogarthe

    Hogarthe Well-Known Member

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    As mark d pirate said avoid pvc. It can leach stuff into hot water. I think its called cpvc but they make a separate product for hot water applications that is safer.
     
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  14. Steve21

    Steve21 Member

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    Curtain material hey? I might have to look into as that would make life simpler for mashing. As for the pvc, I didn't know that so I guess this was the last time I use it, I'd rather not have anything but beer in the beer.

    I ended up trying my idea and it worked but it was more annoying then anything. I did end up scooping my grains out after I was done and put them into another smaller pot which again I put my bag on. I was able to collect all that goodness from the bottom of the cooler because of doing that. Boiled and yeast is in so here's Hoping it good.

    Thanks though guys for the replies, I'm still rather new at this and have a lot to learn so it's super awesome hearing from people who are willing to help.
     
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  15. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    #15 Hawkbox, Mar 26, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2018
    I mash in a bag all the time. Works a treat. I've bought 2 from these guys for different mash tuns. They've worked really well.

    https://www.brewinabag.com/

    Edit: I don't have any pictures currently but I'll run and take one.

    Edit Edit: Here we go, I use bungee straps to hold it on and I have the bazooka tube in because the filter got sucked into the hole and plugged once. Just easier than pulling it back out after it sticks.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  16. Steve21

    Steve21 Member

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    I think I'm going too have to look into that, seems way better than what I have going on. Also that other guys comment about the pvc has me looking for something different now.

    I've read biab lowers your efficiency though. Not that the one I just did yesterday was great according to my calculations.

    I am going to check that out through, see if I can find them in Canada.
     
  17. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    It can lower efficiency but a couple % but for the simplicity of it I don't worry about it. I ended up ordering the bags from the guy directly as I didn't have a lot of luck in Canada. Plus he'll make it to measure for you which was nice.
     
  18. Steve21

    Steve21 Member

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    Well I might just bite the bullet then. It looks like it would be easier.
    Seeing where your from I figured there would ve been more places to buy from. I'm from Grande Prairie originally and they only had 1 place and it just sold kits.

    I most likely will grab one now for my next brew. I like the easier clean aspect as well.
     
  19. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    Like Grande Prairie as in northern Alberta?
     
  20. Steve21

    Steve21 Member

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    You bet, moved to bc into wine country......i don't even like wine lol.
     

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