Milling grains for BIAB

Discussion in 'Beginners Brewing Forum' started by Brewer #181510, Jul 13, 2018.

  1. Brewer #181510

    Brewer #181510 New Member

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    I am ready to try the BIAB method. I have all the equipment for 5 gallon batch. From what I have read you should double grind the grains for BIAB. My question is has anyone tried to use a food processor or even a good old fashion blender to mill the grains? I am thinking this would make a too fine of grain. Thanks
     
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  2. okoncentrerad

    okoncentrerad Active Member

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    I biab and mill my grain once, i don't think its necessary to double mill... not for me at least. I suspect using a food processor will be doing too fine, but I might be wrong. Perhaps short bursts would give you better control?
     
  3. KC

    KC Active Member

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    Double grind is usually not necessary. If the LHBS grinds your grains and their gap is fixed wide then you could consider it as a band-aid fix. But your conversion efficiency is much more directly affected by pH control.

    A bladed processor will create a lot of flour. Depending on your mesh size, that could settle out in the kettle and burn at the bottom. Ripping up the husk will make the grain bed difficult to drain or sparge. Handling pounds of dry malt won't be good for the blades either. Not that it won't work, but these are some of the considerations.
     
  4. Brewer #181510

    Brewer #181510 New Member

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    Thanks for the reply, I had a feeling it might not work. I guess trail and error is what's in store for me. I will keep plugging away and hope for the best. I am sure I will have a few miss fires along the way. But the great thing is that's what this forum is all about. Happy Brewing!!
     
  5. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Hey i works well for me anyway! I mill all my grain in a glorified blender a thermomix. The key to getting a good crush (or should i say mill) is speed and time and quantity. You may find your processor has different speed settings. I wizz mine on reverse so back of blade the flat part is smashing the grains i find this way it breaks it up into little chunks and doesnt grind the husk down too much. To do speed 8-9 (pretty quick for around 10 seconds gives me a fairly grainy consistance with some flour.

    If i had just a blender id do the same but get it timed do about 400g at a time DONT OVER LOAD IT or youll get a heap of un cracked kernels and well your machine will get bogged down if you know what i mean. Around 400g allows the blend to work efficiently on the grain to get the happy medium you want with all kernals cracked and a grainy texture too much and yes you will have flour. Pour it out into a bowl and run your fingers through the grain looking for un cracked kernels too many means reduce grain volume or increase time on same speed:).

    My experience in biab is yes finer mill = increased efficiency. Yes the sparge can be slow if you overdo the milling and turn it to floury but it will sparge be patient.
    Dont skip sparge is my other 2c its part of the the brew time anyway you wont save any by skipping it and youll get a few gravity points out of it too! Just make sure you acidify the sparge water with a drop or two of strong acid this will negate the tannin extraction (teabag effect).

    I remember back when i was first using blender to mill grain it seems like a silly option and there is supposedly some flaws in shredding up husks and extra tannin extraction and such but ive got some good scores in comps even with pretty clean styles like pilsner and they were all milled as usuall in blender (thermomix):p.

    So go for it good luck any questions fire away!:)
     
  6. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    I have a Corona mill and I basically pulverize my grain, I don't BIAB but I mash in a bag so basically same difference. Realstically, in my opinion do what works for you, try it and see what happens.
     
  7. Brewer #181510

    Brewer #181510 New Member

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    Thanks, I was thinking the same thing.
     
  8. Michael_biab

    Michael_biab Member

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    On the question of double milling (or milling grain fine) with BIAB, I've done both standard milling and double milling in my BIAB experience. When I mail order my supplies I can't get them to double mill even if I pay extra so I have to add a couple of pounds extra base malt to hit their expected gravity in their kits and recipes. When I go to my LHBS, I double mill since customers do their own milling there. It's been difficult to scientifically determine if there's a difference because other variables are at play - for example gravity strength of the beer you're brewing - which reduces efficiency. Plus I've not kept good notes on brews I've double milled. Intuitively, if you crack the grain more you should see better efficiency but I suspect there's a limit. Cracking to the point of 100% flour - while not a problem with a BIAB no sparge approach - might have other drawbacks as mentioned like the particulate matter coming thru the bag into the boil. Testing this out would be interesting. Sounds like a Brulosophy exbeeriment !
     

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