My first BIAB batch

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by dave althouse, Apr 16, 2015.

  1. dave althouse

    dave althouse Member

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    This will be my first BIAB attempt, brewed a dozen plus extract recipes so I think it's time to move to the next level. The process seems straight forward, but I still have a couple questions to fill in the blanks (in my head). I will be using a recipe from Brewers Friend (Shock Top clone). What is the best way to check that you have the max starch/sugar conversion....hydrometer, iodine and if you don't get the calculated OG, what do you do? I am still a bit confused with the "effciency" how would you calculate what your OG will be, I know what the recipe indicates, but what if i were to make up my own recipe how do you know what the OG will be based on the amount of grain used? What is a good effciency %
    Think that will do it for now, sure I'll have more questions

    thanks


    dave althouse
     
  2. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    if you have never brewed in a bag before, your probably going to get a low efficiency the first time and need to add more grain or add dme after you mash to get the gravity up to the recipe calls for.

    for best results mash with a low mount of water just over the top of the grain and don't worry about stats the first time just mash for 1 to 1.5 hours to be safe. the conversion will be done in as little as 45 minutes but you want to soften the grain to allow more sugar to escape. dunk up and down if possible at the end, I go as far as get 2 extra plastic buckets, put your grain bag inside after your drain the bag then fill with water just over the grain, let it set for 15 minutes the dunk up and down several times and pour that water into the boil kettle, do that as many times as needed to get the water up to the starting level, this helps rinse the remaining sugar off and in some cases out of the grain
     
  3. Tar and Feather'em

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    I have been getting used to BIAB myself having done about 6 batches so far. Temp control is key I have been getting great starting gravities but high finals. I think this is due to temp control. Instead of mashing in at a higher temp in hopes of dropping down to the right temp I am going to start to dough in at 120 or so and then raise it to desired temp. Since room in your pot is limited I can't add a lot of water to control temp. Also do iodine tests to check for conversions I have noticed with BIAB you have to mash for closer to 1 1/2 hours to fully convert.

    Hope this helps let us know how it goes!
     
  4. TwoBottles

    TwoBottles New Member

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    I am a BIAB brewer based in the UK, it is common practice here in the UK amongst BIAB brewers to mash for a mimimum of 90 minutes.

    I also tend to start at the mash temperature for doughing in and return the temperature back to 66c or 67c.

    I also stir the mash quite a lot to ensure the temperature is constant through the whole volume.

    I have a slightly undersize pot for a true 25l batch and I do a dunk sparge with 10 litres of water of heated separately to make sure my boil volume is back to 30l.

    With all the above Brewers Friend calcs give me an efficiency of 80% to 85%.
     
  5. GernBlanston

    GernBlanston New Member

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    be careful if you plan to heat with the bag in the kettle. Keep it off the bottom.
     

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  6. sbaclimber

    sbaclimber Well-Known Member

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  7. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    easily fixed, go to amazon, look for pizza screen, find a screen 1 inch smaller than your pot, then go to lowes and buy a 1/2" flat piece of aluminum and some stainless bolts and nuts, tools - use a hack saw or jig saw, file, drill

    if you don't have a water heater element in your pot just cut to 1/2 to 1 inch off the bottom
     

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  8. Bribie G

    Bribie G New Member

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    If you are doing full volume BIAB (my mash is about 33 litres), another good bag protector is available at most kitchen shops and should only cost about ten dollars:

    Curved roasting rack, get a SS one if possible. I've been using mine for over six years. Add a length of twine to fish it out of the pot.
     

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  9. Blackmuse

    Blackmuse Well-Known Member

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    Dave,
    How did it go? I can see from your profile that you've brewed a few more BIABs so I take it you like the process. Have you found the techniques that work best for you? Have you consistently hit your efficiency?
     

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