First attemp at BIAB

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Ronix81
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First attemp at BIAB

Post by Ronix81 » 6 months ago

I've been brewing nothing but fwk's for the past two years and the thought of going to All Grain seemed to daunting not only from the time perspective but also the equipment. Then I started reading more and more about biab and figured a alreadybhad everything I needed bar the keg to make a keggle. After a quick search I came across an old powers brewing 40 litre last week and it was job on. I set about making a pretty primitive keggle but like I said I already had the rest of the gear so worst case I was only down $20 for grains if it turned into an epic failure. Out came the grinder, cut the top out of the keg, drilled a hole for the ball valve and then checked the kitchen for a stockpot lid and as luck would have it the hole I cut was near on the same diameter.
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It was at this point that I managed to well and truly confuse myself wether to chill or no-chill. I was using all sort of calculators and software to try get an idea of volumes and possible efficiency so I wouldn't end up with to little or to much wort to fill a cube. In the end I decided to make my own immersion chiller out of a roll of 1/2 copper I had from aircon installs. Been in cairns the tap water wasn't going to cut it to chill the wort so I filled all my cubes -150 litres total - and got them into a commercial fridge I used to ferment with and set it to 2 degrees.
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So this morning I filled the keg with 35 litres, fired the burner and got it up to 71 degrees. I added the grain bill I'd ordered for a basic pale ale and let it "steep"? For 60 mins.
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I then got the burner going again and got it to a rolling boil and added some Waimea at various stages. After a 90 minute boil it was time to try out the chiller, I dumped all the water into a big esky and hooked up a 12v pump. About 11 mins later the wort was down to 18 degrees- ferment temp, so in the fermenter it went.
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All in all it was a great learning curve, I'm sure I made plenty of rookie errors but it was clean and sanitised so hopefully it turns out. Ive now got plenty of numbers to work with for the next brew so it can only get better from here. Looking forward to any suggestions or even criticism to make the next brew day a bigger success. Cheers Adam


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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by Clackers » 6 months ago

Seems like your onto a winner. God I wish I had the space you have, I want to buy buy buy new gear but just can`t fit it in.
I do my brewing at my work place. As my house is more like a shoe box and have no space.
I`m only into my second BIAB. It takes longer and involved but it sure is a lot more fun to have all the control in the results.
Well done mate.


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Ronix81
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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by Ronix81 » 6 months ago

Image Image Image Image It's handy having room but your not wrong about the buy buy buy part. There's always something new to add to the setup. Took me awhile and lots of different fridges and setups to get to where I'm at now
Last edited by Ronix81 on 01 Jun 2017, 17:55, edited 2 times in total.


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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by Clackers » 6 months ago

looking at your pics.. I want your space and your money. ha ha ha. I want a bigger pot, but the other half, the one with bigger balls
says no!


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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by PistolPatch » 6 months ago

Thanks for the thread and pics Adam - really enjoy such threads :thumbs:

And, congratulations on your maiden voyage. From a fast, but enjoyable read, it sounds like it all was fun.

The only thing I'll write is re the chilling. I know what a bastard it is for those of us who live in hot climates where tap temperature is often around 30°C / . While the chill time to ale pitching temp was an amazing 11 minutes, the energy cost of cooling 150L / 40 Gal of "chilling" water to near freezing would be massive and, it's actually not necessary.

Next time, use you tap water (even if it is 30°C or more) to do the first part of the chill. The wort will drop rapidly from boiling point (especially if you jiggle your immersion chiller). The rate of temperature will gradually slow. For example, to get from 100°C to 50°C might take ten minutes while dropping from 50°C to 40°C might take 25 minutes and from 40°C to 35°C might take another 25.

The point is the initial drop from say 100 to 50, can be done extremely quickly with your warm tap water. After that initial drop, turn your tap down to decrease the flow through the chiller. If the output from the chiller is noticeably hotter than your tap water temp, then continue. The difference will become harder to notice the more the temp drops. For "fine-tuning," turn the tap down further and have the outlet from the chiller run over your foot. Then, jiggle the chiller and, if you notice an increase in temp, then, the tap water is still "working" for you.

Once the tap water stops "working", it's time to pull out your pump and chilled water. Let's say your tap water stops "working" at 40°C. You'll only need a bit over 30L of chilled water to get to ale pitching temp. This means you only need to chill 30L instead of 150L.

As for "converters," I use this one. In the "RESULT" section, ignore the "weight" - the temp is the only thing of interest to us. Pics attached.
Chilling Dynamics 1.jpg
Chilling Dynamics 2.jpg
Chilling Dynamics 3.jpg
Chilling Dynamics 4.jpg
Chilling Dynamics 5.jpg
Chilling Dynamics 6.jpg
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Ronix81
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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by Ronix81 » 6 months ago

Thanks pistolpatch for the advice on chilling the wort with the tap water. I will definitely be trying that for the next brew. I knew at the time chilling the water with the fridge wasn't going to be "economical" but since I had the means to do it and it was my first attempt at BIAB I figured I'd try it out anyway. I'm keen to get another brew in the works and change a few little things I did the first time. One thing I was unsure of was to do with adding the Irish moss. I put it in with about 10 mins of the boil to go but then I created a slight whirlpool whilst chilling the wort. This obviously partially agitated the wort and stirred everything up again so should I then leave it for 20 mins or so to settle before getting it into the fermenter?
Last edited by Ronix81 on 03 Jun 2017, 02:27, edited 1 time in total.


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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by PistolPatch » 6 months ago

Good questions on the Irish Moss and whirlpool Ron :peace:

Irish Moss (Whirfloc): Two biggest mistakes with this are adding too much and adding it too early. Assuming a VFO (Volume at Flame Out) of about 23L/ 6 Gal, add 1/2 tablet whirfloc 5 min before the end of the boil.

Whirlpool: Forget it with an immersion chiller. In fact, forget it in most set-ups. Here's some reasons why:

1. A lot of set-ups make the creation of a whirlpool impossible. A whirlpool needs to be "built" from the outer edge of your kettle (not from putting a fast spinning 'drill' in the center) and, will generally fail if there are 'interruptions' in your kettle (chillers, pick up tubes etc).

2. You already have a "BIAB" bag. Use that as a hop sock.

3. A good transfer technique negates the need for a whirlpool. Hard for me to explain however... if you threw a whole lot of dust and dirt onto your floor and then held your vacuum cleaner in one place, will that vacuum the whole floor clean? No. Once it sucks up the first bit of dust and dirt, it will just suck clean air. Same principle.

But, yes, do let things settle for twenty minutes after you stop jiggling your chiller or, after flame-out, whichever comes last.

:peace:
PP
Last edited by PistolPatch on 05 Jun 2017, 22:12, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by Ronix81 » 6 months ago

Thanks again Pistol for the detailed responses. I'm planning on doing my 2nd biab this weekend so will take all the advice on board. I think I'm on the right track and with your help it can only get better :thumbs:

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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by Lumpy5oh » 6 months ago

Nicely done and great pics!
In the pics you seem to have your lid on during the boil. I'm not sure if that was the case but it is not recommended. DMS precursors are boiled off in the steam and will be reintroduced to your wort if the lid is on.
Some people are like slinkies. Not good for much, but bring a smile to your face when pushed down the stairs.

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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by Ronix81 » 6 months ago

Lumpy5oh wrote:
6 months ago
Nicely done and great pics!
In the pics you seem to have your lid on during the boil. I'm not sure if that was the case but it is not recommended. DMS precursors are boiled off in the steam and will be reintroduced to your wort if the lid is on.
The lid was on while I was bringing it up to a boil and then took it off when it was boiling for 90 mins plus
Thanks for the info though 👍

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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by Lumpy5oh » 6 months ago

I figured you had enough kit experience to know. Just wanted to make sure. :champ:
Some people are like slinkies. Not good for much, but bring a smile to your face when pushed down the stairs.

Weehoosebrewing.ga


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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by Ronix81 » 6 months ago

Kegged my first biab yesterday while making my second brew. Gassed it overnight before turning it down to serving pressure before leaving for work for a week. Couldn't help myself and had to pour a glass and have an early morning sample. Biased opinion but my efforts were rewarding :clap: :champ: Image


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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by PistolPatch » 6 months ago

Fantastic Adam :thumbs: Looks great :peace:

Just noticed something I missed before in your first post. It said you striked at 71 °C. Let's say you were wanting to mash at 66 or 67, the 71 strike temp would be a bit too high in a full volume mash as you don't get as big a temp drop when you add the grain as compared to a traditional mash. You have a "heavy" set-up so...

1. Your temp will tend to keep rising for a few minutes after you turn your flame off.
2. If you wanted to mash 35L at 66°C, I doubt you should strike at anything over 68.
3. Section E of BIABacus will work out your strike temperature for you. (Default in Section X is set for heavy setups.)

Also, you mentioned letting the mash steep for 90 minutes. Occasionally, agitate the mash and check it's temperature especially immediately after flame-out so as you can get a fell for how your setup works - such as seeing if temp still rises after you cut the flame. The occasional stir is also going to ensure no hot spots and the maximum possible extraction of 'sugars'.

Your pic makes me thirsty but I will resist any early morning samplings :P
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Re: First attemp at BIAB

Post by Ronix81 » 6 months ago

Thanks for more great advice. I thought after the fact it may have been a little high temp wise and from more reading I've realised it wasn't doing the brew any favours. I've bought a thermometer to fit to the keggle to try get a better idea of steep temps. I did stir/agitate it during the 60mins and also checked the temp several times and it seemed to be around 68 so thought I was on the right path. As for the pic, it was only a sample and can't wait to try it in 7 days to see how it is, hopeful it will get a chance to condition as I've got a few other kegs on the go
Last edited by Ronix81 on 15 Jun 2017, 19:05, edited 1 time in total.

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