Scaling a recipe using BIABacus

Post #1 made 1 month ago
I've had my first successful (at least, so far) BIAB brew day and I'm looking for my next recipe. I decided I would go with a clone of a beer I like, and found this recipe:

https://www.brewersfriend.com/homebrew/ ... -all-grain
(PDF attached if link isn't viewable)

It seems like it's not too much to take on, as in it's not an overly complicated recipe. However I'm currently only doing mini-BIAB with just a 19L pot so any recipe I find will need to be scaled down. I'm trying to learn how to utilize BIABacus to do this, and have attached my attempt.

Questions:
1. Did I do this right?
2. I'm not really sure what to do about water volumes, there isn't obvious input for that in BIABacus. I'm limited to about 15-17L for the mash, but BIABacus (from what I can tell) doesn't make it obvious the original water going into the mash and scaling that for the intended fermenter volume. Guidance?

Thanks in advance!
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    • SVA Brewer From United States of America

Re: Scaling a recipe using BIABacus

Post #2 made 1 month ago
brew.newb - pretty good start on filling out the BIABacus :clap:
The first tings I noticed are in red at the top above Sections A & B - RECIPE WON'T WORK and Mash Volume exceeds kettle size
You have entered your kettle dimensions, setting maximum limits for items generated in other cells. Why the red messages? Look at Mash Volume in Section K. Your target VIF Section B is 10 L. If you make it 9.5 L or less, the red message that says it won't work goes away, the other now warns you that your kettle is going to be quite full, but it will fit. I hear you saying, "But I wanted 10 L." See below for use of hopoack and Section W for other mash volume effects.

ALSO, you have entered 60 min in the Boil for cell in Section B. The boil time highly recommended in this forum is 90 minutes. That would require even more water to start, boiling more off, to get to VIF of 9 L. It's your choice. There are always many choices to be made as you develop your own style of BIAB brewing.

Section C fermentables bill looks good. Section D the hop bill needs some changes.
The original recipe targets 62.4 IBUs yet with FW entered in the top row for Citra and no time entered for min, you get no IBUs contributed, and that's not right. As a result, your hop additions over in the What You Will Use (WYWU) column have nothing being added until 15 min and the amounts are quite high to (maybe?) get those IBUs up over 62. FW hopping has its special contribution to final flavor, but the chemistry to get the bitterness requires hops to have ~60 min above 80 ºC. Keep the FW and enter 60 min for the top row of Citra and see what happens over on the WYWU side. Fewer grams in total! Same IBUs. Adding hops for more than 60 min in the boil is not a good thing, while hops exposed to the temperature ramp from mashout to boil has some good effects.

In addition to favoring 90 min boil, BIAB favors 90 min mash. You will extract more in 90 than in 60; diminishing returns means it is not worth going more than 90 min.

Mash temp in Section E and the pH in the original recipe about as high as you would ever go. Enzymes have their favored temps and pH, 68.3 ºC mash and a resulting boil pH of 5.8 are way up there - do not go higher on either, lower would be better.
Edit to add reference See http://braukaiser.com/wiki/index.php/Ho ... ts_brewing

Safale 04 is good. Make sure you get the pitching temperature honestly down to 18 ºC, no cheating. Then give it long enough to finish (about 2weeks) before packaging.

You can leave 10 L as your target volume VIF if you put a Y in Section G Hopsock cell. It will immensely cut down on volume lost to hop debris and save volume of wort for you.
If you fudge a little by using Section W, you can hold some water aside from the mash (so maximum mash volume fits in your kettle) and rinse the bag of spent grains with it after pulling the bag. It adds work, you have to heat that separate water separately, you have to know ahead of time how you will rinse the bag after lifting, etc. On your 5 gallon scale, do not hold back more than 1.5 L. Maybe that approach should wait for more experience...

More questions? Ask away.
    Last edited by ShorePoints on 07 Dec 2019, 02:31, edited 2 times in total.

    Re: Scaling a recipe using BIABacus

    Post #3 made 1 month ago
    Wow, taking me to school! This is fantastic stuff, thank you so much for the detailed reply! Going to spend more time reading through and tweaking the recipe. Initial thoughts:

    I am able to contain the hops to significantly reduce the amount of trub they contribute using quite large stainless mesh tea infusing balls, about 3-ish in in diameter (don't worry, I restrict the total amount of pellets that go in to account for expansion). Was a tip from a local brewer. That said, with FW hopping but 90 min boils, should I fish out the FW hops after 60 minutes to reduce the negative effects as you noted?

    Looks like 1.5L added during the boil does put this back within the limits of the kettle. Another thing that is possible is adding a sparge step to actually round out the full volume with sweet liquor instead of diluting whats been extracted. I have a second pot that can easily accommodate this.
    Last edited by brew.noob on 06 Dec 2019, 04:56, edited 1 time in total.
      • SVA Brewer From United States of America

    Re: Scaling a recipe using BIABacus

    Post #4 made 1 month ago
    If your strainer for the hops allows sufficient flow for the boiling wort to circulate through, then call it a hopsack and say Y in the Section G cell.
    When I am using Section W, I take it to mean rinse the spent grains with 70 ºC water and the effluent goes into the kettle while it is heating up to the boil. Technically, the Specific Gravity sample should be taken after this addition and the sample has cooled to the temp where the hydrometer is calibrated.
    If your practice is consistent, you can add pure water or this "sparge" water to the boil and therefore dilute (lowering the gravity) during the boil and just go with it. As the boil goes along, the gravity goes up again. It does mean that your gravity reading at the end of the mash will stand alone and not carry through to OG and FG gravity reading which come later. Keep good notes on whatever you decide to do so that things can be sorted out later.

    Re: Scaling a recipe using BIABacus

    Post #5 made 1 month ago
    We normally recommend the 90-minute boil, for certain reasons... But I do not see it as a “hard and fast” rule. In this case, I might dissent and cut it back to 1-hour like @Brewnoob was first thinking so he can finish with a larger volume. And if concerned about having Wort stabilized before adding 1-hr bittering hop addition, hold off 10 minutes or so and do a 50-min addition instead of 60-min. Which means a little higher amount of hops. Put these inputs in BIABacus and it will tell you the amount to use.

    And if you end up liking your Homebrew and the brewing process (most likely you will), later get considerably larger pots and equipment so you can brew more beer and achieve higher economies of scale. Of course I’m looking at this through the “lens”, of my own beer consumption patterns. I formerly only brewed 5-gallon (19 Liter) batches VIF, but when going BIAB purchased larger pot and fermenter “in case” I wanted to occasionally make a larger batch of beer, or higher gravity brew. Now, maximizing my production is the norm, with 8-9 Gallon (30-34 Liter) VIF batches of beer in the 5% ABV range being the norm. So put this in the back of your mind for later... :think: :drink: And if / when it “comes time” to expand, feel free to reach out for advise if you like.

    Great job on reviewing this planned brew @ShorePoints! Many don’t realize how much time detailed reviews and high quality advice like this take!!! It’s great to have you posting on this forum. :thumbs:
    Last edited by Scott on 09 Dec 2019, 04:33, edited 1 time in total.
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    Re: Scaling a recipe using BIABacus

    Post #6 made 1 month ago
    Brewnoob - First Wort (FW) hopping would, as you observed, have those hops in the wort as the temperature rises through the 70s, 80s and 90s over time. I do not know if that time added to your 60 min boil would have any negative effect. You also suggested a way to do FW hopping with removal after 60 min of being wet - or above ~80 degrees C.. That’s a way around it if it truly is a problem or concern. I don’t know. Maybe some who do FW hopping have an answer?

    Scott is too kind, thank you. I remember getting help here whenever I needed it and I am passing that on to others.

    One more thought. I do not know whether or not the BIABacus does account for water added to the boil when it compares GIB and OG to tie them to efficiency calculations. If it does, then it’s another great thing about it.

    Re: Scaling a recipe using BIABacus

    Post #7 made 1 month ago
    I just re-read this and may have a couple thoughts to add to @ShorePoints advice. I frequently use FWH and put it into the BIABacus as a 90-min hop addition. That’s how I do it... And actually for me, with a 90-min boil they are actually in the wort for at least 110 minutes or so... No I’ll effects. And provided you have room I would leave your FWH addition in the kettle until the end. (But I’ve never done mini-BIAB before).
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    Re: Scaling a recipe using BIABacus

    Post #9 made 1 month ago
    Yes Bob, that is rather small, now that you mention it... ;) All depends upon consumption patterns and time available, I suppose.

    And carrying the full 9 gallon Speidel fermenter from my back patio, down the small sidewalk with a step and into my garage - to far side of garage and into chest freezer / fermentation chamber - it’s kind of heavy. Liquid weight around 75 pounds. Including fermenter? Approximately 80 lbs. / 36 kg for this batch. I’m 52 years old, workout regularly, and am in pretty good physical condition...but yarding this around...it is easy to hurt the back. As I age I will either need to brew smaller batches of beer, or make it easier to lift / carry...or both. I suppose even using a hand truck and using a front opening freezer would help a lot, without redesigning my work space. Oh well, a problem to solve another time... :drink:
      • SVA Brewer With Over 50 Brews From United States of America

    Re: Scaling a recipe using BIABacus

    Post #10 made 1 month ago
    Top job Bob on your replies :thumbs: to @brew.noob . (More below for brew.noob)
    ShorePoints wrote:
    1 month ago
    One more thought. I do not know whether or not the BIABacus does account for water added to the boil when it compares GIB and OG to tie them to efficiency calculations. If it does, then it’s another great thing about it.
    Yes it does account for that so all good :salute:

    @b@brew.noob ShorePoints talked about Section D. On the first two lines, you should only put one number. The best one to use is the Volume of Ambient Wort. In the spreadsheet you uploaded, you had 7 gallons whereas it should be 6. Get rid of the 62.4 on the second line. (If any reader has questions on this, ask here and I'll explain.)

    Next on your first hop addition in Section D, put 60 minutes in for the FWH. Also, there is no need t pull those first wort hops.

    I think that'sit from me :peace:
    PP
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