Jump to content
Mr.Beer Community
Sign in to follow this  
yankeedag

BIAB

Recommended Posts

I just got my A$$ handed to me with a BIAB adventure. Excuse me now, I need to glue it back on...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes... story! :laugh: :P OH wait I sorta know what happened, but Yankee is a much better story teller than I am so I will let him tell it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ye Gawds! Am I on Maury Povich? Oh well. Snick Pah. I tried to do a BIAB today. Wanted to see what it was all about. So I got the stuff... Home Depot, grains, gumption...
So, it says to use all the water for the boil... ok... I got 3 pots. Guess which one I started with...yep, wrong size. Took the water... no worries.. the grain...welll..... not so much. Had to transfer to the bigger pot. Guess what didn't fit... the bag. It went down hill from there. With the comodey of errors.. I did the following. (these are what you DONT DO)
wrong size bag for the job
wrong size pot for the bag
managed to burn the bag after all after trying to suspend it above the bottom.
So when it came to pulling out the bag, guess what stayed in the pot with the burned bottom?
The wort turned out real thick. (I think "chunky" is the correct word)
got the boil going... started adding hops... the wort got thicker, the leaf hops didn't want to break up.
Got those buggers apart... the wort got thicker... way thicker. I've had thinner soup. Added water... as I didn't have a full pot after burning my hands and loosing alot.. when I say alot, I mean half the water. added another gallon.. not much help ... but some. Once the boil and all the hops had been done, I ran the wort thru the filter bags.
The back up bag broke.
Then the back up to the back up broke.
needless to say, filtering all that "stuff" took a while. finally got it into the fermenter, took a OG...*!* It bounced between 20 and 30. That crap was thick. So, I said screw it... it's lawn mower beer. tossed in the yeast I had prepped, and it started bubblin 30 min later.
I'm thinking that DME and I are going to be friends for a VERY long Time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry to hear you had issues... I've found that each one gets easier...

But, on a lighter note... How'd it feel to be the n00b for like the first time ever, Dag? I know I felt a little n00bish on my first one as well...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thought I'd give it a shot. Sounded interesting. I'm thinking All Grain ain't in me future ... so, as long as they have DME.. I'm Cool.
I can see where better information could be put out for the BIAB. Not sure I want to adventure into it more. Odds are, down the road, I'll decide to kick it's a$$ and figure out a better method of imparting the information to make it easy for others. In Failure, You learn. I be one smart sucker tonight.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, as soon as I recover from my burns that I aquired for this effort, I really would like to get with someone and work this buggar out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hmmm now you have me 2nd guessing my plans to jump to BIAB. I told the guys at the LHBS that I wanted to started BIAB when I got my tax retuen and they had no idea what I was talking about. They asked me how I planned on brewing inside of a bag. Turned out the guy was the kid of the guy that owns the places and doesnt know his ass from a hole in the ground so I talked to the owner and he told me a little about it. After steeping for the first time on my last batch that still has a few days left (Irish oatmeal stout).....(which tastes awesome) I need to at least try it once. I was reading this months Maxim Magazine and they had an article in it about the Great American Beer Festival and a little side article about 3 guys who are MY age 25-26 just out of college that started the Aspen Brewing Company. Kinda got me thinking well hell if they can do it why cant I? Im guessing its because they raised $300,000 seed money and spent a couple of years in the red before they were able to pay themselves just $12,000 a piece last year.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Clearcut23 wrote:

Hmmm now you have me 2nd guessing my plans to jump to BIAB. I told the guys at the LHBS that I wanted to started BIAB when I got my tax retuen and they had no idea what I was talking about. They asked me how I planned on brewing inside of a bag. Turned out the guy was the kid of the guy that owns the places and doesnt know his ass from a hole in the ground so I talked to the owner and he told me a little about it. After steeping for the first time on my last batch that still has a few days left (Irish oatmeal stout).....(which tastes awesome) I need to at least try it once. I was reading this months Maxim Magazine and they had an article in it about the Great American Beer Festival and a little side article about 3 guys who are MY age 25-26 just out of college that started the Aspen Brewing Company. Kinda got me thinking well hell if they can do it why cant I? Im guessing its because they raised $300,000 seed money and spent a couple of years in the red before they were able to pay themselves just $12,000 a piece last year.

$12,000 ....+ unlimited beer! :hammer:
Honey! I'm working late again tonight!! :party:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First of all, don't let my failure stop you. It just didn't work for me THIS time. I'm sure I'll "Hit Dat" again down the road. I did learn from this.
I need a bigger, stronger grain bag
I need to be able to keep the bag OFF the bottom.
I'm not sure my temps were right.
I need something to "squeeze" the bag...besides me.. ouch.
so it's not a total loss ... so far.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a wooden frame from my half assed attempt to make an apple press a few months back that im thinking I could modify to hang the bag from and then instead of squeezing the bag I was thinking of just twisting it around it's self to squeeze all the malt out of it.

On a side note I was cruising around the Aspen Brewing Companys website and there was a little side note on the site that said you can download recipies from the site but I cant find em

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey Dag, that's one of them there stories that you'll laugh about after the burn ointment does it's thing!! :cheers:

I did a BIAB/Extract kit a little while back and the one thing it pointed out is that squeezing the bag is bad. It forces tannins out of the grain. Instead, it recommended rinsing the bag by pouring hot water over it and then tossing it. It actually went smoothly. I think because it was a combo, it was less grain therefore less labor intensive. Maybe you should venture a combo as a "baby step" as it were.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I watched a youtube clip of a guy doing a BIAB and thought, "Wow, he makes it look real easy." Then I read Dag's story...I would probably fall on that end of the spectrum the first time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Zobl wrote:

YD, the reference to Home Depot..was that your grain bag?


yeah, got some paint filter bags... 5 gallon and one gallon

and I did have a smithwicks clone... cleared out the keg...
They can't all be winners the first time. We all learn

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Those 5 gallon paint bags have been working great for me for the 2.4 sized BIABs. Not sure I'd want to do much more than that in 'em though. Was this a 5 gallon batch?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

swenocha wrote:

Those 5 gallon paint bags have been working great for me for the 2.4 sized BIABs. Not sure I'd want to do much more than that in 'em though. Was this a 5 gallon batch?


Swen, do you reuse those bags or are they cheap enough to toss after one use?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Definitely reuse them. I have one for grains and one for hops. Have used them at least a dozen times each. They are nylon... They are only $3 for two 5 gallon bags around here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry to hear about the trouble. Between Tobias and I we've done about 15+ of these so I'd be happy to share any thoughts I can with you.

linguini wrote:

I did a BIAB/Extract kit a little while back and the one thing it pointed out is that squeezing the bag is bad. It forces tannins out of the grain.

I have to disagree on this one. We've never had tannins in our brews and we squeeze the heck out of them. We do rinse with water afterwards but squeezing the bag has done nothing but extract more sugars.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I suppose I'll have to squeeze next time. I had read that I should not. So... when you squeeze... barehanded in the hot grain? (ouch!) Or by some other method?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

swenocha wrote:

I suppose I'll have to squeeze next time. I had read that I should not. So... when you squeeze... barehanded in the hot grain? (ouch!) Or by some other method?


:charlie:

OveGlove.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Kealia wrote:

Sorry to hear about the trouble. Between Tobias and I we've done about 15+ of these so I'd be happy to share any thoughts I can with you.

linguini wrote:

I did a BIAB/Extract kit a little while back and the one thing it pointed out is that squeezing the bag is bad. It forces tannins out of the grain.

I have to disagree on this one. We've never had tannins in our brews and we squeeze the heck out of them. We do rinse with water afterwards but squeezing the bag has done nothing but extract more sugars.

I had always read and heard that squeezing leads to tannins, but the BIAB folks all seem to squeeze with no ill effects.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow- Sorry to hear about your "troubles" But "With Failure We Gain Knowledge " .I know you'll "perfect" this method in no time.This one's on me.

113_0075-20110212.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

bpgreen wrote:

Kealia wrote:

Sorry to hear about the trouble. Between Tobias and I we've done about 15+ of these so I'd be happy to share any thoughts I can with you.

linguini wrote:

I did a BIAB/Extract kit a little while back and the one thing it pointed out is that squeezing the bag is bad. It forces tannins out of the grain.

I have to disagree on this one. We've never had tannins in our brews and we squeeze the heck out of them. We do rinse with water afterwards but squeezing the bag has done nothing but extract more sugars.

I had always read and heard that squeezing leads to tannins, but the BIAB folks all seem to squeeze with no ill effects.

Before I did my first BIAB I heard this somewhere too. I did a little research(google) and found a several good articles regarding Tannins. The big bad tannins seem to be released at mash temps above 170, I wonder why sparge water temps seem to be around 170 :)

I guess if you used some sort of uber press to squeeze the bag tannins might be released :)

Ive never had any issues due to squeezing.

2c

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I for one think BIAB is super easy. Not as easy as all extract but easy enough. I bought a 20x30 grain bag at my LHBS I paid around 7 bucks for it and I have no issues. It fits my pot diameter perfectly but is a little long. I heat my water to my strike temp which is usually around 164ish and then take it completely off the stove and put it on some trivets on my counter. Then I add the bag and grains and then cover with towels. The grain drops the temp down to about 155 and the towels help to hold it there for the 90 minutes I mash.

After the mash I take an empty pot and put a strainer on top of it and set the grain bag in that while I get the brew pot back on the burner to start bringing it up to a boil. While the pot heats I sparge the grain with about a quart of 170 degree water and then start to squeeze the bag. I use a clean silicone trivet to squeeze so I don't burn my hands. I squeeze for about 5 minutes and then put the wort that I sparged and squeezed out of the bag into the brew pot and it comes right up to about 3 gallons leaving me with 1/2 gallon of water to lose during the boil.

Now I have only done two BIAB and this is stuff I learned from my first that I changed for my second batch. I will take some pics when I do my next batch and put them up next week sometime. I am by no means and expert and havent tasted my first batches yet but they samples are good and my gravitys were close to what I wanted.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My only problem the first time was temps. I pretty much figured things out the second time and was able to hold the temps much like you described (trivets on the counter) for 60 minutes. I found it to be pretty straightforward other than that, with the same caveat that I haven't tasted a finished product yet. But I do know that I paid like $2.50 for the base grain that replaced $12 of extract, and I only added 30 minutes to my process (assuming a 30 minute steep on my extract brews), so I really like that...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

swenocha wrote:

But I do know that I paid like $2.50 for the base grain that replaced $12 of extract, and I only added 30 minutes to my process (assuming a 30 minute steep on my extract brews), so I really like that...

That is my favorite part. If I went to the brew store and wanted to do 2 2.5 gallon extract batches I was looking at spending around 50 dollars.
Now I can do in there and spend 25-30 dollars and get 2 2.5 gallon batches.

By comparison I spent around 3 hrs to brew an extract with steeping grain batch. I did spend around 6 hrs on my first BIAB. But only 5 on my second. But this is the time from starting to heat the water until I pitch the yeast. So this includes the 90 minutes of mashing, 60 minutes of boil and 30 minutes of cooling where you just kinda hang out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

swenocha wrote:

I suppose I'll have to squeeze next time. I had read that I should not. So... when you squeeze... barehanded in the hot grain? (ouch!) Or by some other method?

Typically it's a combination of holding the grain bag above the pot and twisting the hell out of the bag to make it squeeze itself.

Then using a vegetable steamer like this on the bottom of another pot to act as a false bottom:

r1583.jpg

Then, press down with another pot, a pie tin or anything else that will provide some pressure. I do sparge with a bit ore water and do it by opening the bag and pouring it through the middle of the grains instead of just pouring over the outside.


I've also done 5-gallon batches without the bags breaking (same Home Depot bags) so I'm *guessing* that came from burning the bag - which, knock on wood, has not been an issue yet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This video addresses all concerns mentioned above. As a bonus it also shows you how to use corn as an adjunct.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've done 30 mashes now, and still run into occasional issues, but as Swenocha mentioned, they get easier as you get your process down. Have not done any BIAB, but if you have questions regarding mashing otherwise, I'm happy to offer any help I can.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

oly wrote:

This video addresses all concerns mentioned above. As a bonus it also shows you how to use corn as an adjunct.

This is a video that I watched many times before doing my first BIAB and I use a lot of his techniques.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My first bag did burn (still cleaning up the mess) but the next bag just started breaking... at the seames and in points on the side wall. They were the paint bags from Home Depot.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am surprised you had so much trouble. Maybe I was lucky my first BIAB went so well, but I did a 2.13 gal batch which decreased the weight of the grains and the amount of water needed. Don't give up! Because of the time required I will likely limit the number of all grains I do, but the technique itself was pretty easy for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just did another one yesterday and hit the OG spot on (after adding the DME that I forgot post yeast-pitching, but that's another story).

Nobody should 'fear' this technique as it's quite easy. A bad experience (by anybody) is expected now an then as we all try new things.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How about a retractable steamer basket like this? Keeps stuff from burning on the bottom of the pot.:
f5485d2b.jpg
Here it is closed:
9cbf7b85.jpg

Another version, I'm sure they make different sizes:
86decf6a.jpg

And a collander strainer that rests on your pot for draining and sparging:

3b1b7509.jpg

Just some thoughts. I think the bags they sell at the LHBS might handle higher heat? :cheer:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

bpgreen wrote:

Those steamer baskets work great.

They are great but you have to unscrew the center peg which I did for the pic or else it could poke a hole in the bag.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My BIAB adventures all went pretty well from the outset. I'll never do all grain, but I think mixing some Crystal, 2 Row, and a specialty Malt needing conversion together prior to boiling with some DME...works well.

I posted a thread on here sometime back when I did a BIAB. It included pictures. It was pretty easy. Honest.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've done 2 PM BIAB, the last with 3.5 lbs of grain and 3.5 gal of water. Would love to try all grain BIAB, but pot is only 21 qt, so 1 gal per lb isn't possible with 5-6 lbs of grain,. I read that efficiency falls with less water per lb.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hurst/Olds wrote:

I've done 2 PM BIAB, the last with 3.5 lbs of grain and 3.5 gal of water. Would love to try all grain BIAB, but pot is only 21 qt, so 1 gal per lb isn't possible with 5-6 lbs of grain,. I read that efficiency falls with less water per lb.

I only have a 16 qt brewpot. I brew 2.5 gallon all grain BIAB batches. My brew pot is about perfect for that size. I use the full amount of water that I plan to boil. I get about 70% efficiency. I mash at about 155 instead of 152 and for 90 minutes instead of 60.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been using a 16qt pot and a 5gal paint strainer for BIAB, works fine. ONly issues is the amount of time needed for a two gal batch, so lately I'm adding extracts for a partial mash, and filling two fermenters.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...