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bigT

BIAB vs extract

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Couple things, been away for awhile but after taking the summer/fall of brewing Im back in the swing.

I have brewed the last 3-4 brews as extract (with good results) and Im curious about biab. But, as I read on it more I here it being a full water boil and guys are using 15gal pots I am a little apprehensive.

Is there a big difference between BIAB and extract brewing with a steep/partial mash that I should invest into biab?

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BigT what info are you looking for?   A partial mash and a steep are 2 different techniques that will give you different results.  Yep for BIAB you will need a big pot.  How big depends on the batch size.  BIAB is all grain brewing.  You will have to do a full volume boil.   Extract with specialty grains is a steep.  You make a tea from the grains.  Partial Mash is a small mash.  You will use a base grain &  specialty grains.  Which you will maintain a temp of 150* for 60 mins.  The runnings from this mash are added to the volume of water to which you add HME or do a hop boil and then add extracts.  Do a google on these techniques there is a lot of great info out on the net.  There should be some here at

 MR B too

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I brew biab and only got a 8 gal pot to do 5 gal batches this one:  .http://www.target.com/p/imusa-32-qt-aluminum-tamale-steamer/-/A-10910892#?lnk=sc_qi_detaillink. 

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I use slightly different equipment for BIAB than other methods, but I didn't need much investment because we already had almost everything.  For a LBK-size batch, I use a 2-gallon beverage cooler as the mash tun (good for up to 5 lb of grain), a 3 gallon pot for the full volume boil that we already had in the kitchen, and the combination of two 2-gallon kitchen pots for sparging that we also had. 

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While classic BIAB is a full-boil, all grain method, I often adapt it to suit my needs.  Perhaps it would be more accurate to say I borrow from it.  Anyway, if you do a partial mash and partial extract batch, then you can do a partial BIAB and partial extract batch as well, regardless what you decide to call it.   Heck, you may already be using a bag for your partial mashes anyway.  I use a 16 qt pot for my 2.5 gallon BIAB batches.  If you are doing 5 gallons, you’d need a larger pot.  Like Bob says, read a bunch of articles about it.  Different people can have slightly different practices that all fall into the same category, even if it’s loosely, sometimes.  I think you’ll love it.

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well some of my reading on the subject has me more confused. What gets me is I miss the fact that some are brewing large batches. I do not want to boil a 50gal drum for 5 gal of beer, which is how it sounds sometimes. What I like to do is keep things simple but I want a better beer. So here what I would like to know about BIAB

1. I have a 16qt pot, so could I do say a 2 1/2 gal full volume boil for 60min keeping the temp in the 150-155deg range (mash temp). after removing the grains them boil the hops from there. Or is the sparging necessary which is were the big pot comes in because you will have to boil down wort and sparge water.

2. Do you just use all grain recipes for BIAB?

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1) You can do what you describe with or without a sparge.  You can get better efficiency with a sparge possibly, but in traditional BIAB, it is not done.  I've done both ways and both ways have resulted in beer.

2) You can do it completely all-grain (most do in this scenario), but you can certainly combine HME or DME with your BIAB batch for a partial mash (I've done this at times).

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Ok thanks, I have a English ale recipe that I plan on trying. I have a lbk and a 5 gal ferm so it gives me some choices. The last brew I did before taking the summer of was a mini mash for 30min with a sparge & extract so making this jump shouldn't be to hard.


I was just gathering info and all of it starting getting confusing.


 

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OK another question how do you calculate BIAB efficiency????


Everyone talks about it but no body tells you how. For what its worth at 150deg in 2qt water I had a preboil reading of 1.04. my grain bill was 4.25lb 

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Well qbrew had my og at 1.048 and I nailed it at 1.048 so I must have done something right. I do see where I could have added more water to my original striking water. Overall I like the BIAB method. will post the recipe in the recipe section.

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To calculate the efficiency in BIAB or all-grain, you would need brewing software (such as QBrew or BeerSmith), or a spreadsheet or other method to do the calculations that the software does.  Ideally you would measure the gravity of your wort with just the draining from your grain, measured with a hydrometer, or you could back out the non-grain ingredients to estimate the gravity that has come from your grains.  In the software, you would include only the grains that you mashed.  If your calculations have assumed 75% efficienncy and your wort's gravity equals the calculated value, your efficiency is 75%, which is a good result.  If not, scale the 75% assumed efficiency to your actual gravity. 

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