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BIAB Help - A few questions

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Bax

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Hey all,

First time back here since 2016 or something.

Mrs decided she'd be nice and shouted me some keg gear, so I thought now sounded like a good time to get back into brewing.
Unfortunately for me, I haven't brewed anything since 2016 and whilst the overall understanding is there, a lot of the finer stuff isn't there anymore.

Also unfortunately for me, I'm not just going to do extract and partials anymore, I'm jumping to BIAB.

So, questions.
I had an old keg, so I'm converting into a Keggle as I already had a burner as well. This seems to be the best option for me.

How do I calculate strike temp and overall boil volume to calculate my final batch size? Online calculator or something I'd imagine, at this point I don't have a lid sorted, I'm sure I could find something to put over the top but ultimately I need a lid.
How about blankets/insulation for maintaining temps during mash?
How many days is it going to take a 2 ring burner to get my wort up to a boil? 4?
I want to do no chill, as I really don't want to jump down the path of chillers just yet, worst case it'll sit overnight until cool enough to pitch, best case I can drop it into the pool and bring it down a little faster.

Recipe kits, do they have to specify that they're for BIAB? (I'll go Recipe kits until I get comfortable again)

I think I'm okay from there on.
Am just about to put another order in online for my co2 tank as kegland is out of stock I'll have to go elsewhere. But then I'll have to track down a recipe kit as well.
 

MHB

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Where are you from?
Brewman is one of the few shops that offers a range of crushes from very fine (best for high efficiency BIAB) to coarse (good for a deep bed recirculating system). You can use BrewBuilder which gives you a couple of hundred recipes that you can tweak to suit your system/batch size...
Set it up with your target batch size (the default is something like medium (1.5mm crush), 23L to fermenter, 2L under the tap at 75% efficiency but you can change all that).
No matter what its a good idea to measure your dead space (under the tap), fill the keggel to the weld line in the middle (25L), fire up the burner time how long it takes to reach a boil. boil for 15 minutes and measure the boil off X4 should give you your rate of boiloff / hour.
Buy a decent thermometer that you can trust (get a decent glass lab one as a reference).

Keep good records, after your first brew go back into your software, adjust until it matches what you actually got rather than what you think you might get. Save that and your next order will be a lot closer to target.

Have fun
Mark
 

SKBugs

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I also have a keggle - in this case a 50 litre that i use to brew 20l all grain.

How do I calculate strike temp and overall boil volume to calculate my final batch size? Online calculator or something I'd imagine,
  • I use Brewers Friend with the settings for my keggle setup. To measure my temp, strike water amount, i used Brew in a Bag (BIAB) Calculator ~ which is a good place to start. I would also make a measuring stick to work out how much wort/water you lose at each step. For me, with a 3 burner, i lose about 7kg including mash and boil.
at this point I don't have a lid sorted, I'm sure I could find something to put over the top but ultimately I need a lid.
  • I use my fry pan lid and it is excellent.
How about blankets/insulation for maintaining temps during mash?
  • I'm in Ipswich QLD, and i only use a piece of insulation if i'm brewing on a cool night. Coming into winter that might change, but mostly i wont lose more than 2 degrees ever. The lid makes a big difference to this.
  • I would totally recommend a digital thermometer that has a temp alarm. That allows you to really get your processes right.
How many days is it going to take a 2 ring burner to get my wort up to a boil? 4?
  • My 3 ring will get 27 l to 70 degrees in 30mins. The boil takes pretty much the same. (i do lose some heat when i'm adding the left overs from the wort in the grain bag.
I want to do no chill, as I really don't want to jump down the path of chillers just yet, worst case it'll sit overnight until cool enough to pitch, best case I can drop it into the pool and bring it down a little faster.
  • Yep, no problems there, so long as you make enough to fit your cube or whatever you are putting the wort in.

Recipe kits, do they have to specify that they're for BIAB? (I'll go Recipe kits until I get comfortable again)
  • Whatever recipe i come across i run through brewers friend and tweak as necessary. It seems to work pretty good so far. As far as specs go, if you are having your grain milled, you can tell them its for a BIAB setup and they may mill finer, but from what i hear, that is a hassle for LHBS coz they have to constantly change their levels etc. At the end of the day you get what you get and you don't get upset😁. I'm the same and would very much like to mill my own at some stage. That being said, i haven't had cause for complaint with my beers.
Hope it helps.

Cheers,
Steve
 

Bax

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Thanks guys, awesome posts. I'm going to hit the button tonight on an order from kegking to get the remaining bits that I've been waiting on from kegland, another 12 days until co2 tanks are back in stock and as a bonus kegking has got the 20L cube in stock. For whatever reason bunnings doesn't seem to have the 20L's anymore.

I'm in Rockhampton, QLD. I know there's a local group of guys and I'm part of their crew on facebook, but admittedly after so long I've basically lost all contact and haven't followed anything for a while. Martin at National was my old go to for ingredients, I'm assuming he's still powering on.
 

MaggieO

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Good luck and welcome back to the hobby!
 

Bax

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Well I kegged yesterday. From initial tastes it seems pretty good.

Will need to check my hydrometer calibration though as I'm fairly sure I got a 1.000 on the FG.
 

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