Biab On Electric Stove

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benny_bjc

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Hello,

I am in the process of learning and hopefully moving to BIAB / All grain brewing. (Small batches around 10-20L of ale first off and I won't be brewing regularly).
I want to keep things as simple as possible (both equipment and process wise).

Am I asking for trouble trying to start BIAB on an electric stove with a stock pot? It seems most people use gas... I'm sure it is much more reliable and of course much easier to maintain temperatures.
I think the other option is to buy a stainless steal urn (like this one
However that costs a fair bit... but maybe it is worth it?? Can everything be done in the urn, like BIAB in a stock pot, or is there other equipment and processes to consider with this route?

Any other info or help is welcome!
Thanks Heaps!
 

seemax

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40L (30L at pinch) urn will get your brewing standard 23L batches without much fuss, but it will set you back $200+

In regards to the stove, it can be done with a pot... search for Nick's BigW 19L pot method... but much volume can your stove boil?
 

mrTbeer

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I use electric stove and 19L stockpot similar to nickjd's method. My ceran stove struggles to hit the boil but maintains it ok.
 

Fat Bastard

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I reckon it'd struggle to get a 35-45l stock pot to the boil. I tried to boil my 36 litre pot half full on 2 different electric stoves and I lost patience with it.

You could always buy a cheap pot, try boiling it, and if it boils, happy days. If it won't boil, buy a 2200w heater element and ball valve from one of the site sponsors, and you'll be out of it for less than the price of an urn.
 

Nick JD

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The big element on an electric stove is 2200W.
 

Fat Bastard

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The big element on an electric stove is 2200W.
Theoretically, yes. Still couldn't boil my half full pot in a realistic timeframe with 2 different stoves though. I use a 2400w element in mine, and it'll boil 30 litres in just over an hour to a decent boil. Wouldn't have thought the extra 200w would have made that much of a difference!

I'd reckon having the element immersed is what done it, yer Honour.

Still, I'd have a crack at doing a test boil on the stove and see how it goes first.
 

Maheel

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The big element on an electric stove is 2200W.
yes but i reckon the internal element is more efficient so works better

but the nick method does work really well, it got me started :)
 

Spork

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beer007 - 1/2 size batches are def. possible on an electric stove, but personally the novelty of 3 hours brewing for < 12 bottles, and the complaints from SWMBO and kids (It smells, we want to use the stove, GTFO of the kitchen) soon pushed me down the 40 litre urn path.
Now I can dio full size batches, outside in man land, in a bit longer than those little batches took.

Everything (BIAB) can be done in an urn - although I added a basin to sparge with, and ye olde bigW stockpot on BBQ wok burner to heat said sparge water as I was getting shit (61%) efficiency without any sparge. Later on if you decide to go 3v, the urn can still be a useful part of your brewery from what I hear.

For me the urn was worth every cent. I don't have much room for brewing. If I had a decent shed, or was a bachelor, I'd possibly go 3v instead. Other members have lots of success just with a stove, a stockpot and high gravity wort diluted to full batches of regular strength beer.
 

pimpsqueak

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I did a few full batches on my stovetop but the only reason I was able to get a good boil going was that the main element was faulty and stayed on full tilt, rather than switching on and off like ceramic cooktops are supposed to.

The other complete bastard was lifting the bag when it's already at chest height and holding it there to drain.

Go the urn for simplicity any day, but if you must use the stovetop then it is possible. Maybe try the 19L maxi-biab to start?
 

kymba

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or don't boil at full volume... if you have pissweak hobs like mine just halve it so you get 5L of 1.080 to a boil then top up with water and other sugars if needed

obviously you will need to tweak the recipe to suit
 

Nick JD

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or don't boil at full volume... if you have pissweak hobs like mine just halve it so you get 5L of 1.080 to a boil then top up with water and other sugars if needed
I usually boil 14L of 1.060-1.075 ... violently, with a 2200W stove element. Cost a few cents more in hops to get the same IBUs and I probably get more caramelisation/mailard reactions (is that a bad thing?!) but it means I can dilute to a keg-sized batch in the fermenter.

BTW - new stove elements are freakin cheap.
 

QldKev

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If the element on your stove is 2200w I dont think it will be that much different to an internal element. The large element on my stove was only 1800w and it just did not hack the job.

QldKev
 

Nick JD

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If the element on your stove is 2200w I dont think it will be that much different to an internal element. The large element on my stove was only 1800w and it just did not hack the job.

QldKev
I think there's a bit more contact with an immersed element and perhaps less loss to the air from the outside of the pot and convection, but I'm always surprised when people can't get a healthy boil from the big element on their stoves.

My one kicks arse and it's a shitty stove. I think I've wrecked the thermostat though - only runs on eleven these days. The Mrs kept burning shit, turns out if it's on full noise at the start of cooking it doesn't respond to being turned down - stays on full noise. You have to turn it off and then clockwise round to a lower temperature now.
 

GalBrew

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My shitty ceramic stovetop is fine in a 20L pot for a 10L batch. Just keep in mind it's not that quick compared to gas.
 

craigo

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my electric stove does the job fine.
 

_HOME_BREW_WALLACE_

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I reckon you all just need a big-arse pot that covers all 4 elements on your stove, turn them up to full-piss and do quad batches :icon_cheers: :lol:

EDIT: or do what LRG does.
 

badboyd

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Maybe you can boil the water in a kettle before adding it into the pot. It should speed things up a bit.
 

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