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First AG BIAB + no-chill

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angus_grant

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So I have been building myself a "brau-clone": a recirculating singel vessel system. It is now at the point in the build where I can start knocking out BIABs whilst I finish off the malt pipe.

Quite a while ago I bought some pre-milled grain packs from the Lord Raja Goomba last November. I was very close to the values in Raja's Brewmate brewsheet except for the pre-boil SG. He had it at 1045 and mine came out at 1032 so I was a bit worried about the efficiency of extraction until I remembered I needed to correct it for temperature. I measured after mash-out so it was about 75 degrees, which puts my corrected SG at around 1050

So my notes during the mash

  • 7:30: 29.1L pre mash
  • 8:30:water temp at 68
    mash in and temp drop of 1.8 degrees
    mash at 66 for 60 minutes
  • 9:30: raise temp to 75 for 10 minute mash-out
  • 9:45: 25.1L pre boil
    SG: 1032 temp corrected to 1051

So on with the photos

My brew station. The laptop receives temp data from the main vessel and fires the element using a PID library

Inside shot of the main vessel. Nothing really that special going on here.

Grain pack: (3.8kg pale ale malt; 500g heritage crystal; 200g cararoma; 40g pale chocolate)

Lord Raja's brewsheet he gave me for the grain pack

Woot!! First AG mash-in

By god, it looks like wort!!!!!!

And I'm spent. This will find a home with a neighbour who owns some chickens....

And the 60 minute boil is on. Nice and simple. 60 minute addition of 15g of pacific gem leaf.

Cleaning and sterilising cube. You can see my ferment fridge (with Coopers IPA 3/4 done) and keg fridge to the right.
If you are wondering why my ferment fridge is open, I plugged it straight into the wall as I was using the laptop to control the mash and it got down to 15 degrees. So just warming it back up to 18 degrees again.
I will be re-doing my electronics control box to allow me to run the fridge and beer system at the same time.
If you wanted to have a look at the fulll build, there is a link in my signature to my "Brewton" thread

By jove, 20L of wort packed in the cube waiting for the fermentation fridge!!!!

So all in all, I think I am pleased with my first AG brew day. Was fairly easy (I need to work on bag hoisting and draining) and my software worked well, main vessel worked well. Just hope the beer tastes good!

My one worry is that the temp probe is at the base of the pot and was measuring 75 during the mash out. I grabbed my digital thermometer and stuck it in the top of the bag and it was measuring 80 degrees. What would be the implications mashing too high?

I also forgot to take a final reading on the gravity. I did take a reading on the trub and crap left in the pot which came out at 1060 or so. I figure this is incorrect. I'll take a proper reading when I drop it into the fermentor sometime next week.
 

angus_grant

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Well the mystery of the temp difference has been solved. The old adage "you get what you pay for" applies exactly. The little brown pump I bought in one of the bulk buys has crapped out after one brew. Feels like the motor has partially seized. So I reckon it crapped out towards the end of the mash or during mash out because I checked flow out of the silicon tube towards the end of the mash...

I bought two pumps so I will have to use the other one and have a spare head. I suppose that is the bonus out of the situation. The threads on these pumps feel so flimsy that I will snap one at some point and need a spare head.

Guess I will have to bump buying a proper pump up the list of purchases. :blink:

I forgot to mention that the wort was smelling very nice. I was cleaning out the kettle and licked up some of the concentrated wort of the bottom. Like licking the spoon while cooking cakes :icon_drool2:

I may actually have two spare kegs once I ferment this Irish red ale. The Cooper IPA should only have a couple of days left fermenting, then cold crash for a couple of days, and then into keg. Force carbonate over a week. So should have IPA on tap in 8 days or so. Red ale should have finished fermenting then so cold crash and into keg. So 12 days and I should have two kegs. Saweet!!!
 

Bada Bing Brewery

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Have you taken the brown pump apart? Some shit stuck in it?? Might simply be a 12v connection - been there.........
Wouldn't worry to much about the temp difference at mashout. 75-80C at mashout - no drama........
Cheers
BBB
 

Crusty

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angus_grant said:
So I have been building myself a "brau-clone": a recirculating singel vessel system. It is now at the point in the build where I can start knocking out BIABs whilst I finish off the malt pipe.

Quite a while ago I bought some pre-milled grain packs from the Lord Raja Goomba last November. I was very close to the values in Raja's Brewmate brewsheet except for the pre-boil SG. He had it at 1045 and mine came out at 1032 so I was a bit worried about the efficiency of extraction until I remembered I needed to correct it for temperature. I measured after mash-out so it was about 75 degrees, which puts my corrected SG at around 1050

So my notes during the mash

  • 7:30: 29.1L pre mash
  • 8:30:water temp at 68
    mash in and temp drop of 1.8 degrees
    mash at 66 for 60 minutes
  • 9:30: raise temp to 75 for 10 minute mash-out
  • 9:45: 25.1L pre boil
    SG: 1032 temp corrected to 1051

So on with the photos

My brew station. The laptop receives temp data from the main vessel and fires the element using a PID library

Inside shot of the main vessel. Nothing really that special going on here.

Grain pack: (3.8kg pale ale malt; 500g heritage crystal; 200g cararoma; 40g pale chocolate)

Lord Raja's brewsheet he gave me for the grain pack

Woot!! First AG mash-in

By god, it looks like wort!!!!!!

And I'm spent. This will find a home with a neighbour who owns some chickens....

And the 60 minute boil is on. Nice and simple. 60 minute addition of 15g of pacific gem leaf.

Cleaning and sterilising cube. You can see my ferment fridge (with Coopers IPA 3/4 done) and keg fridge to the right.
If you are wondering why my ferment fridge is open, I plugged it straight into the wall as I was using the laptop to control the mash and it got down to 15 degrees. So just warming it back up to 18 degrees again.
I will be re-doing my electronics control box to allow me to run the fridge and beer system at the same time.
If you wanted to have a look at the fulll build, there is a link in my signature to my "Brewton" thread

By jove, 20L of wort packed in the cube waiting for the fermentation fridge!!!!

So all in all, I think I am pleased with my first AG brew day. Was fairly easy (I need to work on bag hoisting and draining) and my software worked well, main vessel worked well. Just hope the beer tastes good!

My one worry is that the temp probe is at the base of the pot and was measuring 75 during the mash out. I grabbed my digital thermometer and stuck it in the top of the bag and it was measuring 80 degrees. What would be the implications mashing too high?

I also forgot to take a final reading on the gravity. I did take a reading on the trub and crap left in the pot which came out at 1060 or so. I figure this is incorrect. I'll take a proper reading when I drop it into the fermentor sometime next week.
Nice one Angus.
No problems with the mash out, you'll be fine.
I mash out at 78deg.
Cheers
 

m3taL

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Nice work Mate,

:icon_offtopic:
I wouldnt mind knowing a little more about your rig as im currently trying to design a cheap and simple rig at the moment. currently using a gas burner but would love to get over to electric.

What Element are you running?
How many watts and where from etc?
Does it get a good rolling boil?
The bowl you put ontop during the boil, is that simply to keep the heat in?? to get a more vigorous boil?
 

angus_grant

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yeh, I pulled the pump apart. One very tiny speck of grain in the head.

I plugged my spare LBP into the connection and it fired straight away, so I reckon the first one is kapuut!!!!
 

angus_grant

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m3taL said:
Nice work Mate,

:icon_offtopic:
I wouldnt mind knowing a little more about your rig as im currently trying to design a cheap and simple rig at the moment. currently using a gas burner but would love to get over to electric.

What Element are you running?
How many watts and where from etc?
Does it get a good rolling boil?
The bowl you put ontop during the boil, is that simply to keep the heat in?? to get a more vigorous boil?
I am running a 2400W low density element from Helios in Brisbane. They bent the element for me and all the for the grand cost of . It gets a vaguely bubbling rolling boil but my pot is 40cm high by 40cms wide so quite square by homebrew standards. I lose a lot of heat through the top of the pot whereas urns and normal brew pots are tall and narrow to reduce this effect.

The stainless bowl I put on top is to reduce the gap at the top of the pot to reduce heat losses and I get a nice rolling boil. The hole in the top of the pot is fine with regards to evaporation and DMS/nasty stuff escaping as confirmed by Ross at Craftbrewer.

Here is the exact post in my Brewton thread where I talk about the electric element. You can probably read the whole thread and it is linked in my signature. Also read the Braumiser thread for some more ideas on single vessel electric breweries

And if you wanted cheap and simple, then I know some people have wired up STC 1000's as their temperature controller and little brown pumps to recirculate. No idea on the STC 1000's temp control though. The point of PID systems is to wind back the firing time of the element per cycle as you approach our target temp. So my activity light blinks on and off as I approach target temp. My wild guess is that the STC would eventually get you an accurate mash temp after it over-shoots and then turned off, went under, and then overshot again, etc, etc.

You can get stand-alone PID controllers (Auberins sell them, plus a bunch of other people, and of course eBay people flogging off Chinese knock-offs) so these would probably get you more accurate temperatures.
 

Truman42

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Mate these brown pumps are easy to fix. Pull it apart and clean the impeller shaft and bush in some hot water and Pbw. You should find bits of dried wort and crap stuck in that bush that had the slotted gear looking thingy. The bush gets crud in it then twists and pulls the impeller shaft against the body seizing the pump.
I've got 12 hours on the clock with my little brown pump and its still going strong after I did the above the first time I used it and she seized up.
Now I have my pump mounted vertically with the body at the top and its never seized since.
 

angus_grant

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Alright cool. I'll pull it apart tomorrow night and see what I can find. It certainly binds at one point in the rotation and there were a few small pieces of grain in the wort. They must have got through the bag somehow.
 

angus_grant

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Well pulled apart the pump, cleaned everything, and put it back together and no luck. I still have a spare pump so will run with that next time. I'll see what I can do plumbing-wise to get the pump body above the impeller so it should not get any wort in the body of the pump.

I'll pick up another LBP somewhere and then grab a decent pump to plump into the base of the system for the malt pipe install.

Thanks for the help,
Angus.
 

angus_grant

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So finally got to Craft Brewer and picked up a Wyeast 1084 Irish Ale yeast. Ross smacked it for me (he he) and it had started swelling when I got home about an hour later. Cleaned out my fermenter and pitched yeast at about 10PM tonight. Smell was fairly grainy and I am wondering what difference having all the hot and cold break in the cube and tipping that into fermenter.

According to Goomba's BrewMate recipe sheet I am down 4 points on original gravity. Not bad for a first AG I suppose. I'll have to find an online calculator and work out how much water to add next time to hit my OG properly.

Smacked pack:


Fermenter in fridge at 22 degrees


Now just have to wait 3 weeks for it to ferment out, cold crash, and then force carbonate. I'll be making Goomba's Big Wiener next weekend. I'm hoping to crank out a few no-chill cubes and have them sitting around so I can crank the ferments out and get a bit of a stockpile going. I have a spare double fridge which I scored from brother in law which will be great for storing kegs, yeast and hops.
 

asis

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Not a lot of head space, is it climbing out of the airlock yet?
 

angus_grant

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Pitched last night at around 10pm and checked this morning. Not too much krausen and blooping about once a second. Thought there might be more activity than that from what I have read on various forums but it has only been 10 hours.

And any blooping is good blooping. I have read some reports of this yeast fermenting out in 4 days, but that was with starters. I just smacked and pitched.

Can't wait for my first AG beer. May be taking it to a boys weekend at the end of this month.
 

angus_grant

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Huh, the yeasties are going crazy now. Blooping at least twice a second. It looks like the krausen is getting about half way up the headspace so far. May have to look at blow-off tube if it gets crazier. Sweet!!!!!!!!
 

Yob

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why was there hot break in the cube?

My LBP is as strong as an OX about 10-15 brews in and usually doesnt miss a beat... I stupidly had it on with the tap closed on the weekend and it didnt like that very much... let it cool and with a bit of coaxing fired back up again, stuttered to begin with so Im a little concerned and may just get the HEX up to temps and run it for an hour to test it before my next brewday. (24V and I do also have a sparie or two)

congrats on your first AG.. remember to post a piccie of the beer in the glass and some tasting notes

:icon_cheers:
 

angus_grant

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Cause I completely forgot to buy and add add any kettle finings... :blink:

The first pump is dead. Even with everything pulled apart, the motor does not wind over. No noise what so ever.

I still have a spare pump, so will run with that for this weekends brew. Will do some reconfiguring to get the pump body above the inlet/outlet as per my post as mentioned by someone else on this website. I'm not sure how that would help though as it would fill up under gravity and still leave wort in the body. I have a ball valve after the pump to choke the speed down, but would also need a ball valve before the pump so I could drain it for the boil.

Yeast has slowed down slightly this morning. I am wondering if I'll get a 3 or 4 day ferment. If that is the case I am sold on liquid yeasts. Expensive, but normally the dried yeast would take me 7-10 days to ferment out. And the cost is reduced once I start splitting the yeasts and making starters.
 

angus_grant

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Well ferment has finished finally. Final gravity was 1011 which leaves the beer at 4%. This was down on the recipe but I filled up the fermenter with too much water which resulted in a lower starting gravity. On with the pics.


The fermenter nice and clear. All the yeast has dropped and things are looking good


And here is my gravity filter setup. I purge the keg with CO2 first of all and then open the tap on the fermenter and it flows the the .45 micron filter. I think I will try a 1 micron filter to see what the taste difference is


Ooh, the filter looks nice and red. The Irish Red Ale has a really nice deep red colour. I am really looking forward to tasting it.


Two of Qlds best ready for shipping down to Goomba. He has recently moved from Brisbane to Tasmania so might be missing our fantastic XXX.
Actually it is two of the Red Ales for his tasting and critique
 

slash22000

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Huh. Does that whole gravity filter situation actually work? Wouldn't it oxidise the beer?
 

angus_grant

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Hmm, the way I figure it I am gravity filtering into a keg which is going to get CO2 purged and blasted into it about 2.5 seconds after I finish filtering. Granted though, it does take around 30 minutes to filter

I suppose I could flush the entire filtering system with CO2 before opening the fermenter, but I haven't had any off tastes in any of my previous beers from oxidation That being said I guess I don't know exactly what oxidation tastes like.

But I would have thought oxidation would take a fairly long time to affect the beer, as opposed to 35 minutes during filtration. Am I correct in this assumption?
 

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