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First Biab In My 40lt Urn

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Crusty

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So I finally got around to doing my first BIAB today, an American Pale Ale, no chill, hopped with centennial & cascade & also my first time using BrewMate software.
I've got quite a few All Grain beers under my belt but this was my first BIAB. The day went extremely well & all finished in around 3.5hrs.
Note to self: Get off ya butt & install that pulley you bought a month ago. Holding the bag & letting it drain was a workout even for a single batch, so the pulley is a god send. I mashed in with 30lt water @69.2deg & added the bag & grain & it settled @65.7deg, aiming for 66deg, so pretty close. I lost around 2deg after a 90min sacc rest so will improve on that next time round. After the rest, I ramped up to 78deg mash out whilst continually pumping with the paint stirrer. Once @78deg, turned the urn off & hoisted the bag. I aimed for a 23lt final batch @1.049 but I failed to add my loss to trub/chiller in BrewMate & left it at 0 so I ended up only getting around 21lt into the cube but the gravity was 1.061. I worked out 70% efficiency for this beer & ended up with a tad over 80%, so BIAB efficiency is great & something I was worried about beforehand compared to my traditional 3V set up. I did squeeze the bag & pre-boil volume was 27.5lt instead of 26.6lt so I may not squeeze next time. I found the squeeze probably contributed to a bit more trub but I'm not too phased by it. If anyone is thinking of giving BIAB a go, I say go for it, It's a fantastic way to brew. I quite often hear comments that BIAB is just a stepping stone to bigger & better beers but in my experience, if you are happy with single batch 23lt beers from 3-6%, look no further than BIAB, it's fantastic.
ps. The cube sample tasted awesome. :icon_cheers:
 

RdeVjun

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You've done really well on a maiden BIAB! :beerbang:
You may be aware of this already but when it comes time to pitch, just dilute the wort to the desired strength:
614921L=26L (roughly)
So add 26L-21L=5L water (must be sanitary!)
Should put you right into the zone! :icon_cheers:
 

Bribie G

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Well done old son :icon_chickcheers: - glad to hear you made the leap, no going back now.
 

Crusty

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You've done really well on a maiden BIAB! :beerbang:
You may be aware of this already but when it comes time to pitch, just dilute the wort to the desired strength:
614921L=26L (roughly)
So add 26L-21L=5L water (must be sanitary!)
Should put you right into the zone! :icon_cheers:
Thanks mate.
I thought about diluting it to get to my desired OG before fermenting but was a little worried about the hop additions. Simply adding the desired anount of water will fix my voulmes but on the downside, it will also throw out my hop additions, won't it? or are my hop additions out already with the higher OG?


Well done old son :icon_chickcheers: - glad to hear you made the leap, no going back now.
Thanks Bribie for all you help via my PM's. I really appreciate the help & advice you offered me & the day wouldn't of went as well as it did without your help. :icon_chickcheers:
BIAB & no chill is awesome & it's defiantly no looking back from here on in.
Cheers
 

Barley Belly

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Glad it all went well for you Crusty. :icon_cheers:

At what times did you add your hops additions?
 

Crusty

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Glad it all went well for you Crusty. :icon_cheers:

At what times did you add your hops additions?
Hi BB.
Thanks to you mate also for answering some concerns I had before taking the plunge.
Just a simple recipe, no chill.
15g Centennial ( 10.5% ) @60mins & 25g Cascade ( 6.2% ) @10mins.
32IBU & 4.8%. Cube sample tastes awesome.
 

GuyQLD

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Yesterday must have been the day for firsts.

I did my first BIAB yesterday, and anything that could go wrong did go wrong.

New gear / New technique and no experience made for a fun day, but when all is said and done I got 18.5L of 1.060 Grav wort into my fermenter, with a bit of top up water hit 1.048-1.049ish. Which considering I was shooting for 1.046 on the recipe I'm pretty stoked and now I know what I'm doing, I imagine next brew day will be so much better.

Doesn't seem to matter how much "research" I did, at the end of the day it was me, a crab pot and 5kg of grain battling it out. And there's no substitute for experience.

Can't wait to taste the results. The house still smells malty.
 

Amber Fluid

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Considering you have gone from 3V to BIAB I just have a couple of q's....

1/ Why the change?

2/ How do you compare between the 2 ways of brewing, although you have only done one BIAB?

3/ Do you think one system is better than the other?

Obviously if you want really high gravity brews then there is only one way to go, but if this is no factor, and in a perfect world, you had to choose between the 2, which one would you prefer?

I BIAB but I see not often someone gives up 3V brewing to go to BIAB (usually the other way around), so am curious on what your thoughts are with the whole procedure.
 

Crusty

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Yesterday must have been the day for firsts.

I did my first BIAB yesterday, and anything that could go wrong did go wrong.

New gear / New technique and no experience made for a fun day, but when all is said and done I got 18.5L of 1.060 Grav wort into my fermenter, with a bit of top up water hit 1.048-1.049ish. Which considering I was shooting for 1.046 on the recipe I'm pretty stoked and now I know what I'm doing, I imagine next brew day will be so much better.

Doesn't seem to matter how much "research" I did, at the end of the day it was me, a crab pot and 5kg of grain battling it out. And there's no substitute for experience.

Can't wait to taste the results. The house still smells malty.
Nice one Guy.
Looks like you got good efficiency as well. I was really concerned that doing biab was in some way a step backwards from my 3V system but that couldn't be further from the truth. I got over 80% efficiency with my first ever biab & I am chuffed. The strike in was great, rich, foamy, malty goodness filling the house. The hardest part for me on the day was the hoisting of the bag, it was pretty heavy holding it out of the water for the required time that I could slip it into another pot to drain it. I will get my pulley set up for the next brew. It was a few firsts for me. New gear, first biab, first no chill & first time using BrewMate in the field.
 

roverfj1200

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Great work.. And one more reason for me to turn...


Cheers
 

Crusty

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Amber,
My 3V setup was very hands on & was a PID controlled Rims system. As far as making better beer, I think there is no difference at all, they can both make equal quality beers.
I really just got sick of the whole process. Heating up strike water via gas, transferring water to the mash tun, recirculating through the rims tube
( often resulting in a stuck mash ) even using extra strike water & rice hulls. Pump, hoses, camlocks, silicone beer line everywhere, I just got sick of the process to the point where I couldn't be bothered brewing, it was that bad. I started off with a simple 10g igloo cooler mash tun which lost 0-1deg over an hour mash & got it into my head that controlling the temp would produce better beers. I made some of the best beers I have ever had with that set up & frankly, needed to give myself an uppercut for changing something that was already working so well. I looked at going back to the old system but thought about the urn & using electric as opposed to gas. I am glad I went biab now as it was such a simple brew day & clean up was a breeze. I am happy with standard beers so I have no interest in high gravity brewing & if I did, I would probably just make less volume brews, boil longer to achieve it. As I have had the chance to compare three methods of brewing, I can say with absolute certainty that biab is where I am staying. There are so many ways to brew, but for me, the simplicity & ease of doing this beer today has made me enjoy the process once more. If you biab & make great beers, don't be lured into believing that a 3V system will somehow produce a better beer, it just won't.
 

jakethesnake559

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Hey Crusty,

Congrats on making the sideways step to BIAB!!
I did a couple of 3V brews with a mate back when I was still into kits.
Looking at the setup and amount of stuff he had, I couldn't ever see myself getting that dedicated to brewing.
But then I stumbled on BIAB about a year ago, and absolutely love it :icon_cheers: !

I picked up a 40L Burko urn last month, and as you found, it's made things even simpler again.

Looking to hear some more of your BIAB insights given your 3V experience!!
 

RdeVjun

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Thanks mate.
I thought about diluting it to get to my desired OG before fermenting but was a little worried about the hop additions. Simply adding the desired anount of water will fix my voulmes but on the downside, it will also throw out my hop additions, won't it? or are my hop additions out already with the higher OG?
No sweat Crusty, kudos on a job well done!
IMO those hops should be fine, within reason of course, when diluted, but I presume that the recipe would've been designed for that 1.049, not 1.061. From that unexpectedly high efficiency you're looking at just a few extra litres of wort at the target strength here, but if you leave it undiluted you would perhaps be more likely to have BU:GU issues, 20% more GU.
However OTOH, more often than not the batches that deviate from the target are the exceptional beers, so I wouldn't knock anyone for trying either way. That's one thing with this caper, there's swings and roundabouts at every turn! I guess the most important thing is, no matter what you'll have loads of great beer and all made quite simply! :icon_cheers:
 

Crusty

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Hey Crusty,

Congrats on making the sideways step to BIAB!!
I did a couple of 3V brews with a mate back when I was still into kits.
Looking at the setup and amount of stuff he had, I couldn't ever see myself getting that dedicated to brewing.
But then I stumbled on BIAB about a year ago, and absolutely love it :icon_cheers: !

I picked up a 40L Burko urn last month, and as you found, it's made things even simpler again.

Looking to hear some more of your BIAB insights given your 3V experience!!
Simplicity is the big one that's for sure. After brewing on my 3V setup, I would be so glad it was over only to spend the next 45mins to an hour cleaning up. Empty the mash tun, disassemble the false bottom, hose everything out, pull the rims system down, get the element out & clean it, etc, etc, etc, stuff that. Too much work involved. There had to be a simpler way & biab was the result. I am in no way saying that if you own a 3V system you will encounter the same hassles as me but being time poor with three little kids, I don't get much time to myself so I needed to look at something more time efficient. Due to this being my first biab & first time using BrewMate, I just ran with what numbers I achieved without altering my volumes or hop additions. In the end though, I ended up with a little less voulume into the cube than expected but on the plus side, a much higher gravity & much better efficiency than planned. When I ferment, I will add 5lt to the cubed wort to bring it back in line with my 1.049 required & will hop tea to give it a little kick along. I will now be fermenting 26lt instead of the 23lt that I was expecting so more beer for less work.
You gotta be happy with that. :icon_cheers:
 

Tim

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I also have gone from 3V brewing to BIAB. I started with simple plastic bucket 3V setup about 10 years ago and made some excellent beers, but then bought all the shiny things and had a 60L all stainless brewery at one stage. I still have some of the kit, including a 60L vessel and a march pump, but my beers were not any better and my brewday was just getting longer and longer. To top it off the beers were suffering for it as well and I couldnt capture the quality I got on my ghetto system of a 25L willow esky, bucket of death HLT and 30L fermenter with immersion element over the side. I now brew in a 40L crown using BIAB. I have a 3 hour brewday and the beer is some of the best I have ever brewed.

Keeping it simple brews better beers, not shiny things.
 

Crusty

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I also have gone from 3V brewing to BIAB. I started with simple plastic bucket 3V setup about 10 years ago and made some excellent beers, but then bought all the shiny things and had a 60L all stainless brewery at one stage. I still have some of the kit, including a 60L vessel and a march pump, but my beers were not any better and my brewday was just getting longer and longer. To top it off the beers were suffering for it as well and I couldnt capture the quality I got on my ghetto system of a 25L willow esky, bucket of death HLT and 30L fermenter with immersion element over the side. I now brew in a 40L crown using BIAB. I have a 3 hour brewday and the beer is some of the best I have ever brewed.

Keeping it simple brews better beers, not shiny things.
Absolutely spot on Tim.
I was also having issues trying to get my beers as good as the old ghetto system. Not too sure why as everything was identical except the hardware. I'm not sure if it's just me or not, but the amount of malty goodness on top of that mash today was something I haven't seen in a long time. This beer will be fantastic for sure. It's kinda like cooking a steak on a gas BBQ as opposed to a wood fire BBQ. Both get cooked well but there's something a little more special with the wood fired one.
 

Crusty

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No sweat Crusty, kudos on a job well done!
IMO those hops should be fine, within reason of course, when diluted, but I presume that the recipe would've been designed for that 1.049, not 1.061. From that unexpectedly high efficiency you're looking at just a few extra litres of wort at the target strength here, but if you leave it undiluted you would perhaps be more likely to have BU:GU issues, 20% more GU.
However OTOH, more often than not the batches that deviate from the target are the exceptional beers, so I wouldn't knock anyone for trying either way. That's one thing with this caper, there's swings and roundabouts at every turn! I guess the most important thing is, no matter what you'll have loads of great beer and all made quite simply! :icon_cheers:
Will add the desired water volume based on your calculations to bring it back in line to expected OG. I am a little surprised my efficiency was so good, I certainly wasn't expecting it to be as good as it turned out.
Oh, if anyone is looking at buying a MashMaster minimill from Ross, get one. Brilliant mill.

Cheers :icon_cheers:
 

Amber Fluid

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Oh, if anyone is looking at buying a MashMaster minimill from Ross, get one. Brilliant mill.

Cheers :icon_cheers:
Yep have ordered one and am hoping mine will actually be at home tonight when I knock off. :p The old Marga just doesn't do the job anymore

Thanks for the feedback above.
 

chunckious

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I'm think of going down this route and getting a Crown 40l from Craftbrewer.
All the Non/Concealed element with build up and cut outs. I'm getting a sore arse from sitting on the fence.
Single batches suit my needs.
 

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