My first biab in my 40lt urn

Post #1 made 7 years ago
Well, today was the day to try a few firsts. My first biab in my urn, my first no chill & the first time using BrewMate software. I have gone from a 3V temp controlled rims system to biab & here's how my brew day went.
I aimed for a simple APA, hopped with cascade & centennial, 23lt into the cube @1.049, 70% efficiency. My recipe called for a 30lt strike in @69.2deg for a 90min rest @66deg. Once at temp, I added the grain bag, crushed grain & the mash settled in @65.7, close enough. Lid on & wrapped in blankets for the 90min sacc rest. After sacc rest, I took a temp reading, lost a couple of degrees so will improve on this next time round. I switched the urn back on & ramped to my mash out temp of 78deg whilst continually stirring with my paint stirrer. Once at 78deg, I switched off the urn & hoisted the bag. I haven't got around to installing my pulley system yet but will do so for the next brew. Hoisting & holding the bag was quite heavy & the pulley system will make things a lot easier. I did a 60min boil with a grain bag that kind of made a swimming pool for the hops & using the bag should help with trub management. As this was my first biab, I ran with what numbers I got & did not add any water or adjust hops to keep true to the recipe, I just let everything run as it unfolded. I was expecting 23lt into the cube@1.049 & ended up a little short @21lts but with an OG of 1.061 temp corrected. In BrewMate, I had my losses to trub/fermenter @0 instead of the 2.5lt that I lost so I factored this into my next brew. This gives me an efficiency of a tad over 80% so am very pleased with that result. I drained the urn after switching it off & leaving it settle for about 30mins. I did not use a silicone tube for transfer, I just let it run full bore into the cube. I did get a bit of trub into the cube but have been advised that this will not be an issue. Due to the higher efficiency & resulting higher gravity, I will need to dilute my cubed 21lt to bring it back in line with my target 1.049. I use this equation: OG/expected OG x L ( 1.061 / 1.049 x 21 = 26 ) 61/49x21=26. 26-21=5. Add 5L to the 21lt in the cube to get 26lt @1.049. I will also hop tea into the fermenter after a week to give it a little hop boost. I did squeeze the bag which added to my trub losses so I may omit this next time round. So to sum my first biab up, it was extremely simple, time efficient & very enjoyable. I ended up spending 3.5hrs in the shed. This saved me some time compared to my 3V system. Another plus is the extra wort I ended up with for far less effort. 26lt instead of my expected 23lt so you gotta be happy with that.
Cheers,
Brian

Post #2 made 7 years ago
Excellent! :champ:

You also have a lot less to clean up than you do with 3V and don't be afraid to squeeze the bag, there's lots of good yeast food in there. ;)

Glad to hear things went well the first time out for you, welcome to the easiest way to excellent all-grain beer.

---Todd
Last edited by thughes on 12 Jun 2012, 20:06, edited 3 times in total.
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Post #3 made 7 years ago
Crusty,

My first BIAB was a panic. I made a dozen mistakes and was discouraged by mucking up such a simple brew. The beer turned out great and my next brew session was as smooth as silk. (It was about the last time it went that smooth) Anyway, thanks for the brew day diary. Keep up the good work! Welcome to the heretic brewers!
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Post #4 made 7 years ago
Good Day, I never hit the Final volume based on time...Weather, humidity, beer God, etc, Have made this possible.

After 80% of my PLANNED boil time(68min.), I now need to measure the Kettle Volume to Hit my numbers.

Sometimes the boil takes 80 minutes, somtimes 100 minutes, Pretty good for a 90 minute planned boil.

It is a Small 12L batch on the stove!

Please see http://www.biabrewer.info/viewtopic.php?f=53&t=1231 if your interested!
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Post #5 made 7 years ago
Crusty wrote:I have gone from a 3V temp controlled rims system to biab & here's how my brew day went.
Top job Brian :thumbs: :clap: :salute:,

I know Bob used to 3V and so did I (plus quite a few others on the forum) but I really take my hat off to guys like you who have invested so much in 3V gear and have still been willing to give BIAB a shot.

Really pleased to hear you enjoyed it :).

On the trub losses, I suspect most of this would have been hops. The biab bag makes a very good hop sock if you just let it dangle loosely in the boil which you'll be able to do easily when you get your pulley set up.

Will look forward to hearing how your next brews go.

Good on you :peace:,
PP
Last edited by PistolPatch on 13 Jun 2012, 19:56, edited 3 times in total.
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Post #6 made 7 years ago
PistolPatch wrote:
Crusty wrote:I have gone from a 3V temp controlled rims system to biab & here's how my brew day went.
Top job Brian :thumbs: :clap: :salute:,

I know Bob used to 3V and so did I (plus quite a few others on the forum) but I really take my hat off to guys like you who have invested so much in 3V gear and have still been willing to give BIAB a shot.

Really pleased to hear you enjoyed it :).

On the trub losses, I suspect most of this would have been hops. The biab bag makes a very good hop sock if you just let it dangle loosely in the boil which you'll be able to do easily when you get your pulley set up.

Will look forward to hearing how your next brews go.

Good on you :peace:,
PP
Thanks Pat.
I used a grain bag from CraftBrewer, the 24"x24" medium mesh grain bag pegged around the outside of the urn for the hop pellets. I assume the trub was increased by me squeezing the bag which I now know is not necessary. Factoring this into BrewMate software, I will just strike in with the 2.5lt more water to compensate. My first time using my new MashMaster mini mill as well so the brew day was a day of firsts for me. At the end of the day, I ended up with a 1.060 temp corrected wort & achieved over 80% efficiency & am extremely pleased with the process. I am matching my numbers to the 3V system but am doing so much less work & cleaning & the whole biab process was fantastic. I urge anyone thinking about giving biab a try to go for it. It is not difficult & you will never look back. I pitched an American Ale 1056 this afternoon after adding the desired amount of cooled boiled water to the fermenter to bring my OG back into line with my recipe starting gravity of 1.049. After a week or so, I will give this brew a small amount of hop tea to compensate for the slight dilution. I am looking forward to getting this one in the bottles & the 6-8 week wait is going to be a long one.
Last edited by Crusty on 13 Jun 2012, 20:37, edited 3 times in total.

Post #7 made 7 years ago
Hey Crusty,

Good work on your first BIAB. :party:

In Brewmate, add your expected trub losses to your batch size. IE, 32.5L instead of 30L
If you add it to the losses section, the program just adds the extra water without adjusting for the extra grain/hops etc you would need.

HC
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Post #8 made 7 years ago
housecat wrote:Hey Crusty,

Good work on your first BIAB. :party:

In Brewmate, add your expected trub losses to your batch size. IE, 32.5L instead of 30L
If you add it to the losses section, the program just adds the extra water without adjusting for the extra grain/hops etc you would need.

HC
Thanks for that. I didn't realize that,
Cheers
Last edited by Crusty on 18 Jun 2012, 20:37, edited 3 times in total.

Post #9 made 7 years ago
I bottled my first BIAB today, an APA hopped with Centennial & Cascade. Being my first BIAB & not knowing what to expect, I ended up with a much higher OG than expected & slightly less volume so I ended up pitching the yeast after watering the brew down to my starting OG of 1.049 from 1.061. I ended up adding a tad over 4lts to the fermenter & decided to hop tea after a week of fermentation. I worked out that I would need to hop @1g / lt of wort & less trub, I will need 20g of Cascade. I used a 4cup coffee plunger, tossed in 20gms of Cascade & poured boiling water in & let it infuse for 15mins, plunged & poured the hop tea into the fermenter & left it for another week. I had a taste today whilst bottling & I think I am looking down the barrel of the best beer I have ever made. It has a full body, awesome grain flavour & a beautiful hop note to it, it's unbelievable.
So to sum up my first BIAB in a 40lt urn, well I'm totally convinced that BIAB & no chill is awesome. I am so glad I went this route & I am looking to do my next brew ASAP.
Cheers

Post #10 made 7 years ago
Exciting stuff Crusty!

While we are waiting, if you have time, I'd love some more info on the coffee plunger side of things. Maybe even a new thread, "Post-Boil Bitterness Corrections - Are they Worth It?"

I often get higher OG's than I predict and often dilute. I have never noticed a problem but many of these recipes I would have never brewed before. Logic tells you there shouldn't be too much of a problem diluting (what goes in must come out) but, I know, hop formulas tell you something else :lol:. It's something I have never worried about until bcull brought the problem up here and I stupidly decided to add these formulas into the upcoming BIBacus :lol:. You wouldn't believe how long the formulas are :roll:.

I still have to write one more bit in to the dilution formulas before I can see how they all work together. For now, I'm wondering if any sort of post-boil bitterness adjustments are warranted if you find yourself with an efficiency higher than expected?

What made you decide to do it? And how did you come up with the 1g/L figure?

I love reading things like this - really interesting. Hold on...

No, I'd love it more if you hit enter more often! All your posts are a single paragraph which to me is like eating a Mars Bar in one gulp. You write so much good stuff I want to not miss a bit of flavour, so more paras please for me if you can ;).

(I should probably hit Enter less :roll:)

Can't wait to hear how this beer ends up tasting :thumbs:
PP
Last edited by PistolPatch on 26 Jun 2012, 21:27, edited 3 times in total.
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Post #11 made 7 years ago
Thanks Pat.
My hop additions were based on a wort into the fermenter of 23lt @1.049. Due to the higher OG, I decided to water it down to get to my starting OG of 1.049 otherwise even with a full attenuating yeast like the Wyeast 1056, I would end up with a FG a tad too high & would most likely throw out my ABV as well. Adding 4.2lt to the wort to get to my starting OG, this wort is now too diluted for my hop additions so not the best scenario. Being my first BIAB as well, I needed to find my feet so to speak as to how my system ran according to my recipe calculations using my brewing software. Taking notes & recording volumes, gravities etc has made it easier for the next time I brew this exact recipe. I now have a pretty accurate idea of my grain absorption rate based on my grain mill setting & my losses to trub with my system. Due to the dilution of this beer I know that the hop additions are now out because of the extra volume but it's really an easy fix. I did not bother to correct my bitterness which I could of by simply boiling some bittering hops ( centennial for this recipe ) & adding that to the fermenter after primary fermentation is finished. Adding the hop tea before primary fermentation is finished will result in less of an impact as the still fermenting wort will drive off some of that bittering or flavour you are trying to add, so it's either added after primary fermentation is pretty much complete or added to a secondary vessel if you do a secondary ferment. I am not sure where I got the formula for the hop tea addition. It was suggested to me that a hop tea rate of 1g/lt will give a really nice hop flavour & this has proven to be correct. I had close to 2lt of trub & spent yeast in the bottom of my fermenter & calculated that I had 20lt or so of wort. I grabbed 20g of cascade which was an aroma addition in my original recipe & tossed that into my 4 cup coffee plunger, filled it up with boiling water & let it steep for 15mins. After 15mins, I slowly plunged the plunger & added the hop tea to the fermenter, it was still quite hot but such a small volume of water into the 20lt of wort will cause no problems at all. I am thinking of doing this from now on to all my no chill recipes that call for a 0min hop addition. Just do the 0min addition as a hop tea using 1g/lt as your infusion rate. Tasting the beer yesterday as I was bottling, I can detect a very, very nice aroma & taste of cascade which was not present as strongly against my usual way of adding hops at 0mins. I can't wait to taste this beer once it's carbed, it's going to be a cracker.

Post #12 made 7 years ago
What, only one para? :lol:

I must give this a go Crusty. Will definitely put this on my list of things to do. Do you think the hop tea adds much bitterness or just flavour/aroma?

My brain is fried from too many formulas, coffee and beer. There's really two questions I have that I didn't word properly in my last post here. I should have asked...

1. In the case where your efficiency is higher and you dilute, what methods can you employ to correct the bitterness to gravity ratio? (This is where your hop tea comes in as one solution.)

2. In the case where your evaporation is too high and you are simply diluting to get back to your correct volume and gravity, is it even worth making any correction? In this situation, I think not.

Of course, the usual scenario is more likely a cross between the above. The formulas being worked on atm aim to show when there is a real problem with the B/G ratio. I just wonder what other things can be done to fix it when there is a problem and if we could actually come up with any guidelines :think:.

Only 10am here and I'm rambling already :roll:.
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Post #13 made 7 years ago
PistolPatch wrote:What, only one para? :lol:

I must give this a go Crusty. Will definitely put this on my list of things to do. Do you think the hop tea adds much bitterness or just flavour/aroma?

My brain is fried from too many formulas, coffee and beer. There's really two questions I have that I didn't word properly in my last post here. I should have asked...

1. In the case where your efficiency is higher and you dilute, what methods can you employ to correct the bitterness to gravity ratio? (This is where your hop tea comes in as one solution.)

2. In the case where your evaporation is too high and you are simply diluting to get back to your correct volume and gravity, is it even worth making any correction? In this situation, I think not.

Of course, the usual scenario is more likely a cross between the above. The formulas being worked on atm aim to show when there is a real problem with the B/G ratio. I just wonder what other things can be done to fix it when there is a problem and if we could actually come up with any guidelines :think:.

Only 10am here and I'm rambling already :roll:.
One big paragraph though Pat. :thumbs:
A 15min steep I find will give no bitterness at all, purely for flavour & aroma.
Point 1: I will have to rack my brain & try & come up with a solution to correctly work out a formula for the B/G ratio. I didn't bother trying to fix a slight loss in bitterness as we are only brewing on a small scale & the bitterness will be fine, I don't think it is that important to warrant the correction, but that's up to the individual I guess. I just took it on the chin.
Point 2: Again another small adjustment can be made but I think it's too small a problem to worry about & I probably would not try to make any corrections.
I think the 4 cup coffee plunger is a really good size for a standard 23lt batch to make bitterness, aroma & flavour corrections. It may be a little hard to accurately work out a precise formula for making corrections because everyone has a different preference to what they may perceive as being hoppy enough or not. I would just as a starting point, use a 4 cup coffee press & go from there.
The one I own is a Bodum Chamboard available at all good coffee shops. I think I paid about $45.00 for it.
Give this a go Pat on your next brew & I am pretty sure you will be very happy with the results. I used to dry hop some of my brews with a secondary vessel but quite often found that the dry hopping led to some grassiness flavours in my beers & stopped doing them.
Last edited by Crusty on 27 Jun 2012, 10:42, edited 3 times in total.

Post #14 made 7 years ago
Seven paras!!! I'm in heaven :lol:.

Thanks for that info :salute:. I imagine that any formula we come up with would be pretty inaccurate. I mean the existing 'normal' hop formulas are so we'd probably be going way out on a limb - lol. Let me know though if you come up with something.

I've got a no-chill brew here that needs dry hopping when it is fermented so I'll do the hop tea instead :peace:.

Thanks again :thumbs:.
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Post #15 made 7 years ago
PistolPatch wrote:Seven paras!!! I'm in heaven :lol:.

Thanks for that info :salute:. I imagine that any formula we come up with would be pretty inaccurate. I mean the existing 'normal' hop formulas are so we'd probably be going way out on a limb - lol. Let me know though if you come up with something.

I've got a no-chill brew here that needs dry hopping when it is fermented so I'll do the hop tea instead :peace:.

Thanks again :thumbs:.
No problems Pat.
Whatever amount you are going to dry hop with, add the exact amount to the coffee plunger ( 4 cup ) & steep it for 15mins. Let us know if you find a difference between the two. :thumbs:
Last edited by Crusty on 27 Jun 2012, 10:59, edited 3 times in total.

Post #16 made 7 years ago
You can also take your tea with you too parties where you know there will only be BMC type swill.Just a couple drops and it peps up the blandest of beers!
AWOL

Post #17 made 7 years ago
Lol Lylo ;)

Just to go even more off-topic (I know Crusty won't mind), the 4L coffee plunger, or should I say two of them, offers up a whole new world of experimentation.

I like testing brewing 'theories' side by side. It's actually the only way I can see that brewing theories can be tested properly. You'd be shocked at how many 'theories' are given weight based on anecdotes from single brews brewed weeks apart or numbers that have been simply extrapolated.

I have two brewing rigs but doing side by sides is a major inconvenience for me. On a brew day I want to end up with two different beers not two variations of the same one!

Crusty, your mention of a 4L coffee plunger opens up a whole new world for me, much more than hop tea even! It might be a few months away but my next brewing purchase/excitement will be at least two 4L coffee plungers - preferably three.

Maybe someone can find a cheap link on eBay?

Maybe others can also think of brewing experiments we could do with two or three of these? We could form a cult of brewing testers - hahahaha! (But, seriously, a fanatical cult of testers is probably what is needed to combat some of the myths that seem to fly around :whistle:)

Many thanks Crusty :salute:. Can't wait to think more on what a few plungers could tell us.

:thumbs:
PP
Last edited by PistolPatch on 02 Jul 2012, 01:41, edited 3 times in total.
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Post #18 made 7 years ago
all,
Crusty, your mention of a 4L coffee plunger opens up a whole new world for me, much more than hop tea even!

Don't forget Coffee press ....

http://www.stempski.com/hop_vodka.php

http://traffic.libsyn.com/basicbrewing/ ... 2vodka.mp3
Last edited by BobBrews on 02 Jul 2012, 02:58, edited 3 times in total.
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Post #20 made 7 years ago
Crusty wrote:I bottled my first BIAB today, an APA hopped with Centennial & Cascade. Being my first BIAB & not knowing what to expect, I ended up with a much higher OG than expected & slightly less volume so I ended up pitching the yeast after watering the brew down to my starting OG of 1.049 from 1.061. I ended up adding a tad over 4lts to the fermenter & decided to hop tea after a week of fermentation. I worked out that I would need to hop @1g / lt of wort & less trub, I will need 20g of Cascade. I used a 4cup coffee plunger, tossed in 20gms of Cascade & poured boiling water in & let it infuse for 15mins, plunged & poured the hop tea into the fermenter & left it for another week. I had a taste today whilst bottling & I think I am looking down the barrel of the best beer I have ever made. It has a full body, awesome grain flavour & a beautiful hop note to it, it's unbelievable.
So to sum up my first BIAB in a 40lt urn, well I'm totally convinced that BIAB & no chill is awesome. I am so glad I went this route & I am looking to do my next brew ASAP.
Cheers
Re 'coffee plunger'. Recently viewed another practical use of a 'French press'. http://www.basicbrewing.com/index.php?page=video" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Last edited by thylacine on 02 Jul 2012, 17:57, edited 3 times in total.

Post #21 made 7 years ago
I use a 4 cup (800ml) French press for my no chill super late aroma additions

Basically pour boiling water on the hops and stir/steep for one minute. Plunge and pour into fermenter

Then add more boiling water and restir and steep for 5 minutes. Then plunge and pour

Really good for adding late aroma which I just find you miss with no chill

I got my plunger at big w for <20$ and it works quite well, it's Pyrex and black plastic and is fully sanitizable ;)
Fermenting: -
Cubed: -
Stirplate: -
On Tap: NS Summer Ale III (WY1272), Landlord III (WY1469), Fighter's 70/- II (WY1272), Roast Porter (WY1028), Cider, Soda
Next: Munich Helles III

5/7/12

Post #22 made 7 years ago
Ps: don't overfill a French press!
Fermenting: -
Cubed: -
Stirplate: -
On Tap: NS Summer Ale III (WY1272), Landlord III (WY1469), Fighter's 70/- II (WY1272), Roast Porter (WY1028), Cider, Soda
Next: Munich Helles III

5/7/12

Post #23 made 6 years ago
This tea hop cafetiere thing/idea is....genius!

I think I will be trying this out instead of dry hopping (or maybe as well) - think this could even be done after my 21 day maturing - it will give such a fresh flavour right before racking....funny because BrewDog are developing an instant hop infusion system which happens at the dispense stage, in front of the customer!!!!
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