Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #26 made 6 months ago
I just wanted to say, I'm still about and still brewing. Brewed my 8th BIAB yesterday, in the form of a Patersbier, and still getting excellent efficiency, allowing me to use less grain and get more beer into FV. The Patersbier I used 4k of Dingemans Pilsen malt, and got 23 litres of wort into the FV with an OG of 1.046. :peace: Using Maris Otter malt I get even better efficiency, as an example I brewed a golden ale with 3.6k of Maris Otter and 100g of Crystal malt, and got 21 litres into FV with an OG of 1.050.
TheWatchAle.jpg
Oh, and switching to whole hops worked a treat! No blocking during transfer, and after about a litre into the FV the wort runs clear. A bonus, I'm getting more wort out of the boiler and into the FV, losing only around 500mls to the trub. A heck of a mess left in the bottom of the boiler though, but better there than in the FV...
trub.jpg
I've purchased a large, 300 micron, hop bag for when I really need to use pellet hops, and will make sure to still use mainly whole hops with them, in order to form a filter bed on the bazooka.
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #27 made 5 months ago
Well, of course the journey has continued, with me refining my process and making tweaks. I can get clearer beer now for one, this is a pic of a English style golden ale I made (a fuggles/maris otter smash in fact, delicious!):-
GlodenGlowPint3.jpg
I got 76.3% EIF on that one.

I made some alterations to my equipment though, fitting a recirculation pump to my mash tun/boiler.
ModifiedOutlet1s.jpg
AlteredFitteds.jpg
Mashings.jpg
It made for very fast and effective cooling when the outlet was placed inside my immersion chiller, dropping from boiling to 15 degrees C in about 25 minutes. Uhm yeah, I was aiming for 18 degrees C though... Warmed it back up a bit to 17 degrees C and pitched at that... :whistle:
overshotpitching.jpg
I didn't stir my mash at all (other than when I doughed in) relying on the recirculation instead. My software (sorry guys, I was brewing a Braggot, and BIABacus really struggled with it, I had to use it to just double check numbers) gave me a mash efficiency of 90.7%, and a brewhouse efficiency of 87.98% (that one is probably so high thanks to the 2.27 kilos of honey that went into it... lol). So yeah, it was a very effective improvement. :peace: Don't worry folks, next brew I'll be back to using BIABacus fully as it'll be a dry stout that I've already constructed using it. :salute:
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #29 made 4 months ago
My pleasure bud. :peace:

I did a 2nd brew on the 29/3, this time with no honey or simple sugars, just grain. Another hoppy Saison (our favourite style to date). My target OG was 1.047, I ended up with an OG of 1.050 and an EIF (according to BIABacus) of 90.6%. The only stirring I did was whilst doughing in. Oh, and I had crystal clear wort going into the boil, so yeah I am very happy with the re-circulation mashing. Oh and (sorry guys, I'm about to use the s word...) it massively improved my ... sparge... too, crystal clear runnings with a higher SG than I was getting with dunk and rinse sparging. Sorry folks, I know that's a rude word on here, but it allows me to get 23 litres into FV with my boiler, with good efficiency numbers too. Especially when I'm brewing with a slightly larger grain bill. I've been diluting in the FV too (the GAW was 1.058, and the dilution was planned in BIABacus). I'd love a larger boiler, but that's not going to happen any time soon sadly.

Made some more tweaks today though. Fitted a T piece return to the lid to use whilst mashing, as the "jet" return sits too low in the boiler and made it hard to fit the steamer insert under it.
MashingT1.jpg
So I'll use this when mashing, and the "jet" when cooling the wort after boiling (it'll go in at the same time as the wort chiller, so they both get a good boiling to kill anything on them).

I also modified how I attach the pump to the boiler, so now it attached using quick disconnects, directly onto the tap.
Pump2s.jpg
Looks nice and tidy, and I'm happier with the pump better supported.

TweakedS.jpg
Disconnects for cleaning super quickly, thanks to the quick disconnects.

All that's left to do now: put some heat shrink on that power connector (wibble!), leak test it, try it out on a brew again. Seriously reduce the work I have to do on brew days now though, and gotta love that lovely clear wort going into the boil....
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Last edited by AdeDunn on 07 Apr 2018, 20:45, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #30 made 3 months ago
So, yeah, my ACE mash tun/boiler packed up on me... A cable to one of the elements burned right through. Tried to fix it, but the screw holding the terminal connector on was shot too...

So, anyway, now in the process of converting my old 33 litre stainless steel stock pot into an electric, re-circulating, BIAB pan...

So far, fitted a 2.4 kw element, and a tap. Got some bits to build a false bottom, and a nice large bag. I've also cold leak tested it, but will want to run a hot leak test too to check with heat expansion.

I've skipped using my bazooka filter, gone with a pick-up and an elbow to minimise dead space. Also I'll be putting a stainless steel pan scourer on the end of the pick-up to act as a filter.

IMG_20180517_204950.jpg
IMG_20180517_204439.jpg


I'll be adding temperature control etc at a later date, and I have some bits and bobs to make a false bottom to keep the bag away from that element.
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Last edited by AdeDunn on 18 May 2018, 04:51, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #31 made 2 months ago
The joys of brewing Ade :)

There is lots of fun in building an automated system however, it often ends up that the more parts we add, the more complications occur and our brew day becomes longer and sometimes harder. If there is a God, he/she seemed to have installed in brewer's brains, not only a love of beer but also tinkering - possibly a design error :) ? I've had heaps of fun tinkering but I must say that I do have a room full of discarded "time-saving" devices I dreamed up.

Main thing is to keep in the front of your mind when tinkering, "Can I easily keep my system cleaned and sanitised?" That's the key I reckon.

Once again, thanks for your great read :salute:
PP
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #32 made 2 months ago
That's the good thing about this build, PistolPatch, it all comes apart for cleaning. :peace: The pump and hose etc are all easily cleaned in place too, making cleaning a little easier. The big con with this build is the exposed element, this will be harder to clean than the concealed element in my ACE. On the flip side though, if the element fails I can easily remove it and fit a new one.

A few more bits done. False bottom made, just wish I could find one about 34.5cm in diameter....
IMG_20180518_143305.jpg
The bag in the pot.
IMG_20180518_142118.jpg
Fittings in lid to allow return from pump.

IMG_20180518_142152.jpg

The whole lot, including the pump, fitted to the boiler.
IMG_20180518_143147.jpg
It's all using either quick release connectors, or cam-locks, so comes apart very very easily (when you want it to that is... lol).
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Last edited by AdeDunn on 19 May 2018, 02:10, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #33 made 2 months ago
AdeDunn wrote:
2 months ago
That's the good thing about this build, PistolPatch, it all comes apart for cleaning.
That is music to my ears Ade :party: :drink:

It's really one of my biggest worries in brewing when I see a brewer embarking on a build with massive enthusiasm. I see their passion and want to encourage that most valuable quality but often the build they are working on I can see will eventually destroy their passion :scratch:. What am I meant to say in those situations?

I'm so pleased to see your reply above. So far, I've just been a reader of your thread and really enjoyed it. I have only read it in glances though, not with the concentration I would have liked to have spent on it. Things are freeing up a bit for me now though so a pleasure for me will be to re-read your thread in entirety. I'll focus on finding any potential "passion-killers," as I think, if there are any, you'll use your brain/passion to solve them.

In other words, I'll try to be super-critical, because, if there is anything wrong, I have a feeling you will take it on board*. (Don't worry though, if there was some glaring error, I would have already registered it in my brain and it would have niggled at me as I'd have an overwhelming desire to correct it :lol: )

Love your attitude and passion Ade :salute:
Pat

* And I expect you to teach me or some others some stuff as automation is not my specialty.
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #34 made 2 months ago
My biggest error so far has been going too small for boilers, right from the off. It forced me down the route of messing around trying to find ways to increase volume that little bit further, messing around with formulating a grain rinsing (calling it this, as a big part of it was a case of recirculating AFTER the actual sparge, to rinse out every bit of sugar I could) method, not to mention diluting in the FV. All creating more work for myself than doing a simple, true, BIAB. Thing is though, I enjoyed doing it. I've enjoyed the challenge of stretching things that bit further to get better results! Oddly, I always get better results when my wife helps me to dough in (she pours the grain, I stir it in... lol). :think:

My last brew for example, the one my ACE died in the last 5 minutes of the boil on, BIABacus gave some lovely numbers. 80.5% EIB, 84.5 EAW and 82.5 EIF, with 20.5 litres into FV with an OG of 1.060. Took the first post ferment SG today too, and it's down to 1.012. It'll get another 7 days now to rest, then I'll check the SG again see if it's moved any. Purists though would slap my wrist, as to get that I "sparged" with 5 litres, and added another 3 litres a short way into the boil. I was way over target though (target OG was 1.052), so there's an argument that I could have easily hit target OG with a pure BIAB IF I had gone for a decent sized vessel.

I did try brewing a smaller volume by the way. It vanished in the blink of an eye, and left us wanting more! :idiot:

One thing I have learned experimenting with automation though is, not to rely on it too much. The brew before last I was persuaded to not both stirring at all during the mash, relying on the recirculation instead. My EIB dropped a full 10% from what I usually get when I stir the mash every 30 minutes. What recirculation HAS given me though is much much clearer wort going into the boil! It's put an end to the suspended "flour" from the grain making it into the boil, with the bonus of less scorching. Or, to put it another way, it's a much easier way to vorlauf. :peace:

I welcome constructive criticism! Anything that helps me to brew better beer is more than welcome, as this is always my goal. Over the length of this thread you can see that process in action, it took me from producing beer with low efficiency, to massively improved efficiency! Too often if you mention efficiency under 70%, then that you BIAB, you get told that that's just BIAB... There's a myth out there that BIAB has lower efficiency. I used to reduce my numbers when posting elsewhere in case folks though I was making them up. :lol: I increased the intensity of my boils too, from a normal rolling boil for 90 minutes, to one that tried to leave the boiler completely for 70 minutes. Result, haze free beer that tasted way better.
MrPumpsBraggot.jpg
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #36 made 2 months ago
Scott wrote:
2 months ago
Your beer looks good...!
I have to confess to cheating slightly. That pic is of a hoppy braggot I made, was the first brew I did using recirculation. Still BIAB though, just 47% honey to 53% grain. Blows your head off if you drink too much of it, as it's about 8.7% ABV. :lol:

I've made a Saison and an IPA since then, using the ACE and recirculation, but the Saison is still conditioning, and the IPA is still in the FV (the one that my ACE died on... lol). I'll get a pic of the Saison soon though to put up, not tasted it yet anyway so probably about due a sneaky bottle... :drink:

I can however show you a pic of the (hot) wort from my last brew day, I was running it out of the boiler before I sparged the grain (hence still hot) and moved the boiler to under our big extractor hood for the boil. It was lovely and clear.
PocketRocketMooseIPAWort.jpg
Also, some pics of my new boiler, all insulated.



IMG_20180520_142526.jpg
IMG_20180520_141158.jpg
IMG_20180520_141127.jpg
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #37 made 2 months ago
Here it is, the last Saison I brewed. Nice and clear, but appears to have hop particles in it. Not been in the fridge yet though, so they should settle out once it has. Flavour wise, it's spicier than I'm used to, quite peppery. Big hit of bitterness too (my notes say 17 Tinseth, but I'd say it's a lot higher than that). My wife loves it though, I reckon it'll improve with more time. Oh, this one got hopped with Pilgrim (bittering), Mosaic, Citra and Amarillo. It was also "dry hopped" with an entire pouch of Brewferm Hop Sensation Peach Melba (basically Amarillo), which is probably where the extra bitterness has come from.
GreeboPee.jpg

I poured extremely carefully, so no head, plus I find I get a better head once I've had the beer in the fridge for a week or so.

This was bottled on the 2nd of this month, with an ABV of 6.8% approx, so could definitely do with more time to condition.
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Last edited by AdeDunn on 22 May 2018, 04:15, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #38 made 2 months ago
Right, I now have 3 photographs that illustrate how effective recirculation can be in reducing haze.

These pics are of my last brew where I didn't use recirculation,
GoblinsWort1.jpg
I did everything by hand and the wort was pretty cloudy pre boil, with a lot of break material after the boil.

GoblinsGlodBeginning.jpg
First pint I had was a few weeks after bottling (10th of March), and was meant to compare flavour and appearance with the commercial beer. It tasted spot on, but had quite apparent haze.


GoblinsGlod.jpg
However, this is a pint I had of it last night (26 May), after about 4 weeks in the fridge.

That saison in the previous pic however was bottled on 2nd May, and is just as clear after 1 night in the fridge....

What this illustrates to me is that time will achieve the same effect as recirculation when it comes to clarity, BUT with a lot more work (this beer I did my best to vorlauf manually with a 5 litre jug, and recirculated manually during the sparge with the same jug, all of which added a good 40 minutes onto my brew day!). So for me, recirculation is about giving me better results, more quickly, with less effort. :peace: What it isn't about is fully automating my brew day, I get MUCH better efficiency if I stir the mash every 30 minutes, even with recirculation.

You're probably going to want to kick me into the eBiab section soon though, I have the parts on order to build a basic temperature/power control panel.... :lol:
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Last edited by AdeDunn on 27 May 2018, 21:20, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #39 made 2 months ago
Hello AdeDunn,

Can’t taste a picture, but your brews certainly look tasty...! :P :drink: ;)

My preferred brew setup is a more simple full volume BIAB, as I feel that I have enough complexities in life and don’t want to complicate it more necessary to make great beer. But that said, more complicated setups like yours score high in the COOL department! ;) And who knows... Good job researching things and doing a good job documenting for me and others that are intreagued. Will be interesting to see if your additional equipment and labor allows a couple points higher efficiency. (Probably will...) So anyway, good job! There are many ways to make good beer.
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #40 made 2 months ago
This may surprise some, but my original forays into recirculation were a part of my attempts to reduce labour, and try to get clearer beer. I'm far from been a BIAB purist to be honest, I'd need to brew smaller batches than I prefer, so I tend to be naughty. ;) End of the day though, the goal is to produce good beer, whatever the path we take to this eh? lol

I'd already managed to get my overall efficiency up to about 80% before I started playing with pumps etc, just from getting my water right and stirring properly whilst mashing (90 minute mashes don't hurt either... lol). I was getting really cloudy wort going into the boil though, from all the flour out of the grain. I tried vorlaufing using a 5 litre jug, and found this helped but would trigger the arthritis in my hands and wrists something rotten... Recirculation just seemed a natural solution, as it basically does the vorlauf for me.

Then I was bumping heads with my family, blocking the food prep end of the kitchen for my entire brew day, so I came up with a hybridised BIAB approach (feel free to frown at me... lol). I'd mash (with recirculation) in my end of the kitchen (I used to keep dart frogs down there, but now it houses my brewing stuff and a few freshwater dwarf shrimp tanks (the shrimp are dwarf, the tanks are various sizes....lol)). I'd then drain the boiler into a clean FV, and do what was effectively a fly sparge with 5-6 litres of water, before recirculating this for about 20 minutes, getting more sugar out of the grain. This was then added to the clean FV, and the grain bag would be lifted and put on a rack over another FV to finish draining. Here's the reason for it all, I'd then take a break for lunch, so we could all have our lunch even during a brew day. :party: After lunch (at which point the grain had pretty much finished draining) I'd add the liquor drained from the bag into the full FV and move my boiler to the cooker end of the kitchen (where we happen to have a very powerful extractor hood). Into the boiler went the liquor, and the boil process would begin.

15 minutes before the end of the boil, pump would be attached to my makeshift whirlpool attachment, and this, along with my immersion chiller, would go into the boiler to be boiled for 15 minutes, with the pump running to run that nice hot boiling wort through the tap and hose etc. Flame out, water on to the chiller, whirpool swirling the wort speeding up cooling time significantly (As in, down from about 50 minutes to around 20 minutes to hit 18 degrees C with the water from the outside tap at 14 degrees C! Helping to reduce problems with chill haze that I'd been having).

So, although it actually all seems to be overcomplicating what should be incredibly simple, it all has a purpose. For me it's actually making things simpler.

Plus, to be honest, I enjoy the tinkering. :lol:

Oh, and it's probably going to give you nightmares, but I've done quite a lot more since my last post. Built a control panel so I can run a kettle RIMS system, tweaked the pan (a 2nd tap just for the pump)... As always, everything can be removed if there is a need, the taps are 2 part and can be taken apart so you can clean inside. I bought a 10 pack of PTFE plumbers tape, so even fittings can be taken apart and put back together periodically, for a more thorough clean. I'm going to cut some larger holes into the pizza tray that forms the bottom part of the false bottom too, open up that flow a bit more.

Take a deep breath (maybe a deep draught from your beer...) and brace yourself, pics. lol :whistle:
Boiler1.jpg
InsideBoiler.jpg
FalseBottom.jpg
panelbuild3b.jpg
Oh, and the hose for the recirculation is insulated with pipe lagging to reduce heat loss from this too.

Rest assured though, if I had a garage or a nice shed to brew in, I'd probably build a bigger boiler, and go full volume, and just ignore the haze... :lol: We looked into getting a gazebo, but that's only really any good during warmer weather (I can't really stand the cold for long, my joints start to really hurt. lol).
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #41 made 2 months ago
Here you go, the boiler with all the pipework and pump in place, complete with pipe lagging:-

BoilerPlusRecirc1.jpg


Also, a couple of pics of my "temporary" whirlpool(ish as 45 degree angle isn't ideal, but I know from past experience that it speeds up cooling when used with my immersion chiller) attachment:-
Whirlpool1.jpg
Whirlpool2.jpg
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #42 made 1 month ago
Finished the false bottom. I would have made more holes, but my 10mm cobalt drill bit is kaput now. Gasket doesn't shift at all when fitting or removing now, and it's a VERY tight fit putting the false bottom into place, and getting it out again.
FalseBottomFitted.jpg
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #43 made 1 month ago
Ade, thanks again for keeping us posted. I know this site has a button planned so as you will be able to give a post a thumbs up (like) however it still needs some work. If it was working, I'm sure you'd find yourself with plenty of thumbs up.

I've been short on time lately and so have only been able to read here not make any comments. Lol on, "Oh, and it's probably going to give you nightmares, but I've done quite a lot more since my last post." Let's hope you never get the garage :lol:. You should see my place. I shuld open it as a hardware (home depot?) store but it's really a collection of my past misadventures explorations :think:

Just one thing on the education/terminology side... You've used the term "efficiency" a lot and I'm guessing you're using mainstream brewing software which, due to its ambiguous terminology and the model its based on, has lead to a massive misunderstanding of what "efficiency" is and what affects it. Start tinkering with the BIABacus and Clear Brewing Terminology. Mainstream software works on a principle where you type in your "efficiency." There are two problems with that:

1. They usually fail to define what efficiency they are talking about (search for posts written by me here that contain the word "cousin" and you're sure to find an essay on this).
2. The user has to type in their "efficiency." This means that they just type in something like 70%. What the user does not realise and what is never explained, is that "efficiency" is not a constant.

In contrast to the above, instead of the user typing in an "efficiency" figure, the BIABacus looks at what you are brewing and sets it for you. For example, the other day, I brewed a massively big beer (OG of 1.097) and the BIABacus auto-set my "Efficiency into Kettle (EIK)" to a very low percentage, probably about 55%. Whereas, my next brew was a "normal" one with an OG of about 1.050 and the BIABacus auto-set my EIK to about 85%. On a low gravity brew with an OG of say 1.035, you should be seeing an EIK of around 90%.

Due to mainstream software, "efficiency," is seen as some fixed number that must be achieved whereas "efficiency" is a variable that is quite predictable. This treating it as a fixed number has lead to a mass of confusion; the poor brewer whose last brew had an OG of 1.045 and achieved a "kettle efficiency" of 85% then does a brew with an OG of 1.058 and can't understand why their efficiency into kettle dropped by 5%. They think they have done something wrong.

The problem gets even worse when the software's meaning of "efficiency" refers to the "Efficiency into Fermenter" (EIF). A highly hopped beer, regardless of OG, will always have a lower EIF than a lightly hopped beer of the same OG simply due to the fact that there will be more kettle trub and subsequently less Volume into Fermenter.

Did I just write all that? :)
At least I didn't get onto refractometers :lol:

Keep up the great posts and work Ade :thumbs:
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #44 made 1 month ago
Hi, thanks for the feedback.

For clarification, in this case I am referring to EIF (in other software usually referred to as brewhouse efficiency). My past brews were all built and designed in BIABacus, 12 of them in total. I also use Beersmith 2 (the mobile app has a really handy timer built in), which does indeed use "efficiency" to mean kettle efficiency (you'd hope people realised this though, as it gets set in the equipment profile). But yeah, usually if I've said just efficiency I've meant EIF rather than kettle efficiency. I've actually been able to use BIABacus to dial in Beersmith 2 to the point where it's actually accurate.... :lol:

My second to last brew for example (Moist Saison) I had the kettle efficiency set to 85% for my calculations and ended up with (according to BIABacus):-

EIB 71.8%
EAW 90%
EIF 90.6%

This was done using the process I previously outlined, with the drain then sparge etc. The EIB was actually lower than my usual though, which I could easily put down to the fact that I didn't stir even once whilst mashing, relying entirely upon recirculation.

My last brew, I returned to stirring the mash every 30 minutes, and BIABacus gave me:-

EIB 80.5%
EAW 84.5%
EIF 82.5%

I was aiming for an OG of 1.052, and ended up with an OG of 1.060.... lol All thanks to that 30 minute stirring regime.

I found that with BIABacus, and my process, I'd overshoot my estimated OG every single time... lol On the bright side, I use a lot less grain.... Hence I've been having to manually set the kettle efficiency to avoid ending up with 7% and above beers. :lol:

Full disclosure though, I was getting decent numbers even before recirculation. My Hobgoblin Gold clone for example, BIABacus gave me:-

EIB 72.1%
EAW 80%
EIF 83.8%

Which is why I would say to anybody wondering "You don't need recirculation to get better efficiency, just examine your process for simple things like stirring and water chemistry first". Just look at the people with Grainfather systems and the like, complaining that they're only getting 65% EIF. Go digging, and you'll usually find they're relying totally on recirculation rather than stirring, and often they're rushing doughing in too (I get my wife to help, and we take our time to stir it in really well).

So trust me when I say this, I focused on my basic process before I started playing with shiny toys, I just did it faster than some. Years of playing with water chemistry for my freshwater shrimp helps (I live in a hard water area, but keep shrimp that like super soft water with a pH of 6.0.... lol). This is also how I found that a more intense 75 minute boil gave much better results than a "nice rolling" 90 minute boil, and that I needed to turn the water on full blast when cooling my wort and cool it as quickly as possible (I'd say a pump for this stage alone would pay for itself, as pumping the hot wort through an immersion chiller massively speeds up cooling!).

So I suppose I need to apologise for knowing the "clear brewing terminology" (I read all the intro posts multiple times when I first joined here, really helped to take my brewing from an EIF of 60% to where I am now!!), but not using it in my posts. :idiot:

Anyway, a new adventure awaits! I'm about to embark upon the adventure of properly adjusting my water for brewing (using RO as the base), rather than just mixing 23 litres of RO with 5 litres of tap water (which worked in so far as the beer has been nice, but unless you try other ways, how will you ever know if it can be better?).
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #45 made 1 month ago
Hi AdeDunn,

Question for you... You mentioned better results @ 75 minutes of super hard boil vs. 90 minutes roiling boil (so higher temperature???). How so? In what way was the result better? :scratch:

Also, FYI the BIABacus always defaults to getting higher OG than planned. It's easy to fix this before fermentation, and if you accidentally get too low on a brew, going higher OG gives some margin for error. If you don't want to have this there are some adjustments you can make to the software to lower the OG and have it be more accurate (in one of those cells over on the right hand side, I believe)… I don't do this as I prefer having some margin for error.


Thanks,
Scott
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #46 made 1 month ago
Good stuff posting some numbers Ade :peace: . This helps give a clearer picture and I'll come to those in a minute.

Before that though, a clarification on your clarification :lol: . In BeerSmith, "brewhouse efficiency" actually refers to Efficiency into Fermenter." I just downloaded BeerSmith 3 to check that nothing has changed here and it hasn't. (Nice to see my name is still under the Major Contributors :) ).

So in Beersmith 2 (and now 3) you'll see the following terms, "Efficiency," "Mash Efficiency," and "Brewhouse Efficiency," depending on which screen you are looking at. Where it says "Efficiency" or "Brewhouse Efficiency," it means Efficiency into Fermenter. When it says "Mash Efficiency," it means Efficiency into Kettle.

[The above paragraph may give you an idea as to why I spent a lot of time over a few years developing Clear Brewing Terminology.]

So, in Beersmith you have to type in (guess) your Brewhouse Efficiency (Efficiency into Fermenter) in your Equipment Profile - there is no option to type in (guess) your "Mash Efficiency" (Efficiency into Kettle). What this means is that if a BeerSmith brewer (or any other mainstream software user) sets an "efficiency" figure in "their profile," they are going to experience the following problems...

1. They brew a high gravity brew with a heap of hops and find themselves with far less volume into fermenter and at a lower gravity than was estimated.
2. They brew a low gravity brew with few hops and find themselves with too much volume into fermenter at a higher gravity.
3. Any combination of the above.

To avoid the above problems, they really would need to set up countless "Equipment Profiles" that matched what they were brewing. The BIABacus avoids all that; it calculates the "real" maths for you.

It's really important to understand the above.

The following are facts...
It is impossible for a high gravity brew to have the same Efficiency into Kettle as a low gravity brew.
It is possible for a high gravity brew with very few hops have the same Efficiency into Fermenter as a low gravity brew with a heap of hops.

What I think I should do is write a proper official thread on all this. (Just noticed a few "first posts" that mention being worried about "efficiency".) It will take a day or two, without distraction, to write well but it is way overdue. Until then, let's have a look at...

Your Numbers Ade

If I write the following well, you might go :idiot: . But, you shouldn't. This is hard stuff for the brain to take on when you've been unwittingly mislead into thinking "efficiency" is a constant. (It took me several years of questioning, along with others, and then experimenting before I was able even see what is now obvious.)

You have three brews and have listed their EIB, EAW and EIF. The first thing to realise is that EIB and EAW are both measures of Efficiency into Kettle, they are just taken at different times. In other words, EIB and EAW should match. Why?

If I put one teaspoon of sugar in a cup of coffee and then boil half of it off, the coffee will just taste like I added two teaspoons. Sugar doesn't evaporate.

The second thing to realise is that Efficiency into Fermenter must always be lower than your kettle efficiencies (EIB or EAW). Sugar does not drop from the atmosphere into the hose you use to transfer from your kettle to fermenter :)

But, on your numbers we are seeing that your EIB and EAW are totally different from each other whereas they should be, in theory, identical. In practice, they'll rarely be identical du to measurement error but they should be pretty close.

Then we have your fermenter efficiency being higher than your kettle efficiency (or close to it) on all three brews. In other words, on your three brews, you miraculously ended up with more sugar in your fermenter than was in your kettle!

...

You wrote, "I suppose I need to apologise for knowing the "clear brewing terminology" (I read all the intro posts multiple times when I first joined here, really helped to take my brewing from an EIF of 60% to where I am now!!), but not using it in my posts. :idiot:"

That's no problem. But, the phrase, "really helped to take my brewing from an EIF of 60% to where I am now!." is a problem :lol: . Well, it's a problem for me.... it indicates that I'm failing to properly educate in this area and that I really must write a comprehensive thread on this whole subject.

Until then Ade, I want to see evidence you have searched and studied my posts that have the word "cousin" in them. I wrote that in my last post here but you missed that one didn't you? :lol:

I'll try and block out a few days in the next week and write on this whole subject so as we can knock it on the head once and for all.

Yikes!
PP
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #47 made 1 month ago
Scott wrote:
1 month ago
Hi AdeDunn,

Question for you... You mentioned better results @ 75 minutes of super hard boil vs. 90 minutes roiling boil (so higher temperature???). How so? In what way was the result better? :scratch:

Also, FYI the BIABacus always defaults to getting higher OG than planned. It's easy to fix this before fermentation, and if you accidentally get too low on a brew, going higher OG gives some margin for error. If you don't want to have this there are some adjustments you can make to the software to lower the OG and have it be more accurate (in one of those cells over on the right hand side, I believe)… I don't do this as I prefer having some margin for error.


Thanks,
Scott
Other way around bud. The "super hard boil" was more vigorous, using a total of 2500 watts, rolling boil was maintained with 1600 watts (my old ACE had 2 switches, so you could use 900 watts, 1600 watts, or 2500 watts). That probably makes more sense to you now. 2500 watts was positively volcanic (the boiler claimed to be 30 litres, but had a full mark at 27 litres, so I'd usually be boiling about 25 litres...), rather than a "rolling boil" (my wife used to be a chef, and quite agreed that it was considerably more vigorous than a rolling boil. lol). With the new build I'm going to have to tune this all again, but that's why I have the power regulator (that, and to prevent scorching) so that I can tweak the boil to be spot on for my requirements. My panel build also has the option to completely skip the power regulator should it be that I need to use a full power boil (it also removes the PID and SSR from the circuit when boiling, so that it can't mess with my boil).

On the topic of the adjustment on the right side, yeah been having to use this for a while, as otherwise the "margin of error" is more like a gaping chasm... My last brew just as an example, my target OG was 1.052, had I of left BIABacus to decide this my grain bill would have looked like this:-

Maris Otter 3187g
Carapils 255g
Ireks Pale Ale 1540g
Munich Malt 372g

However, I forced it to use 82% kettle efficiency, and had a grain bill like this:-

Maris Otter 2995g
Carapils 240g
Ireks Pale Ale 1448g
Munich Malt 349g

I still ended up with an OG of 1.060, rather than 1.052. :whistle: Sure I could dilute more, but then I'd be messing with Bitterness to gravity ratio too much for my liking. As it is, it was an American IPA, so the higher OG was more than acceptable and probably made for a better beer. :peace:

PP, regarding needing multiple equipment profiles, not if you know how to use Beersmith 2 (and now 3) properly. In the desktop version you can adjust the "BH Efficiency" on the design few tab, you would however need to understand that you'd have to be doing this in the first place. Luckily for me it's not an issue as I don't brew "big" beers, I consider my equipment too small, and my experience level too low. The Beersmith Software relies quite heavily on the brewer been able to "dial it in" for a particular brew, which unless you've brewed similar before would be rather difficult I should imagine. Hence I've previously always built in BIABacus to begin with. Originally I was using only the Beersmith 2 phone app as a brew timer to be honest. Now I use the desktop version more as I've reached the point where I've brewed the styles I create enough to know at least roughly what I'm going to get.
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Re: My Current equipment and process. 1st BIAB outcome etc.

Post #48 made 1 month ago
AdeDunn wrote:
1 month ago
PP, regarding needing multiple equipment profiles, not if you know how to use Beersmith 2 (and now 3) properly. In the desktop version you can adjust the "BH Efficiency" on the design few tab, you would however need to understand that you'd have to be doing this in the first place. Luckily for me it's not an issue as I don't brew "big" beers, I consider my equipment too small, and my experience level too low. The Beersmith Software relies quite heavily on the brewer been able to "dial it in" for a particular brew, which unless you've brewed similar before would be rather difficult I should imagine. Hence I've previously always built in BIABacus to begin with. Originally I was using only the Beersmith 2 phone app as a brew timer to be honest. Now I use the desktop version more as I've reached the point where I've brewed the styles I create enough to know at least roughly what I'm going to get.
That "feature" has been there in all versions Ade. As mentioned above, I'm listed as one of the few major contributors to the program so I do know the program back to front. What I'm worried about is that your numbers are not making sense. You need to check those. Hopefully there is enough detail in my posts above on what to research and check. I hope there is because they certainly took some time to write!
Also on the BIABacus, you always use the numbers (weights) on the right hand side of Sections C and D. If you worked off the left-hand side when scaling or copying a recipe, you'd run into major problems as the left-hand side simply establishes ratios.
Last edited by PistolPatch on 20 Jun 2018, 21:11, edited 1 time in total.
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