First try at using BIABacus - can I get another set of eyes to see if I did this right?

Post #1 made 4 months ago
I hope this is the correct place to put this question....

First try at using BIABacus - can I get another set of eyes to see if I did this right? I'm trying to decide on what to use on brew day: Brew Target, Beer Smith, Brewers Friend or something else. I also have the Bru 'N Water spreadsheet, since I use RO water and have to add minerals. I'd like something that is accurate, repeatable and gives consistent results (based on if I don't mess up what it tells me to do) - ie. water volumes, brew steps, timers, accurate OG/FG/ABV/SRM/IBU, etc.

Is there a way to upload the file so others can view it? In case that's a no - I've uploaded it HERE (.ods) http://www.rogerhanson.com/BIABacus - Y ... Stout.ods or HERE (.xlsx) http://www.rogerhanson.com/BIABacus - Y ... rsion.xlsx

I'm in the US, so had to convert all the numbers. I didn't know SRM conversion to EBC, so I found a calculator for that HERE https://www.brewtoad.com/tools/color-converter.

Basically, I went through each section alphabetical and answered things the best I could. I'm not sure where to enter Trub loss in the fermenter though. I guess I have a "guesstimate" built-in when I say I want 11 gallons in the fermenter, that's figuring I might have about 1 gallon of loss due to trub.

You may question some of the numbers on BIABacus, but here's my setup:

eBIAB system.
25 gal Al kettle with 5500w heating element.
A Brew In A Bag brew bag made for my kettle.
Steam Condenser - so I boil with the lid on and the condenser turning steam into water, creating a vacuum and pulling it out of the kettle - to avoid high-humidity, especially since I will brew in the garage in a cold Minnesota winter.
I have a Craftbeerpi temp controller to control mash temp. I have a small pump that recirculates during mash.
I have a homemade CFC that works very well.
I don't have any kegging equipment and have to bottle 10 gallon batches.
I still use a glass carboy or fermenting bucket. Hoping to get a couple plastic 15gal conical fermenters some day.
Last edited by BMWFan on 26 Aug 2018, 10:07, edited 1 time in total.
Electric BIAB brewer. Homemade CraftbeerPi controller.
25gal kettle. 15gal Plastic Conical Fermenter with temp control
Having fun.
    • BME Brewer With Over 5 Brews From Tuvalu

Re: First try at using BIABacus - can I get another set of eyes to see if I did this right?

Post #2 made 4 months ago
I forgot to add more info about trying out Brew Target and Beer Smith software and Brewersfriend.com.

The starting water volumes for that same recipe in Biabacus files I linked to gave different results between all of them, as well as different ABV, OG, SRM, IBU. I'm assuming that it's because the equipment profiles are not exactly the same between them.
I was hoping to save some money and use Brew Target, but it was the one that was off the largest amount.

I was hoping that the BIABacus spreadsheet would be a good option, since it was made for BIAB from the start.
Last edited by BMWFan on 26 Aug 2018, 20:27, edited 1 time in total.
Electric BIAB brewer. Homemade CraftbeerPi controller.
25gal kettle. 15gal Plastic Conical Fermenter with temp control
Having fun.
    • BME Brewer With Over 5 Brews From Tuvalu

Re: First try at using BIABacus - can I get another set of eyes to see if I did this right?

Post #3 made 4 months ago
BMWFan -
All told, good job on filling out the BIABacus. :thumbs: You must expect to get different numbers when using different programs because the assumptions made are inherently different. I am biased toward the BIABacus. Your equipment is much more complicated than mine so I cannot offer an estimate of KFL losses, just measure what you get.

Check out posts by Pistol Patch from 4 years ago
viewtopic.php?f=5&t=2247&p=33405#p33405
https://www.biabrewer.info/viewtopic.ph ... 415#p33415

My look at your BIABacus gives, from the top:
Section B, kettle capacity is filled in properly, but the advice given most frequently on this forum is to boil for 90 minutes. Yes it uses more energy, but it is to evaporate the water used in the full-volume mash that extracted the good stuff from the grains during the 90 minute mash you entered in Section E.

Section C:
You have Chocolate Malt listed twice. Is there an explanation? :scratch:
With flaked oats at 9.1% and flaked barley at 4.6% you will likely get a less-than-clear beer after all is done. That will be fine, as ling as you know it is coming.
You asked about EBC and SRM - someone else will have to help you there. I don’t worry much about color numbers. The BIABacus can be trusted to give approximate SRM numbers. In this case it indicate a fairly dark beer. Some light will get through, but you will not be able to read by it.

Section D: Willamette is one of my favorite flavor/aroma hops, but I do not use it for bittering. At its common 4.8% AA, as you entered on the left side, it is on the weak end of the AA% spectrum. You have entered 8.9 as the AA% on the right side - pretty potent Willamette hops you have there. If that is correct, it explains why you will be using a little more than half of the original recipe (left side). Why are there three entries of 8.9 on the right side with only one named hop on the left? If you intend to add Willamette hops more than once, enter the name on the line on the left (you don’t need to enter it on the same line on the right after that). Hops change from year to year in their AA% and more.

Section E: 68.9 ºC is on the high side for a Mash Temperature. It will provide for lots of body* in your beer, if that is what you want. You will not get as much fermentable sugars as you would with a lower Temperature like 66.5 ºC. Whirlfloc at 5 minutes is great. Mashout at 78 ºC for zero minutes :think: - what do you hope to accomplish here? Mashout does a couple of things -the heat denatures the remaining active beta and alpha amylases and supposedly reduces viscosity to aid in draining of the bag when lifted. Pull the bag from the hot liquid before you go above 78 ºC no matter what. If you just ramp up to a boil without pause, the difference will be negligible - again, make certain that the bag of wet spent grains is out of the hot liquid by 78 ºC. Your bag is going to be heavy when first lifted and draining back into the kettle. Have you got that covered? No rinsing required, just drain it and the liquor drained goes back in to be boiled.

Your entries show 22.41 lbs (10.165 kg) in Section C going into TWN of 14.37 gal (54.41 L) in Section K, putting you in the right range with no water held back in Section W (no need to enter zeros, just leave it blank). Other brewing recipe builders will have different numbers, guaranteed. Let BIABacus handle the efficiency numbers based on your upcoming results. Don't base an early recipe on a guess about efficiency. It will take you more than a few brew days to get an idea of your own efficiency on your own equipment.

Good luck an let us know how things go. :interesting:

*I may be guilty of perpetuating a myth regarding body and high mash temperatures. See http://brulosophy.com/2018/08/13/mash-t ... t-results/ for results from one case (a Helles, for what itis worth) where the correlation is disprovend
Last edited by ShorePoints on 11 Sep 2018, 01:51, edited 1 time in total.

Re: First try at using BIABacus - can I get another set of eyes to see if I did this right?

Post #4 made 4 months ago
Thanks for the input.
I have used Whirlfloc tablets and plan on using them again.

Chocolate malt is there 2x because there is 2 different kinds, 2 different SRM levels.
About the hops number - I didn't set it to 8.9% - but really forgot to change it from the previous stock recipe (which is why the other entries are there, but no hops shown. I used the already-filled-out spreadsheet with the sample recipe. Thanks. I'll change it down to 4.8% and remove the others.

I do have a pulley above the kettle that I use to lift the bag and let it hang and drain. I also have some rubber insulated gloves that I squeeze the bag with.

There should not be any mashout. I think there were a lot of entries already filled in because I used the sample spreadsheet to start out. I'll clean it up. If you'd like to see it after I get it cleaned up, I can upload it again.

This is based on this recipe at homebrewtalk.com:
Yoopers Oatmeal Stout (this is a 5-gal recipe that I doubled everything)
Recipe Type: All Grain
Yeast: Wyeast 1335
Yeast Starter: Yes!
Batch Size (Gallons): 5.5
Original Gravity: 1.052
Final Gravity: 1.016
Boiling Time (Minutes): 60
IBU: 32
Color: 33.5
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 21 at 64
Secondary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): none
Tasting Notes: Wow- smooth, rich, velvety, not too roasty, not too dry! GREAT beer.
7 lbs Pale Malt, Maris Otter (3.0 SRM) Grain 63.64 %
1 lbs Oats, Flaked (1.0 SRM) Grain 9.09 %
12.0 oz Victory Malt (25.0 SRM) Grain 6.82 %
10.0 oz Chocolate malt (pale) (200.0 SRM) Grain 5.68 %
8.0 oz Barley, Flaked (1.7 SRM) Grain 4.55 %
8.0 oz Black Barley (Stout) (500.0 SRM) Grain 4.55 %
8.0 oz Caramel/Crystal Malt - 80L (80.0 SRM) Grain 4.55 %
2.0 oz Chocolate Malt (450.0 SRM) Grain 1.14 %
2.00 oz Williamette [4.80 %] (60 min) Hops 31.6 IBU

1 Pkgs British Ale II (Wyeast Labs #1335)


Water was
Ca: 84
Mg: 26
Na 9
SO4 45
Cl 62
HCO3 228

Mashed at 156, with a thin mash (1.75 quarts per pound) to keep the pH in range.
Last edited by BMWFan on 27 Aug 2018, 07:05, edited 2 times in total.
Electric BIAB brewer. Homemade CraftbeerPi controller.
25gal kettle. 15gal Plastic Conical Fermenter with temp control
Having fun.
    • BME Brewer With Over 5 Brews From Tuvalu

Re: First try at using BIABacus - can I get another set of eyes to see if I did this right?

Post #5 made 4 months ago
BMWFan - I guess you can tell that I missed the SRM difference in the two different Chocolate malts because I failed to pay attention to color. :blush:

The recipe has unusual elements; High mash temperature, >13% flaked grains, >11% black/chocolate grains and one dose of Willamette hops at 60 minutes, but they will work together. The link you included has discussions about astringency where it balances out. Take good notes along the way during brew day.

One great thing about the BIABacus is that you can enter the original recipe on the left side and it will convert to the scale you have set with your kettle dimensions and desired volume, OG and IBU targets. You do not need to "double" anything.

Looks good. Please let us know how it turns out!

Re: First try at using BIABacus - can I get another set of eyes to see if I did this right?

Post #6 made 1 week ago
This beer turned out FANTASTIC. Awesome!

I'm going to brew again and have a question about the BIABacus spreadsheet -- and boil-off rates. I'd like to change it because it's calculating way too high for me.

I use a Boil/Steam condenser, which gets me about 2 qt per hour of evaporation/boil-off.
The spreadsheet is calculating 2.4 gallons for a 1-hour boil. That's way too high for my setup. Thus, it's telling me I need way too much water.

Can I correct this somewhere in the spreadsheet? I don't see where.
Last edited by BMWFan on 05 Jan 2019, 06:10, edited 1 time in total.
Electric BIAB brewer. Homemade CraftbeerPi controller.
25gal kettle. 15gal Plastic Conical Fermenter with temp control
Having fun.
    • BME Brewer With Over 5 Brews From Tuvalu
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