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General Category => General Homebrew Discussion => Topic started by: roguejim on January 08, 2012, 08:08:35 PM

Title: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: roguejim on January 08, 2012, 08:08:35 PM
If you have a recipe that calls for 6-8 ounces of hops, and you use pellet hops, is the typical paint strainer bag an effective way to hold back the hop matter?

Will the pellets merely plug up the bag resulting in poor utilization?

What are the pro and cons?

Thanks.
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: jamminbrew on January 08, 2012, 09:01:50 PM
I use a fine mesh nylon bag for my pellet hops, and have had no problem hitting my estimated IBU's.  For that amount of hops, I might use 2 or 3 bags, to increase the surface area, and flow through the bags.

The biggest con I can think of, is break material collecting on the bags. But again, I've used them to good effect.
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: Hokerer on January 08, 2012, 11:35:34 PM
Do you have some particular reason you need to "hold back the hop matter"?  Easiest thing is to not even bother with a bag.  Whirlpool and such at the end should keep enough of it out of the fermenter.
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: Malticulous on January 09, 2012, 12:28:11 AM
I haven't had any problems using them.
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: el_capitan on January 09, 2012, 12:46:36 AM
I mainly use them for whole hops, because they absorb so much wort.  After the boil, I kind of twist the bag up and squeeze out as much wort as I can with my spoon (not bare hands).  I have thrown pellets in there too, and haven't seen problems.  BUT, I've never used 6-8 oz of pellets so I can't say for sure.  They're nice though.

Another option would be to just throw the hops in, and then at the end, sanitize a strainer bag and line your brewing bucket with it (they bags have elastic at the top to hold onto the top of your bucket).  If you dump your wort through the bag, it will filter out virtually all of the hops and break material - very convenient as long as you can be sure it's sanitized.  Pull out the bag slowly and carefully, and you have a bag full of schmoo and a bucket full of clear wort!

Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: morticaixavier on January 09, 2012, 03:16:36 AM
I mainly use them for whole hops, because they absorb so much wort.  After the boil, I kind of twist the bag up and squeeze out as much wort as I can with my spoon (not bare hands).  I have thrown pellets in there too, and haven't seen problems.  BUT, I've never used 6-8 oz of pellets so I can't say for sure.  They're nice though.

Another option would be to just throw the hops in, and then at the end, sanitize a strainer bag and line your brewing bucket with it (they bags have elastic at the top to hold onto the top of your bucket).  If you dump your wort through the bag, it will filter out virtually all of the hops and break material - very convenient as long as you can be sure it's sanitized.  Pull out the bag slowly and carefully, and you have a bag full of schmoo and a bucket full of clear wort!



This is what I do when using pellets. whole hops clog my kettle output so I bag them, grain bags which are basically the same thing as paint strainers work great for both these applications.
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: 1vertical on January 09, 2012, 03:41:34 AM
Use them, love them....hang em from a pvc hanger...suspended in the BK
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: Pawtucket Patriot on January 09, 2012, 03:42:57 AM
I mainly use them for whole hops, because they absorb so much wort.  After the boil, I kind of twist the bag up and squeeze out as much wort as I can with my spoon (not bare hands).


I've been using them for years without issue.  I also wring out the bag/hops after cooling my wort. And maybe I'm playing with fire, but I just use my bare hands to do this. I just soak my hands in my sanitizer water for a minute or two. Never had any problems with this method (knock on wood!).
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: roguejim on January 09, 2012, 10:19:35 AM
Do you have some particular reason you need to "hold back the hop matter"?  Easiest thing is to not even bother with a bag.  Whirlpool and such at the end should keep enough of it out of the fermenter.

Probably my only reason is when I brew a pils, and I want to reuse the yeast from the yeast cake.  The less old trub I pass along to subsequent batches, the better...I think.
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: davidgzach on January 09, 2012, 02:26:13 PM
I mainly use them for whole hops, because they absorb so much wort.  After the boil, I kind of twist the bag up and squeeze out as much wort as I can with my spoon (not bare hands).


I've been using them for years without issue.  I also wring out the bag/hops after cooling my wort. And maybe I'm playing with fire, but I just use my bare hands to do this. I just soak my hands in my sanitizer water for a minute or two. Never had any problems with this method (knock on wood!).

I use them as well and clip them to the handle of my boil pot.  Can open and add more hops as needed.

I have read however that it is not good to wring out the hop bag.  You should just let it drain.
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: Pawtucket Patriot on January 09, 2012, 04:58:09 PM
Quote from: davidgzach
I have read however that it is not good to wring out the hop bag.  You should just let it drain.

What would be the concern here?  I haven't noticed any off flavors in my beers, even in very light lagers.
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: denny on January 09, 2012, 05:00:03 PM
Quote from: davidgzach
I have read however that it is not good to wring out the hop bag.  You should just let it drain.

What would be the concern here?  I haven't noticed any off flavors in my beers, even in very light lagers.

The "myth" (?) is that wringing the bag will extract tannins from the hops.  I've never found that to be true personally.
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: anje on January 09, 2012, 06:00:18 PM
The "myth" (?) is that wringing the bag will extract tannins from the hops.  I've never found that to be true personally.
What about wringing/squeezing the bag after steeping malts?  I've seen that cautioned against as well.
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: Hokerer on January 09, 2012, 06:07:28 PM
The "myth" (?) is that wringing the bag will extract tannins from the hops.  I've never found that to be true personally.
What about wringing/squeezing the bag after steeping malts?  I've seen that cautioned against as well.

There's probably a bit more truth about not squeezing steeping malts.  The fear there probably involves the fact that squeezing could force some of the grain husk bits out of the bag and into the wort.  The grain husk bits could provide tannins.

It could very well be that the "don't squeeze the hop bag" myth comes from a simple misapplication of the "don't squeeze the grain bag".
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: Pawtucket Patriot on January 09, 2012, 06:48:52 PM
Even if it's theoretically possible to extract tannins from wringing the hop bag, it would require high temps and high pH. Since I'm only wringing the bag after the wort has cooled, I would think that any risk of tannin extraction -- assuming the risk exists -- would be minimized.
Title: Re: Paint Strainer Bags...Effective?...
Post by: tschmidlin on January 09, 2012, 11:46:45 PM
I use a fine mesh nylon bag for my pellet hops, and have had no problem hitting my estimated IBU's.
How do you know for sure?