Author Topic: BIAB efficiency  (Read 4053 times)

Offline jklinck

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BIAB efficiency
« on: November 03, 2012, 02:30:56 AM »
I'm curious what type of efficiency people are getting with BIAB? I'm especially curious about anyone that is measuring mash pH.
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Offline weithman5

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2012, 07:27:22 AM »
i don't boil in a bag but i mash in a bag, not quite the same thing.  however i run around 70 percent. i do check my ph with strips on occasion but i really don't make any adjustments.
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Offline erockrph

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2012, 07:40:43 AM »
I do my mash in a cooler instead of my kettle, but it's essentially BIAB since I do full-volume/no sparge. Plus, I squeeze my bag. I just mash in the cooler to help hold temp during the mash.

I hit 80-81% brewhouse efficiency with a fine crush. If my grains aren't crushed as fine as I'd like (I don't have a mill yet), then my BE is in the 72-74% range.

I don't have a pH meter yet, but I use Brunwater and shoot for 5.3 for most beers. So far, so good.
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Offline beersk

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2012, 11:10:45 AM »
I've only done 2 batches, but I got around 80% efficiency.  I mill pretty fine, gap is set at .030" on my barley crusher. As Jake Keeler says, I goose it to keep the mash temp in line.  I mash in my kettle, have a steamer rack on the bottom (so I don't scorch the bag or grain) with a chain going up to the handles so I can pull it out after the mash. I like it a lot.  Today will be my first time doing full volume mash.  The last 2 batches I did partial volume mashes, like I used to with a cooler setup.
Brew in a bag is a kick ass method. Oh, and I do 3 gallon batches, so it suits me pretty well.
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Offline beerlord

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2012, 03:12:53 PM »
I  don't get caught up on efficiency since I have my BIAB down but every now and again I check and am usually between 78 and 83%. I'm very pleased with my beers as are all my beer-snob friends.

Offline a10t2

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2012, 04:35:08 PM »
Unless you're squeezing wort out of the grains, it will be the same as a batch sparge with the same volumes.
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Offline mpietropaoli

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BIAB efficiency
« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2012, 07:12:12 PM »
75-80% squeezing the bag and a single batch sparge.
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Offline ultravista

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2012, 07:19:38 PM »
I mash in a bag too and get anywhere from 75% to 80%. Most of the time, I mash for 60 to 90 minutes as I'm doing things around the house. Post-mash, I "dunk" sparge and squeeze my bag too :)

Offline beersk

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #8 on: November 08, 2012, 07:53:05 PM »
I've only done 2 batches, but I got around 80% efficiency.  I mill pretty fine, gap is set at .030" on my barley crusher. As Jake Keeler says, I goose it to keep the mash temp in line.  I mash in my kettle, have a steamer rack on the bottom (so I don't scorch the bag or grain) with a chain going up to the handles so I can pull it out after the mash. I like it a lot.  Today will be my first time doing full volume mash.  The last 2 batches I did partial volume mashes, like I used to with a cooler setup.
Brew in a bag is a kick ass method. Oh, and I do 3 gallon batches, so it suits me pretty well.
So I did the full volume last Saturday evening.  I got right at 75% efficiency.  Solid. Crushing finer is the key to getting a good efficiency with brew in a bag. I also mash for 75 minutes or so, but I'm not entirely sure that's necessary.
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Offline dmtaylor

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #9 on: December 17, 2012, 05:48:29 PM »
I get 81% when I do "sparge" by rinsing the grains with some hot water.  I'm not going to sparge anymore in future and figure my efficiency will fall probably to low 70s.  BIAB is a very viable method, especially for small batches (I make 3 gallons or less) although I have a friend whose grandmother sewed him an enormous pillowcase and he makes 15-gallon batches with BIAB.  He has a pulley system to lift the grain bag out and to let it drip out.  He loves it and wouldn't have it any other way.  Awesome.
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Offline amh0001

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #10 on: December 17, 2012, 08:45:17 PM »
I have have done BIAB for about 10-15 batches now. I have my own mill so my crush is always the same. I have seen anywhere from 64-81% efficiency. I think it is important to squeeze the bag. I have had no problems with tannin this way. I think the large swing in efficiency is some what do to adjuncts. For instance I had lower efficiency with a 50% wheat beer.

I also measure my PH with strips, but I can barely tell where its at. It seems like orange is from 4-6 PH lol. Maybe I need some different strips.

Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2012, 08:06:43 AM »
I have a friend whose grandmother sewed him an enormous pillowcase and he makes 15-gallon batches with BIAB. 

You're friend has an awesome grandmother.  I hope he makes her a batch of whatever she wants whenever she wants it.
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Offline weithman5

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #12 on: December 18, 2012, 08:46:57 AM »
  I mash in my kettle, have a steamer rack on the bottom (so I don't scorch the bag or grain) with a chain going up to the handles so I can pull it out after the mash. I like it a lot.  .

as mentioned i mash in a bag then everything else as normal. however i have my eye on a seafood steamer kettle at the store. it has about 6gallons and about two inches up is a circumferential indent for the steamer basket to rest on.  i have been meaning to see if there is room below this where i could drill through and place my electric element.  then i would have an electric steamer kettle and i could skip the mash in the cooler part and control my mash temps directly with the electric element
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Offline beersk

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #13 on: December 18, 2012, 09:55:39 AM »
  I mash in my kettle, have a steamer rack on the bottom (so I don't scorch the bag or grain) with a chain going up to the handles so I can pull it out after the mash. I like it a lot.  .

as mentioned i mash in a bag then everything else as normal. however i have my eye on a seafood steamer kettle at the store. it has about 6gallons and about two inches up is a circumferential indent for the steamer basket to rest on.  i have been meaning to see if there is room below this where i could drill through and place my electric element.  then i would have an electric steamer kettle and i could skip the mash in the cooler part and control my mash temps directly with the electric element
That's cool, give it a go.

The brews in a bag batches I did were disappointing to me. But I think there may have been something else causing the issue, not to do with brewing in a bag. I replaced my siphon hose and it seems to be fine. I might try brewing in a bag again sometime, but for now I'm back to 4 gallon batches in a 5 gallon cooler.
More to clean, but whatevs. Brew day, for me, is typically around 4 hours with a 60 minute mash and 60 minute boil. So no big deal.
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Offline weithman5

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Re: BIAB efficiency
« Reply #14 on: December 18, 2012, 10:14:46 AM »
the cooler is pretty easy and i still put all the grains in a bag. just lift them out of the cooler in the bag, clean up is a snap. 

this is similar to the kettle i found

http://img1.targetimg1.com/wcsstore/TargetSAS//img/p/10/82/10827023.jpg
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