Author Topic: BIAB and sparging  (Read 1932 times)

Offline flbrewer

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BIAB and sparging
« on: June 21, 2017, 01:33:05 PM »
Hi everyone! Miss me? Still taking a long hiatus from brewing (thanks toddler), but my brother has been bitten by the homebrewing bug. I'm helping them out with a pretty simple 1 gallon brew in a bag but I'm curious if there's a need to Sparge during the process. I've seen some to tutorials online that show sparging and others that don't show any sparging. What have your results been?

Hope everyone is well and damn do I miss it.

Offline 69franx

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Re: BIAB and sparging
« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2017, 01:57:31 PM »
Nice to see you on here again. You can but do not need to sparge. Sparging should get more sugars out of your grain bed, but dilutes your OG. You just need to plan out the recipe for one way or the other to be close to you target. I have not done BIAB, but his is what I understand about the process

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Offline erockrph

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Re: BIAB and sparging
« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2017, 02:18:23 PM »
One way to think of BIAB is that you're doing your mashing and sparging all in one step. You are essentially adding all of your sparge water in with your mash water. Since the mash is more dilute, you are leaving a lot less fermentable sugar behind in the grain bed. And since you are pulling the grain bag and letting them drain, there is very little loss to grain absorption and no loss to dead space.
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Offline Nathan

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Re: BIAB and sparging
« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2017, 04:46:07 PM »
I have found that on an average grain bill less than 11 pound s there is little to be gained by additional sparging but on heavy grain bills for big brews I pick up enough sugars to make the extra step and longer boil worth while


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Offline deadpoetic0077

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Re: BIAB and sparging
« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2017, 02:04:00 PM »
All I do is BIAB, and I always sparge. I found that if I don't, my efficiency is a bit low. Typically im at 74% by doing the mash with 2/3 to 3/4 of the total water for the brew, and then I sparge by pouring water over the grain bag once ive pulled it. I typically set a clean grate over the kettle and put the bag on top of that for it to continually drip back into the kettle, and ill pur my sparge water over that. Some have suggested dunking the grain bag into your sparge water and letting it sit there ~15 mins while you start your boil, then pulling the bag and pouring that water into the boil kettle. Both ways are super simple ways to get more efficiency out of your grain.

But I agree, totally not necessary. Grain is cheap and if you have the space for a bigger grain bill, just use more grain to get where you need to be.

Its really up to you. Whichever way you do it, just plan it out accordingly.

Offline Nathan

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Re: BIAB and sparging
« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2017, 12:08:32 AM »
All I do is BIAB, and I always sparge. I found that if I don't, my efficiency is a bit low. Typically im at 74% by doing the mash with 2/3 to 3/4 of the total water for the brew, and then I sparge by pouring water over the grain bag once ive pulled it. I typically set a clean grate over the kettle and put the bag on top of that for it to continually drip back into the kettle, and ill pur my sparge water over that. Some have suggested dunking the grain bag into your sparge water and letting it sit there ~15 mins while you start your boil, then pulling the bag and pouring that water into the boil kettle. Both ways are super simple ways to get more efficiency out of your grain.

But I agree, totally not necessary. Grain is cheap and if you have the space for a bigger grain bill, just use more grain to get where you need to be.

Its really up to you. Whichever way you do it, just plan it out accordingly.
I use a bag inside a homemade Lauter tun I open the valve run my main batch into my kettle and start my boil then I rinse the bag with another 15% and run off into a grant ( 5 gallon pail) the timing is usually perfect for adding these secondary runnings at the beginning of the boil


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Offline Lazy Ant Brewing

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Re: BIAB and sparging
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2017, 11:27:44 AM »
I do BIAB and get about 75% efficiency without sparging.

 I have a round perforated aluminum pizza baking sheet that I place over the brew kettle to drain the bag and I squeeze the heck out of the grain bag.  Then I place the bag into a relatively clean bucket while I light the fire under the boil kettle.  After about 10 minutes, I remove the bag from the bucket and pour the additional amount of wort that has accumulated into the boil kettle.

Maybe I could get a bit more efficiency if I sparged, but I like to make the process as simple as possible.
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Offline jimmykx250

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Re: BIAB and sparging
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2017, 11:38:58 AM »
I do BIAB and get about 75% efficiency without sparging.

 I have a round perforated aluminum pizza baking sheet that I place over the brew kettle to drain the bag and I squeeze the heck out of the grain bag.  Then I place the bag into a relatively clean bucket while I light the fire under the boil kettle.  After about 10 minutes, I remove the bag from the bucket and pour the additional amount of wort that has accumulated into the boil kettle.

Maybe I could get a bit more efficiency if I sparged, but I like to make the process as simple as possible.

Im right at 75%  with you and like you i like to keep the whole process as simple as possible. I just let the bag hang above the kettle until the boil starts then dump it . I am a squeezer though. :)
Jimmykx250

Offline LeftyLucy

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Re: BIAB and sparging
« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2017, 10:02:05 PM »
I do BIAB and get about 75% efficiency without sparging.

 I have a round perforated aluminum pizza baking sheet that I place over the brew kettle to drain the bag and I squeeze the heck out of the grain bag.  Then I place the bag into a relatively clean bucket while I light the fire under the boil kettle.  After about 10 minutes, I remove the bag from the bucket and pour the additional amount of wort that has accumulated into the boil kettle.

Maybe I could get a bit more efficiency if I sparged, but I like to make the process as simple as possible.

Wow, I really like your idea of a pizza pan with holes drilled into it!  That's gotta be better than the square rack I found at the thrift store.  I also dump that extra wort from the cleanish bucket into the boil. 

I also don't sparge, but I do squeeze the bag a bit.

Offline Ellismr

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BIAB and sparging
« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2017, 11:05:41 PM »
When I do BAB I don't Sparge with a small grain bill ~ less than 10 pounds the efficiencies that you lose between that and traditional all grain brewing can be made up with just a few ounces of base malt.  There are also other styles that require a step mash that are better done using traditional methods IMHO.


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Offline Robert

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Re: BIAB and sparging
« Reply #10 on: July 14, 2017, 08:53:02 AM »
i went from a 3 vessel set up to a BIAB system. so i utilize my 10gal round cooler for my mash tun still. My grain mill is set pretty tight too. i put 7.25 gallons of water into the cooler mash tun and then add the grains. pull the bag out and squeeze it with it hanging over the kettle. ive consistently hit 82%-83% efficiency doing it that way without any kind of makeshift sparging. i dont do very many big beers though so i cant speak for grain bills over 12ish pounds.