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BIAB Partial Mash

OK after reading the thread by Chris-P on his awesome brew stand it got me to thinking (always a dangerous and painful thing). So I brew partial mash recipes and my latest called Russ’ Norther Brown English Ale (ok my first recipe is not very original) is very similar to the Elevenses Ale, but will brew a 10 gallon batch. So here’s what I’m thinking.

I have the 16 gal Bayou Classic pot with false bottom.
I bring about 3 or 4 gallons of water up to 160º insert the bag and add my grains. Stir and cover and set timer for 60 minutes. During that time insure temp stays at 150º and stir occasionally.

In the mean time in separate pot heat sparge water to 170º

60 minutes later bring wort and grain back up to 170º then drain wort into a different pot and leave valve open. Sparge with about 10 quarts of 170º water.

Let drain and pull out spent grains shut valve and add wort back to brew pot. Add enough water to bring back up to about 11 gallons and brew as normal.

This process should be a bit easier that the way I do it now for 5 gallon batches in the kitchen and oven.

Thoughts?

Talking to a guy at Brewmasters Warehouse and he said for 10 - 11 gallon partial mash batches just add most of the water bring to 160º put in bag and add grains, then let sit for an hour at 150º bring back up to 168º for 20 minutes then pull bag and brew as normal. He also recommended NOT doing 10 gallon all grain BIAB, he said too much grain.

I guess if my 5 gallon batch of English Ale turns out good I’m going to try it in a 10 or 11 gallon batch.

Just curious, if you have a 16 gallon pot, why are you doing partial mash? If you know how to partial mash, then you know how to mash. And your pot is more than big enough for any 5 or 10 gallon batch. So why only partial mash?

[quote=“Scalded Dog”]Talking to a guy at Brewmasters Warehouse and he said for 10 - 11 gallon partial mash batches just add most of the water bring to 160º put in bag and add grains, then let sit for an hour at 150º bring back up to 168º for 20 minutes then pull bag and brew as normal. He also recommended NOT doing 10 gallon all grain BIAB, he said too much grain.

I guess if my 5 gallon batch of English Ale turns out good I’m going to try it in a 10 or 11 gallon batch.[/quote]

I BIAB. My process is boil 5 gallons of water and store in a cooler for sparge. Bring my strike water to temp based on the usual mash water to grain ratio I want, drop in the bag, stir in the grains. Insure mash temp is correct. cover the kettle and wrap in an old sleeping bag. Mash for appropriate time. Pull the bag, rest on an oven rack and sparge with approximately 190 degree water to compensate for the cooling grains until I get my required pre-boil volume. Boil

Lots of BIABers do a full volume mash like your LHBS guy recommended. I find I get higher efficiency with my method. Do what works for you.

You can do 10 gal BIAB. If you have a big enough kettle and strong enough back. Or build a bag lift of some kind. I noticed Chris had D-rings on the tabs on his bag. He probably has a pulley on his garage ceiling to lift his grain bag.

I would agree about the sparge. I’ve been BIAB’ing for about 3 years now and have tried many different methods (full volume, no sparge, w/sparge, etc) and I get 10-15% better efficiency with a normal to thin mash and a batch sparge compared to any other method.

So you think the guy was wrong about a 10 gal all grain batch being too much in my pot? I think what he was saying was that with all grain there would be too much grain to get an efficient mash. I was surprised to hear him say that. I assume that is why folks (like Chris-P) recirculate the mash? That Bayou Classic pot is almost big enough for me to bathe in :slight_smile:

Also he did say a light sparge would be a good idea.

So you think the guy was wrong about a 10 gal all grain batch being too much in my pot? I think what he was saying was that with all grain there would be too much grain to get an efficient mash. I was surprised to hear him say that. I assume that is why folks (like Chris-P) recirculate the mash? That Bayou Classic pot is almost big enough for me to bathe in :slight_smile:

I think a 16gal pot would be fine for a 10gal batch. Maybe not a huge barley wine, but for an average strength beer, sure.

Also he did say a light sparge would be a good idea.[/quote]

And I agreed with him. Sparge is a good idea. It will help bump your efficiency around 10% give or take.

Thanks Dobe, I thought I knew what I was doing and then this BIAB idea comes along. After looking into it, I have totally rethought the way I plan to go. All grain is definitely in my future, just taking it one step at a time.

Start with 5 gallon batches and move up from there. I have a 10 gallon pot with a 24"x24" mesh grain sack and have no problem brewing 5 gallon batches… even higher gravity. I’m brewing a 1.115OG barley wine this weekend with 18lbs of grain. I think I’ll be maxing out what my pot will hold, but my point is you should be more than fine with your 16gal pot. I really don’t think you’ll have a problem with average OG 10 gallon batches. Now, the wet grain you’ll be lifting out will be quite heavy… so plan on that.

I agree with dobe. I’ve easily done 1.090ish beers in my 9 gallon kettle. Chris does 10 gals in his 16 gallon kettle that’s why he got it and that’s what I plan to go to soon for 10 gals. The mash is thick on bigger beers but then you sparge til you get your pre-boil volume. No big deal. BIAB is an easy inexpensive way to get into AG. I have a cheap n easy cooler mashtun as well but seldom use it.

Thanks guys, you have given me some good ideas here. So for the 10 gallon batches would you recommend a pump to recirculate the mash?

Also Danny I never thought about how heavy that wet grain bag would be. Hopefully it doesn’t break when I lift it out.

[quote=“Scalded Dog”]Thanks guys, you have given me some good ideas here. So for the 10 gallon batches would you recommend a pump to recirculate the mash?

Also Danny I never thought about how heavy that wet grain bag would be. Hopefully it doesn’t break when I lift it out.[/quote]

Depends what kind of bag you use. I use a nylon bag made specifically for this purpose. It’s pretty strong. Figure about 1/10 gal of water weight per pound of grain once it’s saturated.

In the system I’m envisioning the pump would be used for moving strike and sparge water from HLT to MT/Boil Kettle, then through the chiller to the fermenter. The whole purpose of my planned system is to avoid as much heavy lifting as possible. I ain’t getting any younger! Would be simple to use the pump for mash recirc as well I suppose. I just haven’t had an issue with heat loss while BIAB mashing.

BTW, just this week I brewed a 1.084OG Arrogant Bastard Ale clone BIAB, 17 lbs of grain mashed in 5 1/2 gals water in my 9 gal kettle. That’s approximately 1.3qts per lb of grain. Pretty reasonable ratio.

[quote=“dannyboy58”][quote=“Scalded Dog”]Thanks guys, you have given me some good ideas here. So for the 10 gallon batches would you recommend a pump to recirculate the mash?

Also Danny I never thought about how heavy that wet grain bag would be. Hopefully it doesn’t break when I lift it out.[/quote]

Depends what kind of bag you use. I use a nylon bag made specifically for this purpose. It’s pretty strong. Figure about 1/10 gal of water weight per pound of grain once it’s saturated.

In the system I’m envisioning the pump would be used for moving strike and sparge water from HLT to MT/Boil Kettle, then through the chiller to the fermenter. The whole purpose of my planned system is to avoid as much heavy lifting as possible. I ain’t getting any younger! Would be simple to use the pump for mash recirc as well I suppose. I just haven’t had an issue with heat loss while BIAB mashing.

BTW, just this week I brewed a 1.084OG Arrogant Bastard Ale clone BIAB, 17 lbs of grain mashed in 5 1/2 gals water in my 9 gal kettle. That’s approximately 1.3qts per lb of grain. Pretty reasonable ratio.[/quote]

I use cheap paint strainer bags. I’ve BIAB’d large batches in my old 25 gallon kettle. I used to use one large bag for this purpose, but found I didn’t like deadlifting that much hot grain. With the paint strainer bags I put about 7-8 pounds of grain per bag, so depending on batch size and gravity determines how many bags I use. I fill them, stir, and then clamp them to the rim of the kettle. Every 15 minutes or so instead of stirring the grain I’ll just “teabag” them, seems to work just fine.

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