Lifting the BIAC Mash Colander out of the 3-in-1
In the BREWHA BIAC method of brewing, there is a Mash Colander that sits inside the 3-in-1 boil kettle/chiller/fermenter. The Mash Colander holds the grain and at the end of mashing, the Colander is withdrawn and the grain can be then disposed of. The Colander allows for the grain to form a proper filter bed so that you can get perfectly clear beer and you can sparge the wort to get the maximum amount of sugar from the grain. The issue arises with the Colander that with the Medium BIAC and the Large BIAC, if you have a large grain bill in the Medium BIAC , or almost any grain bill in the Large BIAC, it is going to be quite cumbersome to lift the Colander out. You are going to need a second person or you are going to need to be able to use a hoist like we have set up here, in order to lift the Colander up.
What I want to show you in this video is just an easy and cost-effective way in order to set up an overhead hoist so that you can pull the Colander up. Here we are in a typical kitchen (can also be done in a garage or brew room)—all that we have done is purchase a $140 overhead hoist (found at Harbor Freight or Princess Auto or Amazon). The hoist is rated for minimum 400lbs so would lift the grain out of the Medium BIAC and even the Mash Colander out of the Large BIAC when it is completely full with grain and water it is not going to weigh more than that.
We have these Colander Lifting Cables (that are on the BREWA website or can be made at home from aviation cable, we have stainless cable that we use in ours, along with quick disconnect links, tie them together and they connect to the hook on the overhead hoist.
The hoist is suspended on an aluminum bar that is in the corner of the kitchen. Make sure that the bar is resting against supports that are going to be able to bear the weight. Don’t just put it on the cabinets unless you are certain the cabinets can support the weight. (It can also be secured to the wall with joist brackets, or to cross-beam running across trusses). We have them anchored against the wall and on the support here that can fully bear the weight so it is not going to come down. The aluminum bar was purchased from The Metal Depot and it cost about $70 and can be purchased online and delivered right to your door. So the hoist is about $140, the bar is about $70 so for just over $200 plus the cables, you are able to easily lift the Colander right out.
The overhead hoist that we have purchased comes with an automatic up and down switch, press the button and it pulls the Colander out and it is great because you are able to do it gradually in increments in order to gradually let the wort leave the grain bed for proper lautering.
And that is it. Thank you for watching this BREWHA video. If you have any questions feel free to send them in using the form on the website.