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I recently got into brewing (well, extract brewing) and all the kits I use come with a grain bag. I've since learned that it is perfectly fine to reuse these bags, so long as you clean + dry them properly.

The problem is, every time I use them, they have hundreds/thousands of tiny seeds/husks/"stuffs" caked onto them. Even after meticulously washing and cleaning them, I still end up with a clean + dry grain bag that has hundreds of seeds/husks/stuffs tangled up with the bag (which is made of cotton).

So I ask: are there any known tricks to getting these hundreds of "stuffs" dislodged from the cotton bag prior to cleaning it, or do I really have to sit there with a pair of tweezers and pick them out one-by-one (because if that's the case I'll just buy a new grain bag each time - they're only a few bucks).

But, I don't like to be wasteful, so I'd like to reuse if possible. Thanks in advance!

  • Are you using them for steeping? – Mołot Aug 8 '16 at 20:21
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+50

For the sake of convenience I would replace them with nylon bags either from your LHBS or nylon paint strainer bags from your hardware store.

The nylon bags clean very easily and have a very fine mesh so husk doesn't get stuck in them.

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  • Thanks @Evil (+1)...dumb question but I have to ask: is nylon "food grade" and/or safe to come into contact with water at steeping temperatures (less than 170 degress)? – smeeb Aug 6 '16 at 12:57
  • Your brew shop should have them, and they're often sold for use with hops rather than grains. I did that in the boil once (with hops) and decided it wasn't worth the effort, but found them useful in my recent first attempt at dry hopping. – winwaed Aug 8 '16 at 13:29
  • @smeeb the bags from the homebrew shop will for sure be food grade, I can't say with certainty that paint strainer bags are, but I've used them a lot even in boil with no off flavors etc. They say 100% nylon as do the bags made for Homebrewing. Nylon will melt if allowed to touch the bottom of the kettle and scorch quickly from direct flame. – Evil Zymurgist Aug 8 '16 at 13:52

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