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Messages - mabrungard

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Water help
« on: November 01, 2015, 06:18:03 PM »
That water supply is a very soft water that could easily be subject to picking up iron and manganese. That is the case, as evidenced by the water report. While the bicarbonate or alkalinity is not presented in the report, it is apparent that the values would be very low.

While ion-exchange softened water use is typically a no-no in brewing, this water has very little hardness and will not pick up a bunch of sodium in the exchange. The good thing is that this treatment will knock down the Fe and Mn content and make this a very good brewing water. Given the Fe and Mn content in that water, I'm guessing that water softeners are common in this area. It's OK to use the softened water here.

Equipment and Software / Re: PH Request
« on: October 31, 2015, 04:33:02 PM »
Yup. Ales are typically slightly more acidic than lagers.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Adding gypsum
« on: October 27, 2015, 06:40:53 PM »
Martin, how is this affected when using RO?

I should have mentioned this, but the lower your water's alkalinity, the lower the effect of the heating on decarbonation. In other words, if you are using RO or distilled water, you probably don't really need to worry about that effect, but if your water has huge alkalinity, you definitely do. 

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: RO water pH of 5 good for brewing?
« on: October 27, 2015, 06:38:25 PM »

would this ^^^^^ impact how your software accounts for impact RO water, salts, and malts has on expected PH of the mash?

Unfortunately, that high dose of carbonic acid is not accounted for in Bru'n Water. The carbonic acid would likely affect the pH result and leave you with a lower than estimated mash pH.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Adding gypsum
« on: October 27, 2015, 12:24:01 PM »
No difference if its just salts being added. They are similarly soluble at low or high water temps. The only issue arises with respect to acid additions.

Heating water can partially decarbonate it and reduce its alkalinity. Therefore, if you calculated your acid addition based on the raw water alkalinity and waited to add the acid to hot water, you may end up slightly overdosing the acid. One option to avoid that problem is to calculate your acid addition based on the alkalinity of the heated water. Good luck guessing that new alkalinity. That's why I recommend adding acid to water before heating.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: RO water pH of 5 good for brewing?
« on: October 27, 2015, 12:17:53 PM »
RO water can actually have fairly low pH that can easily be lower than distilled water. The reason is that some water supplies have dissolved gases, such as CO2, in them. Dissolved gases can easily permeate through the RO membrane into the treated water. That can drive the pH of RO water very low. In most cases, the gas content is minor and there is little problem. Some water supplies have to be run through an air-stripping tower to reduce that gas content to avoid this problem.   

All Grain Brewing / Re: Adding gypsum
« on: October 25, 2015, 12:12:26 PM »
There is really only one good way to assure that your minerals are evenly and well distributed in your mash...add them to your brewing water before adding the grains and mix them up. If you mix the typical brewing minerals in your water for a minute or so, they WILL fully dissolve. I've heard too many impatient brewers complain that they add minerals to their water and they just sit at the bottom of the container. Don't be foolish, while these minerals are fully soluble, it is NOT an instantaneous reaction. It does take a minute and it does help to mix the water during that minute.

The only mineral that doesn't dissolve very well is chalk and there is little that can be done to change that. For that reason, don't use chalk in brewing.

All Grain Brewing / Re: All Grain And Terrible Color
« on: October 25, 2015, 12:04:03 PM »
Depending upon your water, if you aren't doing more to bring your mash pH down into a proper range, there is a very good chance that high pH is creating some of your color 'problem'. The article in the Nov/Dec 2015 Zymurgy is focused on exactly this problem and it provides simple adjustments to try in your brewing when certain problems are perceived.

Acid...its your friend.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Wow, differences in base malt...
« on: October 25, 2015, 11:56:37 AM »
Then I switched to Rahr Pale Ale malt and was making the beers the same way but they were coming out maltier and slightly heavier and darker than usual so I backed off on the mash temp (like 152° to 150°) and everything was coming out pretty nicely. 

Ken, I'm hoping that you were adjusting your mashing pH. I recall that you do. Rahr is peculiar in that it tends to produce a slightly lower mash pH than typical base malts. You may have been experiencing a lower mash and wort pH with the Rahr.

Mashing a a couple of tenths higher on your pH will produce a darker beer since color compounds are extracted better at higher pH. I also find that a lower pH tends to thin my beer body a teeny bit, but I'm not sure if a tenth or two is going to be enough to produce a notable differnce.

Mark, you are forgetting that we are not dealing with chlorine. We are dealing with hypochlorite and subsequent chlorophenols. The taste threshold for chlorophenols in water range between 0.1 and 2 ppb (depending upon species) according to WHO. The taste threshold for chlorophenols in beer is around 10 ppb and they are plainly apparent to virtually all tasters at 30 ppb.

Assuming that dichlorophenol is the predominant species when formed in beer (I don't know that this is true), it takes two moles of hypochlorite to produce one mole of dichlorophenol and working through the molecular weights, that means that 1 ppm hypochlorite produces about 1 ppm dichlorophenol. That 400 ppb chlorine taste threshold is probably actually expressed as hypochlorite and that likely means that what was acceptable in water is WAY above the taste threshold when reacted with beer organics to create chlorophenols (400 ppb >> 30 ppb).

I'm sure many beer drinkers have experienced the following phenomena. A bar serves a beer in a glass that was washed in a chlorine-based solution. A whiff of the empty glass might have a bleach aroma to it. However, when a beer is poured into the glass, the medicinal chlorophenolic aroma is hard for some drinkers to ignore. Unfortunately, some people have little sensitivity to chlorophenols. For example, some people find some phenolic Scotches to be pleasant and drinkable, but others find them over the top...mediciney. For that reason, some beer drinkers never realize that their beers are chlorophenolic bombs, but all their friends know it.

For that reason, be sure that all bleach-related disinfecting solution is gone from your equipment before beer or wort touch them. It takes so little to screw up your beer!

(Mark, your quote from Aroxa is off. They say 300 ng/L, which is 0.3 ppb.  I'm not sure that most tasters could detect it at that low level, but certainly they should at 10 ppb)

I'm less concerned with iodophor solution remaining on surfaces as opposed to hypochlorite solutions (bleach). It takes only incredibly low levels of hypochlorite to taint your beer with chlorophenols. So, I strongly recommend drying bleach solutions and not worrying about iodophor solutions.

Ingredients / Re: flavor contribution from roasted grain added at sparge
« on: October 22, 2015, 01:13:54 PM »
If color is your primary goal, that technique is probably desirable. The flavor contributions will be reduced by the late addition. You can read more about the pluses and minuses of the technique on Bru'n Water's Facebook page.

Martin, remember that even in the presence of air the fermentation will still be anaerobic due to the Crabtree effect. The metabolic pathways used by the yeast in open vs. closed fermentation will probably not be dramatically different, but there may be some difference.

I've been reading a few academic papers on oxygen and how it relates to yeast sterols. I need to read a bit more and wrap my head around things but I believe that open fermentation, broadly speaking, should keep the average yeast sterol composition by weight significantly higher than a closed fermentation. What is the difference in beer flavors expressed by yeast whose dry weight basis is 1% ergosterol vs 0.2% ergosterol? I don't know.

Doesn't the Crabtree effect have something more to do with the production of alcohol due to the concentration of sugars in the media? I'm not really sure.

However, I do agree that the metabolic condition for the yeast under that yeast foam blanket should be primarily anaerobic. I just wonder if there is some sort of effect from micro-oxygenation of the overall system on the yeast? 

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: WY1028 and Sulphur
« on: October 22, 2015, 12:45:11 PM »
I like 1028 for my Am brown ale since it lends a minerally note to the beer. I've not noticed a sulfur note in the many times I've used it. Since you have a copper IC, you shouldn't be copper deficient. I've got to believe that this flaw will clear up pretty quickly.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Distilled Water, salt additions and PH
« on: October 21, 2015, 12:17:44 PM »
I use a triple beam Ohaus scale that was downsized to me from an old engineering firm I worked for. It reports down to 0.1 gram. It doesn't have high enough capacity for measuring grain additions, but its good for hop and mineral additions. I've got an electronic luggage scale that I use for measuring multi-pound grain additions. (yes, I checked its calibration before use!)

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