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Messages - mabrungard

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Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Rehydrating dry yeast
« on: December 15, 2017, 03:13:42 AM »
As mentioned in one of my recent forum posts, magnesium is the preferred cation for yeast rehydration. Epsom salt in distilled or RO water is a good medium. I don't recall the dose of epsom salt, but it is substantial. It was something in the 100 ppm range, so much higher than we would use in brewing water.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Specialty grain %'s when increasing base malt
« on: December 14, 2017, 09:43:34 PM »
While I adhere to keeping the percentages of ALL the grain bill the same when I need to alter their amount to match my system efficiency, I know that Jamil advocated keeping the specialty grain content constant while varying the base malt content when brewing the various Scottish Ale variants (60, 70, 80). I seem to recall his thinking that the smaller versions would benefit from the increased specialty percentage.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: cloudy starsan
« on: December 13, 2017, 08:15:30 PM »
Thanks, all.  Why does the metal part of my brush turn black in the solution?

The black is probably iron being turned into iron phosphate. This is like the reaction when you treat steel with phosphoric acid or clean rusty stuff with Naval Jelly. StarSan contains phosphoric acid.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: cloudy starsan
« on: December 13, 2017, 05:27:20 PM »
Calcium in your water is what makes a StarSan solution cloudy. RO and distilled water are preferred for making the solution, but you can also use ion-exchange softened water.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Down sides of no mashout?
« on: December 10, 2017, 02:05:38 AM »
The only downside is the possible loss of a couple potential gravity points. That potential increases if your sacc rest temperature is on the low side. If you're mashing in the mid to upper 150's, then the loss is probably minor. 

Ingredients / Re: Brewtan-B dosage amounts confusion
« on: December 07, 2017, 07:25:53 PM »
So, finings at 15 min remaining and BTB at 5 min remaining.

Ingredients / Re: Brewtan-B dosage amounts confusion
« on: December 07, 2017, 05:40:20 PM »
Yeah, I assume that's what he's doing.  He's the BTB secialist for Ajinomoto, so I just do whatever he says!

When Denny and I were talking with Joe at CBC Philly, Joe said to NOT add BTB at the same time as when your Irish Moss is added. I can't recall if he said to add the BTB before or after the Irish Moss. I'm sure there is some sort of interaction since both of these materials have electrically-charged surface chemistry and they probably take each other out, if added together.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash ph and mouth feel
« on: December 01, 2017, 07:39:13 PM »
Assuming that you are using roughly equal volumes of mashing and sparging water for a batch, adding baking soda to low alkalinity water such as RO or distilled to keep mashing pH up in a good range will not add that much sodium. While you might add something like 100 ppm sodium to the mashing water via baking soda, that content will be diluted roughly in half when the sparging water (which doesn't have baking soda) is added. The free version of Bru'n Water doesn't account for that dilution, but the supporter's version does.

Sodium is definitely not a problem in brewing water when making most dark styles. It improves flavor!!

Beer Recipes / Re: Bier de Garde
« on: November 30, 2017, 09:22:56 PM »
PS: My wife likes this style and has stated that from now on, our last name is pronounced "Bier de Garde" instead of whatever bastardization its usually pronounced as!

Pimp My System / Re: Basement electric kettle / cooler setup
« on: November 30, 2017, 09:19:36 PM »
I have a small sheet of 1/2" polyiso insulation between my boil kettle and the laminate countertop. Definitely no heat problems then. If I'm not mistaken, it takes much higher temps than 212F to warp the countertop, but I'm being extra cautious.

Ingredients / Re: Water Treatment - Questions on Reducing Alkalinity
« on: November 21, 2017, 01:58:08 PM »
Semantics, definitely! 99% of the readers here could care less about our minutia. Maybe half of the readers would appreciate that both calcium and bicarbonate are reduced by the process, regardless of its actual mechanics.

Welcome to the 1%.

Homebrewer Bios / Re: Jeff from Dayton, Oh
« on: November 21, 2017, 01:25:22 PM »
Good to hear from you Jeff. I look forward to seeing you at events in the Midwest.

Ingredients / Re: Water Treatment - Questions on Reducing Alkalinity
« on: November 21, 2017, 01:23:35 PM »
Raising the pH of a solution to the point that certain salts precipitate, is the purpose of the calcium hydroxide. In this case, the calcium and bicarbonate in the tap water can be precipitated by raising the pH above 11. The water becomes cloudy with precipitating calcium carbonate and it is allowed to settle to the bottom of the vessel. The clear water is decanted off the sediment and the water is typically initially acidified by bubbling air through the water column or through air stripping. CO2 from the air combines with the water to produce carbonic acid and neutralizes the excess hydroxyl ions in solution. That neutralization works only to a certain degree. The remaining hydroxyl and carbonate ions are neutralized with an acid addition.

This process works well in certain waters. Its laborious and time consuming, but its otherwise simple.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash ph and mouth feel
« on: November 20, 2017, 12:47:44 PM »
I haven't noticed differences in mouthfeel when mashing pH is above 5.2, but I've found that beer perception tends to be 'thin' if mashing pH is allowed to be less than 5.2. I'm guessing that the low pH is enhancing the degradation of body forming proteins and beta-glucans, but I'm not really sure of the mechanism or process.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Water treatment
« on: November 19, 2017, 09:50:09 PM »
Doesn't that make it pretty tough to hit a desired mash pH if only adding salts to the kettle?

It can. Again, I don't think its the best way to manage your water treatment. I like adding minerals and acids to each water batch.

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