Membership questions? Log in issues? Email info@brewersassociation.org

Author Topic: Water options  (Read 6854 times)

Offline brewday

  • Brewer
  • ****
  • Posts: 453
Re: Water options
« Reply #45 on: June 06, 2015, 06:08:34 pm »
Gordon uses teaspoons, not tablespoons, and probably adds a lot less than many of us here, myself included.  I measure my gypsum & calcium chloride using level teaspoons (or 1/2, 1/4, etc.) and it's fine.  And easy!
« Last Edit: June 06, 2015, 06:12:37 pm by brewday »

Offline mchrispen

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 713
    • Accidentalis Brewing Blog
Re: Water options
« Reply #46 on: June 06, 2015, 06:23:02 pm »
I find the book a bit confusing, as his mineral additions are not all that precise, and he adds (for the most part) the acid-rich dark roasted, toasted and crystal/caramel malts late during vorlauf. While I appreciate the additional detail in the recipes, my OCD brain spins a bit trying to make sense of it. A new paradigm to explore I guess. Like I needed more things to try :) - Denny and Drew have kept me a bit busy on the experimentation route. I haven't see a real strategy to convert from the proposed late additions to full mash, assuming you need more if cold steeping or adding late.

That said - going to read the book in more detail on the flight out to NHC, and hopefully ask a few questions when we meet.

When brewing something like a BoPils vs a Dortmunder export, measuring salt additions carefully with a good scale and a light hand can make a significant difference. I don't mind being less precise for a Pale Ale or IPA... For the record, I mineralize both mash and sparge liquor, acidify as needed for both, and measure mash pH and boil pH. Again - lizard brain kicks in.
Matt Chrispen
Sometime Austin Zealot
Blogging from the garage @ accidentalis.com
>> Bru'n Water Spreadsheet Walkthroughs<<
>> Bru'n Water Subscriber Version 5.3 Spreadsheet Walkthrough <<

Offline flbrewer

  • Brewmaster General
  • *******
  • Posts: 2161
Re: Water options
« Reply #47 on: June 06, 2015, 07:09:16 pm »
Previously I was using a Tbsp of each of Gypsum and CaCl2 for my 5 gallon batches. Browsing through Gordon Strong's new book, most of his recipes only call for a tsp. of CACl2.

Granted, he also mentions bringing his PH down to 5.5 (RO water) for his brewing liquor.

Two questions...
1) Should I be using less that the Tbsp of each to treat my RO water (Pale Ale recipe)?

2) Using the below tool, I see that a Tbsp of each gets into a "high" zone of Calcium ions. If you bump these up slightly higher (adding a few grams) you move into the "dangerous, do not brew" levels.

Why is this? What is dangerous?

http://www.brewersfriend.com/water-chemistry/

*Edit, using Brun Water as of a few minutes ago...maybe this will answer my questions.
A tablespoon is a LOT.  Get a scale that handles grams to the tenth like this one.  Then use Brunwater.  http://www.morebeer.com/products/high-precision-blade-scale-1000.html?site_id=5

Agreed, maybe that's why my previous beers haven't been too pleasant. What's driving me crazy right now is that I have (IMO) my best beer kegged right now and I have no clue if I added any salts or not to the RO water!

Offline hopfenundmalz

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 10710
  • Milford, MI
Re: Water options
« Reply #48 on: June 07, 2015, 09:09:29 am »
Previously I was using a Tbsp of each of Gypsum and CaCl2 for my 5 gallon batches. Browsing through Gordon Strong's new book, most of his recipes only call for a tsp. of CACl2.

Granted, he also mentions bringing his PH down to 5.5 (RO water) for his brewing liquor.

Two questions...
1) Should I be using less that the Tbsp of each to treat my RO water (Pale Ale recipe)?

2) Using the below tool, I see that a Tbsp of each gets into a "high" zone of Calcium ions. If you bump these up slightly higher (adding a few grams) you move into the "dangerous, do not brew" levels.

Why is this? What is dangerous?

http://www.brewersfriend.com/water-chemistry/

*Edit, using Brun Water as of a few minutes ago...maybe this will answer my questions.
A tablespoon is a LOT.  Get a scale that handles grams to the tenth like this one.  Then use Brunwater.  http://www.morebeer.com/products/high-precision-blade-scale-1000.html?site_id=5

Agreed, maybe that's why my previous beers haven't been too pleasant. What's driving me crazy right now is that I have (IMO) my best beer kegged right now and I have no clue if I added any salts or not to the RO water!
Remember that for water additions, less is more.
Jeff Rankert
AHA Lifetime Member
BJCP National
Ann Arbor Brewers Guild
Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!

Offline duboman

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1578
Re: Water options
« Reply #49 on: June 07, 2015, 09:26:22 am »
Late to the party and already mentioned in various forms, get a ward labs report so you know exactly what's in your water and use brun' water to know exactly how to adjust.

Once I did both my beers improved drastically and with Martin's software you can print a summary page and file it with your recipe or copy and paste it to your brewing software notes section for repeated use.

Ward labs is pretty quick on turnaround and they email you the report so you can save it digitally. Also, if you donate to Bru'n water you get the ability to save everything as a master sheet and other bonuses like regular software updates.
Peace....Love......Beer......

The Commune Brewing Company-Perfecting the craft of beer since 2010

Offline toby

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1021
  • Galvez, LA
    • Beer Judge Chronicles
Re: Water options
« Reply #50 on: June 07, 2015, 12:40:08 pm »
I always use Bru'nwater to calculate and a scale to weigh.  I have also never used tablespoons of anything that I recall for 5 gallons.  Typically, 10g of either or both is the biggest addition I use (where calcium, chloride, and sulfates are concerned, our tap water is basically void of them since it's from a sodium bicarbonate aquifer).  And that's to treat about 18 Gallons of water.

Offline flbrewer

  • Brewmaster General
  • *******
  • Posts: 2161
Re: Water options
« Reply #51 on: June 07, 2015, 12:53:23 pm »
Late to the party and already mentioned in various forms, get a ward labs report so you know exactly what's in your water and use brun' water to know exactly how to adjust.

Once I did both my beers improved drastically and with Martin's software you can print a summary page and file it with your recipe or copy and paste it to your brewing software notes section for repeated use.

Ward labs is pretty quick on turnaround and they email you the report so you can save it digitally. Also, if you donate to Bru'n water you get the ability to save everything as a master sheet and other bonuses like regular software updates.

I have had some reports from Ward in the past. I've just never plugged it all into the software. FWIW, I ended up using 50/50 filtered tap and distilled. I also ended up adding a tiny amount of CaCl2 (4 grams) to my water.

Thanks and cheers!

Offline mabrungard

  • I spend way too much time on the AHA forum
  • ********
  • Posts: 2911
  • Water matters!
    • Bru'n Water
Re: Water options
« Reply #52 on: June 08, 2015, 08:57:54 am »
Always add all minerals and acids to the water before adding grain. Every mineral commonly used in brewing is very soluble in water. However it does take a minute or two of stirring to get them dissolved. Keep stirring!

Reserving crystal and roast malts to the end of the mash can be a useful technique in a few styles. However, it is far better to add the proper alkalinity to waters such as RO or distilled. That keeps the wort pH from dropping too low and giving you tart beer. Reserving the grain technique does NOT avoid an overly tart beer. Get your water right and the beer will follow.
Martin B
Carmel, IN

BJCP National
Foam Blowers of Indiana (FBI)

Brewing Water Information at:
https://www.brunwater.com/

Like Bru'n Water on Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/Brun-Water-464551136933908/?ref=bookmarks

Offline brewinhard

  • Official Poobah of No Life. (I Got Ban Hammered by Drew)
  • *********
  • Posts: 3272
Re: Water options
« Reply #53 on: June 08, 2015, 12:42:35 pm »
Reserving the grain technique does NOT avoid an overly tart beer. Get your water right and the beer will follow.

+1.  I brewed a heavy RIS with this technique last summer that I ended up dumping due to lack of proper water salt additions and balancing the proper pH in the mash(before I studied water).  The beer came out tart and acidic past the point of my likability.  Drain pour! 

Offline HoosierBrew

  • I must live here
  • **********
  • Posts: 13031
  • Indianapolis,IN
Re: Water options
« Reply #54 on: June 08, 2015, 01:03:30 pm »
Reserving the grain technique does NOT avoid an overly tart beer. Get your water right and the beer will follow.

+1.  I brewed a heavy RIS with this technique last summer that I ended up dumping due to lack of proper water salt additions and balancing the proper pH in the mash(before I studied water).  The beer came out tart and acidic past the point of my likability.  Drain pour! 

+2.  I just mash it all together at 5.5-5.6 mash pH for dark beers, adjusted up with baking soda. Easy peasy, no acrid tartness.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2015, 01:09:31 pm by HoosierBrew »
Jon H.

Offline hopfenundmalz

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 10710
  • Milford, MI
Re: Water options
« Reply #55 on: June 08, 2015, 01:17:20 pm »
Reserving the grain technique does NOT avoid an overly tart beer. Get your water right and the beer will follow.

+1.  I brewed a heavy RIS with this technique last summer that I ended up dumping due to lack of proper water salt additions and balancing the proper pH in the mash(before I studied water).  The beer came out tart and acidic past the point of my likability.  Drain pour!
For others that have a tart beer, try adding some baking soda or pickinling ime in small doses until you like it. Beats having to dump a batch.
Jeff Rankert
AHA Lifetime Member
BJCP National
Ann Arbor Brewers Guild
Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!

Offline morticaixavier

  • I must live here
  • **********
  • Posts: 7781
  • Underhill VT
    • The Best Artist in the WORLD!!!!!
Re: Water options
« Reply #56 on: June 08, 2015, 01:59:26 pm »
Reserving the grain technique does NOT avoid an overly tart beer. Get your water right and the beer will follow.

+1.  I brewed a heavy RIS with this technique last summer that I ended up dumping due to lack of proper water salt additions and balancing the proper pH in the mash(before I studied water).  The beer came out tart and acidic past the point of my likability.  Drain pour!
For others that have a tart beer, try adding some baking soda or pickinling ime in small doses until you like it. Beats having to dump a batch.

+1 to this.
"Creativity is the residue of wasted time"
-A Einstein

"errors are [...] the portals of discovery"
- J Joyce

Offline mabrungard

  • I spend way too much time on the AHA forum
  • ********
  • Posts: 2911
  • Water matters!
    • Bru'n Water
Re: Water options
« Reply #57 on: June 10, 2015, 09:48:05 pm »
If you know your original grist, mineral additions, and water volumes, you may be able to use Bru'n Water to calculate what the dose of baking soda or lime should have been to create that higher targeted mash pH. Use that result to guide the dosing of the finished beer to remove the tartness. Add maybe 75% of that amount and check the resulting flavor after mixing. If its still too tart, add the remainder. That should be somewhere in the ballpark.

That sucks that you drained the batch. It was probably somewhat fixable.
Martin B
Carmel, IN

BJCP National
Foam Blowers of Indiana (FBI)

Brewing Water Information at:
https://www.brunwater.com/

Like Bru'n Water on Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/Brun-Water-464551136933908/?ref=bookmarks