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Author Topic: Flameout pH adjustment...  (Read 12851 times)

Offline HighVoltageMan!

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #45 on: August 07, 2021, 10:36:26 am »
I notice better efficiency at a mash pH of 5.4-5.6 at room temp. The difference of .35 between between mash and room temperature seems a bit high. I’ve measured pH at both temperatures and found it to be .2-.25. Pitch pH is obviously measured at room temperature, that leaves a big difference between ideal mash pH and pitch pH of 5.2. Most homebrewers assume that if mash target pH is hit, they’re done. pH needs to be adjusted the entire process.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2021, 10:49:24 am by HighVoltageMan! »

Offline Village Taphouse

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #46 on: August 07, 2021, 11:08:28 am »
I notice better efficiency at a mash pH of 5.4-5.6 at room temp. The difference of .35 between between mash and room temperature seems a bit high. I’ve measured pH at both temperatures and found it to be .2-.25. Pitch pH is obviously measured at room temperature, that leaves a big difference between ideal mash pH and pitch pH of 5.2. Most homebrewers assume that if mash target pH is hit, they’re done. pH needs to be adjusted the entire process.
I think I'm slowly and stubbornly learning that.  If you mash and boil in the mid-5s you can't get to a good pitch pH without an addition of something (sauergut, lactic acid, etc) prior to pitching.  I'm brewing a pilsner now and planning an acid addition with 10 minutes left in the boil prior to adding whirfloc. 
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Offline narcout

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #47 on: August 07, 2021, 12:44:49 pm »
From page 34 of Brewing Better Beer by Strong:  The mash pH should be in the 5.2 to 5.5 range with a target of about 5.3.  Note the mash pH is measured at mash temperatures, not cooled.  If you cool the mash, the pH will read about .35 higher than at mash temperature.

That's where I saw it.

Regardless, I think that when most people on the forum say their measured mash pH was X, they are reporting the room temp measurement.  I guess it would be helpful if people specified.
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Offline Village Taphouse

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #48 on: August 07, 2021, 12:49:12 pm »
From page 34 of Brewing Better Beer by Strong:  The mash pH should be in the 5.2 to 5.5 range with a target of about 5.3.  Note the mash pH is measured at mash temperatures, not cooled.  If you cool the mash, the pH will read about .35 higher than at mash temperature.

That's where I saw it.

Regardless, I think that when most people on the forum say their measured mash pH was X, they are reporting the room temp measurement.  I guess it would be helpful if people specified.
Yeah, I think we're on the same page and I was going to say exactly what you said... specify it.  Without the specification there is doubt.  I feel like anyone measuring the pH has to have a cooled sample so we don't burn up a meter's probe so that part seems obvious but the clearer, the better, IMO. 
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Offline BrewBama

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #49 on: August 07, 2021, 12:51:48 pm »
From page 34 of Brewing Better Beer by Strong:  The mash pH should be in the 5.2 to 5.5 range with a target of about 5.3.  Note the mash pH is measured at mash temperatures, not cooled.  If you cool the mash, the pH will read about .35 higher than at mash temperature.

That's where I saw it.
That’s the range I aim for.  I cool my sample in an attempt to preserve the probe. (They’re expensive). 

It’s like the term ‘efficiency’.  There are many calculations and definitions for various points along the way.  We often think we’re speaking in common terms but a cpl clarification questions later it’s quick to see there are differences.



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Offline RC

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #50 on: August 07, 2021, 05:28:51 pm »
I'm of the opinion that before home brewers (and the magazine and book industry that evolved from catering to it) got it wrong and then morphed into an explosion of micro-brewers (who merely continue to parrot the trend...) the nominal 'ideal' target of 5.4 mash pH was intended to be 5.4 as measured at mash temperature, which would be roughly 5.6 pH if measured at room temperature.  And I'm also of the opinion that a careful read of peer reviewed brewing industry documents from yore (meaning before home brewing was legalized, and soon after sprouted endless micro-breweries) will support my opinion.

I think this is really interesting. In my home and commercial brewing experience and formal brewing education, the optimum has always been 5.2-5.6 as measured at room temp. This is the first I've heard that this pH range is intended to be at mash temp, not room temp. Based on this, I should be targeting a pH of ~5.6 at room temp. (And it's not really an opinion if it's adequately supported in the literature, "adequately" being the operative word, but I digress.)

Silver, if you have access or links to any of those peer-reviewed docs/studies of yore, are you able to share? I did a brief Scholar search but then moved on because my attention span is measured in squirrels.

Offline Village Taphouse

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #51 on: August 07, 2021, 05:50:05 pm »
I know that the gimmicky product "Mash 5.2 Stabilizer" is a memory that would make us all laugh now but why did Five-Star target 5.2 as the pH?  And... is that 5.2 at room temp or mash temp?  I have been brewing for 22+ years and have read many books and sites and it always seems like 5.4 (room temp) to get to 5.2 (mash temp) has been the target.  I believe Kai mentioned this, AJ DeLange mentioned it and numerous books.  I'm not arguing it but it's funny that we have SO many homebrewers out here but there is a question on what the ideal mash pH is and at what temp it's measured. 
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Offline RC

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #52 on: August 07, 2021, 06:22:39 pm »
...it's funny that we have SO many homebrewers out here but there is a question on what the ideal mash pH is and at what temp it's measured.

The "ideal mash pH" question has actually been pretty well answered. The ambiguity is, what temp did those studies measure it at? But at the end of the day, and as interesting as I find this, being off the mark by 0.2 pH units matters little, AFAIC. In my brain, it's like the distinction between a mash temp of 150 vs. 156. Can I tell the difference? No. Other brewers perhaps can (cue the confirmation bias).

Offline Village Taphouse

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #53 on: August 07, 2021, 06:52:38 pm »
...it's funny that we have SO many homebrewers out here but there is a question on what the ideal mash pH is and at what temp it's measured.

The "ideal mash pH" question has actually been pretty well answered. The ambiguity is, what temp did those studies measure it at? But at the end of the day, and as interesting as I find this, being off the mark by 0.2 pH units matters little, AFAIC. In my brain, it's like the distinction between a mash temp of 150 vs. 156. Can I tell the difference? No. Other brewers perhaps can (cue the confirmation bias).
I hear you.  Also, I'm sure we're about to go into the "difference mash pH for different beer styles" part of the discussion.  We have all experimented with different things and we all know what works best for each of us, I assume.   
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Offline denny

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #54 on: August 08, 2021, 08:28:39 am »
I know that the gimmicky product "Mash 5.2 Stabilizer" is a memory that would make us all laugh now but why did Five-Star target 5.2 as the pH?  And... is that 5.2 at room temp or mash temp?  I have been brewing for 22+ years and have read many books and sites and it always seems like 5.4 (room temp) to get to 5.2 (mash temp) has been the target.  I believe Kai mentioned this, AJ DeLange mentioned it and numerous books.  I'm not arguing it but it's funny that we have SO many homebrewers out here but there is a question on what the ideal mash pH is and at what temp it's measured.

They targeted 5.2 because that was what the brewery they were making it for wanted.  Simple as that.

Gordon knows a lot about brewing, but he's wrong about pH measurement.  The reason people don't specify is because it's been standardized at room temp, so they don't need to.
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Offline BrewBama

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #55 on: August 08, 2021, 11:43:58 am »

Gordon knows a lot about brewing, but he's wrong about pH measurement.  …

. …or maybe (just maybe) he’s right. 



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Offline erockrph

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #56 on: August 08, 2021, 11:44:48 am »


...it's funny that we have SO many homebrewers out here but there is a question on what the ideal mash pH is and at what temp it's measured.

The "ideal mash pH" question has actually been pretty well answered. The ambiguity is, what temp did those studies measure it at? But at the end of the day, and as interesting as I find this, being off the mark by 0.2 pH units matters little, AFAIC. In my brain, it's like the distinction between a mash temp of 150 vs. 156. Can I tell the difference? No. Other brewers perhaps can (cue the confirmation bias).
I hear you.  Also, I'm sure we're about to go into the "difference mash pH for different beer styles" part of the discussion.  We have all experimented with different things and we all know what works best for each of us, I assume.   

To take this a bit further down the rabbit hole, I think the *different mash pH for different styles* thing boils down to (pun intended) the fact that I think a lot of homebrewers only really consider mash pH, but finishing pH is more likely to be what is important for a particular style.

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Offline denny

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #57 on: August 08, 2021, 11:46:30 am »

Gordon knows a lot about brewing, but he's wrong about pH measurement.  …

. …or maybe (just maybe) he’s right. 



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Not in this case, but I'm sure in many others.
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Offline BrewBama

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #58 on: August 08, 2021, 11:51:14 am »
I believe the reason there is a different mash pH for different styles is because without the specialty grains added the mash is X pH, but when those specialty malts are added the mash pH changes to Y pH. No need to control it, just let it happen.



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Offline Silver_Is_Money

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #59 on: August 08, 2021, 12:33:39 pm »
Silver, if you have access or links to any of those peer-reviewed docs/studies of yore, are you able to share? I did a brief Scholar search but then moved on because my attention span is measured in squirrels.

I've written much about this on another forum.  It spans many pages and lists sources, but I do not wish to merely duplicate it here.