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Author Topic: Flameout pH adjustment...  (Read 13266 times)

Offline Village Taphouse

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #75 on: August 10, 2021, 02:28:53 pm »
IME, acid additions towards the end of the boil seem to have a very small impact.  I once measured my mid-boil pH and it was something like 5.47 and then I added 1ml of 88% lactic acid and when I took the pH as the wort was headed into the fermenter, it was 5.45 and both samples were measured at room temp.  I'm trying to keep my mind from being blown so please don't say this is blowing your mind.  :P  :D 
Well, hmmpf...I kind of just want to put a bag over my head and keep doing what I'm doing... But if this could mean even better beer, well, has to be worth exploring I'd think. My main worry now, is if I'm mashing at a higher pH and by your observations the pH isn't changing much during the boil, I'm worried about my post boil pH being too high. Is that confusing enough?
Believe me brother, I am a by-the-numbers brewer and when some of these guys start talking fancy I have the bag in my hand ready to put it over my head, LOL.  My latest gig is to just simplify things:  Get my strike water to a pH of 5.5 prior to heating it and then mash away.  I take the pH of the mash and find myself squarely in the ranges mentioned throughout this thread.  My sparge goes the same way and I boil at that pH and then add 1 to 1.5ml of lactic acid about 10 minutes from the end of the boil.  The results so far are encouraging and I feel a bit more comfortable simplifying things.  Now where is that bag... :D
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Offline narcout

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #76 on: August 10, 2021, 02:29:36 pm »
Ahh...... here's the BIG one:

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/threads/yet-more-evidence-that-commercial-brewers-do-not-mash-at-5-2-to-5-6-ph.671764/

The most interesting part of that thread to me is Bryan's screenshots of the offset between the pH as measured at mash temperature and room temperature.  It appears to vary quite a bit rather than being some constant (like the often cited .25 or .35).   
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Offline Silver_Is_Money

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #77 on: August 10, 2021, 02:30:00 pm »
IME, acid additions towards the end of the boil seem to have a very small impact.  I once measured my mid-boil pH and it was something like 5.47 and then I added 1ml of 88% lactic acid and when I took the pH as the wort was headed into the fermenter, it was 5.45 and both samples were measured at room temp.  I'm trying to keep my mind from being blown so please don't say this is blowing your mind.  :P  :D

1 mL of 88% lactic acid will move a pH by 11.141 mEq's.

(5.47 - 5.1) = mEq's/(~35 x ~5)  [for a 5 Kg. grist with a BC of 35]

0.37 = mEq's/175
mEq's = 64.75

64.75 mEq's รท 11.141 mEq's/mL (for 88% Lactic Acid at pH 5.1) = 5.8 mL

You likely needed to add 5.8 mL by which to move your grist to pH 5.1.  In that case it is easy to see that 1 mL would not be seen as much of a change.

In fact:
(5.47 - X) = 11.141/175
X = 5.41 pH predicted after an addition of 1 mL of 88% lactic acid (for the case of my presumptions)

Offline beersk

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #78 on: August 10, 2021, 02:31:37 pm »
IME, acid additions towards the end of the boil seem to have a very small impact.  I once measured my mid-boil pH and it was something like 5.47 and then I added 1ml of 88% lactic acid and when I took the pH as the wort was headed into the fermenter, it was 5.45 and both samples were measured at room temp.  I'm trying to keep my mind from being blown so please don't say this is blowing your mind.  :P  :D 
Well, hmmpf...I kind of just want to put a bag over my head and keep doing what I'm doing... But if this could mean even better beer, well, has to be worth exploring I'd think. My main worry now, is if I'm mashing at a higher pH and by your observations the pH isn't changing much during the boil, I'm worried about my post boil pH being too high. Is that confusing enough?
Believe me brother, I am a by-the-numbers brewer and when some of these guys start talking fancy I have the bag in my hand ready to put it over my head, LOL.  My latest gig is to just simplify things:  Get my strike water to a pH of 5.5 prior to heating it and then mash away.  I take the pH of the mash and find myself squarely in the ranges mentioned throughout this thread.  My sparge goes the same way and I boil at that pH and then add 1 to 1.5ml of lactic acid about 10 minutes from the end of the boil.  The results so far are encouraging and I feel a bit more comfortable simplifying things.  Now where is that bag... :D
Sounds like a good plan and simplifying is always on my list of things to do. I may do this, aiming for room temp pH of around 5.5-5.6 and just up the amount of acid I add at the end of the boil from 1mL to 2mL (or maybe even 3mL based on Silver_Is_Money's comment above). It isn't that big of a departure from what I'm already doing.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2021, 02:36:39 pm by beersk »
Jesse

Offline Silver_Is_Money

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #79 on: August 10, 2021, 02:37:30 pm »
The most interesting part of that thread to me is Bryan's screenshots of the offset between the pH as measured at mash temperature and room temperature.  It appears to vary quite a bit rather than being some constant (like the often cited .25 or .35).

Since Bryan mashes at relatively low pH's to begin with, and (per Narziss data) the higher ones pH entering the boil, the greater the drop, one would not expect Bryan to observe much pH drop across the boil.  Those observing 0.3 to o.35 pH points of pH drop across the boil are the ones mashing at room temperature 5.5 to 5.8 pH.  Yet more evidence that mash pH in the days of yore was targeting what would be 5.5 to 5.8 if measured at room temperature.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2021, 02:41:37 pm by Silver_Is_Money »

Offline Village Taphouse

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #80 on: August 10, 2021, 02:43:45 pm »
Sounds like a good plan and simplifying is always on my list of things to do. I may do this, aiming for room temp pH of around 5.5-5.6 and just up the amount of acid I add at the end of the boil from 1mL to 2mL (or maybe even 3mL based on Silver_Is_Money's comment above). It isn't that big of a departure from what I'm already doing.
BrewBama pointed me towards that.  It's very easy to get caught in a web in this hobby because there is A LOT of variable information out there.  Hell, in this thread we have seen a link to a BYO article where the author realized he may have misled people.  There is plenty of confusion to go around especially if you're a by-the-numbers, weekend brewer like I am.  I do not have the skill set that Silver_Is_Money has crunching those numbers, etc. so I just need to go by what my tastebuds tell me is working.  I have done quite a bit of simplification lately and things are clicking better.  I have also been on a crazy brewing tear lately because we have had a lot of guests at the house this summer... consumption is up so production has to keep up!  :D
Ken from Chicago. 
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Offline Silver_Is_Money

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #81 on: August 10, 2021, 02:50:02 pm »
PS:  'Days of yore' is my colloquialism for the days between which pH was invented and then routinely utilized and the days following soon after when homebrewing was legalized, after which the literature is dominated by home brewers, many of which morphed into commercial microbrewers, and others of which morphed into brewing 'how too' writers, and all of whom merely took their non peer scrutinized (or reviewed) and endlessly parroted (including in print) misnomers and bad habits about beer brewing into the commercial microbrew realm and 'how too' realm along with them. 

Offline Silver_Is_Money

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #82 on: August 10, 2021, 02:55:41 pm »
It's very easy to get caught in a web in this hobby because there is A LOT of variable information out there.  Hell, in this thread we have seen a link to a BYO article where the author realized he may have misled people. 

That is the perception, but although he realized that with his flawed perception of ATC he indeed misled (whereby he humbly ate crow), a careful read of part 2 indicates that he never once retracted his stance upon which he viewed the brewers of yore as mashing at mash temperature measured pH's centered upon a mash temperature mid-point ideal of around 5.4 pH (which would be a room temperature mid-point ideal of around 5.6-5.65 pH).  The ending line indicates that he is sticking to his original opinion, in defiance of all of the endlessly parroted post brewers of yore blather to the contrary.  I tip my hat to him.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2021, 02:59:15 pm by Silver_Is_Money »

Offline Village Taphouse

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #83 on: August 10, 2021, 02:58:22 pm »
PS:  'Days of yore' is my colloquialism for the days between which pH was invented and then routinely utilized and the days following soon after when homebrewing was legalized, after which the literature is dominated by home brewers, many of which morphed into commercial microbrewers, and others of which morphed into brewing 'how too' writers, and all of whom merely took their non peer scrutinized (or reviewed) and endlessly parroted (including in print) misnomers and bad habits about beer brewing into the commercial microbrew realm and 'how too' realm along with them.
It explains why so many brewers see so much variable information.  I mean, the hobby itself has a lot of variables (water, equipment, process, different malts, mashing techniques, etc) and many people who are just trying very hard to help might pass on information that they believe to be true except it may not translate over to everyone else's brewing.  So many forums with so many people who might be a little too loose with the information, so many books, podcasts, opinions, etc.  It would be fun to take a high-end Siebel class on some of this stuff and see what information is important, which can be ignored and what comes down to personal preference. 
Ken from Chicago. 
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Offline Village Taphouse

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #84 on: August 10, 2021, 03:01:02 pm »
It's very easy to get caught in a web in this hobby because there is A LOT of variable information out there.  Hell, in this thread we have seen a link to a BYO article where the author realized he may have misled people. 

That is the perception, but although he realized that with his flawed perception of ATC he indeed misled (whereby he humbly ate crow), a careful read of part 2 indicates that he never once retracted his stance upon which he viewed the brewers of yore as mashing at mash temperature measured pH's centered upon a mash temperature mid-point ideal of around 5.4 pH (which would be a room temperature mid-point ideal of around 5.6-5.65 pH).  The ending line indicates that he is sticking to his original opinion, in defiance of all of the endlessly parroted post brewers of yore blather to the contrary.  I tip my hat to him.
Agreed.  I read all of that and his response was put together nicely and not only explained his original concept but also clarified some things that have confounded brewers for years.  It's good to see that you're not alone in scratching your head over a concept. 
Ken from Chicago. 
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Offline narcout

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #85 on: August 10, 2021, 03:13:34 pm »
The most interesting part of that thread to me is Bryan's screenshots of the offset between the pH as measured at mash temperature and room temperature.  It appears to vary quite a bit rather than being some constant (like the often cited .25 or .35).

Since Bryan mashes at relatively low pH's to begin with, and (per Narziss data) the higher ones pH entering the boil, the greater the drop, one would not expect Bryan to observe much pH drop across the boil.  Those observing 0.3 to o.35 pH points of pH drop across the boil are the ones mashing at room temperature 5.5 to 5.8 pH.  Yet more evidence that mash pH in the days of yore was targeting what would be 5.5 to 5.8 if measured at room temperature.

Aren't we talking about two different things (offset between mash pH as measured at room and mash temp vs. the drop in pH that occurs during the boil due to factors other than sample temperature)?

Regarding the days of yore, is it possible that "optimal" pH targets have changed along with malt production and mashing regimens, etc.?
Sometimes you just can't get enough - JAMC

Offline beersk

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #86 on: August 10, 2021, 03:21:34 pm »


Regarding the days of yore, is it possible that "optimal" pH targets have changed along with malt production and mashing regimens, etc.?
That's a good point.

By the way, Ken - This whole thread started because you had clarity issues and some flabby beers. The thing that worries me is if mashing higher and not adding enough end-of-boil acid to drop the pH into the correct range, wouldn't that produce more flabby beers or am I missing something?
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Offline Silver_Is_Money

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #87 on: August 10, 2021, 03:26:14 pm »
Aren't we talking about two different things (offset between mash pH as measured at room and mash temp vs. the drop in pH that occurs during the boil due to factors other than sample temperature)?

Regarding the days of yore, is it possible that "optimal" pH targets have changed along with malt production and mashing regimens, etc.?

1)  I don't think so.  Bryan was arguing that he never saw a mash pH differential of magnitude 0.30 to 0.35 when he measured mash pH at both room and mash temp.
2)  If you can prove to me that the large commercials who invented the science of yore as to pH with regard to brewing have changed from targeting 5.4 pH as measured at mash temperature to targeting pH 5.4 as measured at room temperature, I'll think that you are onto something.

Offline Silver_Is_Money

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #88 on: August 10, 2021, 03:29:32 pm »
A lot of people these days are parroting that the world is flat.  If for any reason they perchance became a vast majority, would that make the world flat?

A lot of people these days are parroting that the nominal idealized mash target of 5.40 pH has always been a room temperature measure.  If for any reason they perchance became a vast majority, such as they indeed have, would that alone make them correct?
« Last Edit: August 10, 2021, 03:32:33 pm by Silver_Is_Money »

Offline beersk

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Re: Flameout pH adjustment...
« Reply #89 on: August 10, 2021, 03:42:34 pm »
A lot of people these days are parroting that the world is flat.  If for any reason they perchance became a vast majority, would that make the world flat?

A lot of people these days are parroting that the nominal idealized mash target of 5.40 pH has always been a room temperature measure.  If for any reason they perchance became a vast majority, such as they indeed have, would that alone make them correct?

I suppose not.

All this time I've been mashing at too low a pH. Basically, I don't need to acidify the mash with lactic acid for a pilsner or helles with 100% RO water and salts added to get a room temp pH of about 5.5 or so. I've been targeting 5.3 at room temp for years and adding 1mL lactic acid at the end of the boil and I always enjoyed the results.

What could I expect to observe if mashing at pH 5.5 room temp? Higher mash efficiency? Better malt flavor in the finish beer? More body in the finished beer? Better wort and beer clarity?

What if I mash at pH 5.6 room temp for an Irish Red and do not add any acid at the end of the boil? Will the beer be flabby?

I don't really expect you to answer these questions, I just feel like I all of a sudden know nothing... ;D
« Last Edit: August 10, 2021, 03:44:11 pm by beersk »
Jesse