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7 hours ago, Bonsai & Brew said:

This is what your mash pH should be to maximize amylase enzymatic efficiency, reduce astringency, improve clarity, increase hop utilization and prevent off-flavors. I have never measured mine.  

Lol, they have fancy and expensive spring water at the store with the ph printed on the label. My spring water is down two shelves and costs 75% less.

My mash seems happy enough. ;)

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3 hours ago, Cato said:

Lol, they have fancy and expensive spring water at the store with the ph printed on the label. My spring water is down two shelves and costs 75% less.

My mash seems happy enough. ;)

 

Going forward, I'll be diluting my well water 1:1 with R/O water from my workplace -- gotta get my residual alkalinity down! 

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4 minutes ago, RickBeer said:

 

Stealing water from work?  🤯

Shhhhhhh. LOL. 

@Bonsai & Brew, I use Wally's bottled spring water at $0.88/ gallon and an acid rest while mashing. Using ph strips to measure, I've always been in the range of 5.3 to 5.4 without making any chemical alterations to the water.

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2 hours ago, Bonsai & Brew said:

 

Going forward, I'll be diluting my well water 1:1 with R/O water from my workplace -- gotta get my residual alkalinity down! 

That residual alkalinity might be the signature award winning ingredient for Stauhaus Biers!

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Are you seeking a higher efficiency or is it to see if you detect a slight change or improvement  in taste? It will be interesting to see what the results will be.

 

I've been seeking a bit better grain conversion with my BIAB because my crush from suppliers leaves a lot of grain intact.

 

I've had a few wild swings in conversion, so I got the grain mill and will see what I get on a single crush and a double crush. Extra work for sure but I already feel better about having control over that aspect.

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2 hours ago, Cato said:

Are you seeking a higher efficiency or is it to see if you detect a slight change or improvement  in taste? It will be interesting to see what the results will be.

 

I've been seeking a bit better grain conversion with my BIAB because my crush from suppliers leaves a lot of grain intact.

 

I've had a few wild swings in conversion, so I got the grain mill and will see what I get on a single crush and a double crush. Extra work for sure but I already feel better about having control over that aspect.

 

Mash pH is something that I have not paid a lot of attention to and figured it's time to start tweaking my mash-in-sack process.  Improved efficiency would certainly be the prime objective but I'm also curious how/if maintaining the proper mash pH affects the finished beer.  I feel like I'm starting over with my all-grain evolution, but that is the price of progress. :)

 

Also, I've been playing around with the idea of brewing classic styles using appropriate water profiles.  I've known for awhile that my water is naturally well suited for Munich Dunkel, Schwarzbier, etc., but because of high alkalinity/bicarbonate, I'll need to dilute that out before building other profiles with brewing salts.  Like you suggested, we may as well control what we can in our brew process and hope for better beer!         

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On 11/5/2018 at 9:15 PM, Bonsai & Brew said:

This is what your mash pH should be to maximize amylase enzymatic efficiency, reduce astringency, improve clarity, increase hop utilization and prevent off-flavors.

 

Not to mention having a clearer complexion, brighter smile, and fuller hair!

 

🤣

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@Bonsai & Brew was reading some on water profiles and PH today. Looked into getting a ph meter but was not sold on the reviews on most of the portables concerning their accuracy and reliability . I've only used a benchtop model and those get pricey, even the replaceable probes were pricey, at least for the lab model we used.

However I did order a lb of 5.2 stabilizer today. How well it works, I'll have to see. Course I'll need to find an affordable meter to measure its effectiveness. 1 tablespoon added to your mash water is supposed to correct it's ph to 5.2. Larger batches, like 6gal, some say require up to 3tbs.

Might be a gimmick product but for $17 and change I'll check it out.

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1 hour ago, Cato said:

@Bonsai & Brew was reading some on water profiles and PH today. Looked into getting a ph meter but was not sold on the reviews on most of the portables concerning their accuracy and reliability . I've only used a benchtop model and those get pricey, even the replaceable probes were pricey, at least for the lab model we used.

However I did order a lb of 5.2 stabilizer today. How well it works, I'll have to see. Course I'll need to find an affordable meter to measure its effectiveness. 1 tablespoon added to your mash water is supposed to correct it's ph to 5.2. Larger batches, like 6gal, some say require up to 3tbs.

Might be a gimmick product but for $17 and change I'll check it out.

 

I've been getting by with pH paper but need to look into that 5.2 stabilizer.  For my 2 gallon batches, a lb. of that would last a lifetime.  Let us know what you think of it.

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36 minutes ago, Bonsai & Brew said:

 

I've been getting by with pH paper but need to look into that 5.2 stabilizer.  For my 2 gallon batches, a lb. of that would last a lifetime.  Let us know what you think of it.

Lol, will do. Ordered this morning and Amazon delivering Sunday. Faaast service, my fermenter won't be available for another couple weeks!

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14 hours ago, Bonsai & Brew said:

 

I've been getting by with pH paper but need to look into that 5.2 stabilizer.  For my 2 gallon batches, a lb. of that would last a lifetime.  Let us know what you think of it.

I googled the ph of spring water sold in stores, including Wal-Mart @D Kristof! They're mostly in 7.5 ph range. So it would appear that some adjustment would be required for brewing.

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The pH of water, and the pH of the mash, aren't the same.  The grain and the water result in the pH lowering because the grains are acidic.  The only question is whether the pH lowers into the acceptable range for mashing, and whether the water makeup is complementary or not to the style of the beer.

 

For most homebrewers, they can brew with good tasting water and not really know what they are missing (or not adding, pun intended).  For those that pay attention to water details, proper water can tremendously help with a beer style.  That's why certain parts of the world have certain beer styles that stand out.

 

A caution though - many do research and say "oh, here's the water they use in _____, so I will adjust my water to match that".  In truth, the brewers in that part of the world may be adjusting their water also, and no one realizes it.  So you have to do a good deal of research to come up with the proper way to match water for a certain style elsewhere.  Getting your pH to the proper range for brewing is much easier.

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2 hours ago, Cato said:

I googled the ph of spring water sold in stores, including Wal-Mart @D Kristof! They're mostly in 7.5 ph range. So it would appear that some adjustment would be required for brewing.

The pH of water, and the pH of the mash, aren't the same.  The grain and the water result in the pH lowering because the grains are acidic.  The only question is whether the pH lowers into the acceptable range for mashing, and whether the water makeup is complementary or not to the style of the beer.

 

For most homebrewers, they can brew with good tasting water and not really know what they are missing (or not adding, pun intended).  For those that pay attention to water details, proper water can tremendously help with a beer style.  That's why certain parts of the world have certain beer styles that stand out.

 

A caution though - many do research and say "oh, here's the water they use in _____, so I will adjust my water to match that".  In truth, the brewers in that part of the world may be adjusting their water also, and no one realizes it.  So you have to do a good deal of research to come up with the proper way to match water for a certain style elsewhere.  Getting your pH to the proper range for brewing is much easier.

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28 minutes ago, RickBeer said:

Getting your pH to the proper range for brewing is much easier.

Agreed!   For us, we have a private well (for now) so I sent in a sample and got it tested to know what it exactly shows.  Since its not a municipal water system, the makeup shouldn't really change much, if it all.   From there, it's easy breezy to nail what PH you need based on recipe.  A couple little steps to start, but I can tell you after reading @Screwy Brewer's blogs about Water PH, that's when things started changing for me as a brewer.

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2 hours ago, RickBeer said:

The pH of water, and the pH of the mash, aren't the same.  The grain and the water result in the pH lowering because the grains are acidic.  The only question is whether the pH lowers into the acceptable range for mashing, and whether the water makeup is complementary or not to the style of the beer.

 

For most homebrewers, they can brew with good tasting water and not really know what they are missing (or not adding, pun intended).  For those that pay attention to water details, proper water can tremendously help with a beer style.  That's why certain parts of the world have certain beer styles that stand out.

 

A caution though - many do research and say "oh, here's the water they use in _____, so I will adjust my water to match that".  In truth, the brewers in that part of the world may be adjusting their water also, and no one realizes it.  So you have to do a good deal of research to come up with the proper way to match water for a certain style elsewhere.  Getting your pH to the proper range for brewing is much easier.

Thanks Rick! I had assumed that the mash would have an influence on the water in some manner. I'd sort of skimmed over water profiles in my readings thus far and concentrating more on the other aspects of brewing.

 

Now that ph is on my radar, I'll be interested in testing my spring water before mashing, and during to see what I've got.

 

Lol, I haven't been displeased with using spring water with no adjustments, but if it could be better, then I really need to know that!

 

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1 hour ago, Cato said:

Lol, I haven't been displeased with using spring water with no adjustments, but if it could be better, then I really need to know that!

Yeah, because as you get going, along with PH, is different mineral additions that can either help your malts or your hops come forward and can honestly change your beer for the far better.  Its amazing how easy it can be, once you learn it all.  Little steps will show big leaps and bounds of difference in your beers.

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Does anyone here (Rick?) know what substituting Safale US-04 for 05 will do the the Surley Dog recipe?  With my limited knowledge, I  really don't know if I should try it.  But I have no more 05 left.  I did find this, so maybe I answered my own question:

"English yeast (US-04) will attenuate less, leaving a higher final gravity for a more malt-focused beer and the American yeast (US-05) will attenuate more, resulting in a lower final gravity for a dryer beer. "  Briarcliff Brewing      Does he know what he's talking about?

😟

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6 hours ago, Cato said:

I googled the ph of spring water sold in stores, including Wal-Mart @D Kristof! They're mostly in 7.5 ph range. So it would appear that some adjustment would be required for brewing.

Although I am an extract brewer I use grains to complement my efforts.  I don't steep grains, I do a mash using a couple +/- lbs of grains. At first I never thought about ph levels until I did more reading. As I said before, doing protein, acid and conversion rests while mashing has always landed me in the sweet spot. When I begin using my cooler mash tun for larger grain bills I suppose I might need to begin making adjustments. Haven't taken that leap yet, but I am slowly acquiring the necessary equipment.

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1 hour ago, D Kristof said:

Although I am an extract brewer I use grains to complement my efforts.  I don't steep grains, I do a mash using a couple +/- lbs of grains. At first I never thought about ph levels until I did more reading. As I said before, doing protein, acid and conversion rests while mashing has always landed me in the sweet spot. When I begin using my cooler mash tun for larger grain bills I suppose I might need to begin making adjustments. Haven't taken that leap yet, but I am slowly acquiring the necessary equipment.

Actually I think we're probably fine with extract and extract pm recipes. It's the all grain recipes that may need slight water adjustments.

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On 11/7/2018 at 10:24 AM, Bonsai & Brew said:

 

Mash pH is something that I have not paid a lot of attention to and figured it's time to start tweaking my mash-in-sack process.  Improved efficiency would certainly be the prime objective but I'm also curious how/if maintaining the proper mash pH affects the finished beer.  I feel like I'm starting over with my all-grain evolution, but that is the price of progress. :)

 

Also, I've been playing around with the idea of brewing classic styles using appropriate water profiles.  I've known for awhile that my water is naturally well suited for Munich Dunkel, Schwarzbier, etc., but because of high alkalinity/bicarbonate, I'll need to dilute that out before building other profiles with brewing salts.  Like you suggested, we may as well control what we can in our brew process and hope for better beer!         

Okay Eddie Haskell you've opened an interesting door here and the timing seems right for me to pay attention to see if my spring water is basically fine as it is or if I'd benefit from some adjustment to ph in the mash or minerals to the water.

 

So, now in addition to the ph stabilizer, I've got some ph strips coming and a small jar each of gypsum, calcium chloride, and phosphoric acid.

Time for a new column in my spreadsheet for each batch. Will likely take months to evaluate. Good news, more beer needs to be brewed! :)

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On 11/17/2018 at 2:15 PM, Squirley Mic said:

"English yeast (US-04) will attenuate less, leaving a higher final gravity for a more malt-focused beer and the American yeast (US-05) will attenuate more, resulting in a lower final gravity for a dryer beer. "  Briarcliff Brewing      Does he know what he's talking about?

😟

He knows exactly what he is talking about.  I couldn't have said it better myself.

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http://www.ezwatercalculator.com/

 

This is what I use to get an idea of my mash PH.  It is very accurate with the measurements that I have taken with my PH meter.  I don't even bother to double check any longer.  It does require that you know the mineral makeup of your water.  Some municipal water sources will give you this information if you call them.  Some frankly don't test for all of those items.  You also could take a sample of your water and send it to get it tested. 

Ward labs is the most recommended lab for this.  https://www.wardlab.com/BrewersKitOrder.php    They will test your sample and return the results to you via an email.

 

Another option is a water test kit, I have one of these.  https://www.morebeer.com/products/lamotte-brewlab-basic-water-test-kit-718901.html?gclid=Cj0KCQiA28nfBRCDARIsANc5BFBa0F8IkvFBTuu6j2XVP6mk-uRsWqW6QtCfxr5znQCLZX9LOkOue0MaAvIEEALw_wcB

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