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Old 01-17-2010, 03:27 PM   #1
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Default Adding salts to bk

So i was thinking about water additions today.

currently i add the salts to the MLT for the the mash water, and then i add teh salts to the BK for the Sparge water (per Brewstrong podcast)

let me illustrate with an example.

= I mash in with 3 gallons of water, i add 3 grams to the MLT.
= Then i mash out
=Add six gallons of sparge water (this is just an example)
= I empty the sparge water in the boil kettle

At this point I have 6 gallons total in the BK, and 3 gallons remaining in the MLT, trapped in the grain.

3 of the gallons in the boil kettle were treated in the mash.

what volume should i use to add salts for the sparge water?

1) treat the additional three gallons of sparge water that made it too teh kettle
2) treat the boil kettle as if all 6 gallons of sparge water made it into the kettle

I am about to brew, so any clarification would be greatly appreciated.

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Old 01-17-2010, 06:55 PM   #2
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Anybody... please?

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Old 01-17-2010, 07:09 PM   #3
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I just divide up the additions. 1/2 in the mash, 1/2 in the BK. The amount of sparge water has nothing to do with it. I hope that helps!

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Old 01-17-2010, 07:32 PM   #4
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Right, but what about the water that is stuck in the grains... do i count that when i am making my additions in the boil kettle?

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Old 01-17-2010, 07:40 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by sjlammer View Post
Right, but what about the water that is stuck in the grains... do i count that when i am making my additions in the boil kettle?
No, don't worry about that. I don't know how it would be possible to calculate it exactly anyway.

When you use a spreadsheet, the calculations assume some wet grains left over. You want the salts in the mash to ensure proper conversion, and you want the salts in the BK for yeast nutrition and flavor later on.

You'll be fine just dividing the additions.

Of course, I'm no chemist, so I'd suggest further reading if you want to know more of the hows and whys. This is just what I've gleaned from my foray into beginning water chemistry.
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Old 01-17-2010, 07:56 PM   #6
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I do two calculations:

For mash pH adjustment, I figure based only on what's in the mash, and I don't adjust pH of sparge water. For Cl/SO4 balance, I figure additions based upon the entire volume, and add salts to the BK.

Note: Denver water is fairly soft, and high in sulfates, so it's generally just a small chalk addition in the mash and some canning salt in the BK. YMwillV, based on your starting point.

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Old 01-17-2010, 08:24 PM   #7
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Are you suggesting that the sparge water will sparge out salts remaining in the grain after the MT addition? I wouldn't try to calculate that.

Let's say you treat 5gl for the mash but after water loss to grains you would be able to runoff 2.5 gl from that (batch or fly doesn't matter). If you are shooting for a 7gl boil then you'd add salts for 4.5 gl to the BK.

Make sense?

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Old 01-17-2010, 08:27 PM   #8
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Nope. I'm suggesting that to get the mash pH in the right range, I adjust based only on the water that's in the mash during conversion. For taste-related adjustments, I adjust based upon the final volume of beer. Again, it's easy for me, since I usually only need a bit of chalk and canning salt. For more complicated salt schedules, this would be a lot harder.

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Old 01-17-2010, 08:28 PM   #9
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Nope. I'm suggesting that to get the mash pH in the right range, I adjust based only on the water that's in the mash during conversion. For taste-related adjustments, I adjust based upon the final volume of beer. Again, it's easy for me, since I usually only need a bit of chalk and canning salt. For more complicated salt schedules, this would be a lot harder.
That question was to the OP....
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Old 01-17-2010, 11:09 PM   #10
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Ok. I make two salt additions:

1) my first addition is based on the mash water volume

2) the second is the total runoff volume - mash water. Ie. i am excluding the water trapt in the MLT/grains

"Let's say you treat 5gl for the mash but after water loss to grains you would be able to runoff 2.5 gl from that (batch or fly doesn't matter). If you are shooting for a 7gl boil then you'd add salts for 4.5 gl to the BK."

I think we are saying the same thing here.

I guess i am making the assumption that the water trapted in the grains is untreated sparge water.

The other way you could do it is:
1) treat the volume of mash water
2) add salts to the BK based on teh total sparge volume.

The problem with this is that 3-4 gallons of water is left in the MLT,,, yet i am adding salts to the BK for these trapt gallons... doesn't seem right

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