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Old 11-23-2012, 02:19 AM   #1
jamesmiller982
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Default Di water help

I have been doing all grain for about 20 batches now and I am after that perfect tasting beer. My beers are good but I am still learning. One thing I noticed when I do clones is that my beers are missing about 25% of the favor I am looking for, it just doesn't seem to pop. I have been reading on water and am looking for a straight forward approach to using the right kind of water chemistry for the beer I am brewing, but I cant seem to get a handle on it. I have a deionized water maker at my shop so I can start with all zeros. My question is what would I need to add and how much for 5 gallon batches for each brew style. If someone had a simple answer to this question it may be the only way I can understand.

Lastly, when I mash out is it wrong if I run it through again? If not how many times can I do this?

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Old 11-23-2012, 11:46 AM   #2
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If someone had a simple answer to this question it may be the only way I can understand.
As it's a complicated question there is no simple answer but the Primer represents my best attempt at a simple answer. It will get you on the road but there is still a lot you will have to do beyond blindly following its advice. There are plenty of tools available to help you do that.
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Old 11-23-2012, 11:56 AM   #3
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don't know about other brewing software, but Beersmith has a water profile tool where you start with the water profile you have, select any number of target water profiles from around the world based on where the style you are brewing is from and it will calculate whatever additions you will need.

i'm not at that level yet, I'm still working on equipment and technique, but it's kinda cool to know that I can adjust my water to what breweries in Dublin use if I'm brewing a stout and change it to Vienna water if I'm brewing a lager

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Old 11-23-2012, 12:27 PM   #4
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See http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f128/tar...nerals-369377/

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Old 11-23-2012, 10:07 PM   #5
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I have tasted American Pale Ales that were brewed with distilled water and no mineral additions. With my fairly substantial judging experience, I could taste that they were well brewed and contained no obvious infections or faults. But their taste was 'meh' and boring. There was no pop to the hop flavor. I quizzed the brewer and he assured me that there were a lot of hops and additions in the beers. That was a strong education that mineral content is very important for bringing out hop flavor in beer. I'm not so sure that you HAVE to have a significant mineral content to bring out malt flavors in beer since Pilsen water has proven to be quite suitable in Pilsner Urquell.

Please don't try and mimic a water profile from a historic brewing center unless you understand how that profile might fit with your current beer and what those brewers of old might have done to make it work better. The nuances in the Flavor ions (Mg, Na, Cl, and SO4) displayed in those historic profiles may be helpful in guiding a brewer toward levels they might want in their brewing water. But there are a lot of poorly researched water profiles in print and on the web. Bru'n Water has a large set of well researched profiles that can at least show a brewer what those Flavor ion nuances were. That still does not mean that you should brew with them without some modification. The color-based water profiles in Bru'n Water are examples of moderately mineralized profiles with appropriate flavor ion levels. Those are what I largely recommend. Bru'n Water looks tough the first time you open the program, but after you take a moment to understand how it works and what you have to adjust, it is as EZ as any other program.

Regarding the mash out question. Yes you can run it through again. That is like a recirculating infusion mashing system (RIMS). The problem is that you do want to sparge the mash with fresh water so that it will bring out more of the sugars. Just recirculating the wort will end up leaving a little more of the sugar-rich wort on the copious surface area of the grain bed. That is OK to do, its just that the efficiency will suffer somewhat. That is like batch-sparging.

Enjoy!

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Old 11-28-2012, 12:24 AM   #6
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I second Martin's Brun'Water generic color profiles.

For example, a Kolsch I designed using only filtered DC water was mediocre at best. Using the "Yellow balanced" water profile, the Kolsch was spectacular by comparison. I think ensuring proper calcium levels also helped mash pH, precipitating hot break, and yeast health.

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Old 12-03-2012, 05:55 PM   #7
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I am trying to figure out the Brun Water Program and I need a little help. I have most of the water quality report but it looks like i am missing some information and some other info I do not know where to put it.
Here is the info I have
Calcium- 24 mg/L is this the same as ppm?
Mag 14.5
Potassium- unknown- Is this imoprtant?
Bicarbonate- 6 mg
Carbonate Hardness- 74 mg- I did not know where to put this?
Non-caronate hardness- 46 mg- I did not know where to put this.
Chloride- Unknown- Is this important?
Nitrate (N03)- 4mg
Nitrate (NO2) unknown- Is this important?
PH 9.3 is this high?


If i am need the unkowns I may be able to send to a lab if I need to. What other info do i need to have. Once I put into the chart what tab should I look at next? I am going to make Denny Rye IPA. What profile would I go with #48 pale ale? Where do I enter this information? Thanks for the help.

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Old 12-03-2012, 05:58 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mabrungard View Post
I have tasted American Pale Ales that were brewed with distilled water and no mineral additions. With my fairly substantial judging experience, I could taste that they were well brewed and contained no obvious infections or faults. But their taste was 'meh' and boring. There was no pop to the hop flavor.




Enjoy!
I think this is what I am dealing with. By looking at my water profile above can you see what I may be lacking?
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:00 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mabrungard View Post


Just recirculating the wort will end up leaving a little more of the sugar-rich wort on the copious surface area of the grain bed. That is OK to do, its just that the efficiency will suffer somewhat. That is like batch-sparging.

Enjoy!
Can you tell me what this means?
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesmiller982 View Post
Here is the info I have
Calcium- 24 mg/L is this the same as ppm?
It is the same as ppm but not the same as 'ppm as CaCO3'. If mg/L is used in the report it very probably means mg/L as the ion (not as CaCO3).
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesmiller982 View Post
Mag 14.5
Same story for magnesium.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesmiller982 View Post
Potassium- unknown- Is this imoprtant?
No, not unless it is way out of sight.
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Originally Posted by jamesmiller982 View Post
Bicarbonate- 6 mg
What you really need to know is the alkalinity but many of the spreadsheets ask for bicarbonate instead. As long as the pH is less than 8 or so the alkalinity is simply 50*bicarbonate/61. Thus your alkalinity is about 5. This is suspiciously low given your.....
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Carbonate Hardness- 74 mg- I did not know where to put this?
Non-caronate hardness- 46 mg- I did not know where to put this.
which total to 120 ppm as CaCO3 hardness. Note that the alkalinity plus sulfate plus chloride should be roughly equivalent to the total hardness. Total hardness of 120 is 120/50 = 2.4 mEq/L and the alkalinity is 6/61 ~ 0.1 mEq/L. Thus there are 2.3 meq/L chloride plus sulfate. If all chloride that would amount to about 80 mg/L and if all sulfate to a bit over 110 mg/L. In fact it could be anywhere between these limits.
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Chloride- Unknown- Is this important?
Yes because there is potentially so much of it. High chloride is generally good but some beers want high sulfate (depends a lot on personal taste). You need to know which you have.
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Nitrate (N03)- 4mg
Nitrite (NO2) unknown- Is this important?
Neither of these is that important as long as they are both the MCLs for those two ions. 4 mg/L is under the MCL
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PH 9.3 is this high?
Yes, but given the low level of alkalinity it doesn't matter that much. Also the high pH means the alkalinity I calculated using the simple formula will be off a bit but again, because the level is so low, this doesn't much matter.


Quote:
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If i am need the unkowns I may be able to send to a lab if I need to.
Most here would recommend Ward Labs. You get a pretty complete rundown, from the brewers perspective, for reasonable cost.
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