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Old 12-31-2012, 04:44 AM   #11
acidrain
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Experiment results...
I was mainly looking for PH levels, and efficiency. I brewed two exact 2.25 gallon batches. One with RO water and gypsum & calcium chloride additions, and one with the spring water. The RO water batch had 1.5g of calcium chloride, and 1g gypsum added to just the mash. Pure RO water was used for the sparge.
BTW, my ph meter is a little wonky. I did just re-calibrate it, but it takes a long time to settle down and give a steady reading. That may explain some of the readings, but maybe the PH does go up and down during the mash... I don't know... this is the first time I've take mash PH readings.

RO water (neat) 6.11ph
Spring water (neat) 7.48ph

.................RO water batch.................Spring water batch
........................PH............SG.......... .....PH..............SG
15 min..............5.38............................5 .38
30 min..............4.93............................5 .29
45 min..............5.01............................5 .34
1st running........5.21.........1.067............5.34. ..........1.075
2nd running.......5.50.........1.012.............5.66. ..........1.015
pre-boil.............5.39.........1.026............5.6 8...........1.028

The mash PH between the two batches is surprisingly close.
The pre-boil SG is pretty close too, but by these observations, it looks like the spring water actually had better efficiency (although it's impossible to exactly duplicate the two runs).
The main difference is in the pre-boil PH. The Neat PH of the two waters is pretty significant, so it kind of makes sense that the spring water has a higher pre-boil PH.

Now what to do with these two worts.
I could boil and hop each and see if there is a taste difference (absolutely no taste difference between the two worts now).
I could hop the RO water batch and compare it to a finished beer of the exact same recipe that I already have on tap, and keep the second one for starters. I could just accept the results as they are, mix the two worts together and finish for a kegs worth.

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Old 12-31-2012, 03:20 PM   #12
Kaiser
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acidrain View Post
Experiment results...
I was mainly looking for PH levels, and efficiency.
Thanks for taking the time to experiment and, most importantly, record your results.


Quote:
BTW, my ph meter is a little wonky. I did just re-calibrate it, but it takes a long time to settle down and give a steady reading.
That is likely due to an aging pH probe.

Quote:
RO water (neat) 6.11ph
Spring water (neat) 7.48ph
the pH of the water actually matters little but as expected the lower mineral content R/O water has a lower pH. Likely due to the presence of dissolved CO2.

Quote:
.................RO water batch.................Spring water batch
........................PH............SG.......... .....PH..............SG
15 min..............5.38............................5 .38
30 min..............4.93............................5 .29
45 min..............5.01............................5 .34
1st running........5.21.........1.067............5.34. ..........1.075
2nd running.......5.50.........1.012.............5.66. ..........1.015
pre-boil.............5.39.........1.026............5.6 8...........1.028

The mash PH between the two batches is surprisingly close.
Since your meter can not be trusted to the 0.01, I would agree that both mashes were close. You got better conversion efficiency on the spring water batch. What was the grain amount and the mash water volume?

I'm surprised to see that your pre-boil sg is that close when your 1st runnings were off by that much. Did you stir your mash before taking the 1st runnings reading?

Quote:
The main difference is in the pre-boil PH. The Neat PH of the two waters is pretty significant, so it kind of makes sense that the spring water has a higher pre-boil PH.
Given the trend of the pH readings, the mash pH of the R/O water mash was likely quite a bit lower than the spring water batch. and since you sparged with R/O water you did not add many minerals that could raise the pH from 1st runnings to pre-boil. This is different with the spring water. It most likely has considerable alkalinity and thus caused a higher mash pH and also raised the pH during sparging.

What was the recipe? Did you have lots of dark malts and/or acid malt in the grist?

Quote:
Now what to do with these two worts.
I could boil and hop each and see if there is a taste difference (absolutely no taste difference between the two worts now).
Why not. Add a single 60 min hop addition to aim for ~20 IBU and see what you get.

Kai
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Old 12-31-2012, 08:06 PM   #13
acidrain
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Kai, Thanks for your thoughts and effort.
I think you're right about the probe... It has been stored a long time without solution. I'll hunt down a new one.

I stirred well before each reading, so I don't think that was an issue.
I just ran out and re-measure the PH of both batches. It's cold now, and I didn't bother heating samples, but the readings were:
5.92ph RO water batch
6.20ph Spring water batch

The recipe is a simple light ale:
4lb- 8oz US two-row
3oz Vienna malt
1.5oz Chrystal 20L
1.5oz Chrystal 80L

Mash 6.09 qts. at 154F 60 min.
Sparge 3.15 gal at 168F 10 min.

Est. pre-boil gravity: 1.031 @ 72% efficiency
Est. pre-boil volume: 4.09 gal.

The only variable I can think of if the grains were not thoroughly mixed. Seems unlikely though.

This wasn't my normal set up. I did this on the stove with a smaller pot, then simply strained the mash through a sieve. In hind sight, it would have been much easier to do a BIAB, but this was probably more representative of my direct fired, bottom draining FB mash tun.

It looks like my pre-boil volumes are about right on with the estimated, so that means my efficiency was less than 60% both batches.

Hmm... hop both batches separately... I'll have to use my last two fermenting buckets, but what the hell... might as well see this all the way through.
I wonder if I'll taste a difference between the two after hopping the pre-pitch wort?

Thanks a bunch! -Acid

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Keg #1: RHESB 6.2
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Keg #3: BMC West
Fermenter #1 Bourbon/Oak Vanilla Porter
Bottled: Mjolnir Mead, Lazy Daze Hefe, The Bollocks ESB, Dark Matter stout.

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