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Old 09-16-2009, 04:25 PM   #1
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Default How much of your mash adjustment salts make it into the boil?

Let's say I need to increase the calcium content of my mash. My water has 25ppm Calcium and 30ppm sulfate. I'm brewing an IPA, so to boost the calcium I add a calculated amount of gypsum, raising my calcium level to about 95 ppm and sulfate to about 200 ppm. This calcium concentration is good for mashing, and the sulfate concentration is good from an IPA taste standpoint.

Anyone have an estimate of how much that water profile changes once I run-off and batch sparge? Obviously, even assuming 100% of the salts make it into the wort, I must account for dilution, since my ~4 gallons of mash water will become 5.5 gallons wort after sparging and boiling.

What I am curious about is how much of the mash salts are retained in the spent grains. If it's low to negligible %, no worries. But if I lost, say, half the salts (down to 100 ppm sulfate, and then even less given dilution), I would be interested in adding gypsum back to the boil to accentuate the hop bitterness for an IPA.



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Old 09-16-2009, 10:26 PM   #2
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From what I recall, in the water series from the Brewing Network, Palmer suggests putting half your additions in the mash and half into the boil kettle.

Someone please correct me if I am wrong.



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Old 09-16-2009, 10:28 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by jsullivan02130 View Post
From what I recall, in the water series from the Brewing Network, Palmer suggests putting half your additions in the mash and half into the boil kettle.

Someone please correct me if I am wrong.
That is almost right. When doing your calculations, calculate your additions for just the volume of water in the tun. Then, calculate to the same ppm for the amount of water that you sparge with, and add it to the kettle, not the sparge water. Your calculations should be for total brewing liquor, not finished amount into fermenter!
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Old 09-16-2009, 10:48 PM   #4
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For the mash pH the important thing is that the salts are present during the mash to set the correct pH. If they don't all make it out the MLT to the brew kettle that is ok.

For flavor, you do care if they make it out of the MLT. I think this is another good reason to follow the method enderwig posted.

Either way, when it comes to flavor, additions are subjective. You are going to have to play around with them anyway until you know what you like. So in some sense it doesn't matter what percentage makes it to the boil because trial and error is a necessary step.

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Old 09-28-2009, 04:56 AM   #5
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Default How much calcium of the calcium ions survive into boil?

Here's what I read earlier today from Handbook of Brewing, by Priest, 2006 edition:

Because of the precipitation of calcium in these pH control reactions, there is a considerable reduction in the calcium ion concentration during wort production; about 50-60% of the calcium ions present during mashing (either present during mashing, or as added salts, or derived from grist materials) will be lost with spent grains and trub.

He goes on to say that we need a net of 100 ppm calcium ions in the kettle for yeast flocculation and effective hot break:

1. Yeast flocculation is improved by CA; most yeast strains require at least 50 mg/l CA ions for good flocculation.

2. Protein precipitation during wort boiling (trub formation) occurs not only because of thermal denaturation, but also because of the neutralizing effect of cations (especially CA) on the negatively charged polypeptides. It has been estimated that a minimum level of 100 mg/l CA ions is required for good quality protein break formation.

From Zymurgy, Grain issue 1995, p. 35: It takes a single calcium ion to prcipitate out two bicarbonate ions.

So, it seems to me that we may need to either have enough calcium in the mash to allow for a 50% reduction into the boil, with a net calcium level of at least 100, perhaps more depending on how high the bicarbonate level of your water is, OR we add calcium in one form or another to the boil after mashing.

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Old 09-28-2009, 12:33 PM   #6
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I would just make the additions proportional based on volume. If you use 5 gallons in the mash and 5 more to sparge, add half to the mash directly and the other half to the boil kettle. The one thing I picked up from Brewstrong's 4th episode on water is that you're trying to make all your water just like the source profile. I plan to add things proportionally except for baking soda because I don't think there's any flavor profile element there so it will be left out of the boil.

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Old 09-28-2009, 09:28 PM   #7
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Default Do we really want to use the source water profile?

George Fix challenges this whole idea. Yes, you want to adjust your pH; yes, you may want to adjust your chloride to sulfate ratio. But, the idea that you want to match a given profile is full of holes.

1. The water profiles we see change radically depending on time of year.

2. They may or may not be what they were in the past.

3. As here, most professional brewers adjust their water for different styles of beer. They don't blindly imitate any profile. E.g. the calcium levels in Munich and Vienna are way too low for basic mashing, boiling and fermenting requirements. If we blindly followed their profile we would have poor extraction, poor hot-break coagulation, poor flocculation of yeast, etc. Priest, Handbook of Brewing, says the Germans adjust their calcium up to address this. They don't use the profile just because it is there.

Fix, Principles of Brewing Science, 2nd ed., pp. 14-15
"One must be careful, on the other hand, with indiscriminate use of historical models, for they can be misleading. A striking case is Dortmund...The Dortmund water is very hard in the sense that it is loaded with minerals. According to Michael Jacksoon (1997), however, Dortmund beers are generally 'big and malty, with a clean, delicate sweetness.' These characteristics and the Dortmund water-ion cconcentrations will have a mineral or salty taste with an underlying harsh aftertaste, totally uncharacteristic of authentic styles.

This conflict is resolved in part by noting that Dortmund brewers have always been in the forefront of development of techniques for treating water...(which) tends to support the notion that extensive mineral reduction is used...These data tend to support the notion that authentic Dortmunders are brewed with water that is as soft or softer than that used for Czech Pilsners. In short, using the Dortmund water-ion concentrations as a guide to desired water composition for this style is at best dubious. There are many other examples that illustrate analolous effects, Viennese style beers are a prominent example.

Thus, instead of using historical examples as a guuide, the best overall strategy is to first make sure the technical requirements of the mash are met (i.e., a proper pH) and then to adjust the mineral content by using the finished beer's flavors as the guide."


I think some of us have confused the fact that brewers of old had to deal with the water they had. So, if highly alkaline water is what you had in Burton-on-Trent, you could use the darker malts to acidify that particular type of water. That doesn't mean we have to go reinvent their water problem to make that style of beer.

NOW, however, the brewers there, as here, know HOW to adjust their water to pretty much make any kind of beer. Know what your water is. Adjust the pH accordingly. Add mineral salts to get the chloride to sulfate ratio you think fits the style and move ahead.

Fix was a wise, practical brewer.

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Old 12-28-2012, 03:07 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enderwig View Post
That is almost right. When doing your calculations, calculate your additions for just the volume of water in the tun. Then, calculate to the same ppm for the amount of water that you sparge with, and add it to the kettle, not the sparge water. Your calculations should be for total brewing liquor, not finished amount into fermenter!
The "FORMULA" to figure out how much EXTRA water to treat in the BOIL is:
VOLUME OF WATER TO BE TREATED IN BOIL = Total PREboil Vol - Treated MASH Vol

Then you do a ratio (i.e. Vol of water to be treated in boil / Treated Mash Vol) and then you know what to multiply your MASH SALTS by.

SOOooo...
The COMPLETE / SIMPLIFIED formula would be:

amount of to SALT add to BOIL = ((Total PREboil Vol - Treated MASH Vol) / Treated MASH Vol) * amount of Salt added to Mash
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Old 12-28-2012, 03:40 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by driver8rws View Post
The "FORMULA" to figure out how much EXTRA water to treat in the BOIL is:
VOLUME OF WATER TO BE TREATED IN BOIL = Total PREboil Vol - Treated MASH Vol

Then you do a ratio (i.e. Vol of water to be treated in boil / Treated Mash Vol) and then you know what to multiply your MASH SALTS by.

SOOooo...
The COMPLETE / SIMPLIFIED formula would be:

amount of to SALT add to BOIL = ((Total PREboil Vol - Treated MASH Vol) / Treated MASH Vol) * amount of Salt added to Mash
You do realize that this thread was from over 3 years ago, right?
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Old 12-28-2012, 03:41 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by afr0byte

You do realize that this thread was from over 3 years ago, right?
Why in the world would that matter?


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