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Old 11-13-2012, 08:11 PM   #1
booherbg
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Default Mash volume vs full volume SRM?

I'm trying to wrap my head around the water chemistry. If my "recommended" SRM based on Palmer's chart (here: http://www.howtobrew.com/images/f83.pdf) gives me roughly 13SRM, is that for the final beer or the mash only?

For example, I can come up with a 5gal Bass clone that is at 13SRM, but when I take the 5gal down to 2gal for the mash, it shoots up to 22SRM. The mash should be all that matters... so what do we do? Do we re-calculate SRM based on mash? That sounds right, but does not help me figure out which beers are good for my water profile.

Also I know that SRM isn't the best way to judge water, but I'm just trying to understand how the process works. Still lots of reading left to do.

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Old 11-13-2012, 08:58 PM   #2
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Please don't try and wrap your head around something that is just going to hurt your beer. The nomograph is a little aggressive when it comes to recommending alkalinity. You are better off with a program like Bru'n Water that does not base its recommendations on the beer color. It uses the acidity estimates of the individual malts in your grist to estimate mash pH. Its mash pH that matters, not RA.

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Old 11-13-2012, 09:52 PM   #3
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I don't know what the alkalinity or residual alkalinity of your water are but you can brew beer of any color from 5 (home brewers have a very difficult time getting below 5) to 90 with it. And how would you know what SRM you realized anyway? IOW the relationship between water chemistry and beer color, beyond the casual observation that darker beers tend to be made with water with higher RA, is tenuous at best. Worry about treating your water to get the right mash pH, not a particular RA.

Of course that bit of advice is, I hope, useful but it doesn't answer your question. The intent of the nomogram is to tell you what range of finished beer color you should be able to brew with a given RA or, turning it around, what RA you 'must' have for a finished beer of a given SRM.

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Old 11-13-2012, 11:33 PM   #4
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cool. thanks for the advice. just read through the Bru'n Water water knowledge page. That's a great resource right there.

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