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Old 03-31-2013, 08:13 PM   #1
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Default sparge buffering

Ok so I know just enough about water chemistry to be dangerous, but will adding calcium and or magnesium to sparge water help to buffer the ph down (or to help resist a rise in ph) during a sparge? Using ro water for mash and sparge.

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Old 03-31-2013, 10:19 PM   #2
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Yes, but probably not much. Use a tool like the water calculator that Kai has up on brewer's friend and see how much difference they make to the mash. The sparge won't be much, if any, different.

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Old 03-31-2013, 10:23 PM   #3
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It won't- but if you're using RO water for the sparge, the alkalinity is effectively 0 anyway so it doesn't matter.

If you're using other water, then sparge water should usually be acidified to keep the pH below 6.

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Old 03-31-2013, 11:15 PM   #4
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Ok must have miss understood, was listening to a podcast with kai and thought that's what I heard. Was looking for a way to buffer my mash ph during the final running a little more steadily as I have to run a lot of water through the grain bed when making a 5 gallon batch. I have also ran into the final running ph getting to high with the gravity still at 1.020.

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Old 03-31-2013, 11:19 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by nstnate View Post
I have also ran into the final running ph getting to high with the gravity still at 1.020.
With RO water? That doesn't seem possible.

What was the pH? Without akalinity, it seems very unusual to have a high pH with the SG still at 1.020.
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Old 03-31-2013, 11:38 PM   #6
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Yes, with ro water. It doesn't sound right to me either, but i am having a tannin issues with 5 gallon batches. my ro system is a home unit and the TDS does vary from time to time. the ph where i cut the runnings is 5.8.

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Old 03-31-2013, 11:44 PM   #7
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Yes, with ro water. It doesn't sound right to me either, but i am having a tannin issues with 5 gallon batches. my ro system is a home unit and the TDS does vary from time to time. the ph where i cut the runnings is 5.8.
If the pH of the sparge is 5.8, that's fine. That's not too high.

If you are having tannin issues, it must be due to something else.
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:00 AM   #8
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If the pH of the sparge is 5.8, that's fine. That's not too high.

If you are having tannin issues, it must be due to something else.
with that being said, i dont always get to check the ph of the final runnings. but i do always check the gravity (with the thought that above 1.010 should be fine). would it be possible to get the boil ph to high and extract excess polyphenols from the hops, but the mash ph's still be in range?
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:04 AM   #9
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with that being said, i dont always get to check the ph of the final runnings. but i do always check the gravity (with the thought that above 1.010 should be fine). would it be possible to get the boil ph to high and extract excess polyphenols from the hops, but the mash ph's still be in range?
I don't see how. If the mash pH is, say, 5.4, and the sparge pH is 5.8, there can't be any way for the pH to rise.
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:15 AM   #10
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I don't see how. If the mash pH is, say, 5.4, and the sparge pH is 5.8, there can't be any way for the pH to rise.
Is there any possiblity of excess tannin extraction from just running too much water through a grain bed even if the ph doesnt go over 5.8? (tho i think that they are extracted below 5.8 just not in excess)
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