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Old 11-28-2012, 04:14 PM   #1
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Default Verification of Additions

In the past I have diluted my tap water 50% with DI and followed the primer. The results have been good, but I would like to have a little control. I would like to move to 100% DI. I believe I am in the right ballpark but would like someone to verify. Brewing a 5 gallon IPA, 10 SRM. There additions give me an estimated mash pH of 5.4, which I will check with a meter.

Does anyone see anything that I should do differently with these mineral additions?

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Old 11-28-2012, 05:04 PM   #2
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That should work, but unless your tap water would cause one of those ion concentrations to be much higher than desired, there is no reason to go with 100 % DI. OK, there is another reason...if that tap water has metallic tastes due to Fe or Mn.

If the tap water already has alkalinity, that would help you avoid adding lime or baking soda to the mash water. That would be a very good reason to keep some tap water.



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Old 11-28-2012, 07:03 PM   #3
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Thank you Martin. Your input here has been very educational for me. I've read a lot of these kind of posts over the last couple months.

The trouble with my tap water is that it is very variable. When we have high rainfall, they pull from a local quarry and from the river. When the levels in those are getting low, they swap to a group of wells.

Most of the time I can boil water on the stove and watch the Limestone precipitate out and soap hardly lathers. Other times a shower is like a bubble bath.

Unless the addition of the alkalinity compounds is detrimental for some reason I prefer to start from 0 so my results are reproducible. I run DI water for the aquarium all the time already and the permeate goes into the washing machine so there is only waste when I make more water than I have dirty clothes.

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Old 11-28-2012, 08:13 PM   #4
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Then you are probably justified in switching water source. Another option is to monitor the water quality with alkalinity and hardness test kits for aquarium use. You may already have those. But then you could be faced with the unknowns of what the surface water and groundwater quality is. A RO unit alleviates that dilemma and its the strongest reason that AJ uses in recommending RO for brewing...consistency. That is important.

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Old 11-28-2012, 09:49 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mabrungard View Post

If the tap water already has alkalinity, that would help you avoid adding lime or baking soda to the mash water. That would be a very good reason to keep some tap water.
Sorry to hijack the thread, but it is related...

I also use 100% RO water. As long as the pH is good and the other salts are in order, do I need any alkalinity?

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Old 11-28-2012, 10:06 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yso191 View Post
Sorry to hijack the thread, but it is related...

I also use 100% RO water. As long as the pH is good and the other salts are in order, do I need any alkalinity?

Steve
If the pH is good, then no. I never use anything to increase alkalinity, except for my stout (and then I use tap water to add alkalinity ).

The whole point of adding alkalinity is to have an optimum pH in the mash.
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Old 11-28-2012, 11:19 PM   #7
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Yep, the only reason I added the alkalinity was to bring the mash pH up. Without the soda and lime it was 5.1 or so.

Is there a chart anywhere that lists the additions in order of preference? Or is that how Bru'n Water is organized?

For example:

Use Gypsum before using Epsom Salt
Use Chalk before Lime

Or is it irrelevant how you get the ion concentrations as long as you get them?

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Old 12-03-2012, 02:23 AM   #8
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The order doesn't matter, only the ideal temperature to try and add to liquor. I personally don't use baking soda, and only use canning salt for my sodium source. Epsom salt provides my magnesium, so I tend to compute those first, and balance CaCl and Gypsum to get my desired calcium, chloride, and sulfate.

Martin has expressed a pickling lime preference ahead of calcium carbonate and baking soda, and I most certainly agree with him. Watch out, though, pickling lime is like lactic acid; a tiny bit goes an incredibly long way.



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