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Old 10-05-2012, 05:15 PM   #11
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I would want some assurance that the water was prepared for human consumption. Theoretically demineralized is demineralized and the stuff used to fill batteries is as good as the stuff prepared for use in pharmaceuticals. I have no idea how it works in Chile but in the US stores that specialize in the sale of health foods, grocery stores, supermarkets and pharmacies often have reverse osmosis machines or stock deionized water.
I found a store that sells both, in their page they say that the one for human consumption is passed through a UV light filter, I will call them to ask for the exact difference, the price difference is quite big and if I am going to boil it I think it won't make a difference.

I see that most people mix RO/distilled water with the tap one, but with my high level of sodium, sulfate and chloride it might be a better idea to use just this water and make the profile from scratch, is this possible, right?
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Old 10-12-2012, 06:26 PM   #12
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I am going to brew this weekend, with my brewer partner we decided to use half RO water and half tap water. Its an IPA so a high sulfate won't be a problem... we are aiming for 270 sulfate and more calcium so we will add gypsum.

Is it a good idea?

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Old 10-12-2012, 07:21 PM   #13
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I always advise people to work up to such high sulfate levels. You will need to supplement calcium if you dilute but you already have very high levels of chloride and sulfate (and sodium) such that addition of calcium sulfate (or chloride) is going to push you back to very high with respect to both of these. Were I you I would use a larger dilution e.g. 4:1 or 5:1 RO:tap at least. Then you could safely add calcium chloride and/or sulfate as a calcium source.

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Old 10-12-2012, 07:57 PM   #14
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I am going to brew this weekend, with my brewer partner we decided to use half RO water and half tap water. Its an IPA so a high sulfate won't be a problem... we are aiming for 270 sulfate and more calcium so we will add gypsum.
I find that level of sulfate quite nice in an IPA or PA. If in doubt, don't bring the sulfate level this high in the brewing water. You can add a calculated gypsum dose to the finished beer in the glass to bring the sulfate up so that you might assess if you like the higher or lower sulfate concentration.
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Old 10-12-2012, 08:35 PM   #15
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I always advise people to work up to such high sulfate levels. You will need to supplement calcium if you dilute but you already have very high levels of chloride and sulfate (and sodium) such that addition of calcium sulfate (or chloride) is going to push you back to very high with respect to both of these. Were I you I would use a larger dilution e.g. 4:1 or 5:1 RO:tap at least. Then you could safely add calcium chloride and/or sulfate as a calcium source.
Thanks I'll play with the maths of it a bit.
What levels of NA and Chloride are good for a IPA? Also reading how to brew(JP) it says that in really bitter beers sulfate can be 350... But how much is this... 60 IBU?70?80?90+?
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Old 10-12-2012, 11:30 PM   #16
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Those ions are, along with sulfate, called the 'stylistic ions' because they influence the stylistic aspects of the beer as opposed to the more technical aspect of needing to get the mash pH in the correct range. Thus there is no simple answer (though many have proposed simple answers involving things like the ratio of chloride to sulfate). Chloride generally does nice things to beer like soften and smooth the palate, enhance mouthfeel/body, give an impression of sweetness. Sulfate tends to have a drying effect and renders the perception of hops as sharp and coarse. This works with some hops varieties for some people but does not work for all hops varieties nor for all people. That's why I recommend starting out with a low level of sulfate and incrementally increasing the sulfate on subsequent brewings of the same beer until a desirable sulfate level is found. For you personally it may be 0 mg/L or it may be 350 or even more. The sulfate level does not, AFAIK, translate to IBU. Some quite bitter beers (i.e. high IBU) such as traditional Bohemian Pilsners are brewed with very low sulfate levels. If sulfate level in those beers creeps over as little as 20 mg/L the effects of the high bitterness become unpleasant and the beer is ruined. OTOH many of the English ales are brewed with the very high sulfate levels which you mentioned. It seems to be the hops cultivar that makes the difference. And at the same time you can make a better IPA than the traditional IPA by keeping the sulfate level much lower. "Better", of course, needs to have an optimality criterion attached and there is, of course, lots of debate over whether the low sulfate IPAs are really better.

Sodium is at best considered a "don't care' except in cases where there is enough of it that it can be tasted. In some of these cases (e.g. Gose) a salty taste is an important aspect of the style. In other cases the saltiness is considered a flavor negative. High sodium would, in general, be considered a negative.

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Old 10-15-2012, 05:34 PM   #17
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Thanks Ajdelange, I followed your advice. I used 3:1 RO water to build my profile(I started with a low sulphate as you said) ... I don't know if this is related but I've never had a fermentation lag time so short. After finishing the batch I bottled another one... I don't know exactly how much did it take me to bottle but I guess 1 hour and a half or 2 hours.

After that I saw my batch and the fermentation already started. Shortest lag time I've ever experienced, can it be because of more calcium(110 ppm)?

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