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Old 12-13-2012, 06:57 PM   #11
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I will...

how's this?

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Old 12-13-2012, 07:03 PM   #12
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Straight RO water is the ideal water for sparging- you won't get too acidic, and in fact still need to keep your pH under 6 and the RO water is perfect. Most people who don't use RO for sparging should acidify their sparge water.
I knew as soon as I said that someone was probably going to tell me I was wrong I don't have any experience with using RO water with brewing as my water profile is pretty neutral across the board. My only experience using RO is with hydroponics and the pH was always very unstable and hard to predict when putting together nutrient solutions, usually too acidic, so I ASSumed it would be the same with your mash.

However I sparge with out acidifying my water and my pH never climbs above 6. And since you seem pretty knowledgeable on the subject: what would having too low a pH do?
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Old 12-13-2012, 07:19 PM   #13
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However I sparge with out acidifying my water and my pH never climbs above 6. And since you seem pretty knowledgeable on the subject: what would having too low a pH do?
I don't know, as I have never heard of it happening! Even with RO water, it doesn't happen. Too high causes tannin extraction, and creates some harsh flavors, but I've never heard of a too-low sparge pH.

As far as answering the question about the SG readings, the sample should be cooled to under 90 degrees, then the reading taken. Again, this is more of an issue with fly sparging and not with batch sparging, since the sparge water is stirred into the grainbed and not relying on the property of diffusion.
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Old 12-13-2012, 08:04 PM   #14
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Thanks Yooper. I usually let my readings sit while I get the boil going to get a true reading. The gravity usually jumps a few points as it cools so as long as I'm at 1.010 I should be fine. Never thought about checking gravity of the seperate runnings. New brew day parameter.

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Old 12-13-2012, 08:11 PM   #15
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I will...

how's this?
I can't get that here but sounds similar to this:

http://www.motherearthbrewco.com/on-tap/kismet-ipa

Good stuff!
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Old 12-13-2012, 08:15 PM   #16
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actually will be my first IIPA

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Old 12-13-2012, 08:32 PM   #17
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I use RO water and I do acidify my sparge water to between 5-6 with phosphoric acid.

The reason I do is because RO water has zero buffering capability. You lose about 2/3 of the grain mass after the first runnings (all that starch that has been converted and dissolved) so the grains also lose quit a bit of buffering capability. RO water is pH 7 if it has not been exposed to air very long...it slowly acidifies as CO2 is absorbed.

I just don't trust my grain bed to acidify it enough, especially while fly sparging and I would have the same concern for multiple batch sparges.

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Old 12-13-2012, 08:48 PM   #18
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I use RO water and I do acidify my sparge water to between 5-6 with phosphoric acid.

The reason I do is because RO water has zero buffering capability. You lose about 2/3 of the grain mass after the first runnings (all that starch that has been converted and dissolved) so the grains also lose quit a bit of buffering capability. RO water is pH 7 if it has not been exposed to air very long...it slowly acidifies as CO2 is absorbed.

I just don't trust my grain bed to acidify it enough, especially while fly sparging and I would have the same concern for multiple batch sparges.
I need to look into this some more. I am going to buy a PH kit on my way home today.
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Old 12-15-2012, 03:18 AM   #19
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So, I have RO water and soft water from different faucets (brewing AG)..I've been using the soft water with gypsum and 5.2 buffer added for strike and sparge...am I better off using the soft water with gypsum/5.2 for strike water and then the RO water for sparging? (sorry for the mini-hi-jack).

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Old 12-16-2012, 07:43 PM   #20
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Doesn't soft water have a lot of sodium in it? Water softeners work by replacing calcium and magnesium with sodium, unless you mean that your tap water just has a low Ca and Mg content without having to use a softener?

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