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Old 12-10-2009, 07:17 PM   #1
leoglenwood
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Default help with first time using 5.2 mash stabilizer and campden tabs

if you can bear with this probably too simple question:

I have been homebrewing for two years, AG since January (26 batches!) but I just picked up my first campden tabs and 5.2 mash stabilizer after reading favorable posts on HBT

how do I use these?
I boil the liquor the night before and then add one crushed tab - wait 24 hours (or can it be less?)
and then add the stabilizer to the grains while mashing?

does that seem right?

thanks! and peace be with you from Medford, MA where the weather blows!

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Old 12-10-2009, 07:21 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leoglenwood View Post
if you can bear with this probably too simple question:

I have been homebrewing for two years, AG since January (26 batches!) but I just picked up my first campden tabs and 5.2 mash stabilizer after reading favorable posts on HBT

how do I use these?
I boil the liquor the night before and then add one crushed tab - wait 24 hours (or can it be less?)
and then add the stabilizer to the grains while mashing?

does that seem right?

thanks! and peace be with you from Medford, MA where the weather blows!
Add the 5.2 to your strike water.

I'm not sure about the campden tabs.

The weather around here does blow.
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Old 12-10-2009, 08:55 PM   #3
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campden is used in your tap water to remove both the chlorine and chloramine. boiling will remove chlorine, but not chloramine, and most water companies use chloramine because it lasts longer and is thus cheaper/more efficient.

1 campden tablet will remove the chloramine from 20 gallons of water...its potent stuff. I cut them in half, then crush it with two spoons and put it in the bottom of a 5 gallon water jug, fill it up, shake it a bit, then let it chill 20 mins before using (although it should neutralize the chloramine nearly instantly).

pH 5.2 goes in the strike water. I get my water to temp, add the ph 5.2, then it goes in the MLT, and i add my grain to the water (no dough balls this way). no need for it in the sparge water.

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Old 12-10-2009, 09:19 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leoglenwood View Post
if you can bear with this probably too simple question:

I have been homebrewing for two years, AG since January (26 batches!) but I just picked up my first campden tabs and 5.2 mash stabilizer after reading favorable posts on HBT

how do I use these?
I boil the liquor the night before and then add one crushed tab - wait 24 hours (or can it be less?)
and then add the stabilizer to the grains while mashing?

does that seem right?

thanks! and peace be with you from Medford, MA where the weather blows!

Medford? Why that's practically the tropics!

I fill a huge bucket with all of the water that is going to be used in the brew the night before and dissolve a campden tablet into it.

Since I have my water chemistry dialed in (for the most part now) I add the 5.2 to the sparge water as an insurance mesaure, which it seems is a good idea considering the water from the MWRA has very little buffering power.


Kind of a sidebar:

The numbers I've been using for the tap water are:

Calcium 4ppm, Magnesium 1ppm, Sodium 34ppm, Sulfate 8ppm, Chloride 27ppm, an alkalinity of 40ppm Calcium Carbonate, and a pH around 9.5

Assuming I'll lose about 1.25 to 1.5 gallons during my boil, for a typical 7 to 11 SRM beer, I'll add 1/2g of Chalk, 1/2g of Gypsum, 1g Calc.Chloride, and 1g of Epsom to the mash water (2.25gallons for 7.5# grist). I toss 1 tablespoon of 5.2 into 5 gallons of sparge water. And finally to the runnings, I'll then add 1g of Gypsum, 2g of Calc.Chloride, and 2g Epsom to the boil kettle.

I measure each sample out into individual cupcake liners on a Cynmar triple beam balance. This seems to work alright for me. Incidentally the cupcake liners a 0.5g each.

Anobody, let me know if you have different chemistry numbers.
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Old 12-10-2009, 11:30 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by malkore View Post
campden is used in your tap water to remove both the chlorine and chloramine. boiling will remove chlorine, but not chloramine, and most water companies use chloramine because it lasts longer and is thus cheaper/more efficient.

1 campden tablet will remove the chloramine from 20 gallons of water...its potent stuff. I cut them in half, then crush it with two spoons and put it in the bottom of a 5 gallon water jug, fill it up, shake it a bit, then let it chill 20 mins before using (although it should neutralize the chloramine nearly instantly).

pH 5.2 goes in the strike water. I get my water to temp, add the ph 5.2, then it goes in the MLT, and i add my grain to the water (no dough balls this way). no need for it in the sparge water.
so I can put the 1/2 campden into my 10 gals of cold water - let it sit for 20 mins and then boil the water? if so, that's sweet!
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Old 12-10-2009, 11:37 PM   #6
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so I can put the 1/2 campden into my 10 gals of cold water - let it sit for 20 mins and then boil the water? if so, that's sweet!
Indeed you can.
I don't use 5.2 in the sparge. It isn't nesessary if you batch sparge. If you fly sparge, sometime acidification of the sparge water might help with tannin extraction issues, but adding 5.2 to the water don't do anything.
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Old 12-11-2009, 05:28 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by malkore View Post
pH 5.2 goes in the strike water. I get my water to temp, add the ph 5.2, then it goes in the MLT, and i add my grain to the water (no dough balls this way). no need for it in the sparge water.
Ditton on this.

Remember, 1 tablespoon per 5 gallons of water. Adjust the amount of 5.2 you measure out depending upon how much strike water you use.
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Old 12-11-2009, 07:05 PM   #8
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Are you sure you need the 5.2?

If you are in Medford, you seem to be getting water from the Quabin reservoir. This water is surface water and should be fairly soft and it is very possible that you don't need to treat your water at all for a wide range of beer colors.

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Old 12-11-2009, 07:20 PM   #9
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Here is a water report for Quabbin water: http://www.mwra.com/monthly/wqupdate/pdf/2009data/112009.pdf

The water is very soft and what you are getting should have these ion concentrations:

Ca: 4.1
Mg: 0.8
Na: 31
Cl: 23
SO4: 6.4
Alkalinity: 41 ppm as CaCO3
Hardness : 14 ppm as CaCO3

Looks like water treatment increased your sodium from the initial Quabbin water but that is not a concern. Your beers should be able to benefit from a bit more calcium, magnesium and, for darker beers, alkalinity.

Kai

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Last edited by Kaiser; 12-11-2009 at 07:24 PM.
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Old 12-12-2009, 07:33 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaiser View Post
Here is a water report for Quabbin water: http://www.mwra.com/monthly/wqupdate/pdf/2009data/112009.pdf

The water is very soft and what you are getting should have these ion concentrations:

Ca: 4.1
Mg: 0.8
Na: 31
Cl: 23
SO4: 6.4
Alkalinity: 41 ppm as CaCO3
Hardness : 14 ppm as CaCO3

Looks like water treatment increased your sodium from the initial Quabbin water but that is not a concern. Your beers should be able to benefit from a bit more calcium, magnesium and, for darker beers, alkalinity.

Kai
that's really, really nice of you to share that (thanks!); if you feel up to it, can you give me a link on how to learn about how much to add - I've never delved into this part of brewing - though I realize it's about time

p.s. I shouldn't bother with the 5.2 then, right? and perhaps, if I was lazy, perhaps I might just be fine?
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