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Old 10-08-2008, 11:14 PM   #1
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Default PH 5.2 Buffer

Hi folks,

I have two questions about usage of PH 5.2 I am hoping you guys could help with.

When I mash I usually put my hot strike water in my mash tun and wait for the temp to come down to my target strike before mashing in. Do I add the PH 5.2 buffer to the water before I mash in or do I wait until the grain is already in the cooler?

2nd... the instructions says to use 1 TBL for each 5 gallons... does this refer to the mash water, the mash + sparge, the initial boil volume, or the final volume?

Thanks!

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Old 10-08-2008, 11:16 PM   #2
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I usually sprinkle it in the mash right before I stir everything in.

And it's 1 TBL for a 5 gal batch, 2 for a 10 gal batch. It doesn't matter how much water you mash or sparge with, if your final volume is to be 5 gal, then 1 TBL goes in the mash, at the beginning of the mash.

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Old 10-08-2008, 11:28 PM   #3
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Have you ever checked your PH without the use of 5.2?

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Old 10-08-2008, 11:42 PM   #4
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I usually add to the strike water. Never checked it after. I use about a 60/40 split between drinking water(ph8.2)/RO water(ph6.0) then add the buffer. I have no idea how the math works in this, but I have gotten better extraction and beer since going to the water split over just DW with buffer. The grain is supposed to buffer itself during mash but 5.2 does seem to help.

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Old 10-08-2008, 11:57 PM   #5
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I was under the impression that you needed to use 1 TBL for 5 wallons of water if you strike w/ 5 gallons thats TBL if you sparge w/ 5 gal that water also needs to be treated. This is what I do. I also add it to my water and mix it in before I mash in, the reason I do this is because I am treating the "water" not the mash.

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Old 10-09-2008, 12:21 AM   #6
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I was told it was to help conversion, therefore it doesn't need to be added to sparge water (conversion has already taken place) just the mash water. Maybe one day I will email 5 star and ask. Then again maybe I will just have another beer.

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Old 10-09-2008, 12:25 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaybird View Post
I was under the impression that you needed to use 1 TBL for 5 wallons of water if you strike w/ 5 gallons thats TBL if you sparge w/ 5 gal that water also needs to be treated. This is what I do. I also add it to my water and mix it in before I mash in, the reason I do this is because I am treating the "water" not the mash.

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This is what I thought too. I add it to the mash water and a little less to the sparging water.
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Old 10-09-2008, 12:28 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaybird View Post
I was under the impression that you needed to use 1 TBL for 5 wallons of water if you strike w/ 5 gallons thats TBL if you sparge w/ 5 gal that water also needs to be treated. This is what I do. I also add it to my water and mix it in before I mash in, the reason I do this is because I am treating the "water" not the mash.

Cheers
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Not according to Five Star. Actually, adding to your sparge water can have adverse affects apperently (like a mineraly flavor in your beer). It is just for the mash, and doesn't matter on the volume of water aside form the final volume.
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Old 10-09-2008, 12:39 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BarleyWater View Post
Not according to Five Star. Actually, adding to your sparge water can have adverse affects apperently (like a mineraly flavor in your beer). It is just for the mash, and doesn't matter on the volume of water aside form the final volume.
OK, so I just read the jar and your right, they say to calculate it for FV leaving the kettle. All this time I have been adding it to my sparge water too.
So you just saved me some $$$$ (no you can't have it)


I just love this forum its amazing how much you can learn from just hanging around here
Cheers
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Old 10-09-2008, 04:16 PM   #10
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I add it to my sparge water and will continue to do so. 5.2 helps to insure that the pH is correct for optimal starch conversion. They also say it helps with hop isomerization in the boil kettle. Once you drain off your first runnings you've also drained off a bunch of the buffering capacity. If you have really hard water, then when you add the sparge water, the pH can get high enough that when combined with high mash out temperatures can lead to tannin extraction. This is more of a problem if you fly sparge. I break my 5.2 additions into two, one for the strike water, and one for the sparge. I don't go over 1 Tbsp for a whole batch. If you don't have hard water, this is much less an issue. I have water loaded with carbonates that I treat for.

It will only taste minerally if you add too much, not if you add a proper amount to the sparge water. Once it gets to the fermenter, it doesn't matter when it was added as far as tasting the 5.2 itself.

I add the 5.2 after I mash in and check the pH. If I don't need it, I don't add it.

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