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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > Review my game plan!
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Old 01-24-2012, 09:49 PM   #1
mtbfan101
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Default Review my game plan!

Okay, so I am making my second batch of beer(making a porter), and I want to make sure I am doing everything correctly.

1) Brewing Water:
-Treat with campden before diluting with RO water(1:1). This will bring my sulfates down, which my water report indicated were a little high.
-1 tsp of calcium chloride

2) Mash:
I understand how to hit the proper range of temperatures; I just don't have a way to measure ph(no ph meter). I've heard that the ph strips aren't reliable. For this, I have to assume that the darker malts will bring the ph into proper range. To be honest, I'm not too worried about getting this perfect. I've deemed this recipe "kitchen sink porter" because I am using left over grain from the first brew and the remaining grain bill is cheap. Also, I am using left over hops, so there is very little expenses all around.

3) Boil, follow recipe and cool

4) Pitch Yeast:
I am planning on pitching the yeast at 68 degrees. I have a fairly low gravity beer(1.043). I figured I might be able to get away with just 1 smack pack rather than doing a starter. Oh, and I'll be aerating the wort by splashing it back and forth between the brew pot and the primary.

5) Swamp Cooler:
Fill the cooler until it is a couple of inches below the beer in the primary. I plan on doing this until fermentation is complete then I'll stop adding ice and let it come to room temperature(72 degrees).

6) Bottle after 4 weeks in the primary vessel.

I tried being general when describing the steps I am going to take. I figured it would be too much if I included sparge temps, recipes, etc. Also, I am sanitizing everything with starsan.

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Old 01-25-2012, 01:21 AM   #2
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I'm not sure why you're using the Campden tablet...you're going to be boiling anyway. If you don't know what your pH is why calcium chloride, it doesn't disovle real well and pickling lime will up you calcium and alkalinity better (not sure why this is not in more brewing software).

Get a copy of Bru'n Water and plug your city's water info in and you'll dial it in better.

The dark grains will just as likely throw off your pH, you need to know where you're starting from...the city can tell you what it might be, but if you dilute with RO that will change it (RO should have a pH of 7.0). The Bru'n water software will tell you what the pH will be after entering your specific grain bill and you can choose the beer style you want to make and it will recommend a water profile...you can even enter in the fact you are diluting down with RO. From there just and the appropriate salts.

I think if you start with that you can do without the pH meter for now, although it help when you're trying to ensure your sparge water is around 5.7.

One smack pack should be fine, as long as it's not too old...check the date.

Good luck

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Old 01-25-2012, 01:23 AM   #3
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Looks like a good brew plan. Good luck

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Old 01-25-2012, 01:25 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by builderguy View Post
I'm not sure why you're using the Campden tablet...you're going to be boiling anyway.
Because campden can remove dissolved chlorine and/or chloramine from municipal water sources. Boiling will only get rid of chlorine.
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Old 01-25-2012, 02:20 AM   #5
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I like this Bru'n water concept. I'll check that out. I have assumed that the darker malts will bring my PH down because my city water(according to the online report) was flirting somewhere around 8.4.

Also, I am using calcium chloride b/c it was recommended by AJ in his water chemistry prime sticky.

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Old 01-25-2012, 03:44 AM   #6
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Because campden can remove dissolved chlorine and/or chloramine from municipal water sources. Boiling will only get rid of chlorine.
I didn't realize that...good to know.

I've been using a charcoal filter for that.
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