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Old 04-05-2013, 11:30 PM   #1
WillieP
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Hi all, (first time poster, long time reader.)

I am doing the prep work for my first brewday. I have a 32 quart bk, turkey fryer burner, and have built my IM chiller. Wanted to give these a 'dry' run, to determine the time required to get to boiling, the amount of boil off, and chilling time from 212 to below 80. I have done so, and I am pleased with the results.

I will be doing a mini mash kit from Austin homebrew. (Fat Tire Clone.) I have made wine for years and have, as my teenage daughter would say, "been 'creeping' on here for about 3 months". I think I am comfortable with the process and I am looking forward to it.

So, ask a question already..........

After I did a 60 min boil on 6 gal of tap water, there is a 'large' amount of sediment at the bottom of my bk. (covers the bottom) I know my town has 'hard' water, (Sorry- no I don't know the water #s, but I will be requesting them) and my home has a softener. I did not use the softened water but raw city water. In wine making there is no boiling and I was rather suprised when I looked in the kettle.

So..... Do I rack off the boiled water and use it for the mini mash? boil and sparge?
Do I use bottled water for the whole batch? I plan on doing a stove top mini mash and then a ~6 gal full boil?
The water is ok to drink, and I have never noticed any problem in producing fruit wine with it. Do I just use the raw water anyway??
Really don't have a clue which direction to turn.

Thanks in advance for any input!!

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Old 04-06-2013, 12:42 AM   #2
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Is the sediment from seasoning your new kettle, or definitely water? I use Campden tablets for chlorine and Ph 5.2 stabilizer for my mash, but I have never seen "sediment" in my kettles. I'd try a cheap test batch with your tap water, Campden tablets and s Ph 5.2. Leave the "sediment" in the boil kettle when you transfer to the fermenter.

If it turns out bad you may have to filter or buy bottled water.

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Old 04-06-2013, 12:59 AM   #3
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It sounds like you possibly had some calcium precipitating out of your water as you boiled it down. My question would be "does your water taste good?"

If it does, get a Camden tablet and 5.2mash stabilizer and you should be good to go.

The last place I lived and brewed had the most awful water! I would not drink it, it tasted so bad. I used RO water and built a profile and it worked fine. I am not sure if the RO system got rid of the trace Uranium (in the water report) but the RO system made the water taste good and the beer tasted yummy.

If you don't like the taste, they may have a store by you that sells water at 0.25 per gallon for RO, bring your own jug!

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Old 04-06-2013, 01:26 AM   #4
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If you make good wine with the water, you should have no problem with beer.

I have hard water and just use it out the drinking water tap for beer - no problems. It does have a carbon filter in the line which will remove any chlorine. I wouldn't use the softened water out of the regular tap.

The white layer could be from the first time of using the pot, but I suspect it is probably the salts precipitating from the hard water. I don't notice it in the boil kettle with all the wort in there, but I suspect I have it and it ends up dropping to the bottom of the fermenter. I have a kettle I use for boiling water for coffee, tea, etc, and it is caked with white salts that have come out of the water.

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Old 04-06-2013, 02:24 AM   #5
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LaurieGator: I'm not sure what "calcium precipitating out" means, but I assume that it's the suspended calcium falling to the bottom as an effect of the boiling. No, my water tastes fine, no issue there. Did your Uranium Beer make you glow in the dark??

Masskrug: I don't think this can be from the kettle. It is think enough to draw a line in with a spoon. I know 'Campden tablets' from wine making, but not '5.2mash stabilizer' could someone explain that please?

Calder: Good point about the salts just falling out in the fermentor. I hadn't gotten that far in the thought process, I think it's the 'never brewed before jitters'. With proper racking all of what I am seeing in the bottom of my kettle right now should be a non issue.

Thanks for your responses!!

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