How can I make an IPA with a bicarbonate level of 300.

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brewdrool

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If I cut my water in half with distilled I am still at a mash ph of 5.8 and if I use lactic acid to get to 5.2 my RA is a negative number


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GotPushrods

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RA is a mathematical concept, not a tangible "thing". Negative is fine, and often desirable.

Alkalinity of 300 before or after dilution? Acid works, but won't affect the other ions that are most likely also very high. In fact it adds more. Most people don't like to hear it, but diluting to around 50 ppm alkalinity will really alleviate a lot of your headaches.

There is nothing wrong with adding acid to neutralize alkalinity. Your only problem will be finding your taste threshold for the lactate ion. Each acid we use in brewing will dissociate into a proton(s) to neutralize the alkalinity, and the anion of the acid. Phosphoric (phosphate), sulfuric (sulfate), hydrochloric (chloride), or lactic (lactate). Phosphoric is the most flavor-neutral. Sulfuric acid might be a good choice for an IPA if your sulfate isn't already sky high. You may or may not be one of those people who like the effect of high sulfate on hops, which would be convenient if you are.
 

VikingChrisColby

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I'm in a similar boat with my water. I used to use bottled distilled water to dilute my tap water to under 50 ppm bicarbonate for pale beers. Later, I bought an under the sink RO water filter. Home units are slow to produce water, but are fairly inexpensive.


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brewdrool

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Here's my water report:
Calcium: 94.2
Chloride: 13.8
Magnesium: 32.3
Sodium: 3.36
Sulfate: 45
Alkalinity, Bicarbonate: 300
So should I go 50/50 with distilled water that would put my mash PH at about 5.8 and then bring it to 5.2 with phosphoric acid. Or seeing my water report you have a better suggestion


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mabrungard

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With the levels of calcium and bicarbonate, that water is ideal for softening by pre-boiling the water and decanting the clear water off the sediment. I'm sure you have probably seen a bunch of sediment in your water when you heat it. It looks like you might be able to bring the water down to about 80 ppm bicarb and 20 ppm Ca with a pre-boiling treatment. That might be less of a PITA than buying distilled water.
 
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brewdrool

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So would you boil for 20 minutes then let it sit for a day then pull it off the sediment ?


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zwiller

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I really like pushrod's suggestion to use sulfuric acid especially if you brew IPAs or english styles frequent enough. I would be curious to plug that into BNW... Personally, I think 300ppm sulfate a must for IPAs and find 5.4 a better target pH for them as well.
 

ajdelange

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Where will you get the sulfuric acid? In the UK there are a couple of suppliers of an equinormal blend of food grade sulfuric and hydrochloric acids intended exactly for this purpose. But, alas, these products are not available in the US.
 

mabrungard

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I am definitely not a fan of the CRS or AMS products that are trade names for those blended acids from UK. They tend to add too much chloride and that is a problem when the sulfate level is high.
 
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brewdrool

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Same place where I get my nitric acid and glycerin ;) http://www.sciencecompany.com/Sulfuric-Acid-Concentrated-500mL-P6506.aspx They also sell 10% if you are less comfortable with strong solutions. Sulfuric acid is not for average brewer that's for sure, but I am one of the guys that uses reagent grade sodium hydroxide for pretzels.
Thanks for the suggestions I'm going to apply these and check my PH and take some tasting notes with each one.
Thanks again


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