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  • mook
    replied
    Originally posted by WaterEng
    Ah! Now I see the problem. Acid Malt is a natural product with a somewhat high degree of variability between maltsters. I heard from a California brewer that reported that a maltster's vendor said that their acid malt was twice the strength of another maltster's product. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to decipher who was who in that exchange.

    With a recognition that there is this variability in the acidity of acid malt products, it should be quickly apparent that you are not likely to hone your mashing and water treatment practices and produce consistent results when using them. Removing that variable and replacing it with lactic acid of a known strength will provide a more consistent result. In addition, it appears that using a liquid acid could be more economical than acid malt usage. Arguments regarding acid malt adding improved flavor nuances to the finished beer compared to liquid lactic acid usage do not appear to be truly viable or worthwhile. A switch to liquid lactic acid should improve the predictive capability of your software and that acid will continue to provide your finished beers with the soft nuances of the lactate ion. If your beers have more than nuances in them (aka: twang), then you might consider switching to other acids (phosphoric, sulfuric, hydrochloric) for water treatment.
    I started adding the acid malt in because of the difference I was getting. When I do not use acid malt, the pH is consistently 5.6-5.8 when shooting for 5.2. Do most brewers use some form of acid in every batch?

    Leave a comment:


  • mook
    replied
    Originally posted by jwalts View Post
    I built a spreadsheet that you can download here:

    https://sites.google.com/site/narrowsbrewing/

    Mook: are you correcting your pHs for temperature? That could be the reason why Bru'n Water seems inaccurate. Temperature-correcting meters don't account for the fact that the pH itself changes with temperature (if a solution were to have a constant pH regardless of temperature, non-correcting meters would read different values across the temperature range). My hack method is to linearly interpolate between 20C (no correction) and 65C (0.35 pH shift). The pH target in my spreadsheet is for room-temperature samples.

    Joe
    Yes, always taking the reading at 20˚C, or as close to that as possible. I also got a new probe for my pH meter and do a calibration almost every time we brew.

    Since I wrote the original post, I've been watching my flow meter and I feel like it's been giving me false readings. I can't be sure, but I may be getting more strike water in there than I estimate within the software, which would definitely throw the pH off.

    Thanks for all the responses!

    Leave a comment:


  • mook
    replied
    Originally posted by nateo View Post
    If that's true, that sounds really accurate. Why not just plan on the calculated value being lower than the actual?
    That's what I've been doing, adjusting with acid malt... but it just doesn't seem right since its always the same amount off.

    Leave a comment:


  • CharlosCarlies
    replied
    I've been using Bru'n Water for a while, but I feel like it hasn't been very accurate. The pH levels of the software compared to reality always have a few points difference, the latter being higher than the software anticipation.
    Strange...Bru'n Water has always been dead on accurate for me.

    Leave a comment:


  • jwalts
    replied
    I built a spreadsheet that you can download here:

    https://sites.google.com/site/narrowsbrewing/

    The file is Water_Barrels.xlsx. It has a few different malt groupings, and uses color to estimate some of their acidities (it assumes constant acidities for others). It currently uses chalk as the only treatment to raise alkalinity, which I know is discouraged by the Water book, but I'd rather have an inefficient treatment than one that adds sodium. I plan to add an option to increase alkalinity with slaked lime, but I haven't gotten around to it yet (the spreadsheet does have calculations for lowering alkalinity with slaked lime).

    Mook: are you correcting your pHs for temperature? That could be the reason why Bru'n Water seems inaccurate. Temperature-correcting meters don't account for the fact that the pH itself changes with temperature (if a solution were to have a constant pH regardless of temperature, non-correcting meters would read different values across the temperature range). My hack method is to linearly interpolate between 20C (no correction) and 65C (0.35 pH shift). The pH target in my spreadsheet is for room-temperature samples.

    Joe
    Last edited by jwalts; 06-29-2014, 10:08 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • Bainbridge
    replied
    There's also the EZ Water Calculator spreadsheets: http://www.ezwatercalculator.com/ I use those.

    Version 2.0 is based on the outdated and disproven SRM color method, while 3.0 is based on bench mash pHs for the different malts. Which is great. If you have those numbers for your malts. Which I don't. And just using their listed values proved to be wildly inaccurate. So I've actually gone back to 2.0 since, disproven or not, it works better for me.

    Except on Stouts. All these calculators suck at dark beers. That one's all trial and error on your part baby.

    Leave a comment:


  • Junkyard
    replied
    I think Martin is on the forums here as watereng. He might be able to tell you what's going on with bru'n water if he sees this. Bru'n water, and the online calculator at brewers friend.com are the only ones I know of.

    Leave a comment:


  • nateo
    replied
    Originally posted by mook View Post
    The pH levels of the software compared to reality always have a few points difference, the latter being higher than the software anticipation.
    If that's true, that sounds really accurate. Why not just plan on the calculated value being lower than the actual?

    Leave a comment:


  • mook
    started a topic Water Software?

    Water Software?

    Hey all,

    I've been using Bru'n Water for a while, but I feel like it hasn't been very accurate. The pH levels of the software compared to reality always have a few points difference, the latter being higher than the software anticipation.

    Anything else out there I could potentially use?

    Thanks!
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