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Bad mash ph mojo

http://www.thebrewingnetwork.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=2156

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Bad mash ph mojo

Posted: Mon Jul 03, 2006 9:53 am
by gandolf
Has anyone experience an increase (rise) in ph after doughing in? My last two batches went from 5.8 strike ph to 6.3 mash ph (a red ale) and 5.4 strike ph to 6.2 mash ph (a blonde fruit base). :shock: I checked and recalibrated my ph meter each time. I always us phosphoric acid with carbon filtered well water which has an 8.2 ph. For the last batch, I adjusted the sparge water to 5.1 and ended up with a final boiled wort ph of 6.0. WTF! :?

Posted: Mon Jul 03, 2006 3:56 pm
by jamilz
How long are you waiting after making the initial adjustment of the water before testing? If you do it really quickly, there can be a rebound effect where you drive the pH down and then it rebounds back up in a couple minutes.

Also, is the temp of the samples the same when you check the pH?

Posted: Mon Jul 03, 2006 5:38 pm
by seanhagerty
Yes, Jamil is speaking of the boomarang pH effect.

It is mostly caused by wearing orange hats while brewing. Also, if you ever thought of boiling in an aluminum pot, or used chlorine bleach as a sanitizer or added biscuit malt to your brew it could happen

although the boomarang pH effect isnt widely known, usually it doesnt happen until you let gucci near your grains..there is no known explaination for that effect but it is believed to have something to do with his wearing of womens underclothing. Gucci's wearing..it has not been associated with Jamils wearing of womens underwear.

Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2006 3:59 am
by gandolf
First, thanks for the quick replies. Second, I usually filter and adjust the strike water ph the night before I brew. I have checked the ph in the morning and it's always right were it had been the night before. I don't think the alkalinity is rebounding "boomeranging" since I have checked the ph a few times during and at the end of the mash and the ph has never fluctuated more than a tenth.

My well water is very hard (high alkaline) with a ph of 8.02. For the next brew, I’m' going to blend (50/50) my well water with some RO water. I'm also going to try replacing my carbon filter.

I don't buy the expensive carbon block filter cartridges (24.95
here) any more. I have switched to grinding (old Corona mill)
aquarium activated charcoal (4.95 - 8 ozs) into small bits and
packing as much as I can in between the water filter housing and
the filter. I also installed some SS mesh in the outlet and inlet to
keep the charcoal from exiting either port. That has been working
great and its cheap.

Finally, I wasn't aware of the effect women’s "bloomers" had on mash dynamics. I haven't been wearing them; during brewing anyway. Since Gucci's wearing of women’s bloomers increases his mash ph. Maybe, it will lower mine?? My wife (British) has a pair with Mickey mouse all over tem. A limey with mice in her drawers might hold the key to all this.

Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2006 11:42 am
by Bugeater
gandolf wrote:First, thanks for the quick replies. Second, I usually filter and adjust the strike water ph the night before I brew. I have checked the ph in the morning and it's always right were it had been the night before. I don't think the alkalinity is rebounding "boomeranging" since I have checked the ph a few times during and at the end of the mash and the ph has never fluctuated more than a tenth.


I think I see a possible source of your problem. Your are trying to adjust the ph of your water rather than the ph of your mash. This can be done, and is done by many pro brewers, but requires a lot of work and good test equipment. If you know the exact chemistry of your water as it is when it gets to you, as opposed the the average chemistry reported by your water utility, you can compute the changes you need to make, taking into consideration that the chemistry can change on short notice. Also each recipe will vary in buffering ability due to the varying amounts of different grains.

Once you add grains to your "adjusted" water, the buffering characteristics of the grain will throw the chemistry out of whack again. By trial and error you can come up with the adjustments you need to make to the water for each recipe. It is much simpler to make the adjustment after you mash in and stir for awhile.

The pro brewers can get away with adjusting the water ahead of time because they are brewing the exact same recipe over and over. We change the recipes too much for it to be really practical.

The only adjustment I make to my water (very hard and high in carbonates) is to dilute with RO water and add some calcium chloride to bring the calcium up to a reasonable level. All ph adjustments are done after mashing in and taking a reading with the ph meter.

Wayne
Bugeater Brewing Company

Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2006 4:18 pm
by gandolf
Wayne, are saying grist can raise the mash ph? I have never heard of that.

I basically gest-a-mate by the past experience and the light/dark grist ratio how many points it will drop the mash ph. I then adjust the strike water to get the mash ph as close as I can. I then tweak the mash if it's a little high, but not 6.2. I have tried that and found adjusting mash ph that far out of whack and trying to maintaining mash temp while stirring allot just sucks.

If there is no other way around this issue; I have thought of incorporating a "port" similar to what is used in a hospital IV (while recalculating) to inject acid with a syringe inline; there by maintaining a stable mash temp and adjusting the mash ph.

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