Confused about brew water calculator

Discussion in 'Recipe Editor' started by aZeef, Mar 25, 2018.

  1. aZeef

    aZeef New Member

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    Hey all,

    I could use some help with the brew water calculator. I live in an area with calcium rich water, and quite high bicarbonate (303 ppm). The full report is:
    Ca 87
    Ma 10
    Sodium: 3
    Chloride: 3
    Sulfate: 4
    Bicarbonate: 303.

    I need to adjust the water for the "light colored and malty" profile.
    Those stats are:
    Ca 60
    Ma 5
    Sodium: 10
    Chloride: 95
    Sulfate: 55
    HCO: 0.

    My question is: when I click on "update calculations" in the "Water Target Selection" somehow my HCO in the "Actual" row has magically reduced (from 303) to "1.756". My Ca has reduced to 35, my Magnesium to 5, et cetera.

    I haven't done any boiling or additions of salts.

    How does this compute? How am I to understand these stats?
     
  2. Yooper

    Yooper Administrator
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    What do you put in the water target selection? Can you give us a couple of screen shots, so we can see what you see?
     
  3. aZeef

    aZeef New Member

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    Thanks! Here I have linked to some screenshots (apologies: they show up a bit big...): [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  4. Yooper

    Yooper Administrator
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    You have checked to use different waters for mash and sparge- do you have a profile of the sparge water you're using?
     
  5. aZeef

    aZeef New Member

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    My sparge water is the normal "Source Water", which is in the second image.

    I brewed a beer today, and while following the Mash and Water Chemistry calculations, the pH of the mash was pretty far off. I aimed at a pH 5.4 (SRM of 16), but instead got 5.67. No idea why the difference between the mash pH prediction and the actual mash pH is this big...
     
  6. Yooper

    Yooper Administrator
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    Ok, then where is the water profile for the mash water?
     
  7. aZeef

    aZeef New Member

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    This is the calculator's "Mash Report" for the beer I brewed yesterday, which used the correct grist bill, included all salts added to the mash water, et cetera. I followed both the grain bill and the salts to the gram/milligram. Yet, the measured pH of the mash, with a sample taken ten minutes into the mash and cooled down to 25° Celsius was 5.67...
     

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  8. Yooper

    Yooper Administrator
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    I'm not able to understand the issue from those screenshots. There is a check in the box about using different source waters for the mash and the sparge- but without seeing the water used in both, I can't explain why you are so far off. I believe it's in the data entered, but since I cannot see the source water in the screenshots for both the mash and sparge, I'm just guessing.
     
  9. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    Quick clarification to make sure we're all on the same page, did you get the mash and sparge water from the same tap? If so don't check the different source box.
     
  10. aZeef

    aZeef New Member

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    Okay, thanks anyway!

    The key is: I do not understand how to use this water calculator.

    :)
     
  11. aZeef

    aZeef New Member

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    They do come from the same tap, but I don't process them in the same way. The source water just needs a bit of acid, the mash water seems to need more processing because of the high alkalinity of my tap water (bicarbonate of 303). I haven't yet found the way of doing that. The opening question was about just that: how come all alkalinity has disappeared without me doing anything?

    "My question is: when I click on "update calculations" in the "Water Target Selection" somehow my HCO in the "Actual" row has magically reduced (from 303) to "1.756". My Ca has reduced to 35, my Magnesium to 5, et cetera."

    I don't understand those calculations...
     
  12. okoncentrerad

    okoncentrerad Active Member

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    Perhaps you shouldn't check the box "Use different water..." but the box "Salts added to mash only"?
     
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  13. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    I don't fully grasp the calculations either, but lets start small and make sure we're putting the water in correctly before we start questioning the math.

    Honestly I barely understand how to calculate this stuff myself and still get it mostly wrong.
     
  14. Yooper

    Yooper Administrator
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    I don't want to be one of "those people" who just tell you to read the instructions, so please don't think that is what I am doing. The thing is, the water calculator needs you to go step by step, entering the data that is needed. Each box is important, including the box you checked. In order to get good data out of it, the proper data has to be plugged into it.

    I'm happy to help.

    If you start with the instructions below the water calculator: https://www.brewersfriend.com/mash-chemistry-and-brewing-water-calculator/ and scroll down, put the required info into each box. Then we'll talk you through it and how to use it.

    Perhaps, start with the basic water calculator to get familiar with all of the boxes and what they are looking for: https://www.brewersfriend.com/water-chemistry/ and then the advanced will make more sense.
     
    Brewer #195813 likes this.

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