pre-mixed minerals as a single water adjustment

Discussion in 'Feature Requests' started by JoeSchmoe, Nov 4, 2013.

  1. JoeSchmoe

    JoeSchmoe New Member

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    I really like the water chemistry calculator and how it ties into the recipe editor, but it is missing an important idea that would make it much easier for me to use.

    I know my starting water profile (it's actually distilled) and I know what I want to add in order to get that source water up to my expected profile, but I don't measure out tiny amounts of each individual mineral every time I brew. Instead, some time prior to brew day, I mix up a fairly big batch of minerals (enough for, say 100 gallons of water) and then dole out that mixture in appropriate amounts when I go to brew. It would be really sweet if the water chemistry calculator worked with me on this.

    For example, to mix up my "bitter" mineral mix, I dump the following into a zip lock bag:

    150g gypsum
    20g kosher salt
    20g epsom salt
    10g baking soda

    I shake it up really well and then dole this mineral mix out into my source water at a rate of 2g per gallon. It simplifies my brew day by having the minerals ready to use, I can measure out the individual minerals in amounts my scale can actually handle precisely, and mixing up such a large amount of mix also helps to average out any precision errors I or my scale might make when measuring things out.

    Now... the feature request:

    It would be really nice if I could enter and save this mixture with a name (e.g. "bitter"), and then enter an amount of that mixture as a single adjustment into the water profile section of my recipe. This along would be a big help to me.

    But... even better would be if somewhere along the way (perhaps in the water chemistry section of the recipe) the tool could tell me how much mix I should use for this recipe. How? Well, if my recipe knows how much water I need, I tell the recipe which mineral mix to use, and that mineral mix specifies a rate to use in grams/gallon, then all the information is present to calculate how much of the mix to add to the recipe. This would make my life so much easier when it comes time to enter the mineral adjustments on brewday :)

    Anyway, hopefully you get the idea. I make a big batches of minerals to achieve certain water profiles. On brew day I dole out that mineral mix into my source water at a known rate to achieve the desired profile. It would be super awesome if Brewer's Friend tools could help figure out how much of my mineral mix to use on a recipe, and then record that information with the recipe and feed it directly into the water chemistry calculations.
     
  2. LarryBrewer

    LarryBrewer Active Member

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    I get what you are doing there, but given every mixture would be unique that would be quite a feat to implement on our side.

    It sounds like you may already be doing this, but for now you can enter 100 gallons into the water chemistry calculator to figure out the ppms achieved for the entire bag. Then dole out the mixed minerals for each batch by weight. For example, with the 100 gallon mix, if a brew session calls for 10 gallons of water, you'd use 10% of the starting weight.

    The pre-mix approach doesn't give you much flexibility though. I often tune up my SO4 level for an IPA, or add more overall minerals for a dark beer.
     
  3. JoeSchmoe

    JoeSchmoe New Member

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    You're more or less correct. I end up having to calculate each separate mineral addition to plug back into the calculator by dividing up my original mix into the amount of water I need on brew day. It's tedious... As I mentioned, it would be really nice to be able to tell the tool "add 10g of my bitter mix" and see how that affects the calculations.

    As for not being flexible, I handle this by having several specialized mineral mixes. I currently only have two: A "balanced" mix, and a "bitter" mix with relatively more SO4. However, there's nothing to say that I couldn't create other specialized mixes as needed, if I found I was, for example, brewing lots of dark beers. There's also nothing to say I couldn't also make small additional adjustments depending on the beer - like starting with my "balanced" mix and then adding in a dash of chalk or what-have-you. However, the whole point of this is to keep things simple on brew day ;)

    Anyway, I don't have a real sense of how common it is for other folks to do what I am doing. If I'm the only one doing this, then it certainly doesn't make sense for you to implement this just for me. But if it turns out to be more common, I don't think it is as complex as you might be thinking - at least to implement a bare minimum of support.

    Thanks for the response. I'm a relatively new BF user, but having switched over from other brewing software, I have to say I am really impressed. BF lets me brew the way I brew, and isn't insanely complicated like some other software I could name :) Thanks for all your work.
     
  4. LarryBrewer

    LarryBrewer Active Member

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    Thanks for the nice compliments! Yeah we'll leave the issue open and see who else chimes in.
     

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