Wrapping my head around water calcs

Discussion in 'Beginners Brewing Forum' started by lucianthorr, Feb 10, 2018.

  1. lucianthorr

    lucianthorr New Member

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    I've been playing around with the Brewers Friend water calculator for this weekend's brew and I'd just like to verify that I'm approaching it correctly (or at least acceptably)

    I brew on a sort of HERMs system so there's one main water source.
    For a 10 gallon batch, I might start with 20 gallons of water:
    First, I transfer 9 gal over to Mash and add salts to balance as the calculator recommends.
    Then I would use the calculator to adjust the the remaining 11 gallons down to a desired pH level and use 5 of those gallons to sparge.

    So even though I only sparging with 5 gallons, I should tell the calculator that I'm sparging with 11.
    That won't mess up any further calculations within the program, will it?

    Thanks!
     
  2. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    Wouldn't you start with (at least approximately) the amount of water that you actually need...i.e., amount into fermenter plus boil-off, system losses, grain absorption, etc? That way you would dial in the water profile for the entire amount you're using.
     
  3. lucianthorr

    lucianthorr New Member

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    That makes total sense and sounds much simpler.
    I guess I was separating the two quantities because the processes I've read seem to put their additions in during the dough-in and sparge steps.
     
  4. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    #4 Ozarks Mountain Brew, Feb 10, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2018
    the site will not adjust to your recipe changes,

    the way the software works is it calculates the total water based on your defaults, not what you put in your mash amounts in your recipe, it then divides mash and sparge up by the Starting Mash Thickness, so for one the site ins't set up for herms so it cant tell you the correct acid to add to the sparge unless you follow its mash and sparge water amounts which might not be correct if you cover your coils with more water then the site tells you to sparge with the water calculator is only reading the defaults as well, the calculator and recipe editor aren't necessarily linked yet to changes, the developers are working on that one
     
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  5. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    Of course! That's why some systems have to start with more water!:oops::)...I never think in terms of minimum water amounts in vessels since I'm not set up for electric.
    I can calculate pretty much down to the pint how much total water volume I need and heat it ahead in my keggle/boil pot. By the time I'm ready to sparge, I can pump the last of the water out of the boil pot into my sparge vessel and have it be pretty much exactly what I need.
     
  6. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    ok let me clarify my answer :} you can change the water amounts in the calculator and it will give your the correct readings, even the correct acid in the sparge but will not transfer back to the brew session or the recipe
     
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