First All Grain BIAB Brewday water treatment worries!

Discussion in 'Grain, Hops, Yeast & Water' started by Brian105, Nov 7, 2019.

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  1. Nov 7, 2019 #1

    Brian105

    Brian105

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    Hi all,

    I've been lurking here for a while now attempting to hoover up all the accumulated knowledge before I attempted my first stove top all grain BIAB but I've hit a brick wall and need a little help!

    The background to all this was my better half thinking it would be a good idea to buy me an all grain Brooklyn Brew Shop Punk IPA kit for my Birthday this summer. I hadn't made home brew for 30 years and she thought I'd enjoy doing it again. I did... and then some. I quickly sought out a homebrew shop and bought a couple of premium kits. Before long I had a brew fridge and homemade kegarator in the shed! After good results and half a dozen kits later I toyed with trying extract brewing but realised without much extra outlay I could scale down all grain recipes from the books I'd bought from a member here (who'd put them on eBay).

    I've actually bought the ingredients for an Old Peculier clone via The Malt Miller. I bought enough for 19 litre's and intend to halve everything and brew in a bag in my 17 litre stockpot. I should end up with 9.5 litres of beer so hopefully 18 x 500ml bottles. I can then brew the remaining ingredients at a later date making any changes I feel necessary. Does this sound OK?

    Anyway, brewday is Saturday as family are all out and I'll have the kitchen to myself. I thought I'd keep it simple by just rinsing mashed grains over an FV (though colander) with pre-heated sparge water and then adding to the wort before boiling with hops at appropriate timings. I then intend to cool in an ice bath in the sink and pitch re-hydrated S-04 before moving to the brew fridge. Hopefully that all sounds OK so far for a first attempt but any advice gratefully received.

    Now to my concern. Water treatment. I know people say not to over think it especially at this point in my "new" hobby but I thought i'd try to get the basics right. Haven't got time to get a profile from my water supplier so have bought Tesco's Ashbeck mineral water and wanted to enter the composition of this into the recommended calculator on Brewer's Friend but having done that I'm none the wiser about what steps I should take next. I was hoping someone could look at the profile below and advise me or perhaps share a profile of Ashbeck they've already made and tell me what additions I should make.

    https://www.brewersfriend.com/mash-chemistry-and-brewing-water-calculator/?id=1NX2H6H

    Many thanks in advance.
     
  2. Nov 7, 2019 #2

    matt76

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    Honestly my advice is this.....

    You've bought some Tesco Ashbeck - forget about water treatment and just make some beer.

    Seriously - there's plenty more things to get the hang of before you start to make life difficult worrying about water treatment.

    I used Ashbeck for my first 21 brews - the beer turned out just fine. I didn't even attempt any water treatment until the 15th brew.

    I've only recently started brewing with tap water as I start to get the hang of water treatment. In fact my latest brew (#29) I mixed 2 parts Ashbeck with 1 part tap water as I felt the need to go more back to basics.

    Trust me - keep it simple athumb..
     
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  3. Nov 7, 2019 #3

    Brian105

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    Hi Matt76,

    Thanks for the reply.

    Yes, I appreciate it's early days and that I could easily brew a perfectly acceptable beer without treating the water but was still hoping someone could make sense of the profile on Brewers Friend for me. If the water just requires a little gypsum or something equally simple I may as well add it.

    Cheers.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2019
  4. Nov 7, 2019 #4

    Ben034

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    Matt is probably correct to leave for another day when you're back in the swing of things. However, if you have what you need to adjust water already, use the brewers friend to adjust the calcium up. Ideally you will benefit from over 100ppm calcium. You can use calcium sulphate and calcium chloride to do this. Add in the brewers friend calculator until you have approx 150 calcium, 100 chloride and same for sulphate. This is a reasonable starting point. If you want to get more serious and match the exact style you're brewing, have a look at these threads

    https://www.thehomebrewforum.co.uk/...-to-water-treatment.64822/page-44#post-850987

    https://www.thehomebrewforum.co.uk/threads/more-advanced-water-treatment.71451/

    Good luck
     
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  5. Nov 7, 2019 #5

    matt76

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    Honestly, I really wouldn't bother - I've made nice bitter before using Ashbeck and no water treatment.

    However, using the profile for bitter in this post by @strange-steve I had a quick look using an old bitter recipe of mine and Ashbeck.....

    I think if you add 5g gypsum and 2.5g calcium sulphate [edit: sorry, it was late - should be 2.5g calcium chloride] you'll be pretty darn close for a 10L brew. But you need to add both otherwise your sulphate to chloride ratio will be seriously out of whack.

    Really though if I were in your shoes I'd leave the water treatment for the time being and keep it simple.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2019
  6. Nov 7, 2019 #6

    foxy

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    I think you maybe getting your chemistry mixed up, sure you don't mean calcium chloride.:D
     
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  7. Nov 7, 2019 #7

    Brian105

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    The Ashbeck water states its PH as 6.2 so don't I at least want to lower this to 5.2?
     
  8. Nov 7, 2019 #8

    foxy

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    The buffering components in the grain will drop the pH so you will still have to calculate what the drop in the pH will be, it could be that you may have to add some calcium carbonate to raise the pH.
     
  9. Nov 8, 2019 #9

    ACBEV

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    I agree with @matt76 , but if you must tinker with Ashbeck I'd add the following for your amount of water...

    3g - Gypsum - Calcium Sulphate
    0.5g - Salt - Sodium Chloride
    1g - Calcium Chloride (dihydrate)

    From my tinkering the above is the closest I can get to the balanced profile, with minimal inputs... Although I don't think doing water chemistry this way is a good idea, but I think It'll be good for paler beers like pale ale, bitter, golden ale and the like.

    As suggested above, you'd be better off just brewing beer in the short term, either with Ashbeck and/or styles that suit your tap water. Another hack is to combine Ashbeck with your tap water for each style you brew.
     
  10. Nov 8, 2019 #10

    foxy

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    OK Brian, I didn't see the water profile you linked, first off where is the grain bill? If you split the grain bill, I presume they come in separate bags, the buffering effect of half the grain bill will take your pH down to 5.21, adding any salts will drop it even further. Leave it as is, and if you want to get into salt additions use your tap water.
     
  11. Nov 8, 2019 #11

    matt76

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    Yes I did - 2.5g calcium chloride. Thanks athumb..
     
  12. Nov 8, 2019 #12

    Brian105

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    Hi. OK, it seems my fears are unwarranted and I'll brew tomorrow without treating any water. My first BIAB day is bound to throw up other issues to keep me busy anyway!

    Thanks everyone for you input.
     
  13. Nov 8, 2019 #13

    Brian105

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    Was I supposed to add the grain bill to the profile? I missed that.

    I purchased the ingredients for the 19 litre version the of this recipe:

    https://photos.app.goo.gl/J9N9P61u2VS13RkS6

    I'm halving everything but mashing for 90 mins and boiling for 90 mins. I take it this is correct?
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2019
  14. Nov 8, 2019 #14

    MickDundee

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    I’ve been brewing for over 4 years and have never made any adjustments to my water, although I live in a very soft water area and almost exclusively brew pale ales - my local microbrewery reckons their tap water has a very similar profile to the water used for German lagers, although the reservoir their water comes from is a different one to mine but it should be similar. If you are using Tesco Ashbeck you’ll be fine.

    Regarding splitting the bag, if all the ingredients are mixed together in one bag you run the risk of the grains not being evenly distributed so one batch might have more speciality grains than the other.
     
  15. Nov 8, 2019 #15

    Brian105

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    Hi Mick,

    The Pale Malt is seperate from the Crystal and Chocolate which are mixed but are of a similar amount so think it will be fine.
    I'm in a hard water area so will use the Ashbeck untreated as advised till I feel the need to experiment!

    Cheers.
     
  16. Nov 8, 2019 #16

    foxy

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    Yes, always add the grain then save before moving on to water profiles.
    I generally mash for 75 and boil for 90 minutes, lower OG I mash for 60 mins.
     
  17. Nov 8, 2019 #17

    Hengoedbrewer

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    I'm a new BIAB brewer and really impressed you are considering water profiles already. I've got 2 done now and still feeling I am a ways off tinketing with water; I need to refine other processes first, get a handle on my efficiency etc...but it's a really fun way to brew and I am sure you will enjoy it. Good luck!
     
  18. Nov 8, 2019 #18

    Brian105

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    Thanks foxy.

    Hi Hengoedbrewer. I'm probably trying to run before I can walk but I'm enjoying myself! Really looking forward to tomorrow. Will take a few photos and if all goes well I'll post a couple along with my thoughts on all grain brewday #1
     
  19. Nov 8, 2019 #19

    Hengoedbrewer

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    The thoughts and experience of a fellow new all grain brewer would be really interesting so good stuff!
     
  20. Nov 8, 2019 #20

    Brian105

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    Hi Hengoedbrewer. My grandparents originally from Merthyr and Caersws. I'm a Utd fan too. Lots in common!
     

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