hist-brewing: Water Chemistry

Wade Hutchison whutchis at bucknell.edu
Thu Jan 13 11:18:25 PST 2000


The ways to remove ions from water are 1) distillation, which would remove
_all_ the ionic content, 2) Reverse Osmosis, which will remove almost
all of the ions (CL- may still remain) or 3) Ion exchange, a procedure
that replaces specific ions with other ions of the same polarity.
Ion exchange involves specific resins that you run the water through,
and acutally exchange the ion you don't want for one you can live with.
Water softeners do this, removing the Ca++ and adding in either sodium
or postassium.  I agree with Jeff that the easiest thing for you
to do is build up a water profile from scratch, using commercially
distilled water.  Good luck!

What beer/ale are you trying to brew that you need London water for?
         -----wade hutchison


At 09:31 AM 1/13/2000 , Jeff Renner wrote:
>OxladeMac at aol.com asks
>
> >Are there any chemists or advanced brewers out there that could field a
> >question on water chemistry adjustment?  I'm trying to adjust my tap 
> water to
> >more closely match London's supply for a recreation effort I'm about to
> >embark on.  My city's water supply is OK in most areas, but it seems to have
> >unusually high concentrations of sodium and cloride ions in it.
>
> >City            Ca++    CO3--   Cl- Mg++    Na+ SO4-    HardnessTDS
> >London          90      125     20  5       15      40      235     300
> >Stillwater, OK  75      40      296 64      279     116     140     456
>
>I'll say it's high in those ions!  I'm surprised your water meets EPA
>standards for drinking water.  I'm afraid there's no way to reduce them as
>they are virtually totally soluble.  Acidifying and boiling, as was
>suggested, will at best remove the Ca, Mg and CO3, but Ca is needed for
>proper mash conversion.  The Na and Cl will remain.  Your best bet is to
>build the water from scratch using deionized/distilled water.
>
>You probably won't be able to completely duplicate the ions given for
>London water because they don't balance.  I'd suggest for more information
>you search the HomeBrew Digest archives http://hbd.org in 1995 and1996 for
>AJ deLange's excellent articles on water chemistry.  There was one 1995
>article on London water.  Search fopr "delange and water and london" and
>you should get a fairly manageable number of hits, then look for the
>subject line "water".
>
>Good luck.
>
>Jeff
>
>-=-=-=-=-
>Jeff Renner in Ann Arbor, Michigan USA, c/o nerenner at umich.edu
>"One never knows, do one?"  Fats Waller, American Musician, 1904-1943.
>
>
>
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