From the HBD Archive
From: Jeff Miller <>
Subject: hermal shock/glass carboys/water ph
Date: 1989-02-24 13:14:24 GMT

I think everything Erik said about old carboys (yes mine were both used) is
true; they seam to become more brittle with age and especially the more times
you shock them.

When I broke my first carboy some time ago I also went out a bought some
copper and made myself a nifty counter-flow wort chiller. It works fine
and prevented me from blowing up carboys until recently.

The thing is that I have been getting into "back to the basic" type brews
of late. I don't seem to have the time to dedicate to long brew sessions
so I have been doing simple extract brews and I got lazy. Sure I kept
everything clean but decided I didn't want to sanitize my chiller. Being
lazy cost me dearly in this case. Something that I used to do to reduce
shock was to rinse the carboy with hot water. This seems to bring it up
in temp and reduce thermal shock. I forgot to do this on the last break
up and I guess thats what happens when you try old habbits and forget simple
little solutions.

Jay, I'm glad to hear somebody else has heard of these pyrex carboys. The
other person's carboy also had a large neck but he didn't seem to have any
problems getting a stopper. As for cleaning it, there are lots of nasty
caustics about that I'm sure would eat anything off the side of the carboy.
If your friend wants to get rid of some of them maybe he would be interested
in a friendly net auction???


Now, on to a new subject. I just started studying Noonans book and I'm
starting to do some water analysis. I found that my water starts at a ph
of almost 6. When I boil (just water) and test the ph it goes to 8. Once
the water cools it again returns to 6. By adding 1/4 tsp gypsum to 1 cup
water my ph dropped to 5 when cold and again went to 8 when boiled. In
both cases the ph dropped back to the original (6 and 5) when the boiled
water was cooled. My interpretation is that I have good temporary ph
and that with the addition of gypsum I should be able to obtain the 5.2 - 5.5
ph range that is supposed to be best. Other possibilities might be that
when I add the crushed grains the ph might drop by itself.

I have been trying to make time for an all-grain brew to test some of this
stuff out but I don't know when that might happen. What kind of analysis
has anybody else figured out about water ph?

Jeff Miller (

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