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pH meter recommendations

Discussion in 'Gear and Equipment' started by btrots87, 4/1/16.

 

  1. btrots87

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    Posted 4/1/16
  2. antiphile

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    Posted 4/1/16
    G'day Trotsky (found your political philosophy intriguing, BTW)

    This is purely a personal opinion. I'm certain there are many many people that have got pH meters from eBay etc and have had no problems with them. I'd rather spend a few extra bucks and get one from a "physical" location in Aus, and that specialise in scientific instruments. This one is very similar to one I got and it has been an absolute gem (I recalibrate every month or so but it's never been more than 0.1 pH units out).

    Just my 2 rupees. Cheers.
     
  3. Fat Bastard

    Brew Cvlt Doom

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    Posted 4/1/16
    That one looks a little cheap. Manufacturers Reccomendation according to the description is to calibrate before each use, which means you'll go through heaps of buffer. I'm using a Hanna 98128, which is probably a bit more than you want to spend, but has worked well for me.

    Ideally you want something that has a .05 resolution or smaller, preferably with a replaceable electrode, at they do wear out.

    Also pH meters can be finicky to look after, you need to store them with the electrode immersed in storage solution ( or at the very least buffer solution) and clean them properly after use. Would pH strips work for you?
     
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  4. wobbly

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    Posted 4/1/16
    Please don't take this as an insult but "You get what you pay for"

    If you are going down the road of investing in a pH meter then it is worthwhile making sure that you understand how to use and calibrate it and this link gives some good advise as well as what to look for when seeking to purchase a pH meter (at the bottom of the first post) http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=302256
    You will also note that it is recommended that the meter be:-
    • capable of reading to 2 decimal places because the pH scale is logarithmic
    • and should have the capability to be calibrated at, at least 2 points so as to set the meter slope.
    • Cheers
    • Wobbly
     
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  5. wobbly

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  6. Benn

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    Posted 4/1/16
    Would it be useful to have a Ph meter hard wired into a brewtroller box? I saw some on eBay a while back but the max temp for the probes was around 50deg.
     
  7. btrots87

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    Posted 4/1/16
    Thanks guys, I'm pretty familiar with how to use and calibrate them, just not sure if the cheap ones were good enough for brewing. I suspected they probably wouldn't be. As someone only just starting out in AG brewing do you think it is worth getting a pH meter or would the strips be accurate enough for now?

    Also, to the guys who own a meter do you use it every brew, or is it more a case of using it for the first few brews to get your process down pat and then not checking it all the time? If it is something that I'll use a lot then I'm happy to spend a bit more money on it.
     
  8. antiphile

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    Posted 4/1/16
    Can't speak for the other guys/girls (?), but I absolutely use it every brew. I measure the water in the HLT, the mash (usually a minimum of twice), the first runnings and the final runnings, and the kettle contents before it hits the hot break. But that's what being anally retentive does to someone!
     
  9. motman

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    Posted 4/1/16
    I had one the same or similar. It was ok - I calibrated every use and it didn't drift too much until the end of its life (probably 8 brews, 8 months). I checked it against strips many times and it seemed fairly consistent and similar to the strips. I think I'll go with strips moving forward, as the initial outlay of a better meter and the maintenance, solutions and limited life span of the probes makes it unlikely it will ever pay for itself. I'd never trust one of these cheapies without a comparison point either, so not for me.
     
  10. wobbly

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    Posted 5/1/16
    I went and purchased one of these Altronics for $91 but you can get then on - line from Tiawan for $68 here:-
    http://www.aliexpress.com/item/Taiwan-EZDO-PH6011-pH-tester-waterproof-pen-PH-meter-PH-meter-digital-ph-Auto-calibration-Free/2047131616.html?spm=2114.40010508.4.2.pw0gTP

    Not the cheapest out there but it has all the features I have read you should be looking for

    Cheers

    Wobbly

    Not sure why but the edit doesn't want to include the link to the Altronics catalogue anyway the cat no is Q1269
     
  11. btrots87

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    Posted 5/1/16
    Thanks for the help guys. I think in the short term for now I'll just go with the strips to save some cash. Just bought a grainfather and an urn so I should probably slow the spending for a few weeks.


    Thanks for the link and the info Wobbly, once I've got a few brews under my belt and a bit more disposable cash I'll keep that one in mind.
     
  12. nosco

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    Posted 5/1/16
    I bought this one last night it sounds lime its got what is needed. Should be here in about a month. 1 week from China and 3 with Australia Post.

    Professional Handheld Waterproof Digital PH meter Temperature High Accuracy +/-0.05PH with Replaceable Electrode
    http://s.aliexpress.com/Nb67Rbi2
    (from AliExpress Android)
     
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  13. danestead

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    Posted 5/1/16
    Ive also got a hanna 98128. It does the job and the accuracy specs are on the website.

    You want something with a tight accuracy. I think fat bastard may have mixed up the terms resolution and accuracy. Yes you want a small resolution but its no good if the accuracy is rubbish.

    When my hanna dies ill probably buy a milwaukee meter. Ther is one with a 0.02 accuracy for about the same price as the hanna I have and I believe milwaukee are a respected brand also.
     
  14. danestead

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    Posted 5/1/16
    I use mine every brew at the start of the mash and then add acid to hit my desired PH. I very rarely brew something identical so I dont really have the luxury of knowing what the ph is likely to be without measuring it. Even if I did brew the same thing twice id probably still test the ph because its not hard to do and im pretty anal about repeatability etc etc.

    I calibrate every brew day. My hanna 98128 is about 2 years old now and I guess about 30 brews in and the original probe still seems to be quite accurate prior to calibration (doesnt seem to be drifting much yet).
     
  15. fraser_john

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    Posted 5/1/16
    I had this same one for years before breaking the electrode and buying a different one, worked well. Good thing is it floats and just chuck it into the mash/sparge water whilst doing the salt additions & acid adjustments.
     
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  16. Mardoo

    Noob What Craps On A Bit

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    Posted 5/1/16
    I had that one too. Solid meter. Until I abandoned the prospect of pH meters that is.
     
  17. danestead

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    Posted 6/1/16
    Just tested how far my Hanna 98128 has drifted since last calibration and brew about 3 weeks ago. 0.02. I only ever test room temp wort and the probe is about 2 yrs old
     
  18. GalBrew

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    Posted 6/1/16
    You have to calibrate a pH meter EVERY TIME you use it! Doesn't matter if it cost $50 off eBay or thousands of dollars off a scientific supplier like Hanna.

    Edit: Unless you are going to use it multiple times in a day, then once at the start of the day is fine.
     
  19. jibba02

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  20. klangers

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    Posted 10/1/16
    I am sceptical of this.

    I've installed many an inline pH probe (used for industrial process control) and they are pretty much set and forget. My experience with handheld probes, however, is limited.

    It simply depends on the method of measurement. There are various ways to measure pH directly and indirectly. Methods such as conductivity are usually factory calibrated once, and then should only ever require periodic calibrations.
     

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