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steve8479
06-11-2007, 03:17 PM
OK, it's been over 2 weeks since I made the Mead (5-27-07) and over one week has gone by since I moved it from the basement to the upstairs closet. I moved the must out of the closet on Sat. 6-9-07. When I moved the bucket, a bit of must bubbled up into the airlock. So I took off the lid to clean out the airlock, the must smelled very yeastie and had the color of, not to be disgusting, cloudy urine. Is this normal? I decided to wrap a heating blanket around the bucket to see if I get any more activity. How soon should I be moving the must into the second fermenter? I have a glass carboy for this.

Once again, many thanks

Steve ???

Oskaar
06-11-2007, 04:49 PM
Exact recipe and ambient temperature of must and surrounding area please.

Thanks,

Oskaar

steve8479
06-13-2007, 07:15 PM
15 lbs raw clover honey
4 gals of water
2 tsp yeast nutrient
1 tsp yeast energizer
2 Lalvin 71b-122

Bring to boil one gal water for 10 min remove from heat. Add yeast nutrient & energizer and honey. Mix to an even consistency. Brought temp back up to about 160F and then let it sit for 10 min. Add 3 gal of Chilled water to 5 gal food-grade bucket, added hot must. Re-hydrate yeast and let sit 15 min then stir thoroughly (I let it sit for almost 30 min). Add yeast to must, the must should be below 80F (I was at 88F, I didn't want the yeast to sit any longer). Stir must for 5 min to add as much air as possible. Take a specific gravity reading(I was at 1.11) Close lid and move to fermenting place. Add air lock. and let sit for 2 weeks.

that was the recipe, I basically followed Ken Schramm's Orange Blossom, but I couldn't find Orange Blossom honey, so I used raw clover. The air temp in the basement is about 62F. I moved the mead to an upsatirs bedroom aboud 1 1/2 weeks ago. The room temp in there is about 74F and the temp of the must is about 78F. The must mixture has now taken a very alcoholish odor, but the mixture is still cloudy. I hope that this is enough info for you Oskarr.

Thanks
Steve

Oskaar
06-13-2007, 07:44 PM
This looks like it should yield a pretty nice mead. I've done recipes like this in the past and they have been pretty nice. I now prefer to do them without heating the honey, but in this case that's not what the issue is. Your mead is probably just a bit young and the yeast is still doing it's thing and is in suspension. Based on that I would say not to worry if the mead is a bit cloudy at this point as it will clear with time. If you did not oxygenate or aerate then I would expect that your fermentation will take a bit longer than if you did since the heating/boiling of water will drive off a significant portion of the O2 contained therein.

Your big issue is the temperature. You need to get that must temperature down to 70 degrees in a hurry or that alcohol smell will get worse and take on a more "rocket fuel" character which can take a very long time to age out, sometimes it never ages out if the mead is fermented and aged at temperatures of 78 and above in my experience (I live in So Cal so we're HOT HOT HOT during the summer time) so my advice is to get it cool quick. I use the 18 gallon tubs to hold my carboys so I can water bath them down, and keep them cool.

Hope that helps,

Oskaar

steve8479
06-15-2007, 08:19 AM
Thanks for the help Oskaar. I moved the mead back down to the basement on Wed 6-13-07. Then Yesterday took a temp reading and it was at 68F. I decided to aerate/stir the mead (for about a minute) and I tasted it when I was done stirring (I licked the spoon). It tasted very much like Chaucer's. I think I am close to moving to secondary fermenter. Next time I am going to splurge and get a clear plastic carboy (my brew shop has some that are designed for winemaking, I think it's food grade plastic). Once again, thanks for all the help

Steve

steve8479
06-25-2007, 10:02 PM
Ten Days since the last post and another update. I racked today and I got a SG reading of 1.062. But the cloudiness is still an issue for me. If you have a myspace account, everybody can take a look at what it looks like http://viewmorepics.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=viewImage&friendID=30574277&albumID=0&imageID=11961206 and http://viewmorepics.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=viewImage&friendID=30574277&albumID=0&imageID=11961206 also, you can see what I actually looks like and I do for fun. I would imagine that I just have to wait for this to clear. Man, it almost looks like Apple Cider.

Oskaar
06-27-2007, 08:19 AM
Maybe you can post those photos somewhere other than myspace.

I just get a generic myspace website page and I'm not interested in creating an account to view photos.

Cheers,

Oskaar

steve8479
06-27-2007, 01:40 PM
Let's see if this works http://photos.walmart.com/slideshow/AlbumID=11595828/PictureID=294170667/a=4295277_4295277/t_=4295277 and http://photos.walmart.com/slideshow/AlbumID=11595828/PictureID=294169203/a=4295277_4295277/t_=4295277
or http://www2.snapfish.com/slideshow/AlbumID=162347752/PictureID=3388340055/a=98893432_98893432/t_=98893432 and http://www2.snapfish.com/slideshow/AlbumID=162347752/PictureID=3388340056/a=98893432_98893432/t_=98893432
Thanks for all the help

zionpsyfer
06-27-2007, 05:31 PM
The last link had a picture of a carboy. The rest required a login.

Here is a good website to use to host pictures.

http://imageshack.us

steve8479
06-28-2007, 07:18 AM
http://img443.imageshack.us/img443/74/mead2tq8.jpg (http://imageshack.us)
Shot at 2007-06-28

Now that pretty cool, that this works. Well, tell me what you think

zionpsyfer
06-28-2007, 06:56 PM
Looking good! The cloudiness is suspended yeasties in your mead, nothing to worry about.

You *may* want to consider topping off the carboy though. Water or apple juice (with no preservatives). My first batch was this recipe and I neglected to do that. I somehow ended up with a sort of mead concentrate, cloyingly sweet and yet potent in alcohol. Nothing that topping off a glass with some water didn't fix, but it would have been easier in the carboy. It will also protect you from oxidization and possible infection.


It looks fine though. You'll start seeing it clear on its own in time.
:cheers:

steve8479
09-04-2007, 09:10 PM
I racked again over the labor day holiday and my SG was at 1.010. It was still bubbling about 2x a minute and I figured it was time, because I had the time. After racking, I topped it off with distilled water, about a quart. The mead has taken on a very wine-like taste and I assume I just have to wait for it to clear. If I am doing anything incorrect, please let me know.

Thanks to all
Steve :cheers:

Also, does anybody have any hints about getting the tubing off the end of the racking cane? They were seperate originally and after the first use I could not get them apart no matter how hard I pulled.

Leonora
09-05-2007, 01:25 AM
Also, does anybody have any hints about getting the tubing off the end of the racking cane? They were seperate originally and after the first use I could not get them apart no matter how hard I pulled.


Run the place where the two join under very hot water. Use your finger nail or the end of a spoon to pry the two apart. Don't try to tug them apart, just sort of lever and scrape the tube off the cane.

BTW, I only take them apart when I replace my tubing (which I do ever 6 months or so).

Leonora

zionpsyfer
09-05-2007, 09:54 PM
My tube gets really hard too, I likewise run it under hot water to soften it up. I share the same hose between my racking cane and my bottle filler so I always take it off of the cane after racking.

Your starting gravity was 1.11, and I believe* you should end up on the drier side if you used the yeast recommended for that recipe. Have you taken a gravity reading lately? That will tell you (and us) exactly where you're at on sugar content.

* I could very well be wrong here, as it comes down to yeast selection.

Johnnybladers
09-06-2007, 08:05 PM
Also, does anybody have any hints about getting the tubing off the end of the racking cane? They were seperate originally and after the first use I could not get them apart no matter how hard I pulled.


Run the place where the two join under very hot water. Use your finger nail or the end of a spoon to pry the two apart. Don't try to tug them apart, just sort of lever and scrape the tube off the cane.

BTW, I only take them apart when I replace my tubing (which I do ever 6 months or so).

Leonora

I tried to just tug them apart once........I ended up with the short end of the elbow in one hand, still connected to the tube, and the rest of the cane now just a long straw.

sandman
09-06-2007, 09:49 PM
I was wondering when someone would admit to that. I'm on my second racking cane as well. :BangHead:

Oskaar
09-07-2007, 02:22 AM
Um, I just use a heat gun that I use for shrinking the capsules for my corked wine bottles. Badda bing! Done in a few seconds.

Oskaar

Wolfie
09-07-2007, 04:53 PM
My racking cane broke just above the elbow, so it's a little funny, but it works. :cheers:
Heat gun eh? I might give er a go with the blow drier...

steve8479
09-08-2007, 08:43 AM
Back to zionpsyfer's question about my SG. My SG was at 1.010 when I racked. I would imagine this a very dry mead.

Thanks for all the help
Steve :cheers:

Johnnybladers
09-08-2007, 11:23 AM
I would not consider 1.010 that dry. Semi-dry perhaps but not very dry (1.000 or less is not uncommon). This is likely a matter of personal taste as 1.010 might actually be too dry for one person yet too sweet for another. Bottom line is what do you think of the sweetness/taste?

zionpsyfer
09-08-2007, 02:22 PM
Agreed, 1.010 isn't that dry. I have a sweet tooth and prefer mine between 1.01 and 1.025. Others like their mead dry. Yours is still going, and will certainly end up somewhere below where it is now. As Johnnybladers said, it's all about how you like the taste. Is it sweet enough for you? If it's too dry for your tastes then you can always backsweeten. If it's perfect the way it is AND it's not showing any signs of clearing then you could possibly consider stopping the fermentation yourself by adding potassium metabi / sorbate to it, followed by a cold crash to help the yeast settle. Then rack another time for bulk aging.

I know that my yeast are giving up the ghost when I start seeing it clear. If you're seeing that, and the taste is good for you then you might decide to let the yeast finish up on their own.



A rough table of final gravities
1.005 and below - Dry
1.006 to 1.015 - Medium
1.016 - 1.020 - Sweet
1.020 and above - Dessert

steve8479
10-01-2007, 07:36 AM
It's been almost a month since I last racked. It's bubbling about once every three minutes. I'm think about racking again. The mead is clearer in the neck of the bottle only. I read on other posts something about cold crashing. What is this? Would this be something that recommended to stop fermenting and settle out the spent yeast? Again any help is greatly appreciated

Thanks
Steve :help:

Leonora
10-02-2007, 12:16 AM
Steve,

Use the search function, please! There is a TON of info on cold crashing on this site that none of us have time to re-send for you. I don't want your question to go unanswered, but I think you'll agree it's better for folks to spend the time and energy answering new questions.

All the best,
Leonora