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Bbockelmann
06-30-2009, 05:07 PM
getting supplies ready to make my first batch of mead ever. decided i would go with Joe's ancient orange and spice.

recipe is for 1 gallon batch. what if i only have access to 3 or 5 gal carboys?
will a 1 gal batch be ok in a bigger carboy? should i increase size?

also my local brewstore sells these (http://better-bottle.com/index3.html) are these good? does the airlok work well?

ah! i'm nervous

wayneb
06-30-2009, 05:46 PM
Hi, Bbockelmann! Welcome to the Gotmead community!! You've come to the right place for help with your first batches!

But, before I answer your questions, I'd like to suggest that you read the Newbee Guide (there's a link over on the left side of this page), so you can understand why we suggest some of the things that we do.

Now to your questions. First, Joe's recipe is scaled for a single gallon batch, but if all you have are 3 or 5 gallon carboys, you can certainly scale up the recipe (multiply everything by either 3 or 5) and it will work just fine. It is better to keep the airspace above your mead as small as possible, especially after fermentation is finished and your mead is aging. That will prevent oxidation.

As far as the Better Bottles are concerned, I still use glass, but that's mostly because I've been doing this for a while and I have enough glass carboys to do most of what I have planned. If I were buying new equipment I might add some Better Bottles to the collection since they are cheaper, more robust against breakage, and the like. From what I've read, they should be as good for primary or secondary fermentation as glass vessels. I don't know if I would try any really long-term aging in them. I'll let those folks with experience using them answer that more definitively.

Don't be nervous -- mead is a mostly forgiving mistress. Just take care to keep up good cleanliness and sanitation practices, and follow directions, and your mead will likely turn out fine! Good luck with it!!

Bbockelmann
06-30-2009, 06:02 PM
Thanks wayne. your answers helped. I am in fact on chapeter 14 of the newbee guide right now! ;D i'm sure i'll read it a couple more times b4 i dive in.

akueck
06-30-2009, 06:46 PM
I just picked up a couple Better Bottles and so far they are working well. My only complaint is that when you move them around, the walls can flex and you can suck back the liquid in the airlock. The flexing walls also shot water about 3 feet when I picked it up to dump out the cleaning solution (I apparently squeezed it too hard). You can avoid water cannons easily enough, but you have to think about it more than with glass.

Medsen Fey
07-01-2009, 09:04 AM
I have some better bottles and I like them a lot - mainly because I cannot break them no matter how drop them. ;D

I do not like the ones with the racking port - just extra stuff to have to clean and fiddle with. I'd rather rack using an autosiphon.

I have kept meads in them for several months during secondary without noticeable oxidation, but I have not tried really long aging in them. I do that in Corny kegs.