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Pedar.TheLostViking
04-04-2010, 09:40 PM
Recipe

6lb clover honey
2lb orange honey
1 1/4 tsp grape tannin
1 pack Lalvin 1116
1 oz fermaid k
1/4 tsp DAP

pitched on 3/21/2010
it was pitched into three bottles 2 one gallon bottles and 1 two quart bottle. at pitch the temp was 91.4 and balling was at 39 for the two bigger bottles and 37 for the smaller. and the 2 qt bottle got a single whole clove in it.

here is my issue. I was told to add some fermaid k and some dap at the end of the lag phase. my yeast never got to the "boiling" point that was described so i added some of the nutrient to one bottle on 3/34 and had a foam over and lost about 2 inches off the top of the must. i added boiled water to the must after the water came back down to room temp but now my balling for that bottle is about 5 points lower than the other bottle.

i am planning to pitch a new batch of yeast into the bottles with the help of slavens but we are wondering if we should 1) mix the two 1 gal bottles to bring them to a match and start from scratch; 2) use honey to bring the balling of the lower bottle up to that of the larger bottle or something completely different.

fatbloke
04-05-2010, 04:05 AM
Recipe

6lb clover honey
2lb orange honey
1 1/4 tsp grape tannin
1 pack Lalvin 1116
1 oz fermaid k
1/4 tsp DAP

pitched on 3/21/2010
it was pitched into three bottles 2 one gallon bottles and 1 two quart bottle. at pitch the temp was 91.4 and balling was at 39 for the two bigger bottles and 37 for the smaller. and the 2 qt bottle got a single whole clove in it.

here is my issue. I was told to add some fermaid k and some dap at the end of the lag phase. my yeast never got to the "boiling" point that was described so i added some of the nutrient to one bottle on 3/34 and had a foam over and lost about 2 inches off the top of the must. i added boiled water to the must after the water came back down to room temp but now my balling for that bottle is about 5 points lower than the other bottle.

i am planning to pitch a new batch of yeast into the bottles with the help of slavens but we are wondering if we should 1) mix the two 1 gal bottles to bring them to a match and start from scratch; 2) use honey to bring the balling of the lower bottle up to that of the larger bottle or something completely different.
I'm sorry, I have absolutely no idea where you actually are with this.....

If you mix the ingredients in a bucket (except the yeast and nutrient) and then allow it too cool to the right temperature before pitching the yeast (having hydrated the yeast as per the instructions or with GoFerm), then pitch the yeast and then seal the bucket with an airlock, once you've got bubbles in the airlock, you'll know when to add the nutrient i.e. once the bubbles are showing in the airlock, the lag phase will have ended.

1 oz of nutrient ? Damn that's a lot for basically a 2 gallon batch. A teaspoon full would have been plenty, then once you get to the 1/3 sugar break (sorry, I'm completely unfamiliar with the balling scale, like most here, I use brix/gravity scales - anyway, if you know what the measurement is before the yeast is added, and what you expect it to get too once the ferment has finished, by dividing the results by 3 should give you the number to watch for for the 1/3 and 2/3 sugar breaks) anyway, the 1/3 sugar break is where you'd add something like 1/4 tsp of FermaidK and maybe 1/2 tsp of DAP.

With a batch in a bucket it makes it much easier to open it and aerate (stir it) at least once a day, and still get measurements as to how the ferment is progressing. That way, with knowledge of the 1/3 and 2/3 sugar break numbers, when the ferment has reached the 2/3 sugar break you can safely stop stirring and transfer it over into it's respective jars which are then sealed with airlocks and left until they've finished fermenting.

So wherever you've got to with your batch, I'd suggest that you just seal the jars/bottles/whatever with airlock and let them finish. It matters not, where they are at the moment, as long as they finish, you just need to ensure that they're still fermenting or finished. You can always blend then together to even them out later, once they've finished.

As for your comment about foaming, well it's why in the early stages, that if you have your batch in a bucket you can safely leave a good airspace, so to allow for foaming when you add nutrient - it's sort of an occupational hazard the foaming. The same applies to jars/bottles/carboys. Then when you're happy that you've achieved the 2/3 sugar break or some actually ferment lower before topping the batch up to exclude airspace and allow the ferment to go into the anaerobic phase......

S'up to you really...

Good luck with it - and whatever you do, don't put it down the sink until you're absolutely sure that you've screwed it up completely and that it can't be saved...... It's a waste of good mead and materials.....

regards

fatbloke

Medsen Fey
04-05-2010, 09:57 AM
pitched on 3/21/2010
it was pitched into three bottles 2 one gallon bottles and 1 two quart bottle. at pitch the temp was 91.4 and balling was at 39 for the two bigger bottles and 37 for the smaller.

here is my issue. I was told to add some Fermaid k and some DAP at the end of the lag phase. my yeast never got to the "boiling" point that was described so i added some of the nutrient to one bottle on 3/34...

i am planning to pitch a new batch of yeast into the bottles with the help of slavens but we are wondering if we should

Pedar, there's a lot going on here but it would be good to start with determining where you are at before you do anything else. Your Balling scale numbers don't add up with the amount of honey you used. 8 pounds of honey in 2.5 gallons works out to be about 27 Brix/Balling not 37. Why don't you start with taking a gravity reading now and see where it is? At this point it may be finished so I don't think you need to pitch more yeast yet.

You can't judge fermentation activity by how much you see visibly, and meads often don't look all that busy even though the yeast are going strong. Measuring the drop in gravity tells you how you are progressing and also tells you when to add nutrients if you are staggering them. I'm not sure what "boiling" you were expecting and didn't get.

How much additional nutrient did you add to your batches? The 1 ounce dose of Fermaid K is quite a bit more than would normally be recommended and adding more is just piling on. It may potentially leave you with some odd flavors, but hopefully that will not be a problem.

If you haven't taken a look at the NewBee Guide (http://www.gotmead.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogcategory&id=108&Itemid=14), check it out. There's lots of good info to help you.

Medsen

Pedar.TheLostViking
04-07-2010, 12:07 AM
thanks for the help.

from what i have found Brix and balling are the same thing (or so says the papers that came with my hydrometers). my hydrometer is labeled balling so that is the term and measurement i use to prevent from getting confused. sorry if i confused anyone.

my gravity reading got my one gallon bottle was 1.164 corrected to 1.169 temp at the time of the reading 91.4 and the 1/3rd sugar break worked out to be at 26. my problem came from adding water to take up some of the dead air space that was created when it foamed over when i added some nutrient and it foamed over. when i added the water my brix/balling reading dropped about 5 points. should i take 5 from the 1/3rd sugar break or use the original numbers?

jayich
04-07-2010, 01:44 AM
As a beer brewer, I have always oxygenated the wort immediately after pitching the yeast and then keeping my carboys sealed from air to hopefully prevent off flavors from oxygenation. Why do meadmakers on this site recommend aeration through 2/3 sugar break for meads. The few meads I have made so far, I have only oxygenated once after pitching the yeast. Could I expect better results by aerating daily up to 2/3 sugar break- even though I used pure O2 at pitching? Thanks,
Jayich

Medsen Fey
04-07-2010, 09:51 AM
should i take 5 from the 1/3rd sugar break or use the original numbers?

It really won't make a big difference, but do be aware that your 1/3 sugar break will be 1/3 of the total drop in gravity you expect. You're not going to go more than about 130 points, so your 1/3 point would be about 43 points below your starting gravity or about 1.120.

Now, as I said before, 8 pounds in 2.5 gallons does not produce a gravity of 1.164 so there is something in error here. Either you used more honey, or the volume is not correct, or you took a sample that was not mixed well. What is your current gravity reading (degassed)?


..., I have always oxygenated the wort immediately after pitching the yeast and then keeping my carboys sealed from air to hopefully prevent off flavors from oxygenation. Why do meadmakers on this site recommend aeration through 2/3 sugar break for meads. ... Could I expect better results by aerating daily up to 2/3 sugar break?

Most folks advise aeration up to the 1/3 fermentation point not the 2/3 fermentation point (except in some rare instances). You can even limit the aeration to the first couple of days and probably get the full benefit of aeration. An aqueous solution saturated with O2 contains about 4.5 times as much oxygen as a must saturated with air, so oxygenating to saturation might be equivalent to aerating 4 times. Oxygen is toxic to all living cells at high concentration and sustained high concentrations may have negative impact on yeast lifespan. There is some discussion about this in a recent thread on pure oxygen (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthread.php?t=15808). If you want to do something interesting, set up two identical batches and run a comparison of oxygenating versus aeration.

In the meantime, we probably shouldn't divert Pedar's thread off topic, and should start a new thread if you want to discuss it further. Thanks.

Medsen

jayich
04-07-2010, 03:03 PM
Thanks. I'll check out the oxygen thread.