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calicojack
11-07-2010, 02:11 PM
so i did my first two batches today. used warm water throughout. it's been about two hours and i'm not seeing ANY bubbles in the airlocks.

is this normal? or do i need to scratch and start over?

YogiBearMead726
11-07-2010, 02:40 PM
Hey, welcome to GotMead!

Cool your jets there calico! It's only been two hours, and sometimes the lag time for the yeast to start showing visible activity is 24-48 hours. Just be patient. If you're already impatient waiting for it to start, I doubt you'll be able to let the mead age for very long. :p If after 48 hours, there is still no activity, then, you might have a problem. If so, you'll need to post your full recipe and process so that the members here can diagnose what could be the problem. :)

calicojack
11-07-2010, 02:42 PM
copy that. will post back in 48 hours

Shadar Aman
11-07-2010, 05:27 PM
Also be aware that a ferment can be going without any bubbles appearing in the airlock. The only reliable measure of fermentation is readings taken with a hydrometer.

calicojack
11-07-2010, 07:15 PM
http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash2/hs478.ash2/75136_491767186420_561781420_7490807_6711502_n.jpg
http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash2/hs488.ash2/76145_491767246420_561781420_7490808_7201714_n.jpg
http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc4/hs989.snc4/76220_491767266420_561781420_7490809_2399034_n.jpg

huntfishtrap
11-07-2010, 07:29 PM
My mouth is watering!

calicojack
11-08-2010, 04:01 PM
quick update:
Day 2 pics of the southern reserve pecan. a very thick top layer.
http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc4/hs918.snc4/73142_492314386420_561781420_7500149_7593494_n.jpg
http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc4/hs1139.snc4/148129_492314421420_561781420_7500150_1949363_n.jp g
http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc4/hs1158.snc4/150082_492314461420_561781420_7500151_2598031_n.jp g

calicojack
11-08-2010, 07:38 PM
so i came home from my meeting just now. apparently the yeast has kicked in. my gallon jug is now full and flowing INTO my airlock. how do i get it down? pour some of it out? pictures up in a min!

http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc4/hs1121.snc4/148329_492424716420_561781420_7502416_1841531_n.jp g

wayneb
11-08-2010, 08:08 PM
Actually, I'd say that it is going TOO right! ;D

Seriously, the best way to limit this kind of Mead Eruption Accident (MEA) is to transfer the must to a larger container for primary fermentation, and rack the mead over to your carboy only when the fermentation has settled down. You'll see if you read over many of the senior members' postings that we often ferment in a relatively open-topped container (like a food grade bucket) with only a towel that has been rinsed in sanitizer and then wrung out as a cover. During the early part of primary fermentation especially, the yeast are producing so much CO2 that stuff like what you're seeing can often happen in a narrow necked container.

You could alternately pour off some of the must into another gallon jug, and allow primary fermentation to happen in two half-full jugs. That will also provide enough headspace to keep the cap from pushing out of your airlocks, like it is doing in your single jug.

You could also just pour out about a third of the must and let the rest ferment in the gallon, but you won't be left with much mead once that is done so that wouldn't be my first choice of how to handle the problem.

BTW - clean the airlock thoroughly and re-sanitize it before you use it again.

YogiBearMead726
11-08-2010, 08:11 PM
First off, I don't want to discourage you from posting, but you shouldn't really start a new thread for every problem with a single batch. If you post all your concerns in a single thread, it'll help people see all the details. I believe this is the third thread you've started for this batch. Try to keep posting in a single thread, otherwise, it's just confusing.

That said, yes, you should pour some liquid off into a sanitized container, and maybe remove some of that powdered cinnamon you have. It's the likely culprit. It has likely formed a literal cake that is seriously impeading the CO2 from leaving solution, thus the pressure is forcing the cap of cinnamon up and out of the airlock. This was why I recommended using whole cinnamon sticks in one of the other threads you have on this batch (again, this would make more sense to others reading if it was all in one thread...)

Edit: wayneb has some better points about this, I just can't seem to post quickly/thoroughly enough. But that's part of what makes this site so great! Plenty of peer review :p

calicojack
11-08-2010, 08:28 PM
Sorry for the multiple posts. If you or a mod can merge the topics please do so.

I'm going to use wayne's suggestion of transfering to a food grade bucket, as I have a lot of those sitting at the house atm.

Question on that. How long do I want to wait before transfering it back to the jug?

huntfishtrap
11-08-2010, 10:20 PM
When fermentation is pretty much over, there is much less CO2 being produced. It's this bubbling that is causing your foam. So foam will be less of a problem. I go by my hydometer readings. Also, less CO2 production could leave your mead in contact with the air. So I move to a carboy that I have shot CO2 into to displace the air. Then there is usually a little CO2 that will come out of solution and keep air out until you can get it airlocked. So I would go with the bucket also.

Good Luck

Paul

YogiBearMead726
11-08-2010, 10:37 PM
Also, don't worry about the multiple posts. Just something for future reference :)

calicojack
11-08-2010, 11:01 PM
if we can. delete this thread and the other something went wrong thread. i've condensed questions and answers into my brew log (mostly for my personal reference)

eta:
http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc4/hs1136.snc4/149847_492507036420_561781420_7504103_6016505_n.jp g

fatbloke
11-09-2010, 04:26 PM
looks like your patience has been rewarded eh!

Gotta be good stuff goin' on inside those :cool:

regards

fatbloke

wayneb
11-10-2010, 01:49 PM
Calicojack, instead of deleting the two threads that you've started, I've merged both the "things went wrong" themes into one thread. There's plenty of good information in here applicable to other new meadmakers, so I didn't think that deleting the threads outright was needed. Besides, I like your pics! ;)

calicojack
11-10-2010, 03:54 PM
Calicojack, instead of deleting the two threads that you've started, I've merged both the "things went wrong" themes into one thread. There's plenty of good information in here applicable to other new meadmakers, so I didn't think that deleting the threads outright was needed. Besides, I like your pics! ;)

right on. thanks for that.

a new question:
the cinnamon is definitely impeding the air release. what's the best way to skim off the floating layer of goo? or do i just need to scratch and start over?

wayneb
11-10-2010, 04:01 PM
If that is the batch you currently have in the bucket, you can remove the cinnamon "cap" fairly easily by using a sanitized kitchen spoon (metal or plastic rather than wood) to skim off some of the cinnamon encrusted surface foam..

Chevette Girl
11-10-2010, 05:45 PM
Or just make sure you stir it a bunch of times each day till the fermentation dies down...

calicojack
11-12-2010, 05:59 PM
so today i finally got around to sterilizing my 2 gallon bucket, airlock, stopper, spoon, and whipper doober.

i skimmed the cinnamon cap off. it was like goo. After that I transferred the remaining liquid to the new bucket, whipped the mess out of it, and capped it.

As I posted above I had covered it with a sterilized towel on monday (so 5 days ago). This batch has been fermenting in one way or another since sunday (total of 6 days).

When I put the top/airlock on the top of the bucket, nothing is happening in the air lock. also when i press down on parts of the cap the air lock fluctuates.

sooooo here's a quick video. thoughts?
eta: apparently you can't embed video on this board. see below.

In case that doesn't work here's the link to the video on youtube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=voM5fzb84nY)

faerielady
11-12-2010, 07:48 PM
When I put the top/airlock on the top of the bucket, nothing is happening in the air lock. also when i press down on parts of the cap the air lock fluctuates.

Nice video :) Um, personally, my 3 gallon buckets do the same thing (fluctuates) when I press down on the lid. However, they also bubble, which means it does seal at least enough for there to be buildup.

Also, it may take a while before there are bubbles in the airlock. It took 2 1/2 days to get bubbles in the airlock when I re-started the stuck dark mead (WayneB's directions... halfway through day 3, the airlock started chugging). So, patience is needed, I think. :)

calicojack
11-12-2010, 09:10 PM
http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc4/hs1141.snc4/148327_495014341420_561781420_7528432_5467028_n.jp g
http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc4/hs1181.snc4/150361_495014401420_561781420_7528435_5337650_n.jp g
http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc4/hs973.snc4/76678_495014481420_561781420_7528437_1595824_n.jpg

calicojack
11-13-2010, 03:12 PM
so this morning i sloshed it around. it's the seal. going to check the same lid on another bucket and see what the seal looks like. might have to ruin another lid.

akueck
11-13-2010, 04:33 PM
Don't sweat the bucket seal for a primary fermentation. Oxidation is not a problem when CO2 is pouring out of the must. Most buckets leak a little, with no ill effects.

calicojack
11-15-2010, 04:46 PM
so in the three above pictures what am i looking at as far as alcohol content?

AToE
11-15-2010, 05:15 PM
so in the three above pictures what am i looking at as far as alcohol content?

Depends how far it ferments. You won't know for sure until you have a final SG when it's done.