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torahanjyuu
01-07-2011, 06:47 PM
I have just finished reading The Compleat Meadmaker by Ken Schramm, and now have a head so full of facts and figures, I can't hold much else in! :) The book has been extremely informative, but it's left me with a couple of questions.

The author suggests one way of making melomel is to place the fruit inside of a hops bag during fermentation -- this allows you to remove the fruit easily, even if you aren't done with your primary fermentation. (The author also notes that this is a great way to make metheglin.)

This works great if you're fermenting in a bucket, but what if you have a carboy? How are you supposed to get the fruit out of the itty bitty little neck of a carboy?!? On that note, does a fermenting bucket for a 1 gallon batch even exist?

What I have is a 6-gallon carboy (for primary fermentation), a 5-gallon carboy (for secondary fermentation), and a 5-gallon bottling bucket with a spigot at the bottom. I also have a 1-gallon glass bottle (is that a carboy?) that I'm currently making a cherry elixir in just in case my batch of show mead heads south...

So many questions -- I'm sorry. But feel free to answer just one, or all of them if you know. Thanks!

Chevette Girl
01-07-2011, 07:05 PM
Welcome to the addiction!

There's absolutely no reason not to use your 6-gal fermentation bucket for a 1-gal batch. You actually WANT headspace during primary.

Medsen Fey
01-07-2011, 07:22 PM
You can get 1-gallon plastic buckets (http://www.yankeecontainers.com/PHP/Product1.php?itemnumber=PCI08B6WHHC) (and 1.5 gallon) that work well for a 1-gallon batch if you search around a bit.

And Welcome to GotMead!

torahanjyuu
01-07-2011, 11:00 PM
You can get 1-gallon plastic buckets (http://www.yankeecontainers.com/PHP/Product1.php?itemnumber=PCI08B6WHHC) (and 1.5 gallon) that work well for a 1-gallon batch if you search around a bit.

And Welcome to GotMead!

Thank you for the warm welcomes. :)

I like the look of that small bucket (I have a space constraint because we live in an apartment), but can it be made airtight? My bottling bucket has a rubber seal in the lid and comes pre-drilled with a rubber grommet for an airlock. But does that mean that I can ferment in it? I'm not sure if I can trust the spigot at the bottom to keep in the mead while it's fermenting....

kudapucat
01-07-2011, 11:16 PM
I can tell you that if you have a cloth bag in a carboy with mango or banana or some such in it, that when you remove it, it will press automatically as you pull it through the neck.
This is good, but if you were wanting to rack, you'll have to wait for sediment to drop out again, as it 'murks up' the must a fair bit.

Also: regarding buckets, get a foodsafe pail from your local hardware/homeware store for $5, drill a hole, whack in a grommet and fit an air lock. Easy, and all for well under $10. - That is if prices where you are are like they are here.

Chevette Girl
01-07-2011, 11:43 PM
My bottling bucket has a rubber seal in the lid and comes pre-drilled with a rubber grommet for an airlock. But does that mean that I can ferment in it? I'm not sure if I can trust the spigot at the bottom to keep in the mead while it's fermenting....

I got one of those used from a local brew shop who was upgrading to stainless steel vessels, I have fermented in it when I ran out of other fermenting buckets but I did make a small puddle of banana must on the floor the first day because mine has a position where the spigot leaks a little, but if you fill yours with water you can determine whether it's going to be a problem (I'd suggest in the bathtub, just in case :D). I had to put my spigot at an angle to keep it off the floor too but the gasket was nice and watertight.

I typically do my smaller batches in a 3-gal bucket (I get honey buckets from the local bulk food store), leaves lots of room for fruit bags and a little extra must to make up for racking losses, not to mention some headspace for an exhuberant fermentation.

I don't use a fruit bag if I put fruit into a carboy because I'll never get it out again, I wrap a thin layer of cheesecloth over my racking cane's end and siphon off the fruit, then rack it again a day or two later to get rid of any crud that made it through the cheesecloth.

fatbloke
01-08-2011, 07:55 AM
Over here, "they" tend to sell 2 imp gallon/10 litre buckets, which is fine if you're making a 1 gallon batch as you can make up the liquid portion of the must to 1 gallon, still use Kens suggested method of the hop bag and have some air space. They're usually just clip on lids (that can be drilled/punched to take an airlock grommet) and will usually be airtight.

Of course, if you make up the batch to the "correct" size, then steep fruit in it during the actual ferment process (whether in a bag or floating lose), you'll invariably end up with a greater volume of liquid as some of the juice will come out of the fruit, even if you don't squeeze or press it when it's done.

It just depends on the technique you prefer during the actual "making", whether you'd need to top the fermented product up or not.....

regards

fatbloke

p.s. Oh and welcome to Gotmead......

gregoryc
01-08-2011, 10:34 AM
www.store.homebrew4less.com/prodinfo.asp?number=LD5111&variation=
You can get two gallon fermenter pails with grommeted lids at this link.

fatbloke
01-09-2011, 06:29 AM
www.store.homebrew4less.com/prodinfo.asp?number=LD5111&variation= (http://www.store.homebrew4less.com/prodinfo.asp?number=LD5111&variation=)
You can get two gallon fermenter pails with grommeted lids at this link.
Yeah, those are similar to what I was thinking about.....

The ones here, tend to be translucent, rather that solid white in colour and have a graduated gallon/litre scale printed down the side as well, but basically the same thing.......

regards

fatbloke