View Full Version : i have a little problem...need some help please

01-26-2011, 03:03 PM
I made four different batches of mead yesterday and one out of the four is not fermenting yet. it has been close to 24 hours since i pitched the yeast and nothing in the airlock. What i did was rehydrate 8 grams of d47 yeast in go ferm per the sticky notes instructions, i mixed it in about 10 oz of tap water. i used the yeast from the 8 gram packet for two one gallon jugs of joes orange and a 5 gallon carboy of traditional mead. i poured about 30% of the yeast into two one gallon batches of joes, and the remaining 70% into my 5 gallon carboy. my two one gallon carboys of joes are bubbling away nicely, but there is no activity in the 5 gallon batch. there is a bubbly foam on the top of my 3 fermenting batches and none on my non fermenting batch (i take it that is normal). i think i did everything right i also mixed up a 6 gallon batch earlier in the day with 71b and that mead has started bubbling away too, i don't know what is the 5 gallon carboy's problem. ialso gave it a goos shake about 4 hours ago to see if that would get things goin.

recipe is basic
5 gallon carboy

17.5 lbs of natural clover/wildflower honey

yeast d47

fermaid k and dap about an hour after pitch

original gravity 1.132

target gravity 1.006

why is there no activity in my 5 gallon carboy

i read on here that sometimes it takes a while to kick off the fermentation, but how long is too long when should i be worried

did i pour to much yeast into the joes leaving too little to ferment my 5 gallons.

can i pitch more yeast and if so how soon should i do it

thanks for the help

Chevette Girl
01-26-2011, 04:07 PM
If I'm reading you correctly, you pitched 70% of one packet of rehydrated D47 into a 5-gal batch? Typically, those packets are designed for a 5-gallon batch so it may take a day or two for the remaining yeast you pitched to multiply enough to make up the difference and start fermenting.

Perhaps next time if you want to make your yeast go farther, I'd suggest using a starter, rehydrate the yeast as per directions, then add an equal amount of must, then keep doubling its volume by adding more must every couple of hours till you've got lots of nice healthy yeasties.

24-48 hours isn't unheard of for a lag time, even when a full packet has been pitched into a 5-gal batch. Generally 24 hours is when I start thinking about re-pitching or trying again with a starter. In this case though, you already know the yeast is good because it's working in the two other batches, so if it were my batch I'd probably give it up to 48 hours. Yes, you certainly can pitch more yeast, although if you're going to re-pitch, I'd suggest a whole packet of the same type of yeast you were already using.

And the airlock isn't a very good indication of what's going on, try giving the carboy a bit of a swirl every few hours and see if you can see any bubbles forming?

Also, as an aside, if you used the D-47 on two batches of Joe's Ancient Orange, it voids the warranty... they won't turn out like Joe's Ancient Orange made with bread yeast, they will probably ferment out too dry. Using bread yeast is the main thing that makes JAO what it is. Not that you're the first to do so, but the results are nowhere near as predictable.

01-26-2011, 04:09 PM
why is there no activity in my 5 http://www.gotmead.com/forum/images/misc/vbglossarlink.gif (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/vbglossar.php?do=showentry&item=gallon) gallon (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/vbglossar.php?do=showentry&item=gallon) http://www.gotmead.com/forum/images/misc/vbglossarlink.gif (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/vbglossar.php?do=showentry&item=carboy) carboy (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/vbglossar.php?do=showentry&item=carboy)

i read on here that sometimes it takes a while to kick off the http://www.gotmead.com/forum/images/misc/vbglossarlink.gif (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/vbglossar.php?do=showentry&item=fermentation) fermentation (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/vbglossar.php?do=showentry&item=fermentation), but how long is too long when should i be worried

did i pour to much yeast into the joes leaving too little to ferment my 5 gallons.

can i pitch more yeast and if so how soon should i do it

thanks for the help
A million and one reasons....

The obvious one being "lag phase" i.e. that the yeast is doing it's best to multiply the colony up to a level where it will show signs of fermentation.

If it was all from the same rehydration and the smaller batches are going well, then that suggests it's not dead.

So it might be prudent to give it a stir to aerate it some more as yeast in the earlier stages need oxygen etc. I'm thinking that it'll pick up.

It's easy to think that because a standard sized home brew pack is enough for up to 5 gallons, then you can split it up and spread it about a bit.

I believe that this is a false economy. As the packs are cheap, little is saved splitting it this way. I would have been easier/less hassle to use a pack for each batch.

How long to wait ? Well I've had one batch of wine (not mead) that for reasons I won't bore you with, took 3 weeks to kick off, though I suspect that if it's not playing within a week (might still be fermenting, but check for signs of bubbling i.e. vvv small bubbles on the surface of the must), then treat it as just a must again and rehydrate another pack of the same yeast and pitch that.....



01-26-2011, 04:09 PM
What temperature are you fermenting at? I've had something similar happen before, and the only thing I could come up with was the must was too cool for fermentation to start.

01-26-2011, 04:31 PM
The protracted lag phase could be due to a combination of high starting gravity and low pitch rate.

01-26-2011, 05:00 PM
i will mix it up every few hours and give it another day before i pitch again and i do have some more d47. the only reason i split up my yeast is because i see alot of the packets only hold 5 grams and the packet i used is an 8 gram pack, i fugered it would go farther but i guess that was not the case.

i am fermenting all of my caboys in a closet at about 68 degrees

thanks for the advice, hopefully these tips will work