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soatman
04-06-2012, 11:52 AM
Water 12 Gallons
Honey 30 Pounds
Sugar 34 Pounds
Raisins 1 Pounds
Molasses 24 Ounces
Yeast 5 Packets

Is my recipe.
SSG 1.150
FSG 1.055

I feed with a super ferment and it has fermented about 2 months now and it is done only got about a 12% was trying for about 18% So a little sweet but that is ok. My problem is smell sulfur. I have read about the copper but a little concerned about that.

If it dose work will a few pennies in the batch for a few days work. I made this for some one else and they want to pick it up on Monday but the smell.

Can adding to much nutriance cause this. I did feed a lot due to slow fermenting and not get the desired alcohol percent.

I have had others with the smell but this one is a lot worst then any others, as the other did loss the smell over time with filtering and degassing.

I have also filtered the must through a filter system I have as well has helped remove the smell in the others.

Any and all help is welcome and thank you very much!

HunnyBunz
04-06-2012, 02:19 PM
Hi soatman. I see that this is your first post, so welcome to the forum.

Your batch had a really high starting gravity. Increasing the amount of yeast you pitch can help with that, but more is needed because that's going to be a very stressful environment no matter what. In a high gravity must, using some type of re-hydrating nutrient as well as making an acclimated starter is highly recommended, and if you did not do those things I would be surprised that you got the yeast going at all.
An even better solution if you want a high ABV is to start with a lower gravity - say around the 1.120 - 1.130 mark, then step feed by adding more sugars during fermentation. That way the yeast is not stressed right off the bat.

That's my 2 cents anyway. Someone with more experience than I have can help you with what you should do at this point. :)

akueck
04-06-2012, 02:39 PM
Yes, you can get the sulfur smell if you add a lot of nutrients up front and get a fast-moving fermentation going, only for it to slow down later and start to stink. We usually find it better to stretch out the nutrient additions into several over the course of fermentation. Adding nutrients when it starts to stink often clears it up, but your are chasing a moving target at that point.

That is a really high starting gravity. It's not uncommon for yeast to fall short of their "listed alcohol tolerance" when operating under severe conditions. You might find it easier to start at a lower gravity and backsweeten as necessary. Step-feeding is also an option if you're just going for alcohol punch.

soatman
04-06-2012, 05:50 PM
I was thinking of the sugar stepping not starting with so high of a gravity then add in steps as well so that is an option, good.

The nutrient i was adding it every week about 4 ounces each feeding, is that to often?

I used the EC1118 yeast. It cooked for about a month then stopped altogether, I even try restarting with more yeast and no luck.

HunnyBunz what do you mean by making an acclimated starter?

Any suggestions for getting some of the sulfur smell out of it?

Thanks!

skunkboy
04-06-2012, 06:51 PM
I think one of the classic "winery" solutions is copper, but I'm not very qualified to speak on that.

http://nanaimowinemakers.org/Steps/H2S_Issues.htm : Section 5

HunnyBunz
04-06-2012, 06:58 PM
You can make an acclimated starter by re-hydrating the yeast according to instructions, and I really recommend using Go-Ferm or another re-hydration nutrient. Then add enough of the must to double the volume of the starter and wait until you see some activity, then double the volume again with more must, wait for activity, then double it once or even twice more. When you see activity after the last addition then pitch the whole thing. That way the yeast gradually gets used to the high sugar content before being pitched.

In your case re-pitching more yeast didn't work because now you have about 12% alcohol which is also too stressful and toxic for the yeast just starting out in.
The sulfur smell is likely from the yeast being too stressed. I have also heard about using copper to diminish sulfur smells but I have no experience with that.

Sadie Lady
04-06-2012, 07:10 PM
Here's a link from a post http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthread.php?t=19446&highlight=Pennies.

Not sure if I copied that right or not.

If that doesn't work the post title started. Batch smells like fart

Lots of info about pennies in it. I think I read somewhere that you don't want to add them till fermentation is over. I could be totally wrong on that

HunnyBunz
04-06-2012, 08:38 PM
One more thought about nutrient additions:

You said that you added 4 oz each week (for 4 weeks?) What brand of nutrient did you use? Different manufacturers have different recommendations, but it seems like a total of 4 oz for the whole 12 gallons would be way more than enough. For standard energizers like Fermaid K and inorganic nitrogen nutrient like DAP a dosage of 1/2 to 1 teaspoon per gallon is usually the recommended amount - and that should not be added all at once, but split into 3 or 4 doses until about the 1/3 sugar break.

There are about 6 tsp. in an ounce so that means that each week you put in double the total amount for the whole batch. And again, I don't know what you were using, but 3 or 4 additions of 4 oz seems like too much, which would contribute to the stress on the yeast.

You might do a thread search on Staggered Nutrient Additions, and I also recommend reading through the newbee guide in the yellow box on the left if you have not already done so. That will help to answer a lot of your questions.

TAKeyser
04-06-2012, 08:43 PM
The nutrient i was adding it every week about 4 ounces each feeding, is that to often?

that's a lot as you'll usually see it measured in grams in recipes

Typically for a 5 gallon batch I'll stagger 4 grams of Fermaid K (yeast energizer) and probably 6 to 8 grams DAP (Yeast Nutrient)

akueck
04-06-2012, 09:09 PM
The amount of nutrient is important, but so is the timing. And by "time", here we don't mean clock time. Adding something once a week might work for one mead, and not another. What you want to do is measure the specific gravity periodically (and in the beginning, this might be once or more per day) and make your nutrient additions based on how far along the fermentation is, regardless of how many hours or days it's been. If you wait too long to add nutrients, then dump a truckload in, your yeast will still go stinky on you.

Medsen Fey
04-13-2012, 09:58 PM
Which yeast were you using?

At this point, you may want to test a sample with some shiny copper. Try a glass and stir it with a copper wire to see if the stink goes away. If it does, treating with copper may help. Unfortunately, after a few months, H2S and Mercaptans can convert into disulfides which are also stinky, and which do not bind with copper. You can convert some of them back to the mercaptan form (which will bind with copper) using ascorbic acid (vitamin C) using about .25 g/L. You may have to let it sit for a few days and then treat with copper again.

Blending a stinky batch in with an actively fermenting batch can eliminate odors, but there can be heavy sulfur compounds that none of these techniques will remove.

As a last ditch, there's filtering with activated charcoal which will strip aroma and flavor as well as sulfur, but may leave you with something drinkable.

However, even with all that, some batches wind up being fit only for drain cleaner.

Endeavor to persevere!
Medsen

Bob J
04-16-2012, 09:09 AM
I can vouch for the pennies though in my case it was a situation where I accidentally significantly overdosed a gallon of my wine with campden..... Tasted awful..... A couple of well cleaned pre 1980 pennies fixed it nicely.... Not sure how it works as I expected to see a residue on the pennies when I removed them but they were as bright and shiny as when I put them in.... I did have a small amount of dark lees in the bottom so guess that is where the bound up sulfur went.... Not sure how this trick would work in a case of yeast stress but might be worth a try....

Also I assume you have already racked off the lees..... If the sulfur is coming from the stressed yeast you probably want to get your mead away from the lees as soon as possible...

mkshfr
04-22-2012, 07:55 PM
You may want to pour a couple gallons into 1 gallon carboys and try getting the smell out of a smaller batch. When you find what works for you ramp it up and introduce it to your larger batch.

hepcat
05-18-2012, 11:26 AM
I can vouch for the pennies though in my case it was a situation where I accidentally significantly overdosed a gallon of my wine with campden..... Tasted awful..... A couple of well cleaned pre 1980 pennies fixed it nicely.... Not sure how it works as I expected to see a residue on the pennies when I removed them but they were as bright and shiny as when I put them in.... I did have a small amount of dark lees in the bottom so guess that is where the bound up sulfur went.... Not sure how this trick would work in a case of yeast stress but might be worth a try....

Also I assume you have already racked off the lees..... If the sulfur is coming from the stressed yeast you probably want to get your mead away from the lees as soon as possible...

Hmmm, I may have to try this(pennies). I made some grape pyment 5-4-2012 from Joe's recipe but I used wildflower and avocado honeys instead of clover and buckwheat the recipe called for. I scaled it up for two gallon batch. The last time I looked at the must was about 2 weeks ago, have let it sit and ferment until I racked into my bottling bucket last night. And it smelled like rotten eggs.>:(

I did add 1/4t yeast energizer about 12 hours after I pitched the yeast, that's the only nutrient addition I've made. I used a swamp cooler and have kept it between 65*-70*F, and it was a vigorous, fast fermentation (SG was 1.004 last night when racked) which is I thought, typical for EC-1118. I aerated it a few times during the first three days then pretty much have left it alone until I racked it last night.

So I didn't over-feed it and kept the temp in ideal ferm range for EC-1118. I did have a high SG: ~1.119, but vigorous fermentation was on ~12 hours after pitching the yeast (and shortly after adding 1/4t energizer).

Why does it have sulfur smell???

Chevette Girl
05-18-2012, 11:59 AM
I did add 1/4t yeast energizer about 12 hours after I pitched the yeast, that's the only nutrient addition I've made. I used a swamp cooler and have kept it between 65*-70*F, and it was a vigorous, fast fermentation (SG was 1.004 last night when racked) which is I thought, typical for EC-1118. I aerated it a few times during the first three days then pretty much have left it alone until I racked it last night.

So I didn't over-feed it and kept the temp in ideal ferm range for EC-1118. I did have a high SG: ~1.119, but vigorous fermentation was on ~12 hours after pitching the yeast (and shortly after adding 1/4t energizer).

Why does it have sulfur smell???

You may well have underfed it, that's about half the recommended dose for grape wines on the package for the energizer I use and folks around here regularly double that for meads, although I've not known EC-1118 to get stinky very often no matter how badly I abuse it. Do take this with a grain of salt though, as I haven't tried that recipe myself.

The pennies may well work, although if you haven't racked it lately, try a good splashy racking, that might blow off some of the stink.

Medsen Fey
05-18-2012, 01:30 PM
EC-1118 will get stinky when under-fed.

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