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chop1620
06-04-2012, 09:54 AM
I made my first batch (1 Gal.) of traditional mead on the 1st of June, The recipe called for half a package of activated yeast (lalvin d47), but i was having trouble dividing it in half (my OCD strikes again), so I used the whole package for a control number. I checked my mead this morning and the airlock is popping about once every 3-6 seconds, and the mead is bubbling gently and slowly. I checked the seal and its tight.

Did I use to much active yeast? Is this a fixable problem? Or is it just going to be a slow fermentation?

Thanks in advance from a newbie,

Chop1620

TAKeyser
06-04-2012, 10:01 AM
I made my first batch (1 Gal.) of traditional mead on the 1st of June, The recipe called for half a package of activated yeast (lalvin d47), but i was having trouble dividing it in half (my OCD strikes again), so I used the whole package for a control number.

Many of us use the whole 5 gram package even for 1 gallon batches. At $1 a pack who wants to measure lol

No you are fine with the whole package.



I checked my mead this morning and the airlock is popping about once every 3-6 seconds, and the mead is bubbling gently and slowly. I checked the seal and its tight.

Did I use to much active yeast? Is this a fixable problem? Or is it just going to be a slow fermentation?

Thanks in advance from a newbie,

Chop1620

I'll tell you now and many will probably also say it, but airlock activity is in no way, shape or form an accurate indicator of how a fermentation is going. For that you need a Hydrometer and Gravity readings.

That being said did you use any nutrients to keep your yeast happy?

Chevette Girl
06-04-2012, 10:07 AM
Hey Chop, welcome to the forum!

Don't worry about using a whole packet for a gallon, it's actually standard procedure. One packet is good for up to 5 gallons though so it's also acceptable to divide it up for small batches, but you don't have to. Only some of us cheapskates ever bother.

And yeah, I will reiterate what TAKeyser said about airlocks. You're going to want to invest in a hydrometer if you want to take your meadmaking seriously and really know what your fermentation is doing. Your fermentation may pick up and froth a little bit for a few days, or it may maintain a steady rate, but either way the yeast is doing its job.

If you read the description of this section, it does request that you post your exact recipe including all ingredients and quantities, it's better for us to try to help you with full information, and we might be able to head off problems early on, before they become problems.

chop1620
06-04-2012, 10:22 AM
awesome thanks for the help. But me being a newbie, this makes a few more questions arise. So to start.

My recipe I used. 1 Gallon of water, 3 lbs honey, 1 tblspn of energizer, 1 tblspn of nutrient, 1 package of lalvin d47, and two measly arms to shake it all together.

my questions, is it ok to take the airlock off during fermentation? and when do you start using the hydrometer, when you rack it? When do i rack it if the airlock is not a valid gauge to go by? is there anything else i can be doing between now and racking (minus starting another batch)

Chop1620

Penguinetti
06-04-2012, 10:28 AM
I'll tell you now and many will probably also say it, but airlock activity is in no way, shape or form an accurate indicator of how a fermentation is going. For that you need a Hydrometer and Gravity readings.

That being said did you use any nutrients to keep your yeast happy?


Hey Chop, welcome to the forum!
And yeah, I will reiterate what TAKeyser said about airlocks. You're going to want to invest in a hydrometer if you want to take your meadmaking seriously and really know what your fermentation is doing. ...


Bienvenidos Chop! I'm just gonna go ahead and jump on the bandwagon with my own anecdote. My first mead did very little bubbling away, and the krausen was small in comparison to others I saw. And by the end the result turned out to be... a beautiful golden package of the good stuff.

Don't let your airlock be your point of worry; grab a hydrometer, take a reading, wait a day or two; then take another reading.

Penguinetti
06-04-2012, 10:32 AM
...my questions, is it ok to take the airlock off during fermentation? and when do you start using the hydrometer, when you rack it? When do i rack it if the airlock is not a valid gauge to go by? is there anything else i can be doing between now and racking (minus starting another batch)

Chop1620

Although I can't answer many questions, I can say to use the hydrometer after you mix the ingredients and before pitching the yeast. This'll be your starting gravity. Then use it to take readings throughout to see how much your gravity has dropped. Once you've taken a couple of readings that stay the same through several days, it's probably time to rack.

I don't know if you've gotten the chance yet, but definitely read the NewBee Guide (it's over in the Site Menu on the left, 5th item down). That will give you a good start.

TAKeyser
06-04-2012, 10:48 AM
Penguinetti hit the nail on the head with suggesting the Newbee Guide. While reading it pay attention to things like the Sugar Breaks, Oxygenation and Nutrient Additions because you'll need the Hydrometer to guide you through these steps.

chop1620
06-04-2012, 11:10 AM
OK, so I am going to buy a hydrometer directly after work today. So Is it ok to undo the rubber stopper/airlock setup during fermentation to take readings or do I have to wait for a certain time to test again?

Chop1620

wayneb
06-04-2012, 11:29 AM
You can remove an airlock periodically during fermentation in order to take specific gravity readings without any problems. In fact some of us don't even airlock a fermenting mead during most of primary fermentation. I typically just cover my fermenter with a sanitized cloth (held in place by a bungee) during the first 2/3 or so of primary. Just be careful to sanitize anything that comes into contact with the mead, and you should be fine.

You might also want to invest in another tool when you pick up that hydrometer. Get a "wine thief," which will allow you to pull samples from the fermenter without disturbing it very much.

chop1620
06-04-2012, 11:34 AM
Thank you to all you chimed in with great info for me. I feel a lot better about what I am doing as a newbie, and feel confident to run another batch of 'the nectar of the gods' and start shedding the newbie label (LOL).

Seriously, thanks for the help and advice

Chop1620

Chevette Girl
06-04-2012, 12:10 PM
Oh, and if you can, get a wine thief that fits in your 1gal carboy, the big one you can put the hydrometer into sometimes won't fit in the mouth of the 1-gal jugs.

And during primary when your must is creating carbon dioxide, you're pretty safe to be taking the airlock off for readings as often as you feel like it (but don't get too OCD about it, twice a day is about as often as you'd ever want to bother, I usually do it once a day for the first third of the fermentation while I'm in there aerating and adding nutrients). It's when you're into secondary and the SG isn't changing that much and the yeast isn't producing much CO2 that you want to start being careful about oxygen exposure, but since the SG isn't changing that much you don't need to check it that often anyway.

Just out of curiosity, where did you get your recipe? 1 tablespoon each of nutrients and energizer seems a bit much for a gallon, although don't worry too much about it, it probably won't affect the taste.

I think the biggest thing to worry about when you're a newbie is not to worry. :) Do the best you can, don't stress out, the yeast knows what it's doing and will probably do a good job despite you and whatever little mistakes you may have made. The only time to be worried about anything is if you've bottled unstabilized young wine with residual sugar. Bottle bombs are really the only thing that warrant true worrying.

Enjoy!

TheAlchemist
06-04-2012, 12:17 PM
I think the biggest thing to worry about when you're a newbie is not to worry. :)
Enjoy!

Yes.
What she said.
Keep calm and carry on.
Lighten up and enjoy the ride!

chop1620
06-04-2012, 01:01 PM
I found the recipe online through a few hours of looking. Would I be ok with a half tblspn of energizer and nutreints? or what would you suggest for a gallon batch.

I also stirred the energizer and nutrients together in 2 cups of water and added them to my honey/water mix and lightly swilled to make consistent. then i added the active yeast to 2 cups of 106 degree water and let sit for 15 minutes. then i joined it with current must, topped off with water, and shook vigorously for 5 minutes. Then I put airlock on and stored it in a 73degree...ish room temp. Did i do this procedure out of order? Or am I in good shape to enjoy some sweet mead next summer.

Chop1620

Chevette Girl
06-04-2012, 01:52 PM
Your yeast rehydration procedure sounds correct :)

When you read the newbee guide (which I highly recommend, the rest of this post will make more sense afterwards, even if it may contradict itself from time to time, we're working on a rewrite), there are some basic recipes in there. Take a look and compare them with what you'd found, you'll notice that we don't recommend anywhere near as much on the nutrients and energizer. My DAP suggests 1 tsp per gal and my energizer 1/4 tsp per gal, but these are sort of negotiable, you use a little less DAP because there's some in the energizer, you use a little more energizer because your energizer was designed for grape musts, which have a lot more of the vitamins and trace elements that yeasties need than honey does.

There's no one good answer, just a whole lot of "this is how I do it" answers when it comes to adding nutrients and energizer, but doing a search on the forum (or just reading a bunch of brewlogs - if you use "traditional" as a search term it should give you mostly brewlogs where they use just honey, not fruit) will give you an idea of how it gets done.

The general outline as I have absorbed it is as follows: You want to add the DAP before the first 1/3 of your fermentation (sugar break, look it up in the glossary), too much DAP (nutrients) right at pitch can hurt the yeast, DAP in your rehydration water can seriously harm them (you didn't put it in your rehydration water, and they seem to be going along fine so don't sweat it, I put mine in at pitch for years before I found this site), so you want to hold off on adding DAP until the yeast have had a while to get used to their new surroundings and start multiplying, and a lot of us break up our DAP and energizer additions into multiple doses, called SNA or staggered nutrient addition. Some folks use a complicated schedule, some people dump it all in right after lag phase is over (when bubbles and foam start forming in the must), most of us are somewhere in between, but we all make drinkable mead, whatever our process happens to be. I have a lazy approach, I put in 1/3 or 1/2 of what I expect to need in total into the must right after lag phase is over, then I mix the remaining amounts of energizer and nutrients in a spare container, and every time I aerate, I sprinkle some in, in amounts that should make my last addition right around the time where the yeast have eaten 1/3 of the sugar I expect them to eat, which coincides with when I stop aerating.

Hope this was more helpful than confusing! :)

chop1620
06-04-2012, 02:21 PM
ok, after reading the newbees guide tons and back tracking through my process to make a recipe, i realized I'm an idiot.......LOL at myself a lot, feel free to join in if you want. I misread my findings and replaced teaspoon with tablespoon. So I am going to run another batch next to my first one (with the correct quantities). Will my first batch turn out ok? What happens if you over energize/nutrient the must?

Chevette Girl
06-04-2012, 09:58 PM
Problem number one, you might be able to taste whatever the yeast don't use. Problem two, anything the yeast leave behind is fair game for other organisms (although probably won't be much of a worry if you stabilize it with sulphites and sorbate when it's done its thing).

Sometimes it can cause the yeast to go bugnutz very early on and then stall out early, you won't know for sure till it's done its thing.

THawk
06-05-2012, 09:29 AM
My recipe I used. 1 Gallon of water, 3 lbs honey, 1 tblspn of energizer, 1 tblspn of nutrient, 1 package of lalvin d47, and two measly arms to shake it all together.

Isn't 1 tablespoon each of energizer and nutrient for a gallon a bit much?

Also how warm is it in Colorado this time of year? D47 isn't exactly the most temperature tolerant yeast in the world...

chop1620
06-05-2012, 09:30 AM
today, the first batch is doing not so well, it is no longer even producing bubbles, it has a weird cloudy look to it, and the hydrometer doesn't even float when i try to test the mead. First timers luck for me.

My second batch i started yesterday, and using the right measurements..lol..its off to a good start. How soon should one start using the hydrometer to test the mead?

Chop1620

Also to THawk, My mead is in a almost constant 75 degrees give or take a couple degrees.

Soyala_Amaya
06-05-2012, 09:42 AM
the hydrometer doesn't even float when i try to test the mead.

What exactly do you mean by this? Your hydrometer is hitting the bottom of your container? Then you either don't have enough sample in your tube, or must in your bucket for the size of hydrometer you have and the SG you're at. Your hydrometer will ALWAYS float somewhat, but the SG may be well below the 1.000 line, unless your hydrometer is broken. However, your mead might just be done. Make sure you have a high enough level to completely cover the hydrometer, not have it touch the bottom.

TAKeyser
06-05-2012, 09:47 AM
Also to THawk, My mead is in a almost constant 75 degrees give or take a couple degrees.

D-47 is best when it can ferment below 70 degrees, above that it can produce some off flavours (I spelled it wrong for you Canadians and Englishmen) and aromas.

chop1620
06-05-2012, 09:47 AM
yes. my hydrometer hits the bottom of the tube. even with the tube full to the top. My mead isnt done. Its only been five days. My mead should be roaring, but it slowed to stagnant nothing. I used to much energizer and nutrients

Chop1620

chop1620
06-05-2012, 09:48 AM
so what would be a good yeast to use at my temps?

Soyala_Amaya
06-05-2012, 09:52 AM
The amount of time means nothing. I've seen one or two ferments that finished in just a day or two. And warmer temperatures do usually mean faster ferments. Also, the nutrients would have nothing to do with the sg. However, your hydrometer being completely submerged does sound odd to me. That shouldn't happen. I am concerned your hydrometer has an issue. However, if there is any hydrometer still sticking out of the sample but still hitting the bottom...you don't have a long enough tube.

TAKeyser
06-05-2012, 09:55 AM
so what would be a good yeast to use at my temps?

From my experience K1V-1116 and EC-1118 both are fairly heat tolerant. Clos is really good for higher temps. D-21 isn't a bad yeast. 71B and RC212 should be OK but you have to watch both yeasts closely, 71B can not sit on the lees for too long and RC212 needs lots of nutrients.

chop1620
06-05-2012, 10:09 AM
[QUOTE=Soyala_Amaya;192839]The amount of time means nothing. I've seen one or two ferments that finished in just a day or two. And warmer temperatures do usually mean faster ferments.

I will take a pic of the mead and post it in a few hours. I think it looks weird, but i dont know left from right in terms of making mead yet.

Chop1620

Chevette Girl
06-05-2012, 11:11 AM
D-47 is best when it can ferment below 70 degrees, above that it can produce some off flavours (I spelled it wrong for you Canadians and Englishmen) and aromas.

Aww, you're so considerate :)

I think one of the better ones for higher temperature ferments is K1V-1116, check out posts by Medsen Fey to confirm.



My second batch i started yesterday, and using the right measurements..lol..its off to a good start. How soon should one start using the hydrometer to test the mead?


Fill your test tube with room-temperature water and plunk the hydrometer in, see if it says 1.000 or therebouts, if it doesn't, then your hydrometer is broken or miscalibrated.

You should get an initial reading right before you pitch the yeast, then you can know for sure where your fermentation started and you'll also be able to calculate how much alcohol's in your finished mead.

chop1620
06-05-2012, 11:21 AM
ok, so i didnt take a reading before i pitched my yeast yesterday :(. Will i hurt anything if i take a reading today. (i realize my base number might be a little off, but i am learning i need a base control number).

also i will run a calibration test on my hydrometer to see if its working properly

Chop1620

wayneb
06-05-2012, 11:30 AM
Well some fermentation will have occurred, so your reading will be lower than it would have been before yeast pitch by some indeterminate amount, but getting a number now is better than having no measurements at all.

The other thing you can do to estimate initial gravity is to calculate it based on measurements of the honey and water you used. If you were very careful to measure both quantities before mixing, you can figure out what your starting gravity must have been.

chop1620
06-05-2012, 11:33 AM
thanks for the help. I will post all that info you just mentioned when I get it in a few hours. and hopefully get some help back working the numbers

chop1620
06-05-2012, 01:50 PM
ok, first off. Im trying to back track my s.g. I used one gallon of water, and 3 lbs of honey. I put the stopper/airlock on 6/4/12 at 5:00 pm. I tested my mead with the hydrometer 6/5/12 at 11:40 am, and got a reading of 1.090.

My next question involves my first batch. I tested it with the hydrometer after trying the meter on water (1.000), and my second batch of mead (1.090). When I test my first batch, the meter rests on the bottom of the tube. Is my first batch done for??

wayneb
06-05-2012, 01:58 PM
Based on calculating your SG from amounts of ingredients:

If you used 3 lbs of honey and a full gallon of water, your starting SG would have been 1.085 or so.

If you used 3 lbs of honey and added water to make one US gallon total, then your starting gravity would be around 1.105. Given your current measurement, I'm guessing that either this is what you did, or your 3 lbs of honey had more than 3 lbs in the container.

Regarding your first batch, you need a bigger (taller) tube. There's nothing wrong with it, other than that it may be so dry that the hydrometer is bottoming out in the liquid column before it gets to its neutral bouyancy point (i.e. where it floats), which can happen if the SG is low enough and your liquid tube isn't tall enough.

Chevette Girl
06-05-2012, 02:02 PM
ok, first off. Im trying to back track my s.g. I used one gallon of water, and 3 lbs of honey. I put the stopper/airlock on 6/4/12 at 5:00 pm. I tested my mead with the hydrometer 6/5/12 at 11:40 am, and got a reading of 1.090.

My next question involves my first batch. I tested it with the hydrometer after trying the meter on water (1.000), and my second batch of mead (1.090). When I test my first batch, the meter rests on the bottom of the tube. Is my first batch done for??

Well, if your hydrometer is giving you sensible readings for your other must and for water, then your fermentation's probably all done. Have you tasted it yet? If you can still taste sugar then there's something weird going on, but if it tastes like dry mead, dry wine, rubbing alcohol, unsweetened paint thinner or some combination thereof, then you had a really quick fermentation, probably due to all the overdosing of nutrients... What's the topmost reading on your hydrometer, or at least the level that it drops to, or is it completely submerged in the test tube?

chop1620
06-05-2012, 02:05 PM
thanks wayneb. I used 3lbs of honey, and filtered water until there was about 1/2" of headspace. so almost a full gallon.

as for my first batch. does this mean that its still fermenting even though it looks super stagnant, and no bubble movement. Is it going to take like ten years to clear up? my hydrometer completely submerges. and topmost reading on it is .990, and going to give a taste test now

Chop1620

chop1620
06-05-2012, 02:11 PM
so, after the taste test on the first batch.....It tastes like a dry wine with a little hard alcohol bite at the end. What is the next step for this batch, i was expecting a couple weeks of research and reading before i had to do something next.

Chevette Girl
06-05-2012, 02:31 PM
Bwahaahaa, expecting a mead to keep to YOUR schedule? :)

So yep, you've confirmed that it's done. See, this is exactly why we say you can't trust your airlock as a measure of how well your fermentation's going ;D This one went really quickly without making any fuss!

You can safely leave it for a few days or even a week, but the next step is to rack it off the yeast and sediment that are probably dropping out as we speak.

You'll want to siphon it into a sanitized carboy, and this time you want to make sure you don't have much headspace. Then airlock it and forget about it (except for checking the liquid level in the airlock) until it's nice and clear, then you can rack it again, then you can bottle it. Unless you decide you want it sweetened up a little, in which case, you'll want to stabilize it and add a little more honey, and the sooner you do that part, the sooner it should clear. In theory.

Soyala_Amaya
06-05-2012, 02:36 PM
Your fermentation is done, you had a SUPER fast ferment due to the over dose of nutrient in the beginning. It happens sometimes, yeast are living things that we can't perfectly control.

As for what to do, it will be perfectly fine to wait a couple weeks and leave it alone. I usually wait at least a week after primary ferment is over before I rack it, just to give the gross lees (the bigger, chunkier stuff that settles the fastest) more time to settle.

So my advice at this point is put the airlock on it, and ignore it while you do more research. In a week or two you can rack it to a new container. And yes, unless you have some weird proteins (does happen, but is rare) it should clear just fine with time.

chop1620
06-05-2012, 02:45 PM
ok so i kinda put my yeast on steriods?, if i add honey when i rack it, do i need to shake it all together again, or just add it in. also, do i just use water to fill up the rest of the head space when racking?

Chevette Girl
06-05-2012, 03:02 PM
ok so i kinda put my yeast on steriods?, if i add honey when i rack it, do i need to shake it all together again, or just add it in. also, do i just use water to fill up the rest of the head space when racking?

Yeast on steriods is a pretty apt description.

If you add honey, your fermentation will probably kick back up again. Gently stirring it at this point would be preferable to shaking it (at this point you want to avoid oxygen), although if you just blop some in, it'll eventually dissolve and the yeast will eat it. I like to take out some must and mix it with the honey, makes it mix into the batch a lot easier if it's already been diluted. If you want it to stay sweet, you'll need to stabilize it with potassium metabisulphite and potassium sorbate or else the yeast will just keep on eating it until they've reached their capacity.

You can use water to top it up. The best way is to use boiled and cooled water from the kettle, that way it won't have much dissolved oxygen in it. I sometimes use apple juice or leftover wine.

chop1620
06-05-2012, 03:24 PM
ok last question for now, (i hope). do i need to stabilize my batch if im just going to top off with water, and it looks like i might need a couple cups of water. am i gonna dilute my mead to much, what will this affect?? should i make up some of the space with honey and stabilizer to cut down on water??

Chevette Girl
06-05-2012, 03:59 PM
If you're not looking for something that finishes sweeter right now, you can top it up with honey and water and the honey will probably ferment out again. It'll just take a little longer, is all. Although the way your yeast tore through the original amount, it might not take long at all!

chop1620
06-05-2012, 04:16 PM
awesome, thanks for all the knowledge and input everyone. Thanks for not discouraging me and making feel like giving up. Here's to you all in your mead making endeavors. I can't wait to make tons and tons of meads.

chop1620
06-05-2012, 07:23 PM
OK, so i racked my first batch, and threw in a campden tablet. tomorrow I'm going to add some more honey and water to top off the head space. here's the interesting part. I finally got a bigger tube and a reading off the hydrometer. it reads 1.000. What in the world happened to my first batch, I'm confounded.

Do I need to continue with the racking/aging process, or is this batch going to be a futile effort.

TAKeyser
06-05-2012, 07:59 PM
OK, so i racked my first batch, and threw in a campden tablet. tomorrow I'm going to add some more honey and water to top off the head space. here's the interesting part. I finally got a bigger tube and a reading off the hydrometer. it reads 1.000. What in the world happened to my first batch, I'm confounded.

Do I need to continue with the racking/aging process, or is this batch going to be a futile effort.

I wouldn't worry about the Hydrometer reading. I think I would trust this latest reading in the larger tube though.

Be aware that when you top it off with your honey and water mixture that your fermentation may start up again since you didn't stabilize.

chop1620
06-05-2012, 08:02 PM
'Be aware that when you top it off with your honey and water mixture that your fermentation may start up again since you didn't stabilize.'



Even if i use campden tablets before i top off??

I did rack the mead before adding to tablet.

TAKeyser
06-05-2012, 08:06 PM
Campden tablets alone will not stabilize your mead, it will stun the yeast temporarily but after 24 hours it is out of the must.

To stabilize you add Potassium BiSulfite (Campden Tablet) followed by Potassium Sorbate. Even after the addition it will take a while for it to stabilize so you sometimes get a little drop in gravity or renewed fermentation.

chop1620
06-05-2012, 08:09 PM
ok, that sucks the guy at my homebrew store said all i needed were the tablets. so i guess i will cross my fingers and hope that it doesnt start fermenting again. this first batch is like a Frankenstein mead. My next batch i will use both to stabilize it.

TAKeyser
06-05-2012, 08:13 PM
You can always stabilize and back-sweeten later if need be so don't worry about it to much.

Chevette Girl
06-05-2012, 10:41 PM
And really, even if it does take off again, big deal... we do it intentionally sometimes (look up "step feeding"). Oh, and don't give up on a batch till you're SURE it's horrid, after at least a year of ageing. To quote Medsen Fey from one of my own brewlogs, "Just remember Oskaar's rule - What tastes like ass today can be a delightfully quaffable mead in a few years."

THawk
06-06-2012, 02:51 AM
so what would be a good yeast to use at my temps?

EC-1118 is my choice. I'm in the Philippines and my meads turn out wonderfully (either that or my friends are just too polite ;) )...

K1v-1116 would work too and there's the old standby -- bread yeast...

chop1620
06-06-2012, 11:51 AM
so i added honey and water to take up head space after my attempt at stabilization. Then I air locked it and put it in the fridge to hopefully help keep the mead from fermenting again. I hope it should clear up in a week or so. My questions is; Do i need to keep my batch covered from the light in the fridge, or does light even affect it at this point

TAKeyser
06-06-2012, 11:58 AM
so i added honey and water to take up head space after my attempt at stabilization. Then I air locked it and put it in the fridge to hopefully help keep the mead from fermenting again. I hope it should clear up in a week or so. My questions is; Do i need to keep my batch covered from the light in the fridge, or does light even affect it at this point

Putting it in the fridge will deactivate the yeast and help the mead clear, but when you remove it from the fridge to rack again or bottle I would properly stabilize just in case any yeast has remained in suspension because normally if the mead warms back up the yeast will become alive again.

I never worry about the light from the fridge.

Just my 2 cents, but I'm sometimes overly cautious, but as a renter I don't want bottle bombs staining someones ceilings.

chop1620
06-06-2012, 12:04 PM
cool, i plan on racking one more time before bottling, so i will stabilize it after i rack it. Thanks for the help

Chevette Girl
06-06-2012, 12:13 PM
Sunlight is most damaging, followed by fluorescent, the total exposure of maybe 5 minutes a day of incandescent fridge light isn't going to hurt anything...

chop1620
06-11-2012, 03:47 PM
ok, so today i am going to stabilize my mead and back sweeten it before the bulk age. Am i risking a bottle bomb by rubber stopping it after I bring it to taste? Or should i re rack it one more time with an airlock after stabilizing it to be safe?

TAKeyser
06-11-2012, 04:27 PM
It does take a bit for the stabilizing to take effect so it is best to keep it under airlock for a while and make sure it worked. Some yeasts seem to fight through stabilization and may take another half dose of so.

chop1620
06-12-2012, 10:57 AM
ok, so yesterday i re racked me first batch over a campden tablet, and let it sit for about 3.5 hours and added sorbate. I was planning on giving this a week to do what it does, then back sweetening and aging for a while.

Is one week to long? what is a proper amount of time it takes to stabilize?

TAKeyser
06-12-2012, 11:03 AM
I usually wait somewhere between 2 days and a week, but I've seen people just put stabilizers and whatever they are using to back-sweeten all in at the same time (Joe's Quick Pyment comes to mind). If you haven't back-sweetened before just be aware that if the mead was clear it will get cloudy again and will take time to clear again.

chop1620
06-12-2012, 11:07 AM
ok, well originally, i used a campden tablet on my first rack (guy at brew store said i didnt need anything else), then back sweetened and put in the fridge for a week. then I did as described in my previous post

TAKeyser
06-12-2012, 11:16 AM
The Campden Tablet at each racking is sort of an older practice and I don't really know anyone who does it (especially if their Campden's are Sodium Meta BiSulfite). I sometimes use Campden 24 hours before I pitch yeast when I make a melomel, than I use a one when I stabilize and if it has been bulk aging for a while I may hit it again right before bottling because they have the effect of preventing oxidation. I know Akuek recently posted a schedule of something like 1 at stabilizing, 1 3 months later and another at every year of bulk aging, so as you can see there really is no set standard for their usage.