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otherchuck
09-10-2013, 06:09 PM
Greetings,

I started brewing a batch of mead on Saturday (today is Tues) and I added the first stage of nutrients at that time (4.5g Fermaid/4.5g DAP). About 24 hours later, when there was definitely active fermentation going on, I added the second stage of nutrients (2.8g Fermaid/2.8g DAP), and stirred the must vigorously at that time. Yesterday, I was too busy, and didn't do anything at all to the must, but very early this morning (Tues), I stirred it.

When I get home tonight (about 5 hours from right now, lets say), I plan to stir again, take a hydrometer reading, and add the third stage nutrients if the the fermentation seems to be near the halfway point (based on hydrometer readings).

My question is this: It has been an acceptably vigorous fermentation process so far, and I am wondering if maybe I am already past that halfway point. At what point should I consider the fermentation process to be so far along, that I am better off not doing the third stage of nutrient addition (1.8g Fermaid/1.8g DAP)?

That doesn't sound like a lot of nutrients, so I suspect it will be fine to add them even if I am noticeably past the midpt, but I am eager to hear what others think.

Also, at what point should I stop aerating/stirring the must? Also around the midpoint?

It is possible that the fermentation process hasn't progressed as far as I think it has, but as I say, it has been pretty vigorous for a few days. I am seeking advice now, so I can make the correct decision tonight if...when I read the hydrometer...I find that I am noticeably past the midway point.

The 5-gallon batch consists of 15lbs clover honey, and I used rehydrated Lalvin DV-10 yeast. There are no other fruits or herbs in the must.

Thanks!

Chuck

Jim H
09-10-2013, 10:37 PM
I understand your frustration. I am learning the fine points, myself! Welcome to the forum, by the way.

However - there are two nutrients that you can still add to the must after the 1/3 point - IF and WHEN you think they are necessary. I boil bread yeast in a little water for a few minutes (others nuke it in some water for a little while). When it cools, mix it in. My batches love it, within 8 hours, they are fizzing away. The other is Fermaid O, not to be confused with other formulations of Fermaid! This one has only organic sources of nitrogen, and has less of a chance of causing problems.

So far, I use my nose, thermometer, and a pH meter to see when I should add in nutrients. If I start to smell off-smells with slight rotten egg or whatnot, if the pH goes below 3.5, or if the temperature goes a little high, in goes 1/2 to 1 tsp of Fermaid O, or a packet of boiled bread yeast.

On your other questions, you should look for responses from members who have more experience, especially with DV-10.

Good luck with your batch!

rmccask
09-10-2013, 11:00 PM
5 gallons with 15 lb of honey should get you a OG of 1.108. Lalvin DV10 can go up to 18% so it should be able to take it dry (1.000 and lower). Do you have a hydrometer and if so, do you know what your current SG is? If the SG is below 1.072, then I wouldn't add any more of the Fermaid-K or DAP. Usually after the 1/3 point I stop aerating it too. Without a hydrometer you are in the dark but it hasn't been too long so you can probably add it and give it one last aeration and hope for the best.

otherchuck
09-11-2013, 07:30 PM
Greetings,

Yes, my OG was around 1.100 or a little higher. I am anticipating it going a little under 1.000. When I came home last night, I checked the gravity with the hydrometer, and it was just about 1.050. I went ahead and added the 1.8g of Fermaid-K and 1.8g of DAP. And I aerated it a medium amount as I stirred it in.

I see from your post that 1/3 fermentation (~1.070) should maybe have been my cut-off point, rather than 1/2. I am crossing my fingers that nothing bad is going to happen to this batch.

Chuck