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K5MOW
09-21-2013, 10:03 AM
Just wanted to know how long you all leave your mead in the primary using a 7 gallon brewing bucket. Do you think that 4 weeks is to long before racking? I don't want the Mead to oxidize but I want it to clear some before racking.

Thanks

Roger

danr
09-21-2013, 10:18 AM
When fermentation activity stops you should move your mead from the larger bucket into container(s) that will minimize headspace. As long as there is some fermentation activity, the headspace in your bucket should be filled with CO2. The best way to determine this is when your specific gravity does not move for a few days. Unless you stabilize at this point, you will still want to use airlock(s) on your smaller container(s) in case your fermentation is not completely done.

Personally, I find my primary fermentations normally last about 2 weeks and then I transfer my 5 gallon batches to a carboy.

Dan

kchaystack
09-21-2013, 10:21 AM
But the only way to know if your fermentation is over is to take SG readings. once the SG is stable for several days, you know it is done

Midnight Sun
09-21-2013, 12:13 PM
My method is to measure SG until the fermentation is about 3/4 complete, then transfer to glass and airlock. Usually takes 4-6 days to get there for my mead.

Waiting for the mead to clear a bit before racking from a bucket is waiting way too long IMO. Buckets are leaky, even ones with tight lids. Mead is expensive, factoring in both honey and time so why chance it? Besides, how you gonna know if the mead is starting to clear when using an opaque bucket?


But the only way to know if your fermentation is over is to take SG readings. once the SG is stable for several days, you know it is done

This is close, but not quite on the mark. Yes, the heavy lifting part of the fermentation is done once SG is stable for a few days. Fermentation can very slowly continue for weeks or even months after that though. You're not done until the SG is stable over several months. Unless of course yours is a dry mead, then a stable SG over a month or so is probably safe to declare "done".

Medsen Fey
09-21-2013, 01:14 PM
Unless your have a delicate melomel that's likely to oxidize, leaving it in a bucket for 4 weeks is unlikely to cause any problems. There are folks who have fermented and AGED in a plastic bucket with good results. I'm not ready to recommend that approach, but it does give you something to consider. So me..., I let it finish in the bucket and then rack.



sent from my THINGAMABOB with WHATCHAMACALLIT

K5MOW
09-22-2013, 10:55 AM
Thanks all for all the great info. Well I decided that I would not wait the four weeks. I racked it today when I had a little time. It has been two weeks and the primary is done for the most part. I racked it in to some rasberrys.

Roger

MikeTheElder
09-22-2013, 12:14 PM
I hope you mashed or froze your raspberries before you racked onto them.

Otherwise you might not get much juice out of them to flavor your mel.

Also watch for restart of fermentation with the new supply of fermentable sugars.

I'm hardly an expert yet but I have read about this in several threads.

K5MOW
09-22-2013, 03:25 PM
I hope you mashed or froze your raspberries before you racked onto them.

Otherwise you might not get much juice out of them to flavor your mel.

Also watch for restart of fermentation with the new supply of fermentable sugars.

I'm hardly an expert yet but I have read about this in several threads.

Well I used 3 cans of Vinters Harvest raspberry pure. I also put one can in the primary.

Roger

MikeTheElder
09-22-2013, 05:04 PM
Sounds delicious.

Sorry, I thought you were making a traditional and racking onto berries.