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View Full Version : P.H drop and SUPER FAST fermentation.



Jezter
12-14-2014, 03:46 AM
Hi All,

Couple questions and topics of discussion.

I have a new batch going of peach melomel.

This batch is fermenting extremely fast. Beginning s.g was 1.090 and after only 4 days I am at 1.022 with lavlin 1116. This seems to me to be exceptionally fast and I have read several books and it always says that the faster/healthier fermention the better.Is this true and do i have a record breaking fermentation?

But I have noticed a p.h drop from 4.4 to 2.8 and today I had to add some calc carbonate. I am a beekeeper and I am always using my own honey. I have had quite a few massive ph drops with most of my meads. What is it that causes the PH drop? Is it the vinegar bacteria?? Is this normal?? Is it possible to have a successful or partially sucessful mead and fermentation plus the vinger contamination? Is it exceptionally easy to have this contamination? Lets say for example, here it is winter time and the furnace is blowing air around could the bacteria be air bound??

ALSO i have noticed, these boards used to be very busy. Is it losing popularity for some reason or is it just me?

Squatchy
12-14-2014, 10:05 AM
I had a batch eat through 100 points in 2.5 days.

kudapucat
12-14-2014, 10:17 AM
I had a batch eat through 100 points in 2.5 days.
Me too. My first JAO I was certain it was stalled.

loveofrose
12-14-2014, 10:24 AM
The fermentation process carried out by yeast is what causes the massive drop in pH. If your pH drops below 3, generally the yeast stall out and possibly produce fusels. To avoid this outcome, I generally add 1/4 tsp per gallon of potassium carbonate. Potassium carbonate serves to buffer the pH in order to prevent the must from dropping to the danger zone. (Bonus: potassium is a limiting nutrient in honey that increases the yeast alcohol tolerance. Two birds, one stone.)

Combining pH buffering with Staggered Nutrient Additions. (SNAs), I've fermented 1.100 musts to 1.000 in 3 days on occasion. You can look at my Bray's One Month Mead. (BOMM) for a good pH buffering/nutrient schedule example. It uses a specific yeast for mead in a month, but it works well for any yeast.

Fast ferments are generally clean ferments. If ferments go fast, it indicates your yeast are very happy with the environment. Happy yeast generate meads with less fusels leading to faster drinking mead!

Activity on the boards fluctuates. Before Christmas there is generally a lull followed by an uptick after. No worries. We haven't lost interest in mead!


Better brewing through science!

Jezter
12-14-2014, 01:29 PM
Thanks for the great info! Happy holidays to everyone. :)


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threeway
12-15-2014, 12:27 PM
The fermentation process carried out by yeast is what causes the massive drop in pH. If your pH drops below 3, generally the yeast stall out and possibly produce fusels. To avoid this outcome, I generally add 1/4 tsp per gallon of potassium carbonate. Potassium carbonate serves to buffer the pH in order to prevent the must from dropping to the danger zone. (Bonus: potassium is a limiting nutrient in honey that increases the yeast alcohol tolerance. Two birds, one stone.)

Combining pH buffering with Staggered Nutrient Additions. (SNAs), I've fermented 1.100 musts to 1.000 in 3 days on occasion. You can look at my Bray's One Month Mead. (BOMM) for a good pH buffering/nutrient schedule example. It uses a specific yeast for mead in a month, but it works well for any yeast.

Fast ferments are generally clean ferments. If ferments go fast, it indicates your yeast are very happy with the environment. Happy yeast generate meads with less fusels leading to faster drinking mead!

Activity on the boards fluctuates. Before Christmas there is generally a lull followed by an uptick after. No worries. We haven't lost interest in mead!


Better brewing through science!

Doesn't temperature also affect fusels? I have a BOMM that's going kinda slow given all I've read on it, but I think it has to do with temperature hovering at 60. I'm resisting the heating belt for it so far.

loveofrose
12-15-2014, 12:29 PM
Doesn't temperature also affect fusels? I have a BOMM that's going kinda slow given all I've read on it, but I think it has to do with temperature hovering at 60. I'm resisting the heating belt for it so far.

High temperatures can cause fusel production. It is a very yeast dependent issue. D47 above 70 F is a fusel machine while Wyeast 1388 is clean up to 80 F. I do find 70 F to be best for 1388.


Better brewing through science!

GntlKnigt1
12-15-2014, 06:52 PM
Jester, since you're a week, try using bee pollen as nutrient....almost no drop in pH with that vs conventional DAP and nutrients. 30 grams per liter is the recommended quantity.

Jezter
12-16-2014, 03:58 AM
So now it's been 6 days and it's At 1.000. Very nice.

Regarding the bee pollen. In this batch I did use, dap, energizer and 3 heeling tablespoons of my own bee pollen. Also it was from a fresh stash we have frozen in the freezer which differs from what is available to the public because all pollen (most) is dried for preservation.

I don't know if any adverse affects could happen from so much stuff being added but full fermentation in 7 days speaks volumes IMO.

So I'm intrigued at just using bee pollen. Not needing any dap or energizer? Do you have experience with this? I'd like to have less ph issues that's for sure. But 30 grams per litre yikes that's a lot. Like 1.8lbs per 5gallon.

That would almost be enough to change color since my pollen has mostly yellow and maybe even taste?


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GntlKnigt1
12-16-2014, 04:11 AM
Yes, I have used it experimentally on a batch of traditional. In summary, it is a slower, more leisurely ferment that yields excellent taste, no pH issues, but it DOES leave a residual oily film on the fermenter, so be sure to use a pail so you can clean it. Here is the biggest thread (of several) about bee pollen as nutrient,.,,,
http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthread.php/22680-Pollen-instead-of-chemical-nutrients?highlight=bee+pollen

The science behind it is a study that is linked in that thread as well....
http://www.academicwino.com/2011/10/enhancing-sweet-nectar-effect-of-pollen.html/

Hive pollen collection....
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PXlE7hFvWG4

Jezter
12-16-2014, 04:14 AM
Well I will definitely have to find a time and place to try it. I have some really strong flavoured clover honey of my own and I want to make a show mead I wouldn't want any adverse flavours to exist.


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Jezter
12-16-2014, 04:15 AM
Oh also I can't view that thread sadly. Is that a patrons only thread?


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kudapucat
12-16-2014, 05:34 AM
Oh also I can't view that thread sadly. Is that a patrons only thread?


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You are correct.

GntlKnigt1
12-16-2014, 05:54 AM
Ah well....for $25 a year, its worth it to become a patron if you're serious about mead....

kudapucat
12-16-2014, 05:57 AM
I heartily concur. *quickly pays his overdue renewal*

threeway
12-16-2014, 09:43 AM
High temperatures can cause fusel production. It is a very yeast dependent issue. D47 above 70 F is a fusel machine while Wyeast 1388 is clean up to 80 F. I do find 70 F to be best for 1388.


Better brewing through science!

then i'll add the heating belt and bring it up to 73. see what happens. it's been burning along for a 8 days now