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Dawvis
11-27-2015, 02:05 AM
After a slow start then a boost at day 5 my mead has dropped .034 in 10 days and has slowed to 1 bubble every 25 seconds or so. is this normal?

This is my first batch of mead and first batch of any sort of alcohol.
I am a passionate cook and avid fermenter of food but until recently had not tried making drinks.

After reading the "Art of Fermentation" the Author made mead making sound so simple I decided to jump right in and make a batch for myself.
I will be honest I used what I thought to be the easiest and most delicious sounding recipe without doing any proper research before mixing my first batch.

The recipe I used is as follows:

5.5lbs of honey
2lbs of dextrose
4 cans of lemonade concentrate
1 pack ec-1118
5tsp yeast nutrient (which i missed when i traveled across town to the nearest brew store)
***Instead i used a palm-full of boiled mashed raisins***
2.5 gallons of filtered water

I heated the honey and dextrose up to 180F(as per the recipe instructions) in 1 gallon of water to dissolve then added the lemonade and raisin mush.
Next I add the second gallon of cold water to cool down the batch.
I pitched the yeast according to the package.
While waiting for the yeast to hydrate I stirred aggressively to aerate then when the honey water had cooled to 30 Celcius I added the yeast.

This recipe specifically said put it in the carboy and don't touch it. so i did not aerate again until day 5.

The Original Gravity was 1.116

After 5 days (and lots of online research) I tested the OG again and it had dropped to 1.106.
By now i had been reading everyday about ferementing meads and other alcohols and felt that things weren't going well so I added 2 tsp of DAP and aerated again.

This got things going and for 3 days there was good activity in the airlock. 1 bubble every 2-3 seconds.

5 days after the Aeration and DAP addition bubbles slowed again to 1 every 20 seconds or so.

I tested Gravity and it had dropped to 1.082
I added another .75 tsp of DAP and aerated vigorously for about 1 minute.

It has been 3 days since i fed and aerated and bubbles are down to 1 every almost 30 seconds....

I am really confused because i have read so much about daily aeration, degassing and staggered nutrient additions but at the same time i have read to be patient and don't touch it.
I am afraid to open the airlock and mess around especially now that so little CO2 is being produced.

Thoughts or suggestions?

loveofrose
11-27-2015, 10:03 AM
My first guess is that your pH is too low. That is a lot of lemon concentrate. Get some pH strips and potassium carbonate from your brew shop. If the pH is 3 or lower, add the potassium carbonate.

Also, what yeast did you add and what is your fermentation temperature?


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Squatchy
11-27-2015, 02:01 PM
Ditto what rose said. You also indicate that you just tossed your yeast into the must. That's not good at all. Doing it that way cripples and kills your yeast. If you don't plan on on using Go-ferm (the best thing to do) then use just plain tap water at 104 dergree. I have a rehydrattion post to teach how to rehydrate. Go check it out. You may need to repitch, plus buffer your pH. I think if you were wanting to make your same batch again you might want to add the lemon once your fermentation has completed.

Dawvis
11-28-2015, 01:53 AM
Ditto what rose said. You also indicate that you just tossed your yeast into the must. That's not good at all. Doing it that way cripples and kills your yeast. If you don't plan on on using Go-ferm (the best thing to do) then use just plain tap water at 104 dergree. I have a rehydrattion post to teach how to rehydrate. Go check it out. You may need to repitch, plus buffer your pH. I think if you were wanting to make your same batch again you might want to add the lemon once your fermentation has completed.

Sorry, that's a misunderstanding. I did re-hydrate my yeast in approx 100F tap water for 15 minutes before adding to the must.
I appreciate your reply and suggestions. Where can I find your rehydration post?

Cheers,

Dawvis
11-28-2015, 01:58 AM
Thanks for the quick response and suggestions.

I used Lalvin Champagne yeast EC-1118 and as for temperature I don't know the exact temperature of the mead but the room temp is 19 Celcius.

I will look for the PH strips and Bicarbonate on my next day off and adjust accordingly.

Any feedback on where my mead should be after 10 days?

Squatchy
11-28-2015, 02:00 AM
Making sure that the temps between your must and your yeast slurry is within 10 degrees of each other is very important.
Here is the link http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthread.php/25211-This-is-how-to-rehydrate-your-yeast

You can always use the search feature on here. Same with google,, many times google will find things in Gotmead.

kudapucat
11-29-2015, 07:45 PM
EC-1118 is renowned for starting well.
I'd be concerned about pH. 1118 even dry pitches ok. A gravity of 1.116 will be eaten up easily by 1118.
at 10 days, with 1118 in 19 degrees, I should expect it to be done already. Check that pH.

bmwr75
11-29-2015, 08:40 PM
The lemonade concentrate has probably made your must to acidic. As others have said, check your pH, it is probably too low for a good ferment.