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View Full Version : New to mead, no sign of fermentation



neinstein
06-15-2016, 07:29 AM
Hello everyone!

I'm new to mead making and a little insecure. I looked around for a similar question but couldn't find something that applied very well.
I just made my first batch last night, but I have no sign of fermentation...
Here's what I used:

16L of distilled water
7.5 Kg of local honey
4 vanilla beans
2 packs of Lalvin 71B-1122

Now I mixed the water and the honey, added the vanilla beans and then just dumped the yeast in without knowing that there were instructions on the back to "activate" it. The recipe I was following just said to dump it in.
There are no bubbles of any kind and it's in a plastic tub so I can't see if there's anything happening. The plastic tub isn't filled completly, could that be a problem?

Thank you!

zpeckler
06-15-2016, 11:26 AM
Welcome to the forums!

I think you've got two problems:

1. Just dumping the yeast in the must really stressed them out, and probably killed off a lot of them.
2. Using distilled water can also stress the yeast because there isn't the proper amount of solutes in it.

The yeast are probably still struggling to get up to full strength before starting fermentation. I would give out a little more time before you start to get too worried.

If a few days go by without any signs of yeast activity, I would repitch your yeast using proper rehydration process. Take the temp of the rehydrated yeast after 15 min, and slowly add small volumes of must to it every 10 minutes or so. The goal is to slowly cool the yeast down to within 10F of the must, since the shock of too high a temperature differential can also kill off a lot of the yeast in the pitch.

zpeckler
06-15-2016, 11:37 AM
One other question... Do you own a hydrometer? If not, it's highly recommended that you buy one. It allows you to track the progress of your fermentation and better diagnose when things go wrong.

If you already have one, what's the original gravity of the mead?

neinstein
06-15-2016, 12:53 PM
I unfortunately do not own a hydrometer... Things are pretty hard to find since I live in a small city

zpeckler
06-15-2016, 04:21 PM
I highly, highly recommend ordering one online, then. A hydrometer is probably the most important piece of equipment a homebrewer can own. If you can't find one locally you can get them for $10+ shipping on Amazon or MoreBeer.com.

neinstein
06-16-2016, 07:19 AM
There are some little bubbles on the top, is that a good sign? It's been 36h since I made it

PitBull
06-16-2016, 09:48 AM
There are some little bubbles on the top, is that a good sign? It's been 36h since I made it

Yes it is a good sign. But your mead also needs some nutrients or the yeast will continued to be stressed.

You should read and re-read the Newbee Guide.