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View Full Version : Hello from a noob, and a question.



Jungle_Jim
09-08-2016, 03:27 PM
Hello everyone, I'm Jim. I have made a few batches of mead/melomel with good success. I started a strawberry melomel 08-28-16. My method and ingredients are as follows:

3 lbs clover honey
2 lbs fresh strawberries/crushed
1 gallon of water

I heated the honey water mix and added the strawberries, put it in the 1 gallon carboy and let it cool and added 1 crushed campden tablet. After 24 hours I added:
1 tsp acid blend
1 tsp pectic enzyme
1 tsp yeast nutrient
1/4 tsp wine tannin
US05 yeast


(I intend for this mead to be sweet)

Fermentation started off just fine. It has now fallen off to 95 seconds between bubbles. This is very slow compared to the previous yeasts I have used such as Lalvin EC1118. It has only been ten days.

Am I worried about nothing? Or did I screw it up using that yeast? Do you suggest racking it now?

Thanks,
Jim

hendenburg2
09-08-2016, 03:50 PM
What type of airlock are you using, a 3-piece, or an s-shaped? I have found that the 3-piece can get stuck sometimes. Give it a tap or two to see if that helps. Also, how much head space is there? The more head space, the slower the bubbling, since more volume means more CO2 buildup to get to the pressure needed to displace the water in the lock(ideal gas law and all). There's also a possibility that there might be a slight leak, depending on what type of fermenter you are using and how old the stopper is (the rubber might have a crack, it might not be pushed in far enough to get a full seal, etc...)

Honestly though, absence of proof is not proof of absence. Do some daily hydrometer checks. If it's still going down, you're all good. If it's bottomed out around 1.000, you're good.

There's nothing wrong with using US05, later today I'm racking a batch I made with it.

Jungle_Jim
09-08-2016, 03:53 PM
Thanks! There is a little more head space than usual. I'm using the 3 piece. I'll take a look at all you suggested. The stopper is new.

Cabeceira
09-08-2016, 04:04 PM
although a simple post, but informative

Cobrac
09-08-2016, 04:24 PM
You can put your ear to the fermenter and listen. If there is a slightly sparkling noise you can be sure that fermentation is happening. If you hear it and the air lock dont move you probably have a small leaking somewhere. But more likely it is as hendenburg2 says. That it has stuck.

Squatchy
09-08-2016, 04:42 PM
You really need to by a hydrometer and read your gravity everyday during your ferment. You want to know that metric for many reasons. Starting gravity, ABV% if it goes to zero. Or, you will also know how many points your yeast has assimilated even it it doesn't run dry. You can know how sweet it is, and, you can know when it's finished, stalled out, or tapped out yeast. Also , you should be feeding your must nitrogen along the way at different gravities,,, or feed each day and record the gravity along the way. Bubbles really don't give you enough info to mean anything quite frankly.

Jungle_Jim
09-08-2016, 05:33 PM
You really need to by a hydrometer and read your gravity everyday during your ferment. You want to know that metric for many reasons. Starting gravity, ABV% if it goes to zero. Or, you will also know how many points your yeast has assimilated even it it doesn't run dry. You can know how sweet it is, and, you can know when it's finished, stalled out, or tapped out yeast. Also , you should be feeding your must nitrogen along the way at different gravities,,, or feed each day and record the gravity along the way. Bubbles really don't give you enough info to mean anything quite frankly.

Thanks! I have one now, but didn't have one at the time I started this batch. Any advice on how it could help me at this point?

hendenburg2
09-08-2016, 05:57 PM
Thanks! I have one now, but didn't have one at the time I started this batch. Any advice on how it could help me at this point?

Trend analysis, basically. Plug your recipe in the Got Mead Calculator (below the logo). It should give you a good idea of what your OG was. Take a reading at least once a day for the next few days, and it should tell you if there are changes. If the reading is going down, it means there is still fermentation. If not, it could possibly mean fermentation has stalled (though you usually want more than 3 days to confirm that one). Depending on where it stopped, it could tell you whether fermentation is complete or if something else happened to stop it.

Jungle_Jim
09-08-2016, 06:00 PM
Thank you very much. The mead calculator doesn't load for me. It says page not found...

darigoni
09-08-2016, 06:03 PM
It would have been better if you'd measured your staring gravity from the beginning, but you can get an approximation by using The Mead Calculator, on gotmead.

If you plug in 3lbs of honey and 2 lbs of strawberries, in 1 gallon of water, you end up with approx. an OG = 1.114.

Now you can use the hydrometer to measure what your current gravity is and see how far along you are.

You can also make daily measurements and, if they are changing, know that fermentation is still going on.

I've never used US05, but it looks like the alcohol tolerance is around 12%, which means your final SG= 1.020.

dave

Jungle_Jim
09-08-2016, 06:12 PM
It would have been better if you'd measured your staring gravity from the beginning, but you can get an approximation by using The Mead Calculator, on gotmead.

If you plug in 3lbs of honey and 2 lbs of strawberries, in 1 gallon of water, you end up with approx. an OG = 1.114.

Now you can use the hydrometer to measure what your current gravity is and see how far along you are.

You can also make daily measurements and, if they are changing, know that fermentation is still going on.

I've never used US05, but it looks like the alcohol tolerance is around 12%, which means your final SG= 1.020.

dave

Thank you so much! That is what I needed. I'll measure in a few minutes and for the next 3 days.

hendenburg2
09-08-2016, 06:20 PM
Yeah, happens to me too sometimes. Might need to try it a few times. Or google "mead calculator" and follow the link from there

darigoni
09-08-2016, 10:21 PM
Yeah, I'm not sure WHY they haven't fixed that yet. The link above, to the mead calculator doesn't work. You have to go to the home page and you will find it under Making Mead -> Tools and Resuources.

Here's a direct link: http://gotmead.com/blog/the-mead-calculator/

Read the instructions and play with it.

dave

Jungle_Jim
09-08-2016, 10:56 PM
Yeah, I'm not sure WHY they haven't fixed that yet. The link above, to the mead calculator doesn't work. You have to go to the home page and you will find it under Making Mead -> Tools and Resuources.

Here's a direct link: http://gotmead.com/blog/the-mead-calculator/

Read the instructions and play with it.

dave


Thank you!