View Full Version : Knowing when to rack from primary to secondary

02-25-2004, 04:58 PM
For a basic mead how long is the norm to wait before switching over to the glass carboy? I can't really tell how long it is between gas burps because my air lock isn't making any noise. I know gas is leaking out though because the room has a nice smell to it.

02-25-2004, 11:15 PM
I usually rack at aprox 6 weeks. However, there are no hard and fast rules as to when this should be done. If your particular batch of mead is no longer fermenting very rapidly, and most of the sediment has fallen out, it can be racked at any time. On the other hand, waiting a little longer will certainly not hurt anything. I'm sorry i cant really give you a clearer answer but really every mead is different so theres no definate "right" answer to this common question. In my personal opinion...i would avoid racking too early as this may temporarily stall fermentation, and in my opinion waiting longer allws you to leave MORE sediment behind making the racking more efficent, and reduces the chances of contaminating infection. Like i said, i USUALLY rack at about 6 weeks, but i have waited as long as 4 months and have never had the problem of "yeast autolysis" that some people speak of.

02-25-2004, 11:35 PM
with an airlock and a good seal, 6 weeks. if you are unsure about the quality of your seal move it at 3-4 weeks IMO.

02-26-2004, 01:29 AM
Crap scrolled up on my mouse and lost my whole post >:( :'(

I guess I'll wait for the 6 week mark. Is it normal for the for the bucket to have an outward bulge in the lid, and when I lightly push I get a nice out gassing that Delish ;D Sort of smells like a white wine though.

02-26-2004, 04:00 AM
It may just be the shape of the lid. I just wanted to caution you to be careful that when you press on the lid to release gas that you are not sucking water from the airlock back into the carboy when you release the lid. Water from the airlock getting into the must is a possible source of contamination.

02-26-2004, 05:28 AM
I was afraid of that happening so I lightly push, just enough for some outgassing but not enough to lower the pressure inside to anywhere equal that of that of the rooms.

02-29-2004, 04:27 PM
The fermentation has slowed down tremendously. Almost the point of me not knowing its fermenting until I get a little smell in the air ever few minutes.

Its only been going a little over a week, should I be worried? Am I supposed to add something to it to give it a another start?

02-29-2004, 05:23 PM
It sounds just about right...rapid fermentaion usually begins to cease somewhere between the first and second week (in my experience at least). I would add nothing to it at this point.

03-01-2004, 12:47 AM
That has been my experience too. I am relatively new to meadmaking, but do have 4 different batches going. The oldest is about 6 weeks old. Each batch has done 7 to 10 days of aggressive fermentation according to the outward signs and SG readings.

Show - 6 gal
Cyser - 1 gal
Pear - 2 gal
Show - 6 gal


03-01-2004, 01:07 AM
NM about my question, it seems while I was out today the fermentation increased a bit. Its not going as rapid as it was during the first 7 days but its going much faster than yesterdays and this mornings.