I starting making my first meads this month (5 of them) and only making 1 gallon batches. I used my hydrometer that I normally use for homebrew and just realized when I put my hydrometer into my 1 gallon jug, it's to tall and goes to the bottom of the jug and I get no reading. I don't want to fill my hydrometer since I'm only making 1 gallon. Is there a better way to test the SG for 1 gallon batches?
Fermenting (1 gallon sizes)
All still in primary
Cyser (basic) 4/4/12
Cyser (spiced) 4/6/12
Mixed Berry 4/14/12
Yes, either a wine thief, or if you can't locate one that will go into the carboy/jug, then a 100ml test jar and turkey baster - sanitise the lot and take a sample with the turkey baster and transfer to the test jar and bingo! a testable sample.
And yes, before you ask, I always return the sample to the batch - with no ill effects.
here's me home brewing blog (if anyones interested....)
and don't forget
What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away! Tom Waits.....
I used my auto-siphoning hose and got what I needed. I rarely use and it worked like a champ. My Cyser is at 1.010. I used EC-1118 so it's about done. I'm going to give it another 2 weeks before I transfer it. I pour a small sample 1/2 oz into a shot glass and man was it sweet!! I started at 1.134 which put it right at 16% abv right now. It's so sweet I really couldn't taste the alcohol.
As long as it's still active (SG is dropping) you don't have to worry too much about a little splashing, and you'll find that mead is far more resilient to both infections and oxidation than beers are, returning your sample's fine as long as you sanitized everything that comes into contact with your must... Welcome to the forum!
"The main ingredient needed is 'time' followed closely by 'patience'." - The Bishop 2013
"When you consider that laziness and procrastination are the fundamentals of great mead, it is a miracle that the mazer cup happens." Medsen Fey, 2014
"Sure it can be done. I've never heard of it, but I do things I've never heard if all the time. That is the beauty of being a brewer!" - Loveofrose, 2014
"I tend to....um, er, experiment, and go outside the box. Sometimes outside the whole department store." - Ebonhawk, 2014