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Thread: Second Batch - Comments please!!

  1. #21

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    To make this a little clearer for you: It's not so much waiting for 24 hours, as it is waiting until you see proof that the yeast have moved out of the lag phase and have begun converting things into alcohol. This is called "proof". I feed as soon as I see "proof that fermentation has begun. So in theory this could be in just a few hours. Or as long as a few days. I read quite often where people are concerned because their lag phase has lasted for several days. I would be concerned if lag took more than 8 hours. I feel it it takes longer than that you might have underpitched your amount of yeast. 2 grams a gallon is a good rule of thumb up until 1120. Higher than that would benefit from 3 grams a gallon or even more in some instances. ( I don't make single gallons anymore, or even 3 gallons for that matter) but if I were to make a gallon I still always used to use the entire packet of 5 grams anyway. I buy it in much larger amounts. I wouldn't try to store a partial packet of yeast. It's only a couple dollars anyway.

    Most nebee's would benefit from using more yeast as is. Rehydration is the first place people start to make mistakes. It's very important to get your yeast off to a good start so learn how.

    You won't find a single scientific article saying to feed past the 1/3 (first third) sugar break. Only lack of faith would urge someone to feed past this point. With Fermaid O you would be OK if you feed past the first break, but if you start out right there is no reason to if you are using dry wine yeast.
    7 out of 4 people have a hard time using their hydrometer!

  2. #22
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    Hey Squatchy, so just to add some info, i read some stuff this past 3 days that actually indicates that the early bubbles of CO2 you see might not be the yeast out of the lag phase, but instead the yeast using the glycogen storage that they have when they are packaged (for those who dont know, glycogen is basically polymerized glucose that the cell storages to use in case of emergency). This means that the membrane is not yet ready to take sugars and nutrients from the must. Im not even sure there is much harm done when pitching nutrients at the same time than the yeast. But this points that the lag phase can be longer than just the 5 minutes you see it takes to form bubbles in some strains (I at least get proof of life with some strains while atemperating the yeast with some must before pitching). So if there was damage done by pitching nutrients earlier, maybe its best to hold your horses for a few hours, even if you see proof before pitching.

    What i actually read was that during the lag phase, the cell uses the glycogen storage, but i remain doubtful if this is done aerobically or anaerobically. In any way, the result is CO2, so...

    That said, i agree with Squatchy, its hard you have very very long lag phases. If you take days before seeing anything probably you pitched dead yeast (or killed it)/severely underpitched and the release of CO2 is so low that you cant just see it until it has reproduced a few times.

    Apart from that, all of Squatchy's info is correct, follow his advice

  3. #23

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    I now realize there are two "proofs" and I use them both and failed to diferenciate the two. Yes we can see proof of life when we rehydrate our yeast. I see this very early on. (within minutes after rehydrating) and even more in earnest once I begin to attemperate with must. So you are correct. The glycogen that is stored on board a dry yeast will only last .5 hours before it's completely consumed. At least according to LLelemande. That's why they tell us to pitch within a half hour. This is also why we start the attemperation process using our must as well. We then begin to feed the yeast and need to begin this process within the 30 minutes.

    In my above post I was talking about the changes we see once the yeast has been deployed. Things go silent for a while with no signs of life. And then, at a latter point we see the early stages of fermentation. You can see the very faintest beginnings by taking a flashlight and shining it onto the must. Super small bubbles can be seen rising to the surface. At the same time. If you look at the surface you will see the very small pricks in the meniscus if you look into the glare on the surface. From there it continues on until you see the full krouzen.

    Personally I wait to feed my yeast until I have spotted proof they have moved into the growth phase. The idea here is to not feed any unwanted bad guys so they can't get a head start on the yeast biomass. Granted. If you follow good sanitization techniques you shouldn't have much/if any to worry about. The issue could become a problem if you have long lag times. And could possibly be even worse if you were to add fresh fruit and/or other things that carry a host of bad guys. I never add anything into the vessel until my mead has gotten to a full throttle state. Once it's at this point it's very hard to have anything survive the little ones pretending to be piranha's. I bet to micro biologist yeast must seem like wanna be Great White's.

    I generally attemperate over a few hours and pitch late at night and wake up to an active biomass. I like it this way so I can use the early morning hours before heading off to the salt mines to feed my babies each day and to chart progress.
    7 out of 4 people have a hard time using their hydrometer!

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Squatchy View Post
    I now realize there are two "proofs" and I use them both and failed to diferenciate the two. Yes we can see proof of life when we rehydrate our yeast. I see this very early on. (within minutes after rehydrating) and even more in earnest once I begin to attemperate with must. So you are correct. The glycogen that is stored on board a dry yeast will only last .5 hours before it's completely consumed. At least according to LLelemande. That's why they tell us to pitch within a half hour. This is also why we start the attemperation process using our must as well. We then begin to feed the yeast and need to begin this process within the 30 minutes.

    In my above post I was talking about the changes we see once the yeast has been deployed. Things go silent for a while with no signs of life. And then, at a latter point we see the early stages of fermentation. You can see the very faintest beginnings by taking a flashlight and shining it onto the must. Super small bubbles can be seen rising to the surface. At the same time. If you look at the surface you will see the very small pricks in the meniscus if you look into the glare on the surface. From there it continues on until you see the full krouzen.

    Personally I wait to feed my yeast until I have spotted proof they have moved into the growth phase. The idea here is to not feed any unwanted bad guys so they can't get a head start on the yeast biomass. Granted. If you follow good sanitization techniques you shouldn't have much/if any to worry about. The issue could become a problem if you have long lag times. And could possibly be even worse if you were to add fresh fruit and/or other things that carry a host of bad guys. I never add anything into the vessel until my mead has gotten to a full throttle state. Once it's at this point it's very hard to have anything survive the little ones pretending to be piranha's. I bet to micro biologist yeast must seem like wanna be Great White's.

    I generally attemperate over a few hours and pitch late at night and wake up to an active biomass. I like it this way so I can use the early morning hours before heading off to the salt mines to feed my babies each day and to chart progress.
    Yeah that seems right. That half hour makes sense too

  5. #25

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    Thank you both for so much invaluable information. "Who knew making good mead was so hard?" . I'm learning tons in a short time and up to about 14 pages of notes now with a lot changes in the past 2-3 weeks. The $30 spent on the patron access has been well worth it. I'll work this batch through and provide a few updates along the way. Going to sit down the weekend and plan out my next batch and put the plan in the Mead Log section. Much more reading to do!

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by NightWolf View Post
    Thank you both for so much invaluable information. "Who knew making good mead was so hard?" . I'm learning tons in a short time and up to about 14 pages of notes now with a lot changes in the past 2-3 weeks. The $30 spent on the patron access has been well worth it. I'll work this batch through and provide a few updates along the way. Going to sit down the weekend and plan out my next batch and put the plan in the Mead Log section. Much more reading to do!
    It's really not hard once you get through the very first few pieces that need to happen
    7 out of 4 people have a hard time using their hydrometer!

  7. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by Squatchy View Post
    It's really not hard once you get through the very first few pieces that need to happen
    Agreed. It was a tongue in cheek kinda remark, although sifting the good advise from the old out dated practices out there took some time. I've amassed 18 pages of notes and am now trimming them down based on what I've learned to be best practices.

    Also have a L.D.Carlson Company Complete Oxygenation System and some Ferm-O (So I get TOSNA right this time.)on the way. Hopefully this will help. Again, thanks for all the help!

  8. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by NightWolf View Post
    Agreed. It was a tongue in cheek kinda remark, although sifting the good advise from the old out dated practices out there took some time. I've amassed 18 pages of notes and am now trimming them down based on what I've learned to be best practices.

    Also have a L.D.Carlson Company Complete Oxygenation System and some Ferm-O (So I get TOSNA right this time.)on the way. Hopefully this will help. Again, thanks for all the help!
    So rehydration with Go-ferm and temp control and you should be well on your way
    7 out of 4 people have a hard time using their hydrometer!

  9. #29

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    Just a quick update on progress. Stirred/degassed on each date noted below.
    5/31 - SG @ 1.018
    6/2 - SG @ 1.009
    6/3-SG @ 1.006
    6/4 - SG @ 1.004
    6/6 - SG @ 1.002
    6/9 - SG @ 1.000
    PH has been holding around 3.2

    At 17.32 abv now the alcohol is pretty noticeable but that was expected. Not very yeasty at all. The honey flavor is strong too though and what I was hoping for. Just about at 30 days now so I'll stir daily this weekend figuring it's only going get through about 2-3 more points.
    After that, I'll stir every other day for about 3 weeks, then let it alone for 1-2 weeks before racking onto .25g P-Sorbateand a hair less of Metabysulfite.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by NightWolf View Post
    Just a quick update on progress. Stirred/degassed on each date noted below.
    5/31 - SG @ 1.018
    6/2 - SG @ 1.009
    6/3-SG @ 1.006
    6/4 - SG @ 1.004
    6/6 - SG @ 1.002
    6/9 - SG @ 1.000
    PH has been holding around 3.2

    At 17.32 abv now the alcohol is pretty noticeable but that was expected. Not very yeasty at all. The honey flavor is strong too though and what I was hoping for. Just about at 30 days now so I'll stir daily this weekend figuring it's only going get through about 2-3 more points.
    After that, I'll stir every other day for about 3 weeks, then let it alone for 1-2 weeks before racking onto .25g P-Sorbateand a hair less of Metabysulfite.
    HAve you calculated the ammount of sorbate and Kmeta you need?
    Are you looking to backsweeten? because at 17% ABV unless you backsweeten there is not much need for stabilizing

  11. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dadux View Post
    HAve you calculated the ammount of sorbate and Kmeta you need?
    Are you looking to backsweeten? because at 17% ABV unless you backsweeten there is not much need for stabilizing
    Forget the source but it was here on GM that I copied this into my notes:
    When a batch reaches the desired final SG, cold crash for several days,then rack onto sorbate/sulfite.I will rack it onto a stabilizer solution of 1/8 tsp of metabisulfite and 1/2 tsp sorbate PER GALLON,
    But given the high ABV and that I doubt I will be back sweetening, this becomes academic I assume. I'll let it age out and clear on it's own. If it needs clearing help after time, I'll use the Super-Kleer to finish it up.

  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by NightWolf View Post
    Forget the source but it was here on GM that I copied this into my notes:
    When a batch reaches the desired final SG, cold crash for several days,then rack onto sorbate/sulfite.I will rack it onto a stabilizer solution of 1/8 tsp of metabisulfite and 1/2 tsp sorbate PER GALLON,
    But given the high ABV and that I doubt I will be back sweetening, this becomes academic I assume. I'll let it age out and clear on it's own. If it needs clearing help after time, I'll use the Super-Kleer to finish it up.
    There is not much need to use sorbate if not backsweetening. IF you desire you can do so, of course, but with good practices its hard you get anything contaminated at that ABV, and sorbate does not stop everything
    If you want to give the mead some protection against oxidation feel free to add the K-meta, but keep in mind that ammount is protective but wont prevent refermentation in case you backsweeten.
    Im just saying so its clear. Stabilizing is usefull if your ABV is low (11 or less can be infected by acetobacter) or if backsweetening. Anything else its just protective, and the Kmeta does most of the work there, both against oxigen and against other infections (well alcohol kills most things anyway).

  13. #33

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    Thanks again Dadux. The pieces are starting to fall together in my head now. Not just the "whats", but the "why's too. :-)

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