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Thread: Newbee setup recommendations

  1. #21

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    I would like to speak out here. One thing that can be done on the cheap so to speak is SO2 additions. This should be done by everyone. And unfortunately, this is the most overlooked and abused piece of protocol. SO2 additions will keep bad guys at bay. And at the same time will help to capture O2 as it becomes exposed to your mead as well. All too often. People will add it in very small doeses once, when they stabilize the mead. ABout 40% of the first add becomes bound to other particles in the mead. Once it binds with other particulates it is no longer available to go to work. Each time you expose your mead to oxygen you rish exposure issues. And so each time you do anything to the must more SO2 becomes useless. So it'sa not an "add once" proposition. It's a continual addition type of prtotocl. To be exact you need an analyser. These are somewhat pricey and might not be in a budget for an occasioanal mead maker. But never less. If you buy a pH meter ( only $15 or so) you can then make adjustments. I will provide a chart that will help you to guesstimate the apporopriate additions. As well as educate you to the binding aspect I spoke of earlier.

    Here is the link. http://morewinemaking.com/public/pdf/so2.pdf
    7 out of 4 people have a hard time using their hydrometer!

  2. #22
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    122

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    Thanks, Squatchy. I've never really used or considered SO2 additions until recently. The strawberry and blueberry I mentioned above were ruined, as I said, by oxygenation. I tried adding SO2 to them in an effort to save them, and they did improve to some degree, but they were too far gone to really be saved by this treatment and became "meh'ds", instead of meads. But I may not have been administering the SO2 correctly. I appreciate your turning me on to this article and will read and research it carefully.

    I avoided SO2 additions for the usual reasons you hear: I didn't want any more chemical additions than I could help and was concerned that it might alter the flavour or aroma profiles. I was also concerned about whether it would alter the maturation trajectory of the mead. But in light of your remarks in the MMM podcasts and the blueberry and strawberry meads I lost, I'm going to give this some real consideration and will most likely try it on several of the meads I've got going.

    I'm still going to use CO2 during my active fermentation and initial aging processes, as it does an excellent job of shielding my meads from O2 during various operations but I'm going to read and carefully consider this article. Thanks again!

    This weekend, I'm racking a peach mead, a plum mead and the Maui Gold Pineapple Mead I posted in the mead log recently. All three of these meads are three months from pitch and are very nice meads; wonderfully drinkable and tasty right now and I expect them to be excellent after they've aged a bit. In fact, Willow and I got rather potted, last night, tasting them as we prepped for the racking we'll do tonight. A glass here, a glass there ... you know how it goes. We're also racking a tart cherry and a blueberry that have been aging, just to get them off the very slight lees and fruit that have settled since the last racking a month or so ago.

    ≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈≈

    Ešrendil
    Miruvor Maker and Eternal NewBee
    Mithlond Meadery, Grey Havens, Eriador

  3. #23

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    I can tell you that if done correctly. This will not add any off notes at all. It's a misnomer about the sorbate giving "geranium notes" if your adds are done correctly this won't happen. It will protect your mead for a very long time from oxidation and microbial contamination.
    7 out of 4 people have a hard time using their hydrometer!

  4. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatchy View Post
    I can tell you that if done correctly. This will not add any off notes at all. It's a misnomer about the sorbate giving "geranium notes" if your adds are done correctly this won't happen. It will protect your mead for a very long time from oxidation and microbial contamination.
    Squatchy.... I have to say I have learned so much from your different conversations and I just read the whole link you presented on the SO2. I have been dabbling in squashing frut pitching yeast and hoping for the best as a amateur home Brewer but since my buddy turn me on to Mead my knowledge has bounded forward to the point where I acknowledge I didn't know anything about yeast or fermentation. I currently have a batch of mead I built in pitched my yeast 3 1/2 days ago and am wondering if I am in the right place in this forum to have you help me critique the things I've done with this recipe. If you are willing to reply I can go ahead and post if this is the right place the recipe I built

    Sent from my SM-G930R4 using Tapatalk

  5. Default

    Earendil, Iíd be sad if I lost a batch, for sure, and that would also make me change my ways. In the beginning Iím sure I wonít make perfect mead, but at least Iíll learn how to recognize faults in the mead 🙂 And hopefully the mead will still taste good. Iím starting out with traditionals, that are safer than melomels when it comes to oxydation, but Iíve got lots of wild berries Iíd like to use at a later point.

    Squatchy, Iíve bought sulfite, sorbate and a PH-meter, but hadnít yet read up on how to add, so the link was very helpful. Mixing a 10 % SO2-solution seems like a very handy way for measuring small additions. In the beginning I guess Iíll go for sulfite addition based on PH, traditional recommendations when not knowing the SO2-level in the mead and accounting for an approximate 40 % binding for the first addition and a little less binding for any later additions.

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by Need for Mead View Post
    Earendil, I’d be sad if I lost a batch, for sure, and that would also make me change my ways. In the beginning I’m sure I won’t make perfect mead, but at least I’ll learn how to recognize faults in the mead �� And hopefully the mead will still taste good. I’m starting out with traditionals, that are safer than melomels when it comes to oxydation, but I’ve got lots of wild berries I’d like to use at a later point.

    Squatchy, I’ve bought sulfite, sorbate and a PH-meter, but hadn’t yet read up on how to add, so the link was very helpful. Mixing a 10 % SO2-solution seems like a very handy way for measuring small additions. In the beginning I guess I’ll go for sulfite addition based on PH, traditional recommendations when not knowing the SO2-level in the mead and accounting for an approximate 40 % binding for the first addition and a little less binding for any later additions.
    The link will tell you how much to add
    7 out of 4 people have a hard time using their hydrometer!

  7. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by Need for Mead View Post
    I might go with your system later, but until I know this hobby will stick, Iíll keep it cheaper. Iím now thinking of transferring everything from the bucket to a carboy after 1/2 or 2/3 sugar break.
    I have a question about this. It might be covered elsewhere but I haven't come across it yet. Other than sanitation and oxidation concerns, is there any reason I shouldn't rack from a bucket fermentation vessel to a glass carboy during the initial fermentation? Basically I was thinking of fermenting with fruit for a couple of weeks (instead of a whole month) and then racking to free up the bucket for a new batch. Should I wait until fermentation is complete or can racking be done this early? How early is too early?

  8. #28

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Devin Petry-Johnson View Post
    I have a question about this. It might be covered elsewhere but I haven't come across it yet. Other than sanitation and oxidation concerns, is there any reason I shouldn't rack from a bucket fermentation vessel to a glass carboy during the initial fermentation? Basically I was thinking of fermenting with fruit for a couple of weeks (instead of a whole month) and then racking to free up the bucket for a new batch. Should I wait until fermentation is complete or can racking be done this early? How early is too early?
    Are you finished with the fruit? It doesn't get in and out of carboys very easily. I would keep it in the bucket until the fruit is finished. You can then transfer (rack) to a carboy to free up the bucket. But take everything along with you if it isn't finished fermenting. Leaving the biomass behind will possibly end up with a stalled fermentation. And at least will really make the yeast struggle to get to the end. And they might not get as deep as they will with a full biomass.
    7 out of 4 people have a hard time using their hydrometer!

  9. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatchy View Post
    I would like to speak out here. One thing that can be done on the cheap so to speak is SO2 additions. This should be done by everyone. And unfortunately, this is the most overlooked and abused piece of protocol. SO2 additions will keep bad guys at bay. And at the same time will help to capture O2 as it becomes exposed to your mead as well. All too often. People will add it in very small doeses once, when they stabilize the mead. ABout 40% of the first add becomes bound to other particles in the mead. Once it binds with other particulates it is no longer available to go to work. Each time you expose your mead to oxygen you rish exposure issues. And so each time you do anything to the must more SO2 becomes useless. So it'sa not an "add once" proposition. It's a continual addition type of prtotocl. To be exact you need an analyser. These are somewhat pricey and might not be in a budget for an occasioanal mead maker. But never less. If you buy a pH meter ( only $15 or so) you can then make adjustments. I will provide a chart that will help you to guesstimate the apporopriate additions. As well as educate you to the binding aspect I spoke of earlier.

    Here is the link. http://morewinemaking.com/public/pdf/so2.pdf
    You are the most knowledgeable guy I think I have come across and enjoy reading everything you write. Spring is coming and the sap is going to run do you have any information being a mead guy on fermenting with maple syrup? I have read some things about making mead with maple syrup but do you have any information about fermenting just straight maple syrup

    Sent from my SM-G930R4 using Tapatalk

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