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  1. #1

    Default Quick questions, day 3 no noticeable activity...advice please?

    Hey guys, I started my first batch Friday the 7th and the airlock has never really shown much in the way of activity unless I gently stir the must. So I have a few questions and would appreciate some advice. I was originally shooting for a medium/sweet mead...

    In my recipe I used:
    3.25lbs Raw Clover Honey
    25 Raisins
    1/8tsp Fermaid K (mixed into the must before the yeast was pitched)
    Spring Water (added to make 1 gallon)
    71B-1122 Yeast
    Temp while fermenting has been 63-66 degrees

    The starting gravity was 1.150.
    Sunday night, day 2, the gravity was at 1.130.

    Did my gravity get too high for the yeast?

    Should I add some more Fermaid K since I haven't gotten to my 2/3 sugar break?

    Since I was trying for a medium/sweet mead, is this impossible at this point, am I stuck with a dessert mead?

    Should I do anything at this point?

  2. #2

    Default

    First things first, breathe.........

    Ahhhhhh, much better.

    I am new here, but by listening to the folks around here my first batch came out great! So I would like to share some of the simpler tips that they were able to teach me with my first brew that may be able to help you.

    If you say you started your batch on the 7th, only 3 days ago I would not worry too much yet, give it some time, you say the gravity dropped 20 points out of the gate? Are all of your ingredients mixed properly and thouroughly?

    Give the yeast and the must some time to work with one another, take another gravity reading and see where you sit in a couple more days.

    How is the pH of the must? I was advised in my last batch that my pH was getting a little too acidic (3.3-3.4) and a slight adjustment was necessary, right around the 3.7 mark seemed to work well.

    How is the temperature of the must and the ambient room temp?

    Have you been able to degas? C02 will stagnate the fermentation process.

    Above all else, have patience, this just as much an art as it is a science, and you can't rush a masterpiece.

  3. #3

    Default

    I'm trying not to fiddle with the mead too much, I know this anxiety is just a newbee kind of response.

    My ingredients were mixed really well, I'm pretty confident with that. I have degassed the past couple days. I plan on taking a gravity reading tonight...and possibly adding Fermaid K for nutrients unless people say I shouldn't.

    I haven't taken a pH reading yet though, I'll need to grab some strips tomorrow afternoon and find out.

    As far as temp goes, I use an LCD thermometer on the side of teh carboy so I assume the Must temp is 63-66 degrees the entire time.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Ottawa, ON
    Posts
    8,394

    Default

    If your gravity's dropping, you're fine It was a bit of a heavy must, I try to keep mine under around 1.125, it's a lot easier to add more honey later if it went dry than it is to convince yeast to keep eating when they've been overloaded. Diluting it a little wouldn't be a terrible idea if it quits too early.

    As long as your gravity's above 1.100 you're probably fine to add more nutrients or energizer, and keep degassing and aerating it till then too! I'd aim for a total of 1/2 tsp of Fermaid for one gallon, maybe more if you're not using DAP or any other form of nutrients.
    "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

  5. #5

    Default

    I'll have to try to aerate and degas tonight, and add a little more Fermaid K then.

    I really wasn't going for a high gravity, but apparently I should have checked the hydrometer while I was making the must...lesson learned.

    Thanks for the pointers!

  6. Default

    1.15 is a pretty high gravity must. If you're OK with a little less pop in your mead, try diluting it to get the yeasties going?

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