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Old 10-03-2013, 10:50 PM   #11
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thanks Yooper! So its been only a couple of days since I added sugar but I must not be adding enough I am getting 0 bubbles through my airlock now and the night I added the sugar I was getting about 10 per minute....

No clue what to do at this point, I don't want to open it up again exposing it to the air to check the SG... but i want to check the SG to see if adding sugar is needed...

suggestions? Should I rack it again? its only been 4 days since I took it out of the bucket

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Old 10-04-2013, 12:25 AM   #12
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thanks Yooper! So its been only a couple of days since I added sugar but I must not be adding enough I am getting 0 bubbles through my airlock now and the night I added the sugar I was getting about 10 per minute....

No clue what to do at this point, I don't want to open it up again exposing it to the air to check the SG... but i want to check the SG to see if adding sugar is needed...

suggestions? Should I rack it again? its only been 4 days since I took it out of the bucket
You shouldn't be getting any bubbles- that's normal.

You ferment in the primary until fermentation slows, and then rack it to the carboy and top up to finish and clear. It would be abnormal to see much fermentation after that- the idea is for it to stop! It should be done, or nearly so. You normally take a hydrometer reading at that time- before moving it to secondary, so you can be assured that the fermentation is nearing completion.

A hydrometer reading is pretty important to know when the fermentation is finished vs stalled. My guess is if you took a hydrometer reading, you'd know that fermentation is done, or nearly so. Then the wine begins to clear. Adding more sugar will arrest this process, as well as make the wine higher and higher alcohol with every addition. Each sugar addition will push it to a "hot" rocket fuel drink.

I'm pretty sure that isn't what you want, but I could be wrong.
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Old 10-04-2013, 12:34 PM   #13
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Last night I checked the SG, 0% ABV.

This tells me a couple things, 1 no sugar present and 2 I likely never put in enough sugar for the yeast to be able to do what it does in the airlock to make alcohol.

I added about another # of sugar directly to the carboy. Too fast, a bit of a mess, not to bad to clean up though lol.

Right now its really active, any suggestions at this point? I know where I messed up for next time. The amount of sugar and when it goes in, is very important and both aspects of that I screwed up...

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Old 10-04-2013, 12:44 PM   #14
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This tells me a couple things, 1 no sugar present and 2 I likely never put in enough sugar for the yeast to be able to do what it does in the airlock to make alcohol.
.
No, that's NOT was an SG of .990 or 1.000 tells you!

It tells you that you added sugar before and that it fermented out. That's exactly what is suppose to happen.

Say, the original OG was 1.100. And now it's 1.000. That means the alcohol by volume would be over 13%. If it was .990, that means the ABV is more like 14.5%! If your OG was 1.050, the current ABV is more like 11% wwith two pounds of sugar added later. What was your OG, and how many pounds of sugar did you add after that? Those are important details.

Again, with each sugar addition, you'll increase the SG and then it'll ferment again to .990. That means it's going to get boozier, and boozier, and you'll have rocket fuel soon. It's important to be able to "add" the sugar to your OG, so you must be darn near 12% or so now.

I would highly recommend to stop restarting fermentation, and figure out where the wine is now, if you want this to be drinkable.
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Old 10-04-2013, 10:13 PM   #15
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I am clearly not understanding how to take readings with my hydrometer. I was under the impression that the more alcohol the density of the water would change due to water being heavier right? So I have no clue how to figure out where my wine is.... since I don't understand the relationship of the original reading vs. now. 1.04 to 1.00 as of last night and I added about 1 more #... i can check the SG again but how am i really going to know the ABV?

Yooper you are awesome, I think I rushed making my first wine ... thank you for all the pointers!

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Old 10-04-2013, 10:15 PM   #16
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I am clearly not understanding how to take readings with my hydrometer. I was under the impression that the more alcohol the density of the water would change due to water being heavier right? So I have no clue how to figure out where my wine is.... since I don't understand the relationship of the original reading vs. now. 1.04 to 1.00 as of last night and I added about 1 more #... i can check the SG again but how am i really going to know the ABV?

Yooper you are awesome, I think I rushed making my first wine ... thank you for all the pointers!
Remember that the hydrometer measures the sugar in suspension. As it ferments, it's no longer in suspension. Alcohol is lighter than water, and it's common for wines to get to .990 (water is 1.000).

What was the original reading? And then, how many pounds of sugar have you added in total (after the original reading)? Oh, and the total volume in the carboy (roughly)? And last, what is the reading right now?

I can guestimate where you are at with some quick and rough figuring.
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Old 10-04-2013, 10:28 PM   #17
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Original SG when i transfered to the carboy 1.04 SG (4 gal roughly, pictured in this thread)

After topping up 1.01 sg (5 gal +, pictured in thread)

After fermentation stopped 1.00 sg + 1 lb sugar

2nd time fermentation stopped (2 days later) 1.00 sg +1 lb sugar

Its still bubbling away but has reduced in speed by about 200% likely by Sunday it will no longer be gassing off

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Old 10-04-2013, 10:35 PM   #18
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Not trying to be a meany here, but I think you might have a general misunderstanding of the fermentation process. In general you should make all your sugar additions at the beginning to achieve your desired OG (original gravity, not to be confused with original gangster). Then you add your yeast and let it ferment until the yeast has consumed all the sugar in solution, aka it's dry.

At this point you take another gravity reading to get your final gravity number. The difference between the gravity readings at the beginning and end will give you your total alcohol content.

Like I said these are general rules, so generally at no point should you add more sugar. It will only kick off fermentation again and increase the alcohol content, as Yooper has described.

Hope this helps!

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Old 10-04-2013, 10:41 PM   #19
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Not trying to be a meany here, but I think you might have a general misunderstanding of the fermentation process. In general you should make all your sugar additions at the beginning to achieve your desired OG (original gravity, not to be confused with original gangster). Then you add your yeast and let it ferment until the yeast has consumed all the sugar in solution, aka it's dry.

At this point you take another gravity reading to get your final gravity number. The difference between the gravity readings at the beginning and end will give you your total alcohol content.

Like I said these are general rules, so generally at no point should you add more sugar. It will only kick off fermentation again and increase the alcohol content, as Yooper has described.

Hope this helps!
I wouldn't be on here if I weren't counting on constructive criticisms I actually am hoping for it! Why couldn't I have learned how this process (wine making) works when I took Organic Chem ? LOL Its the worst when people explain how it works and it makes complete sense. Next round Ill add sugar until I reach my desired OG then carboy and live yeast? Once the airlock has reverse pressure I take my SG and bing search how that calculation works for telling you ABV?
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Old 10-05-2013, 01:44 AM   #20
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The SG going into the carboy doesn't matter- what matters is the OG (original gravity) before you pitch the yeast. A few days after fermentation, when it's 1.040, doesn't help at all unfortunately. It seems like your first reading of 1.040 was taken days after fermentation was active, so that reading is useless.

2 pounds of sugar in 5 gallons would add 18 gravity points to 5 gallons. You added 5 pounds originally, plus 15 pounds of grapes. 5 pounds of sugar would give you about 46 pounds, so that right there is 1.064 just in sugar.

It's hard to guess what the 15 pound of grapes would bring, but you definitely get some from them. I have no idea how much natural sugar your grapes had, but you'll know that next time that an OG reading is crucial, to get the original gravity.

If we assume you got 20 points from the grapes (just a totally wild guess- it could be less or much more), that right there would be 1.085ish. Since I have no idea what the reading is today, I'll have to guess there also. I'll guess .994-.996 but I could be wrong. It could be lower.

That means, the wine is currently +/- 12% ABV. Could be a little less, or could be a whole lot more.

It's time to leave it alone, either way. It won't be improved by continuing to boost the alcohol- it'll be hot rocket fuel quickly and take years to age out.

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