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Old 12-05-2011, 09:51 PM   #1
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Default Strange readings .... oops !!

I started about a 4 gallon batch of Raspberry wine. I had 16 pounds of berries thawing in a large plastic tote, and added about 2 gallons of boiling water with about 16 pounds of sugar dissolved in it, and mixed them well. I let them sit until everything was thawed and back to around room temp. I pitched the pectic enzyme and the campden, and let it set for about 36 hours. Just before I added the yeast, I was trying to get a refractometer reading. I couldn't even see the line. So I went and read the recipe again, and I had missed the line where it said to add water to a specific level. The recipe was for one gallon, so I had to just start adding water until I got a reading. I added 2 gallons and I was at about 32 Brix. I ended up adding another gallon and a half, which brought it down to 26.4 Brix. I guess it pays to read the recipes more thoroughly before starting.

I just thought I would pass along my mishap.

I will update as time goes by. My plan is to pull out about 3 quarts and make a port style wine by fortifying it with Everlcear. I did it a couple years ago, and it turned out great.

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Old 12-14-2011, 01:40 PM   #2
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OK, so now I am confused. I strained out the raspberry pulp, and racked into a secondary. When I took a brix reading, it was around 10. The line was not very defined, but it was between the 10 and 11. When I took a hydrometer reading, it was at 1.004. So how can that be ? According to all the brix charts I have looked at, a 10 brix should be about a 1.040. I have calibrated my refractometer with the solution that came with it, and it was dead on at Zero.

The wine is still showing lots of activity yet. I am very confused at the huge difference in my readings. I will take another set of reading tonight and see where things are at, again. If anybody has some insight, I would gladly like to hear them.

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Old 12-14-2011, 01:56 PM   #3
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You can't use Brix refractometer readings once fermentation starts w/o a conversion formula. Brix is a measurement of the weight of sugar in water. Fermentation creates alcohol, which is much lighter than water, so the reading isn't accurate. I'd go with the hydrometer.

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Old 12-14-2011, 02:46 PM   #4
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OK, so with that info, My original reading should be accurate, correct ?

I will remember this for the future.

Thanks

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Old 12-14-2011, 02:49 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bombo80 View Post
OK, so with that info, My original reading should be accurate, correct ?
Yup.
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Old 12-14-2011, 02:50 PM   #6
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OK, so with that info, My original reading should be accurate, correct ?

I will remember this for the future.

Thanks
Yes. The original brix reading would be accurate- it's only when alcohol is created that the reading isn't accurate. That is when you switch to the hydrometer, or use one of those refractometer conversion tables (Beersmith has one).
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