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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Mead Forum > 1st time brewing mead. need help!
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Old 10-06-2012, 04:17 PM   #1
wampodan
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Default 1st time brewing mead. need help!

three months have past since i boiled the honey and water. cooled down the combination added nutrient and yeast. been sitting in the carboy with valve. not sure what to do next. do i strain then bootle. or do i leave longer in carboy? please help

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Old 10-06-2012, 07:20 PM   #2
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Did it ferment? Did you take hydrometer reading at all? that instrument is invaluable to you at this point, and only costs a few bucks anyway. Possibly seeing lees in bottom of carboy but that isn't a good indication that it's ready to rack.

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Old 10-06-2012, 07:22 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wampodan View Post
three months have past since i boiled the honey and water. cooled down the combination added nutrient and yeast. been sitting in the carboy with valve. not sure what to do next. do i strain then bootle. or do i leave longer in carboy? please help
Rack it to get it off the sediment in the first instance. Preferably into something to reduce the head space to a minimum...
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Old 10-06-2012, 07:31 PM   #4
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Have you taken any gravity readings ? I would guess it's finished fermenting but you'd want to be sure before bottling.

You've got a lot of options at this point but more info about your recipe would help us guide you.

How much honey did you use, how big a batch is that ?

What strain of yeast did you use ?

Depending on what you're looking for you could bottle it dry, backsweeten it and bottle, step feed the yeast by adding more honey to get higher alcohol, rack it off the sediment and age it longer if it isn't perfectly clear, or you could try adding some fruit or spices or oaking it for a while.

If you decide to bottle it you should stabilize it with metabisulfite and potassium sorbate otherwise renewed fermentation in the bottle could lead to dangerous pressures under the cork.

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Old 10-06-2012, 08:27 PM   #5
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4 gallons water 1 gallon of Honey. yeast was. wyeast beer nutrient blend . there is about 1.5in of lees on the bottom. vapor valve still releases about once every 45 sec. what is the term rack mean? sorry first at doing this.

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Old 10-06-2012, 08:29 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by snuesen
Did it ferment? Did you take hydrometer reading at all? that instrument is invaluable to you at this point, and only costs a few bucks anyway. Possibly seeing lees in bottom of carboy but that isn't a good indication that it's ready to rack.
i do have a hydrometer, but. not sure how to use it. i do not believe it ready for bottling. was thinking of waiting another month. what does to rack mean?
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Old 10-06-2012, 08:38 PM   #7
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Rack means to siphon the clear wine or beer off the top, into a clean carboy, leaving most of the sediment behind. If you plan on aging for several more months (pretty common with mead), then it's probably a good idea.

How much does 1 gallon of honey weigh?

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Old 10-06-2012, 09:03 PM   #8
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1 gallon of honey weighs approx 12lb

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Old 10-07-2012, 03:25 AM   #9
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You will seriously have much more luck if you read up on brewing/fermenting to learn what to do and what's going on with your fermentation.

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Old 10-07-2012, 04:53 AM   #10
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You'll want to float the hydrometer in the mead and read the specific gravity on the scale. Either use the plastic cylinder that the hydrometer came in or some other tall slender vessel. The more sugar in suspension the higher the hydrometer will float in the water, the the S.G. is the number that rests at the water line. An S.G. of 1.000 has little to no sugar in it, it's equal to the density of straight water. An S.G. of 1.150 has quite a bit of sugar in suspension and a high alcohol potential. Alcohol has a lower density than water so when you've got a high ABV brew and no sugar in suspension its S.G. will sometimes be below 1.000.

If you haven't got another 5 gallon carboy you could rack the mead into a large stock pot, clean the sediment out of the carboy and then siphon it back into the clean carboy.

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