This is my first mead, so I might not be 100% up on all the intricacies yet. However, I'm of the impression that its important to keep the mead aging on top of very little sediment, especially when using fruit. Im making the Barkshack Gingermead recipe from Joy of Homebrewing, but I was looking at making it with a bit of a holiday angle on it and serve it to friends and family this coming Christmas. So I added a decent amount of apple and cranberry, and added a half ounce of orange peel to it left over from a white ale I made last summer.
My problem is that a decent amount of the fruit got into the secondary. I was trying my best to make sure it didn't get through but I used a large amount of fruit (3 pounds apple and 2 pounds cranberries) so it was pretty much impossible. I tried using a makeshift strainer using a cloth hop sack on the end of the racking cane but it kept getting clogged and I had to take it off. It's about a month old now (2 weeks in primary and 2 in secondary), fermentation seems to have died out, and it's even starting to clear up. I haven't taken a gravity reading yet because I don't have a hydrometer tube or wine thief. As per the recipe, the OG was pretty low anyway, like 1.064 or so, so I'm tempted to let it be for another month and then bottle it up. Check these pics out, let me know your opinions.