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Old 01-15-2013, 12:09 AM   #1
Cregar
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Default Mead exploded...

well, foam exploded.

Not sure what happened, made a 5 gal batch of mead yesterday and fermentation started around 10 pm (really slow).

When I got home tonight I noticed a small amount of foam in my blow off tube. I didn't think mead foamed up when fermenting. Well I popped the top off the bucket and dumped in my next nutrient addition. Seconds later the damn thing volcano'ed on me, like when your a kid and you made your volcano experiment.

I think I lost 1/4 to 1/2 a gallon on the carpet before it stopped.

This is my second batch of mead and my first adding nutrient.

Has this ever happened to anyone before? What would have caused it?

I am using fermax nutrient.

Craig

Well, found the answer:

"Be careful when adding dry powders to fermenting mead! The sudden release of co2 can cause the mead to foam out of the fermentor. Removing a small portion of the mead to combine with the nutrients first can help, as can stirring to release co2 before adding the nutrients in."

http://www.northernbrewer.com/connec...ents-and-mead/

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Old 01-15-2013, 12:17 AM   #2
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Yep foam all over the kitchen.

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Old 01-15-2013, 04:19 AM   #3
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A carboy I take it ?

One of the setbacks that happens often is that your ferment had kicked in and when you added the fermax you created thousands of "nucleation points" which the carbonic acid (dissolved CO2) attached to and promptly escaped as bubbles of gaseous CO2.

With carboys, it helps to mix the must except the yeast, take your readings -gravity, maybe pH, temperature etc, then take some out. Maybe into soda/pop bottles which are reserved in the fridge.

Then pitch the yeast to start it off.

Then once you see some fermentation (bubbles etc), you give it a slow stir. The airspace created by removing some must gives the foam some expansion room. If the foam rises too high just stop stirring and let it subside or if you have enough expansion room you can sometimes stir quickly enough to knock the bubbles back.

Either way, you can add the reserved must back in once the most active gas producing part of the ferment is over.

It's good technique to stir the brew before adding stuff like nutrient etc as that also helps prevent eruption.

Or of course, you can start your batches in a bucket, moving them to carboy at maybe the 1/3rd sugar break because a bucket gives more room for expansion and once you've passed the 1/3rd break you should be ready to airlock it off and leave it to finish.......

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Old 01-15-2013, 06:36 PM   #4
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I am in a 5 gallon bucket but I didn't think mead foamed when fermenting so I didn't have much head space... maybe 2 or 3 inches.

Tonight I will pull some out for my reading and some out to mix the nutrient in, then pour it back in. Hopefully that will keep it from exploding :-)

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Old 01-15-2013, 06:57 PM   #5
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No it won't! Pour very slowly, it can still cause foaming.

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Old 01-15-2013, 06:58 PM   #6
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you should have degaused it before adding the nutrient

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Old 01-15-2013, 08:31 PM   #7
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Yea... I will try degassing it first. What is the best way? Just stirring with a spoon?

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Old 01-15-2013, 09:33 PM   #8
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yup.. you want to stir it before adding the nutrient with a sanitized spoon and then stir in the nutrient .

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Old 02-15-2013, 03:11 PM   #9
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This too just happened to me. It's my first mead and first time adding nutrients. My question, is it ruined? I don't want to waste my time if its not going to turn out.

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Old 02-15-2013, 03:15 PM   #10
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Well what is out is 'ruined' but what is in your fermentor is fine. Just remember to give it a gentle stir to help degas it some before you add anything in, and uses some head space.

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