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Old 02-22-2010, 05:03 PM   #1
Mumford
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Default SG readings and secondary help

I currently have some mead fermenting right now and I had some questions about some processes.

I'm doing 1 gal batches and am interested in the SG but by the time I take 2-3 readings it would severely decrease my turnout. How do most people take their readings? I'm not too worried about it since I want a dry product but I would still like to know.

Also, when using those 1 gal jugs as secondaries what's a good way to seal them? I thought about some plastic wrap with a rubber band w/ marbles to limit head space or I could steal some paraffin from some of my labs.

One more question (heh, sorry): when storing wine bottles what's the best/easiest way to store them on their sides. I'm a beer brewer so my storage options are mostly upright.

Thanks!

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Old 02-22-2010, 05:28 PM   #2
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What do you mean it would decrease your turnout if you took more readings?

When using the jugs just use an airlock as you would with any other type of carboy and get rid of excess head space by topping up or marbles are an option.

Lastly you could build a simple wine cube that would not take up to much space but be sufficient for your needs.

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Old 02-22-2010, 07:35 PM   #3
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By "decreasing turnout" I mean that filling up the hydro test tube takes a good amount of liquid and that done over 2-3 readings would take a significant amount out of the yield in a one gallon batch. I'm assuming that no one dumps their test sample back into the batch. It just seems like I'll end up with ~4 bottles instead of 5.

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Old 02-22-2010, 07:41 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mumford View Post
By "decreasing turnout" I mean that filling up the hydro test tube takes a good amount of liquid and that done over 2-3 readings would take a significant amount out of the yield in a one gallon batch. I'm assuming that no one dumps their test sample back into the batch. It just seems like I'll end up with ~4 bottles instead of 5.
Try buying something like this: http://www.brewmasterswarehouse.com/product/0101696/fermtech-wine-thieftest-jar-combo

Makes taking sample easy and you don't waste anything
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Old 02-22-2010, 07:49 PM   #5
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Awesome! I'll look into it. This mead thing has really gotten me interested.

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Old 02-22-2010, 11:54 PM   #6
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I actually have one of the combination thief/test jars, and it doesn't really work for 1 gallon batches. Since the 1 gallon jug is so shallow, you can't really get enough in the tube to float your hydrometer, which defeats the whole purpose.

Whenever I do a one gallon batch, I just sanitize my test equipment thoroughly, then pour the sample back in after taking my reading. Losing 1 gallon to contamination isn't the end of the world, but if you're strict with your sanitizing steps, shouldn't really be an issue. However, I definitely don't do this on larger batches, because at that point risking the investment isn't worth it to me.

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Old 02-23-2010, 12:04 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WheresOurFish View Post
I actually have one of the combination thief/test jars, and it doesn't really work for 1 gallon batches. Since the 1 gallon jug is so shallow, you can't really get enough in the tube to float your hydrometer, which defeats the whole purpose.

Whenever I do a one gallon batch, I just sanitize my test equipment thoroughly, then pour the sample back in after taking my reading. Losing 1 gallon to contamination isn't the end of the world, but if you're strict with your sanitizing steps, shouldn't really be an issue. However, I definitely don't do this on larger batches, because at that point risking the investment isn't worth it to me.
Probably true, I just drop my hydrometer directly into my gallon jugs though.
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Old 02-23-2010, 12:07 AM   #8
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I never thought about just dropping the thing into the jug. Ever have a problem getting it back out? (I shudder to think what's growing on my needle-nose pliers that I'd need to use)

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Old 02-23-2010, 12:11 AM   #9
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I just give it a light tap on the top so it bobs back up to where I can grab it.

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Old 02-23-2010, 12:31 AM   #10
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Thanks again for the help.

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