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Old 10-24-2006, 04:55 PM   #1
LewisM
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Default Just started second cider (help on OG)

Hey all, after the great success of my first cider, i decided i'd try something a bit more adventurouse heh.

I followed the following recipe and altered it slightly:

Dutch Gold Clover Honey (~2.5 lb) Used some random honey i found at the local
Knudsen's Organic Apple Juice (to ~1 Gal) Again, used some random brands juice
Fermaid-K: 1/2 tsp Didn't use
Pectic Enzyme: 1/2 Tsp Didn't use
Cinnamon Sticks: 4 Didn't use, couldn't get any
Sunmaid raisins: ~10-15 16
Lalvin D-47 Yeast: 5g I found some yeast at the local supermarket that was just called "homebrewing and wine making yeast", so i thought that would be better than bread yeast

Heated (not boiled) 1L of the juice and mixed in the honey.
Heated this a bit more and got rid of the scum from the honey. I missed a small bit, but im hoping that wont make to much difference.
Threw that into a 1G carboy and topped most of the way up with cold juice to bring the temp down a bit.
Threw in the raisins, i chose 16 just to be difficult
followed the directions on the yeasts tub, put in 10g of it because 5g looked a bit pathetic.

slapped on the airlock and left it for 10 mins, came back and it's bubbling maybe once every 30 secs or so.

I over filled slightly, so ive put the carboy into a big fermenting bucket, just in case heh.

Now, my questions.

I forgot (again ) to get an OG reading of the mix, so i roughly threw together enough to fill a glass.
measured that and got a reading of "60".
I'm not sure if that is like 1.60?
mine measures down in 10's until it gets to 0 then goes down in smaller intervals.
I hope that explains it, if not ill just take a pic and show heh.

Also, how long should i leave this one in the primary + secondary? I know ciders are ready to bottle when they give a reading of 1 - 0.9, but is it the same for cysers/meads?

Thanks!

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Primary: Empty
Secondary: Cyser (unamed)
bottled: Team Sally's Scrumpy
Drinking: A bottle of the teams scrumpy every now and then :D

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Old 10-24-2006, 08:22 PM   #2
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Well, you used honey at the "dry mead" rate plus the cider's sugars. I'd say your OG was around 1.140. Plan on 1-2 months in the primary and 8-12 months in the secondary. Then a couple years of aging. Most likely your yeast will die long before the fermentation is done and you'll have to re-pitch.

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Old 10-24-2006, 08:28 PM   #3
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wow, a fair old while

and disaster struck earlier, i thought i had overfilled it and sure enough i came downstairs to just catch it starting to spill out the airlock
Thankfully it was already in the bucket, so i just poured in the rest and threw a lid on it

And ill have to take your word for the 1.140 thing, still wouldnt mind finding out exactly =/

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Sing, sing, sing and be merry!
Dance, dance, dance and be merry!
Drink, drink, drink and be pi...merry!
----------------------------------
Primary: Empty
Secondary: Cyser (unamed)
bottled: Team Sally's Scrumpy
Drinking: A bottle of the teams scrumpy every now and then :D

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Old 10-24-2006, 08:40 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LewisM
wow, a fair old while
And ill have to take your word for the 1.140 thing, still wouldnt mind finding out exactly =/
david_42's estimate of 1140 is sensible for apple juice and honey in those conditions. That's how i did the math. You need to read a hydrometer and cross it with a thermometer to get a better idea. I'll take a wild guess that the homebrewers yeast you found was at a Morrisons supermarket - If so It's a wine yeast. ferments out dry - needs a decent aging.
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Old 10-24-2006, 08:45 PM   #5
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Somerfields actualy :P

and im still not quite working out how to get the OG of this, i originally thought i just read it straight off the hydrometer, but aparently not?

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Secondary: Cyser (unamed)
bottled: Team Sally's Scrumpy
Drinking: A bottle of the teams scrumpy every now and then :D

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Old 10-24-2006, 09:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LewisM
and im still not quite working out how to get the OG of this, i originally thought i just read it straight off the hydrometer, but aparently not?
You need to either search here or read up on hydrometer/temp differences and yeast used - it's the only way of improving your brews if you already understand the maturation process for home brew cider.
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Old 10-24-2006, 10:51 PM   #7
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ahh ok, ive been reading up a bit and this is what i've gathered so far, please do correct me on anything that is wrong

The original weight of the wort will be quite heavy as there is a lot of sugar in it, which is heavier than water and so sinks.
This goes the same the other way, meaning that at the end the sugars have been converted into alcahol and so doesnt sink.

Water gives a reading of 0, which im guessing is the reason you have to wait for around that before bottling.

As far as i have picked up, the lower the reading at the end of fermentation, the dryer the drink will be. So if i was to try and make a sweeter wine/cider, i would have to stop the fermentation slightly above 0. whereas with a dry wine/cider i could just leave it alone until it has completely stopped.

to get the end alcahol content i would take the start reading - the final reading and divide that by 7.4
I'm not to sure why its 7.4 or when and why that would change.

The SG is the readings i was talking about above. This is what it is because it calculates how many grams per litre your drink would weigh.
I think it is based on water, which works out at 1000g per litre.
so a reading of say 1014 means that there are +14g per litre, wheras something like .996 would mean there are -4 grams.
Apart from effecting the dryness, i'm not to sure what this would be used for.

[question] Different sites say different things, are the SG and OG the same thing? [question]

As for the temperature, i had a quick search on google and couldnt find much that explained much on it

Now about my reading, which i am still a bit confused about.
My hydrometer gave me a reading of 60, which before i just took for granted as "yay, a 60..."
But, with the above now clear to me i can say that surely this is about right?
60 is about half way down my "Hmeter" meaning that there is plenty of sugar in it, and is would give quite a high reading of 1.060.
Now i'm guessing that meads + cysers also need to go down to roughly 0, but as i said, thats only a guess.
Any way, even so that would potentialy give me a quite strong drink.

Which reminds me, to save me some searching (its getting late here and sleep is looking oh so tempting) could someone explain to me how i work out the Potential Alcahol?

well that was a pretty huge post, as i said please do correct me on anything that is incorrect

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Sing, sing, sing and be merry!
Dance, dance, dance and be merry!
Drink, drink, drink and be pi...merry!
----------------------------------
Primary: Empty
Secondary: Cyser (unamed)
bottled: Team Sally's Scrumpy
Drinking: A bottle of the teams scrumpy every now and then :D

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Old 10-25-2006, 09:01 AM   #8
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also, a quick question about the primary fermenting bucket:

Ive been told that the lid doesnt need to be airtight, aparently some people dont even put a lid on it.
But, if this is going to be in the primary for that amount of time, surely i am going to want it airtight?

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Sing, sing, sing and be merry!
Dance, dance, dance and be merry!
Drink, drink, drink and be pi...merry!
----------------------------------
Primary: Empty
Secondary: Cyser (unamed)
bottled: Team Sally's Scrumpy
Drinking: A bottle of the teams scrumpy every now and then :D

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Old 10-25-2006, 09:51 PM   #9
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Hi LewisM...

Let me try to answer some of your questions (I understand some of the mechanics more than the actual methods )

Quote:
Originally Posted by LewisM
Water gives a reading of 0, which im guessing is the reason you have to wait for around that before bottling.
Water is 0 on the Oeschle scale and 1.000 on the Specific Gravity scale. These two scales are directly proportional... to convert from Specific Gravity, subtract 1 and multiply by 1000:
1.042 = 42 Oeschle

The reverse is also true:

62 Oeschle = 1.062

The specific gravity is 1.000 (or 0 Oeschle) for water, by definition. Sugars dissolved in the water increase the density, therefore increasing the specific gravity. When yeast converts the sugars into alcohol, alcohol is less dense than water, lowering the specific gravity. It is possible to ferment to less than 1 (0.998 or -2 Oeschle, for example) if enough sugar converts to alcohol.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LewisM
As far as i have picked up, the lower the reading at the end of fermentation, the dryer the drink will be. So if i was to try and make a sweeter wine/cider, i would have to stop the fermentation slightly above 0. whereas with a dry wine/cider i could just leave it alone until it has completely stopped.
That is correct, though I'm nowhere near an expert... I'm trying to figure out when to rack to secondary fermenters right now myself...

Quote:
Originally Posted by LewisM
to get the end alcahol content i would take the start reading - the final reading and divide that by 7.4
I'm not to sure why its 7.4 or when and why that would change.

The SG is the readings i was talking about above. This is what it is because it calculates how many grams per litre your drink would weigh.
I think it is based on water, which works out at 1000g per litre.
so a reading of say 1014 means that there are +14g per litre, wheras something like .996 would mean there are -4 grams.
Apart from effecting the dryness, i'm not to sure what this would be used for.

[question] Different sites say different things, are the SG and OG the same thing? [question]

As for the temperature, i had a quick search on google and couldnt find much that explained much on it
Right... you can subtract the original specific gravity from the final specific gravity and divide by 7.4 (I use 8 to round it off quickly in my head) if you're using the Oeschle scale on the hydrometer. If you're using the other scale, subtract the two and multiply by 125.

SG = specific gravity - this is a generic term specific gravity reading
OG = original gravity - this is the specific gravity of the liquid before any fermentation
FG = final gravity - this is the specific gravity of the liquid after fermentation (the current reading if you stop the fermentation at the time you take the reading)

Quote:
Originally Posted by LewisM
Now about my reading, which i am still a bit confused about.
My hydrometer gave me a reading of 60, which before i just took for granted as "yay, a 60..."
But, with the above now clear to me i can say that surely this is about right?
60 is about half way down my "Hmeter" meaning that there is plenty of sugar in it, and is would give quite a high reading of 1.060.
Now i'm guessing that meads + cysers also need to go down to roughly 0, but as i said, thats only a guess.
Any way, even so that would potentialy give me a quite strong drink.

Which reminds me, to save me some searching (its getting late here and sleep is looking oh so tempting) could someone explain to me how i work out the Potential Alcahol?

well that was a pretty huge post, as i said please do correct me on anything that is incorrect
Right again! 60 = 1060 = 1.060 These are just different ways of representing the same value.

You can work out the potential alcohol by assuming your FG will be 0 (or 1000 or 1.000). Take your OG reading (let's assume 60) and calculate the %abv:

60 (OG) - 0 (FG) = 60 / 8 = 7.5%abv (potential)

another example:

1.132 - 1.000 = 0.132 * 125 = 16.5%abv (potential)

To calculate the actual alcohol, use the same equations and fill in the actual FG:

60 - 3 = 57 / 8 = 7.125%abv (actual)
1.132 - 1.015 = 0.117 * 125 = 14.625%abv (actual)

You can figure out the alcohol by weight from the alcohol by volume (and vice versa), too:

%abw = %abv * 0.8
%abv = %avw * 1.25

From what I understand, you need to make sure the fermentation has stopped before you bottle to prevent bottle-bombs! But, that's where my research ends... I'm still unsure how to carbonate if the yeast has finished but there are sugars left in the medium... how does adding the priming sugar promote another small fermentation? Hopefully I'll get my answers soon enough!

I hope this helps!

-Rich
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Primary - 20 oz Rum in the Raw (experiment) - 1.150 OG
Secondary - 1 gal Chokecherry wine
Secondary - 5 gal California Uncommon (dry hopping)
Bottled - Cherry Apfelwein
Aging - 1 gal Still of the Night Mead - 1.132 OG
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Old 10-25-2006, 10:31 PM   #10
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ahh thanks, that does clear up quite a bit

although one thing, in your examples of potential alcahol, using one scale it came out as 7.5 nd the other came out as 16.5, which of these is supposed to be used?

and to repay the favour, heres what ive picked up on bottling

basicly when you bottle you either want all of the fermentation to of stopped or be going very slowly.
If its stopped you just sprinkle a few grains of yeast + sugar into the bottles and cap. I think somewhere there is a chart for how much of each.
what happens is the yeast ferments slightly, producing Co2. This is then absorbed into the drink, carbonating it

as for bottle bombs, these generaly happen if the yeast is still to active, or to much sugar is added to the bottles.

you probs already knew this, but, i made the effert ^-^

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Sing, sing, sing and be merry!
Dance, dance, dance and be merry!
Drink, drink, drink and be pi...merry!
----------------------------------
Primary: Empty
Secondary: Cyser (unamed)
bottled: Team Sally's Scrumpy
Drinking: A bottle of the teams scrumpy every now and then :D

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