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Old 11-21-2013, 06:49 AM   #1
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Default What the guy atthe store said.....

My buddy said he decided to make a cider. He tends to rush into things so he didn't take any gravity readings. Anyhow, the guy at the store said it's "best" to use champagne yeast and to only keep it in the primary for 7 or 10 days max. After 9 days he decided to transfer it to the secondary and sssaaayyysss that it was carbonated......He said when he transferred it was bubbling like it was carbonated( maybe fizzing) In my opinion I thought that would be pretty hard to do full fermentation and carbonation in only 9 days. I told him it's probably just still fermenting. Any thoughts? Especially on what the guy said at his LHBS?

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Old 11-21-2013, 07:16 AM   #2
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My buddy said he decided to make a cider. He tends to rush into things so he didn't take any gravity readings. Anyhow, the guy at the store said it's "best" to use champagne yeast and to only keep it in the primary for 7 or 10 days max. After 9 days he decided to transfer it to the secondary and sssaaayyysss that it was carbonated......He said when he transferred it was bubbling like it was carbonated( maybe fizzing) In my opinion I thought that would be pretty hard to do full fermentation and carbonation in only 9 days. I told him it's probably just still fermenting. Any thoughts? Especially on what the guy said at his LHBS?
The fermentation time will really depend on the type of yeast used, fermentation temperatures, etc. It could also be impacted on whether he added any additional sugar or just used straight apple juice (more sugar = more fermentables for the yeast, which might take longer to ferment out). Champagne yeast is definitely popular but you're not limited to just using that type. I've got a cider in secondary that was made with English Ale yeast and it's tasting really nice. The current issue of Zymurgy has a nice comparison of various yeast types for cider making...

If it was still bubbling in primary, then he probably should have just left it there for a bit longer before racking to secondary for aging. It probably won't have a huge impact on the finished product, although there may be more trub than you'd typically like to have in secondary and if it's aging for a long time that could potentially impact flavor. If there's a decent amount of trub and he's planning on aging for multiple months, he might want to wait to make sure it's done fermenting and then rack it again, just to be safe.

As far as what the guy in the LHBS said, I think you have to take all that kind of guidance with a grain of salt. They can point you in the right direction and give you a sense of timing, but the yeast work on their own timeline and ultimately they are the ones calling the shots. Let them do their jobs in their own time and they'll reward you.

Oh, and tell your buddy to slow down a bit and take gravity readings. It's not that much extra time and it pretty much takes out all the guesswork on whether your primary fermentation is done or if you need to give it more time...
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Old 11-21-2013, 12:23 PM   #3
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It was still fermenting, I have fermented a cider in 7 days however down to .9xx from 1.055
I think I used Safbrew T-58 and I moved it to secondary for another 3 days then bottled with sugar to carb it up.
Best cider to date (3 med oak cubes for fermentation)

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Old 11-21-2013, 12:29 PM   #4
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there are so many variables in home brewing that really it's impossible to get perfect advice from anyone. they can guide you and give you helpful hints and tips, but expect someone to be spot on in each situation is unfair.

each brew is slightly different then the next and you need to have a basic understanding to be able to figure out how to deal with it. like a car mechanic, may have never worked on a heavy piece of equipment. but at the end of the day, a bolt is just a bolt, no matter what it's connected too.

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Old 11-21-2013, 03:08 PM   #5
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Could be carbonated. I don't touch mine for 4 weeks, but everytime it is carbed in the carboy.

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Old 11-21-2013, 03:33 PM   #6
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are you not putting a airlock on the carboy? how does it get carbonated?

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Old 11-21-2013, 04:11 PM   #7
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are you not putting a airlock on the carboy? how does it get carbonated?
^^^With an airlock, the CO2 will escape, so how was this achieved?

To the OP, the bubbling your friend was seeing was active fermentation. It does give the appearance of carbonation, as the CO2 being created by the yeast is moving up through the cider to escape. If you cap and seal the carboy then carbonation will take place, but do this too soon and it could over-carbonate and possibly explode.
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Old 11-21-2013, 04:12 PM   #8
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the yeasts my man. I use champagne yeast. they are beasts and go fast. also the change in pressure would cause bubbles to go back into the carboy, and I think this last batch had was pretty constant for the month, if I remember correctly. I do have a air lock, but its more of a chemistry question on why the CO2 does not come out of solution. That I don't know cause I failed with the advanced chem crap

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Old 11-21-2013, 04:22 PM   #9
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Every fermentation will result in residual dissolved CO2 in the liquid. The more resistance and the greater the density of the liquid (lower temperature) the more Co2 will remain in solution.

Now your friend's cider may still have been fermenting, I think 1 week is pushing it, especially at lower temps, but it could also be some of this residual CO2 your friend was seeing when he racked the cider. The agitation releases the CO2 and can appear to be continuing fermentation.

The answer is, as you probably already know, is to take gravity readings and KNOW how much sugar is left before racking to secondary. Now I don't make much cider and wine, but I *think* it's recommended to not rack until the primary fermentation is complete, or very close to it.

Racking early won't hurt the cider as long as the yeast doesn't start to break down before racking again. But it can easily be avoided with the proper amount of patience. A few more days, or maybe one more week.

On the plus side, if it's still fermenting, it's likely that some of the CO2 that's being released will have filled the airspace and helped to keep O2 out, thereby helping to prevent oxidation later on.

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Old 11-22-2013, 02:59 AM   #10
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I assumed this. I'll passed on the word to my buddy. Stay thirsty my friends

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