Originally Posted by aexe
How long are you fermenting and are you racking into a secondary? What about bottling? Sorry if these are stupid questions, I've never made cider before.
Fermentation isn't something that you just rack off of in two weeks time, one weeks time, etc. etc., you simply watch and wait for the yeast to eat up all of the sugars in solution (unless you want 'original sugars sweetness', whole 'nother process), and then rack off of the lees, or trub, into secondary when they are finished up, or if you don't care about drinking an unclear cider or back-sweetening you can just bottle it straight out of primary.
What most would recommend is to rack into secondary when fermentation finishes, let it clear, and let it condition for around two months or until you are happy with the flavor and bottle 'er up. if you like it dry you can use some priming sugar, or substitute, and bottle carbonate. If you want a Sweet Carbonated cider you can always follow the 'pasteurization sticky' on the Cider Subforum. Bottle pasteurization will leave you unclear, sediment filled bottles (some don't mind this, and may even prefer it). You can also go the extensive / expensive
route like I do and Cold Crash during the ferment at the the S.G. you want, wait for it to cold clear, rack to secondary, sulfite and sorbate and then use one of these Babies
after keg carbonating. Perfectly Clear, sweet, sparkling, commercial (or better) quality Apple Cider in the bottles of your choice. I have a collection of very old 16 oz. claret shaped amber beer bottles that are very distinctive. Nice finishing touch to a good cider.
Hmmmm, I want a cider now!