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Old 12-18-2010, 07:56 PM   #21
Tim27
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Apr 2009
SA, Texas
Posts: 165
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Medsen, foul spoilage is what I think I got. My Airlock kept going dry for some reason. I thought it was broken so I replaced it. New airlock same problem, it would dry out in a few days. I think I deffinitely got some spoilage. It has been 13 months since brew day.

 
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Old 12-18-2010, 08:07 PM   #22
Tim27
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Apr 2009
SA, Texas
Posts: 165
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It smells kinda like nail polish remover. Very solvent like. There is something else there that is the worst odor. I can't put my finger on it. Here is the recipe I followed.


5 gallon batch
15 pounds Sue Bee honey(bulk costco)
4 gallons spring water
2 packages Lalvin 71b-1122(rehydrated)
2 TBS yeast nutrient
2 TBS yeast energizer
OG 1.122 FG 1.002
Ferment at around 72 degrees
Transfered to secondary at 14 days.
Still in secondary.


Maybe I should have used better honey?

Reason: Brain Fart

 
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Old 12-18-2010, 09:39 PM   #23
MedsenFey
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Jan 2010
Florida
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Actually the costco honey isn't likely the problem. It makes decent mead. Which Lalvin yeast was that?

Was this batch fully topped-up? If not bacteria may have had the opportunity to grow.

Nail polish remover often comes from spoilage organisms like acetic acid bacteria and Brettanomyces, but you can sometimes get it from fusels which may age out. If there is something else there, it could be sulfur odors. Take a glass, and swirl it with a bright, shiny piece of copper (a pre-1982 penny, some copper wire, a copper scrub pad, etc.). If the smell improves in that glass then you should treat the rest of the batch.

After eliminating sulfur odors, I'd encourage you to keep it fully topped-up, and let it age for a year. Don't judge it before that - it may yet surpirse you.

Medsen

 
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Old 12-19-2010, 08:23 PM   #24
Tim27
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Apr 2009
SA, Texas
Posts: 165
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Thanks all, I will let it sit. I don't have a means of topping it off however. The yeast I used was 71b-1122. Sorry brain farted that one.

 
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Old 12-20-2010, 12:19 AM   #25
truckjohn
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Oct 2009
SC USA
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Don't have the means of topping it up?
You have no way to a cup or two of add boiled water to it? Strange....

2nd... "Dry" air lock - What sort of air lock are you using? What sort of Bottle/carboy are you using? What sort of temp controls?

3-pc airlocks + Plastic bottles + significant temp swings = massive suckback..... Get one of the S-type air locks and this problem will go away.... glass carboys are quite a bit more expensive....


Thanks

 
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Old 12-20-2010, 03:48 PM   #26
MedsenFey
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Jan 2010
Florida
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Fermenting at 72F can certainly give you some higher alcohols with solvent character, but aging will help them fade out (18 months or more in many cases). With 71B, you can get some funky odors if you leave it sitting on lees for extended periods of time, and you may want to keep it racked whenever a significant layer develops.

There are many ways to address the issue of headspace - but you need to choose one.

Medsen

 
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Old 12-21-2010, 12:34 AM   #27
Tim27
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Apr 2009
SA, Texas
Posts: 165
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I didn't think to add water. I thouught that would water it down to much. Medsen I think I may have had spoilage from a dry airlock or the fact I have left it on the lees for over a year now. I thought as long as I racked off of the gross lees I would have been fine.. Should I try to sorbate and back sweeten? Being a beer brewer of the "new school"(no secondary) and brewing all ales I guess I just need to grow accustomed to multiple rackings. Oh well.

Thanks for the replies everyone, unfotunately I will be out of state for few weeks on vacation. So the mead(if that is what it still is) will have to wait till the new year.

Thanks again, Tim

 
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Old 12-22-2010, 02:13 AM   #28
truckjohn
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Oct 2009
SC USA
Posts: 391
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Once again - you can usually tell a big difference between Moldy and Nail Polish Remover/rocket fuel....

If it tastes like Nail Polish Remover - let it age another year or 2....

If it tastes Moldy, old socks, or wet cardboard - Dump.

If it tastes Oxidized - sherry like, but otherwise good... it still may be fine... it will just taste different than if it wasn't oxidized...

I haven't ever really had any trouble from extended aging on the lees.... Best batch of wine so far was one that I forgot about and let it age on the yeast lees for over a year.... They were *REALLY* compact by then.... I would rack it early to get all the fruit bits and such out - but not so much to remove yeast.... They don't seem to cause much trouble.

Thanks

John

 
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