Originally Posted by scobysurfer
I've read that the optimum temperature for fermenting is between 72-80 degrees with a ready date between 14-28 days, that's quite a range. What are everybody else's temps. and ready dates?
Anybody else here use heating elements? Recommendations?
76-78 deg F. Ready in 10 days. As you imply, takes much longer if it's cooler.
I use a standard heating pad bought at a local drugstore chain, set on Low. Calibrated it originally with a glass gallon jar of water which I sampled after 24 hours on Low, Med, and High settings. Often in the winter months I only leave it on Low for the first 4-5 days.
Sometimes I'm impatient. If the scoby looks really good, I'll test pH & start secondary fermentation earlier. Had a snapshot handy, so here's the batch that fermented in two gallon glass containers starting on 5/10, ending on 5/18 (8 days). For secondary ferment I added about 3oz fruit juice to the 1 liter swing-top bottles, plus an ounce or two of crystallized ginger & let that sit for 4 more days. Just re-bottled the pictured booch into 12oz bottles on 5/22 (last night) where they'll rest for a couple more days before going into the fridge.