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blacktib

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So it's my first time to the wine making business and just had a quick question. I am at day 3 of the fermentation process and have a red and white wine on in two six gallon carboys. These were boxed wine kits, pretty cheap ones for my first attempt. So when I look at the red, it looks great, there is a nice circle on top of foam, so I was told just to give it a stir daily. With my white one I have noticed that it stopped with the nice circle of fermentation at the top, but the red is still going. With this info, is this anything I should be concerned about? You probably need more info but again I'm a noob to the hobby ;) thanks
 

andys_got_it

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You shouldn't be concerned however I am curious to know as to why you were told to stir your must? Usually you shouldn't agitate the must while it is fermenting. Leave the yeast in peace and let it do it's thing.
 

johnnync

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If your on day three shouldn't it be in a primary not a carboy?
 
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blacktib

blacktib

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Sorry, my mistake, it isn't in a glass carboy yet, it is still in the primary fermenters. I also have been taking hydrometer readings, and it seems to be going rather slowly. It started out at 1090 and on day three it appears to only be at 1076. Is that normal?
 
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blacktib

blacktib

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I was told to leave the lid just on top and not to snap it down as there are no air locks on the lid. I was told that the yeast feeds on the oxygen so giving it a little stir daily can get the yeast going. I guess I will just leave it be.
 

johnnync

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It will not hurt it to induce some oxygen while in the primary. When the must gets down to 1.020 rack to a carboy fit your airlock and leave it alone.
 
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blacktib

blacktib

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Thanks Johnny! Does it gradually just drop to 1.020 or will it all of a sudden go? I'm just curious where I'm on day 3 and it has recommended to leave it for 5-6 days and I'm only at 1.076.

Thanks again, for the help
 

Honda88

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Starting at 1.090 ive never had anything ferment to 1.020 in 5 days but maybe im doing something wrong, all my ferments have gone dry but they took over a month to get there. As long as the sg continues to drop I wouldnt worry too much.
 

johnnync

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It may not go to 1.020 but when the very active fermentation slows rack to a carboy. Some wines ferment fast and some are slow. 1.020 is just a general number that a lot of people use, its not written in stone.
 

rawlus

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What was the yeast used? What is the emp of your primary ferment?
It can take a week-10 days to go to 1.10ish depending on temps and yeast used.
 
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blacktib

blacktib

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I'm not sure on the yeast that was used, this was just a wine kit I picked up at Costco. Everyday it seems to be moving, just where this is my first time, I wasn't sure on how fast it goes. If I open the cover you can hear it bubbling away and the wine appears to be moving, it looks quite busy :) I'm just anxious is all but I'm learning that patience is key!
 

Honda88

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yea its really hard not too watch it all the time I have the same problem, After you rack it the first time just leave it alone until the sediment starts to build up and rack again.
It takes a long time till you can drink your wine, If you are an impatient person I wouldnt recommend doing it or maybe brew some beer while you are waiting on the wine hehe
 
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blacktib

blacktib

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Also, when it comes to inserting the air lock into the carboy, is there any particular liquid it should be filled with? I have read where some people fill it with Vodka, Water, or the sulphate solution (I think that is what it is called)
 

Noe

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You can fill it with water if you want. I have filled mine with tap water before but it gave me a scare once or twice. I ended up finding a black mold I in the airlock. The wine turned out to be fine though. I would say just put water in it and keep an eye on it.
 

Honda88

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I just use tap water, if your water is treated right you shouldnt have any problems. You can use vodka if you want but it will evaporate eventually so you will have to keep an eye on it. I got some vodka for my air lock one time but i just ended up drinking it lol. Im not sure I buy into the whole campden water thing because it diminishes with time anyways so it only protects your lock for a short period.
 

BrewandWineSupply

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Don't worry, you're doing everything just fine. Primary fermentation takes about a week to 10 days. If you are at 1.076 after three days you are right on track. A lot depends on fermenting temp. The warmer it is the faster it will go. Try to keep the temps around 70* to 75*f.
Yes, stir it every day to keep things moving, that gets the CO2 out and adds some O2 for the yeast to work.
Watch your S.G. and rack into a carboy when it hits 1.010 to 1.020, even lower to 1.000 is fine. Once in the carboy, put an airlock on it and keep it in a dark place and do not disturb. Tap water is fine in the airlock, if you get some of the 'black stuff' then add some potassium metabisulfite or vodka to kill off the stray beasties.
Pretty much follow the directions in the kit.
Good luck!
 
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blacktib

blacktib

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It did, today they both dropped and were ready to rack! Question about the white wine, at what stage does it start to look clear? I know it is probably normal for now but it is a carmel color but I am just curious. Thanks for the great info!!
 

ananon

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It will take a month or so to clear. Just let it do it's thing. And try not to agitate it any. Every month or so of its not clear just rack it
 

saramc

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As you get more experienced and do more reading you will learn that the majority of the fermentation takes place in the first ten days and it typically takes 30 days for the ferment to finish to dry. I have wines that have taken six months to a year for them to clear and cease dropping sediment.

Follow your kit instructions and you will do just fine. They have honed those so finely that you really don't have to do much. A good experience as you start out.

You can also use glycerin in the airlock, it does not evaporate or freeze and it usually won't develop mold.
 
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blacktib

blacktib

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It's me again ;)

Does the airlock have to be visibly moving during this second fermentation stage? I have been told to just leave it alone but everyday I usually just look at it. The air lock has stopped but I do still notice a small amount of fizzing in the carboy. It is on day three of the stage 2 process. Initially when it was first placed in the carboy the airlock was active, but not it looks to have come to a pretty much halt. The other one (which was put on at the same time) is still pumpin away.
 

Noe

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The airlock does not have to be visibly moving. Different wines finish at different times so the other one could still be fermenting at a faster pace. You should be fine.
 
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blacktib

blacktib

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Is there any issues with taking off the air lock when it is in stage 2 and taking a SG reading?
 

Honda88

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it is probably still offgasing, which is another reason you need to leave it alone.
 
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blacktib

blacktib

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Well as long as there is no issue just leaving it than I will leave it for 5 more days. I mean if I look real close there are small bubbles coming to the top and there is foam at the top that I saw a few times when it was in the primary fermenter so it looks healthy, I just didn't want it to go bad. Again, I probably won't have as many questions the second time around. :)
 
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