slow ferment

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Nealie

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I'm making a dry mead that started pretty high (1.122) and has been fermenting at a slightly cool ambient temperature--the thermometer stuck to my fermenter has said about 65 degF. It's been in the bucket for just shy of two weeks and the gravity is still in the 1.060 range. Should i rack it to rouse the yeast? I've seen comments on this board and elsewhere that racking may cause a substantial loss of yeast count and lead to a stuck ferment. Am i at risk for this here? Should I just stop thinking about it and let it run down to the <1.000 range even if that takes a few more weeks? Are there concerns for weird flavors if I approach almost a month in primary? Are there too many questions consecutively in this post?

Please feel free to answer any of the above. Thx.
 

z987k

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you could just stir up the yeast on the bottom, see if that gets it to take off. Maybe a little yeast nutrient also.
 

malkore

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DO NOT RACK!
mead takes a LONG TIME to ferment. figure a month to 6 weeks for a gravity that high. I'd try to get it up to 70 as well.

if you rack now you might stall fermentation significantly. racking won't rouse the yeast, it will remove the healthy yeast cake...no good.

patience.
 

yaeyama

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But, is it okay to leave it in a primary bucket rather than in a glass carboy under airlock? I don't feel comfortable with a bucket for more than about 14 days. Mind you, I haven't given mead a try yet, only a couple of wines.
 

Yooper

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Well, while it's fermenting, it can use a little oxygen. I only cover/airlock mine when fermentation slows down and I rack it. I have a wine right now in primary just covered with a towel (in a plastic bucket, too!) so it can get plenty of oxygen.
 

Nerro

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Doesn't oxygen keep the yeast from going into anaerobic respiration?
 

malkore

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Nerro said:
Doesn't oxygen keep the yeast from going into anaerobic respiration?
to a degree, yes, but buckets are not THAT oxygen permeable.

for future reference, mead should be done in a glass carboy or better bottle. white plastic food grade buckets WILL absorb smells. my beer buckets smell like hops, always, so mead never touches these buckets.

you'll be fine for now.
 

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