What do I need to order? From where?

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Intheswamp

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Ok, I'm getting ready to ease back into fermenting. I've got some equipment from seven years ago when I made some mead but just dumped the additives and chemicals. I also dumped a bunch of very nasty smelling rubber bungs. I've got hydrometers a some racking canes and a few other items so I think I'm ok equipment-wise other than rubber bungs.

Do the drilled silicone bungs work ok? Stay in the mouth of the jugs ok (don't slip out). By silicone I figure they're soft like the rubber bungs (but no smell). Or should I just deal with the rubber smell of the regular rubber ones?

In regards to bung sizes I think I need #6 for gallon jugs, #2 for wine bottles, and #7 for my 3-gallon carboy. Is that correct?

I'm looking for a basic chemical/ingredient kit. Here's what I figure I need so far:

Pectin Enzyme (dry or liquid?)
K-meta
Campden tablets (or just use regular K-meta?)
K-sorbate
Yeast nutrient (Fermaid?)
PBW

Will that pretty much cover what I need to mail-order? Closest local homebrew store is about 60 miles one-way from me and it appears to open when it wants to so I'll be ordering online. Any suggestions?

My first wines will be a couple of Welch's grape juice wines, so *very* basic. :yes:

For yeasts I figure I'll get a few packets of several different ones from Lalvin and Red star. I'm just still worried about shipping in the heat we're having, though this coming week it will only be 90-91F for highs...it will feel like springtime!!!!<NOT!> But, it will be cooler.

Has anybody got some feedback on the drilled bungs and the ingredients? I'd appreciate any guidance whatsoever!!!! :yes:

Thanks!!!
Ed
 

Blacksmith1

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Do the drilled silicone bungs work ok? Stay in the mouth of the jugs ok (don't slip out). By silicone I figure they're soft like the rubber bungs (but no smell). Or should I just deal with the rubber smell of the regular rubber ones?
None of mine (hard or soft)slip out if both they and the carboy are dry.

In regards to bung sizes I think I need #6 for gallon jugs, #2 for wine bottles, and #7 for my 3-gallon carboy. Is that correct?
Yes, yes, and I believe so.

I'm looking for a basic chemical/ingredient kit. Here's what I figure I need so far:
Pectin Enzyme (dry or liquid?) Dealers choice both work. Not sure how well storage compares.
K-meta
Campden tablets (or just use regular K-meta?) I keep both because trying to figure out what 1/6 of 1/4 tsp is, is a pain. Tabs for single gallons is much easier
K-sorbate yes
Yeast nutrient (Fermaid?) Pretty much any is better than none. I am using something called superferment that is both nutrient and energizer in one.
PBW or Starsan or K-meta in concentrate. again better Something than none.
Will that pretty much cover what I need to mail-order? Closest local homebrew store is about 60 miles one-way from me and it appears to open when it wants to so I'll be ordering online. Any suggestions?
not sure what air locks you use but if they are the cheap plastic s-locks like I have, it is not hard to crack them, so maybe one or two extras if you don't already have a few.

My first wines will be a couple of Welch's grape juice wines, so *very* basic. :yes:
Think outside the grape box. You can do apple, apple cherry, berry.... Pretty much any flavor you can find in Mott's, Juicy Juice, store brand etc. As long as it doesn't have preservatives in it. If you do a cranberry anything, cut it in half with water before any other step.....
 
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Intheswamp

Intheswamp

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Good to hear about the bungs, I won't sweat it. And the sizes, I'll go for those. If they don't work I've got something to work with until I can "adjust". ;)

I think I'll go for the powdered pectin enzyme.

Makes sense on the Campden tabs being easier for the small amounts we need for 1-gallon batches. I thought I read *somewhere* that they were discontinuing them...???

Will definitely get some type of nutrient. Might try the Superferment.

I'm ok on air-locks. Got several of the cheap "S" ones and a couple of the "cup w/dome" ones (never have used the cup type ones, though).

Well, I went and bought some juice today. I had to travel to a larger town where they have a Wallyworld and a Publix grocery store. I picked up a 64oz Welch's White Grape and a 96oz White Grape w/Cherry at Wallyworld. I was looking for the White Grape & Peach but they didn't have it so I opted for those. As I was leaving town I stopped at Publix and scored four 64oz White Grape & Peach!!!!
:ban::ban::ban:

The White Grape has sulfites in it but oddly the White Grape w/Peach and the White Grape w/Cherry doesn't. Oh, the rhyme reason of it all....go figure, eh?

I've got to take a final inventory and put an order in for ingredients and maybe a hydrometer test tube...I've got one *somewhere* but for the life of me can't find it!!!! :(
 
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Intheswamp

Intheswamp

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Btw, I looked at the cranberries while I was shopping but figured it'd be tough...good thought on diluting it...maybe even with one of the grape juices. As for other brands I'm glad they're ok as long as the preservatives and 100% juice aspects are considered. Thanks for opening that window, too! I really appreciate the feedback!!!!
 

Blacksmith1

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As long as it's not sorbate or benzoate it should ferment. K- meta is sulfite so skip it at the start of that one. Maybe build a good sized starter and over pitch it a bit. Actually don't need it on any of the store bought juices.

The "cup" type or three piece airlocks work fine but don't over fill them. I have several of both and tend to go for the s type first.
 

Blacksmith1

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Btw, I looked at the cranberries while I was shopping but figured it'd be tough...good thought on diluting it...maybe even with one of the grape juices.
I l learnd this by accidentally adding too much sugar to my first cran. It came out perfect. My second was not diluted and was far to sharp, biting, and overpowering.
 
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Intheswamp

Intheswamp

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Hmmm, vendors? I'm currently looking at Austin Homebrew or Midwest Supplies. There's a bit of difference in pricing but my main interest is in quality/freshness of ingredients and speed of shipping. Thoughts or recommendations are appreciated. PM is you'd rather keep recommendations off the thread. :) Thanks!
 
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