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Basic kit and ABV question.

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universe

Junior
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I made my first kit a week ago. I followed the directions which stated to top up the carboy within 2 inches of the bung. The kit came out pretty weak but tasty. What are best practices to get the ABV near the normal 12%? Are they any tricks to boosting the ABV otherwise like adding sugar? Thanks.
 

Luc

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Steve is the kit expert over here so i leave it to him.
But just to start things going:

What kit was it
What size of carboy are you using
Where are you living ???
There is a difference in US gallons and imperial gallons
maybe that made the difference (hence the question where
you live).
Any figures like acidity starting SG en end SG.

Luc
 

cpfan

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First what Luc said.

To me, your question reads. I have a car I'm not getting 30mpg.

I don't know what car, I don't know if it's supposed to get 30mpg. I know nothing about your driving habits.

So, tell us...what kit? what were the specific gravities? how much did you top it up?

Best practices to get 12%? Buy a kit designed to produce 12% (some are more, some are less). Get a 6 US gallon carboy. Don't top up a lot (some won't agree on this one). Take specific gravity readings.

Yes you can add sugar to the primary if you want more alcohol.

Finally, as Luc suggested update the Location in the Control Panel, so that we know where you live. It can help with some questions.

Steve
 

cpfan

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Rereading your question...you "MADE" your first kit a week ago? You started? You bottled? Please explain.

Steve
 

universe

Junior
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Bottled my first kit. Spagnols Riesling kit. Topped up as the directions stated I would imagine. I have a 6 gallon carboy (23l)...kit came out pretty watery. The Chard I have in the secondary seems better but I didn't top up. They are all 4 week kits. I'm on Vancouver Island.
 

cpfan

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Which Spagnols 4-week kit? Depending how you count them, they make 4 or more.

Did you get them from the Spagnols store on Annacis Island?

Steve
 

universe

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Which Spagnols 4-week kit? Depending how you count them, they make 4 or more.

Did you get them from the Spagnols store on Annacis Island?

Steve
Heritage Estates Riesling and Chard. I'm on Vancouver Island in the Comox Valley.
 

cpfan

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Heritage Estates - weak but tasty - seems like a good description. Bottom end kit from RJS (Cellar Master lower). Would have expected at least 11.5% from both of these, although I don't know if I ever made a Heritage Estates white, and definitely not since the line was upgraded about 2.5 years ago. Used to make the Merlot & Pinot Noir for a couple of customers, and recall them being about 12%.

Specific gravity readings before pitching the yeast and when adding the sulfite/sorbate will allow the ABV to be calculated.

Steve
 
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