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Discussion in 'Introductions' started by Sunshine Wine, Dec 19, 2019.

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  1. Dec 25, 2019 #21

    Rocky

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    Sunshine, welcome to the forum.

    I would be concerned about the small vessel. The airlock indicates equal pressure and that hints at an air leak. There are a couple of things you can do:

    Use some plumber's tape on the threads of the vessel and then screw on the cap.
    Tear off some plastic wrap and fold it into a ribbon about 1" wide. Wrap this around the threads of the small vessel and screw on the cap.

    As for your stoppers coming out, make sure the inside of the neck of the gallon jug is dry and the stopper is dry. Liquid on either lowers the friction between the rubber and glass. Are your stoppers number 6 1/2? That is what I use in a gallon jug. Worst case, get some duct tape and form two strips about 1/2" wide, push the stopper into the jug and run the tape from the jug, over the stopper and back to the jug. I do this with my demijohns because I do not trust the stoppers. See photos.

    100_1401.JPG 100_1402.JPG
     
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  2. Dec 26, 2019 #22

    Sunshine Wine

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    I got the airlock and bungs to stay in the gallon jugs...still trying to figure out how to get an airtight seal on the half gallon jar. Put masking tape around the threads, left on the rubber gasket, but still not airtight... I am at a loss..
     
  3. Dec 27, 2019 #23

    Rocky

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    Well, Sunshine, let's look at the problem one step at a time.

    * It is a glass jar so that cannot leak.
    * Could air be leaking around the gasket that holds the airlock?
    * Is the airlock defective?
    * Could the plastic top on the jar be cracked?

    If those three questions are no's, then it has to be between the threads of the jar and the top. Masking tape would not be my choice. Plumbers tape (several layers) would be my first choice followed by the Saran wrap in several layers wrapped on the threads.
    As a last resort, and this could create a mess to clean up, you could screw on the top and apply vinyl caulk between the plastic top and the glass jar. It all depends on how long you are going to keep the wine in these vessels.

    Also, I think someone suggested a 1500 ml and a 750 ml bottle. That would be great if you have the right stoppers (#3 or #4 or a universal bung turned upside down with the air lock pushed into the bottom)
     
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  4. Dec 27, 2019 #24

    Rusty Nesmith

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    Hello and welcome. I am also new to wine making and this is a great place to be.
     
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  5. Dec 27, 2019 #25

    beano

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    Kinda late on the draw but.....
    Hello Sunshine!
     
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  6. Dec 28, 2019 #26

    Sunshine Wine

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    So it has been 5 days since I checked the gravity. It is still in the same position. Should I now rack again, add k-meta, and then wait 3-4 months and then rack again, also adding more k-meta at that time?
     

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  7. Dec 28, 2019 #27

    Sunshine Wine

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    This is what it looks like right now. I should get the wine off of this sediment now, right?
     

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  8. Dec 28, 2019 #28

    jgmann67

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    Yes you should. My guess is you won’t have to worry about that 1/2 gallon of extra wine after you do, too.

    My routine:

    Rack, dose, wait three months. Taste. Figure out if you want to do anything more (like add oak or tannin). Rack, dose, wait three months. Rack, dose and bottle (or just dose and wait another 3 months if you like).
     
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  9. Dec 28, 2019 #29

    Sunshine Wine

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    Ok, great, thanks! One question... I just got these bottles for Christmas. Once I am ready to put the wine in them, should I use corks or can I use these toppers that came with them?
     

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  10. Dec 28, 2019 #30

    jgmann67

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    Those are traditionally used for beer. But, if you’re not planning on aging your wine for any length of time, they’ll probably be fine.

    Maybe it’s just me. But if you want the option to age your wine, you should consider 750 ml bottles (or even 375 ml bottles) and #9 corks (I use 1.75” corks).

    Either way, I wonder that those beer bottles will take a cork.
     
  11. Dec 28, 2019 #31

    Sunshine Wine

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    Well, darn... Once I am ready to bottle, how long are you supposed to age the wine? I thought that after you have racked every 3 months and we're ready to bottle, after about 9 months, then it was ready to drink?... I will also want to backsweeten, so when do I do that?
     
  12. Dec 28, 2019 #32

    Rice_Guy

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    You will find there is quite a bit of variation in method. ex you are setting up to rack every 3 months, I try to only rack 3 times. Yes I will rack at the first three months but then it probably sits till contest season. When it is racked, I determine target sugar level, sweeten and bottle. My thinking is that I fear oxidation more than lees producing off flavors.

    I have some grosch bottles and use the rubber that comes with them. It is convenient for taking wine to Vinters meetings. Also will typically do 3 screw top, again it is convenient for meetings, and the rest of the batch gets corks/ 750 ml except if it is a high labor wine like dandelion which gets 375 ml. bottles. I like synthetic corks, at the club most people use natural cork. At some point I will try some bag in box , , , , Again you will find there is quite a bit of variation in method. , , , and it works all four ways.

    ? How soon do you want to drink it/ give out bottles? Kit instructions are designed for racking three times and bottling young. Yes you can, if you follow kit mentality, drink young and treat with sorbate/ metabisulphite. I have enough carboys that I will age till spring, and start to recycle the carboys at rhurbarb season. My cycle time on fruits is a bit under a year but I have some red grape that is a little over two.
    IF you want to drink young go ahead, fruit wines will probably have better fruit flavor. If you are like my mom and forget a jug in the basement for 30ish years you can still have good taste (if I believe her note cards that stoppered jug was only racked 3 times/ no air lock for 28 years)

    Have you done a web search to see if you are close to a Vinters club? I learn a lot by sampling other fruits and grapes and asking what would you do to make it better? Likewise when I travel I pick up a local peach or cranberry or muscat or gurtstraimer, , etc to see how craft wineries put out product. It is fun, the wife/ friends like to do it and its good learning for me.
    Good luck on your path.
     
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  13. Dec 28, 2019 #33

    jgmann67

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    I agree with Rice Guy.

    The answer in winemaking is usually “it depends” or “when you think it’s ready.”

    Seriously, ask 5 winemakers and you’re bound to get 10 opinions.

    I can tell you what I do:

    l rack every three months until it stops dropping sediment (usually racking #3), then dose it with KMeta every three months until it’s time to bottle. I do rack one final time and bottle from a clean carboy just to be sure no sediment gets to the bottle.

    I wouldn’t back sweeten the wine until it’s completely degassed and all I’m tasting is the wine. Usually that’s towards the end of bulk aging. Then I’d do some trials to see how much I want to backsweeten the wine. I use simple syrup, a 350 ml glass and a syringe.

    Once I figure out what I like, I do the math to see how much syrup to add to 23L of wine.

    Depending on how much sugar I’m adding back into the wine (take a gravity reading), I will also dose the wine with potassium sorbate to prevent the wine fermentation from restarting.

    My rule of thumb = wine with a final SG of 1.005 or more gets sorbate. Again, that’s just what I do. I’m sure others will say 1.000, and still others 1.010.

    After adding the syrup, the sorbate and I’m sure the wine is ready, it goes into the bottle.
     
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  14. Dec 29, 2019 #34

    Rice_Guy

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    * there is a product called “wine conditioner” which incorporates the sugar syrup and sorbate which simplifies addition ratios
    * my flavor trials are done with 8 oz canning jars, I like the 100ml/ quarter cup measurements molded in. My second go to tool is a kitchen scale. SpGravity and weight are a straight line function.
     
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  15. Feb 7, 2020 #35

    Sunshine Wine

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    Well, I was getting my juice ready to go and was straining off some of the large pulp. I was told it was muscadine juice. I do believe this is actually a blackberry!!! Lol...anything I need to do differently??
     

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  16. Feb 7, 2020 #36

    Rice_Guy

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    This years black berry was pH 3.9, have seen it pH 3.3 which would be ideal, TA 0.7% which again is in target, with 1.049 juice it needed sugar. Expect that if you add any water you need to also add 20 to 35 grams acid per gallon of water, and enough sugar to get up to around 1.090.
     
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  17. Feb 7, 2020 #37

    Sunshine Wine

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    My SG reading is at 1.026 right now without adding sugar. I would like for it to be more like a table wine....
     
  18. Feb 8, 2020 #38

    Rice_Guy

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    earlier, December, you posted about a gravity of .996 think it was at 5 days after racking. ? ? ?
    I assume you are on a new batch of juice not the .996 wine. At 1.026 you would have roughly 6.26% sugar. A gallon would have .24 pound sugar and 3.55 pound water. A normal primary is somewhere around 27.5% sugar which means that the liquid should contain roughly a pound extra sugar and grow in volume by about 15 ounces.

    Am I confused? And the first racking a month back is at 1.026 in which case you have a stuck fermentation. ? ?
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2020
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  19. Feb 8, 2020 #39

    Sunshine Wine

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    No, this is a new batch. The other small batch is still in the works. I plan to rack it again at the end of March. It is only 2 gallons. This new batch is 8 gallons right now, which I assume will be somewhat less once I rack it the first time. I have a 6 gallon carboy and two more 1 gallon demijohns to put this new batch in.
     
  20. Feb 23, 2020 at 8:27 PM #40

    Sunshine Wine

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    Question about my first 2 gallon batch. It has been out in the garage for about 2 months now. Should I bring it in to get it to room temp and let it stay in here from now on? I will be doing the 2nd racking(from the initial first one) at the end of March.
     

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