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Help! Confused about campden tablets

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facn1989

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Hi, I've read some confusing information. This is from online instructions for wine making from fresh juice buckets:

"To kill the wild yeast found in grape juice, add 1 campden tablet per gallon or ¼ tsp. of metabisulphite to 6 gallons of juice. Allow the juice to sit for six to twelve hours before adding yeast."

Another website states something similar: http://blog.eckraus.com/a-simple-guide-to-metabisulfites

Campden tablets come as sodium metabisulphite or potassium metabisulphite. The ones I have at home are potassium and 1/4 tsp equals to about 2 tablets, not 6.

Can someone please let me know what I should be adding if my campden tablets are potassium metabisulphite? Is it 1/4 tsp (about 2 crushed tablets) or one tablet per gallon (6 tablets)

Thank you!
 

facn1989

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to be clear, when these blogs mention 1/4 of potassium metabisulphite they usually refer to the powdered version. But I assume since campden tablets are the same thing, crushing them to amount to 1/4 tsp (again, about 2 tablets) would be the same thing
 

sour_grapes

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No, not the same thing. Campden tablets include lots of inert ingredients and binders. Let's say that 6 Campden tablets contain the equivalent amount of sulfite as 1/4 tsp of potassium metabisulfite powder.

EDIT: pgentile provides actual numbers below, and it appears that my answer was off base.
 
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facn1989

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Ugh! I contacted Winexpert once and they told me 1/4 crushed campden tablets would be enough! So let's assume I added 1/3 of the sulphites I should have, but I didn't bulk age, just bottled right away. I should be fine if bottle aging for about two years, right? Someone told me the sulphite isn't that important if already bottled
 

pgentile

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A teaspoon equals 5 grams. 5 grams divided .44 = 11.3636 tablets actually. Then a 1/4 teaspoon would be 2.84 tablets.
 

Doug’s wines

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@facn1989 is this a kit or a juice bucket? Your first post talks about wild yeast in mist (which has nothing to do with kits as they already have this done to them before you get the juice), while your second post mentions WE. With a kit, you would only add additional sulfites at bottling or extended bulk (which I don’t believe you do) to get extended aging. At what point are you adding this and what are you trying to accomplish with it?
 

facn1989

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@facn1989 is this a kit or a juice bucket? Your first post talks about wild yeast in mist (which has nothing to do with kits as they already have this done to them before you get the juice), while your second post mentions WE. With a kit, you would only add additional sulfites at bottling or extended bulk (which I don’t believe you do) to get extended aging. At what point are you adding this and what are you trying to accomplish with it?
I'm making kits and intend to age in the bottle (no bulk aging). So I am adding this prior to bottling
 

Doug’s wines

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Ok. I use campden tablets too. The ratio most sites tell you to use is 1 tablet per gallon of wine at bottling, but that’s for fresh grape wine not kits. Like @pgentile suggest 1/4 tsp is approximately 3 tablets which is what most people seem to add to 6 gallon kits. Based on the other threads I’ve seen you post where you bottle immediately and don’t extend bulk age, 6 tablets will be too much. I use 3 tablets for 6 gallons and would suggest that if you don’t bulk because the kits usually finish with a higher free so2 than if you were to extend bulk aging.

If you used less than that, you will be fine. IMO less is better than more. Kits tend to have enough in them already that your wine can age for a good long while without worries in proper storage conditions. Also I have wine from producers who add no sulfites and it ages fine.

Here’s a good basic article for you if you ever want to test and calculate:
http://winemakersacademy.com/potassium-metabisulfite-additions/
 

facn1989

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Thanks Doug! Yes I usually crush 2-3 tablets which ends up being a little more than I need so I just level out the 1/4 tsp.
 
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