Hi PH at start, 4.6 using meter

Discussion in 'Beginners Wine Making Forum' started by Fran365, Oct 10, 2017.

  1. Fran365

    Fran365 Member

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    Hi folks, in a little trouble with my last 2 gallon batch of apple/berry wine. Everything went well and was preparing to pitch and remembered to check PH, bottled juices have been 3.5 PH the last year of making juice wine. To my surprise the PH was 4.2 and after pre pitch additions was 4.6. I had added 1 TBl of acid blend. I had one source say (with hi PH) ptich and let it go till its quiet and then adjust PH with citric acid, which I have. On the 3rd day of a tepid fermentation (hi 20 bubbles/min lo6 /min) it's getting very quiet. Yeast COTE DE BLANC, I have tartaric acid coming on the 4th or 5th day post pitch. Options: I can see if citric acid will bring PH down and see if the yeast starts up, or wait for the tartaric acid see if I can bring the PH down, see if the yeast will become vigorous or re pitch. Original SG was 1.1 so I have a hi alcohol potential and will need a high alcohol yeast survivor, any help on this? Fran
     
  2. Smok1

    Smok1 Senior Member

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    4.6 is really high, high ph might make your wine suseptable to rapid oxidization making it not age very well. so, your ph went higher when you added acid? Should go the other way. Did you test your TA? I try to make my minor adjustments before pitching any yeast. i had some grapes come in at 4.0 this year and ta at .5 so i adjusted to 3.6ph and .75 ta using tartaric acid before i pitched any yeast, and then ran through mlf to get the malic acid down, ended up at 3.8/.5ta and tastes and smells good. Im not sure about adjusting using citric acid or acid blend, maybe someone else can chime in about that.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2017
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  3. Fran365

    Fran365 Member

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    Hi Smok1

    No the PH didn't up wit the addition of acid blend, the acid blend was part of my original must blend which was 6 qts apple/berry juice, 1 qt extract made from 4 bananas, 1 cup grape juice frozen concentrate, 1 tbl acid blend, 2 lbs sugar, 2 tsp yeast nutrient, 1 tsp yeast energizer and last, after 1/2 hour 1 tsp pectin, one hour later pitch. Fer-mentor activity is now 3 bubbles/min. She's dieing,3rd day update:bubbling has stopped SG= 1.100 about the same as start, light yeasty smell little foam, can I save this? Fran
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2017
  4. Smok1

    Smok1 Senior Member

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    I wouldnt count on bubbles being the only indicator of fermentation, whats the sg? Its probly just slowing down because theres less sugar as time goes on. Check the sg.
     
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  5. newBendOrfanatic

    newBendOrfanatic Member

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    Interesting. Do you have an idea what the pH of your acid blend-water is without any additives or juice? Acid blends obviously are different, but a tablespoon of acid blend of any combination when mixed with a moderately low pH must of 2 gallons shouldn't yield a pH of 4.6.
     
  6. Fran365

    Fran365 Member

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    Well newbend, I only checked the PH just before pitching. I'll be trying the tartaric acid approach tomorrow and re pitch. I have learned a lesson about bottled juices and PH and keeping tartaric acid in stock.I also am going to re calibrate my PH meter to make sure that is accurate. By the way I have no idea how those odd cartoon characters got on my post. Fran
     
  7. Fran365

    Fran365 Member

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    Newbendorfanatic, : as your question about the PH of the water I used sunk in I checked the well water I used to make the banana extract, and bingo, it was 7.7 PH, extremely alkaline. I have usually used RO water which is PH 5.5. So I have a good theory on what happened but can this wine be saved? Fran
     
  8. Fran365

    Fran365 Member

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    Ops, calibrated my PH meter and it was off +1.0, so my wine was PH 3.6, ok for apple/berry I believe.So the culprit seems to be the cote de blanc yeast, it was 1/2 a pack that has been in the freezer 1 year. Re-pitched, we will see. Fran
     
  9. Arne

    Arne Senior Member

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    What is the temp. of the wine? This time of year people have trouble getting the yeast to start and a lot of times the must is too cool. Probably want it in the mid 70's or so to start. Arne.
     
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  10. Fran365

    Fran365 Member

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    Thanks Arne, someone told me apple and apple hybrid wines like the 60's, it is cool in my house. I just wrapped my fermentor with my seedling heater wrap, it goes to about 74F. Will report when/if life returns. The wine was 66F. Note to Smok1, this batch never became active, the SG is almost at the starting level, 1.100, Fran
     
  11. Scooter68

    Scooter68 Still getting started at 26 batches & 2 1./2 years Supporting Member

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    I know that sprinkling yeast has become the norm for many folks but.... I still give mine a jump start with a starter-rehydration solution:
    2 oz warm water
    1 oz juice
    1/3 of a 1/8tsp measure of Fermaid-K
    1/8 tsp Yeast Nutrient
    Yeast of choice stirred in to the above then -

    Cover in a warm place and normally within 2 hours I have plenty of bubbles on top. So far in the last 6 batches where I've followed this process - 100% start of fermentation within the first 24 hours - several withing 12 hours. My current yeast of choice is K1-V1116

    Temp in area where I start the fermentation has been 70 - 75 degrees

    NO off smells or SO2 issues since I started doing this with Apple(2 batches), Peach (3 batches), Blueberry,
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2017
  12. Fran365

    Fran365 Member

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    oops2: Well folks I can end this post with something that might help newbies. So I believed I had a dead must that would not support my 2 pitching s. I watched eagerly for the air lock to bubble and it never did. 2nd day check of SG showed nothing was happening. Other things came up and the fermentor was left alone except for a few stirrings. Today, day #9, I planned to dump it in the compost and begin again. As I checked it out I thought to make a last SG check for my records and to my great surprise, again, the SG was .990. A little inspection revealed a tear in the cover of my much used 2 gallon bucket: the co2 created found it easier to escape here than through the airlock. Smok1, you warned me, but I did not hear you. So I've done a sparkloid treatment and will rack in a week. Thanks for the replies, Fran
     
  13. Arne

    Arne Senior Member

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    LOL, good to hear it is fine. Some ferments can sneak by and nobody knows it happens. Good luck with it, hope it tastes great. Arne.
     
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  14. Smok1

    Smok1 Senior Member

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    I always give my yeast a good start as well, goferm while waking it up, so e fermaid k while its thriving and maybe a little a fermaid o during the lasts of it life. We expect our grapes are gods gift so we should treat it with the same respect.
     
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  15. Scooter68

    Scooter68 Still getting started at 26 batches & 2 1./2 years Supporting Member

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    NEVER trust an airlock on a plastic bucket to judge activity during primary fermentation. Bucket lids rarely seal well. You should be able to smell an active fermentation in about 24-48 hours after it starts. SG readings are the only way to evaluate the extent or progress of a fermentation.
     
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