How much stirring is too much?

Discussion in 'Beginners Wine Making Forum' started by crabjoe, Sep 17, 2019.

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  1. Sep 17, 2019 #1

    crabjoe

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    Being new at this, I keep wanting to go look at the wines I've started.. I also want to stir them. Can stirring be over done during primary fermentation or is more stirring better?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Sep 17, 2019 #2

    mainshipfred

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    IMO stirring never hurts, especially with reds.
     
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  3. Sep 18, 2019 #3

    Scooter68

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    A point to remember is that while oxygen in helpful during the initial stages of fermentation, it can also promote oxidation as well as the point that an open container being stirred is also an invitation to fruit flies and other flying insects.

    In most cases I believe you will find that folks stir their wine between 1-3 times a day.

    Each time you stir you sort of wipe away that protective blanket of CO2 and while it will be replaced pretty quick, no point in pushing your luck if the SG is down below 1.020.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2019
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  4. Sep 18, 2019 #4

    M38A1

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    I try to do mine once in the morning, once in the evening... Mostly DB/SP and fruit variants of this.
     
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  5. Sep 18, 2019 #5

    crabjoe

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    Do you keep stirring until primary fermentation is over or do you stop at some point to let stuff settle, so when you rack for secondary fermentation, you don't take as much lees, or whatever it's called, over to your carboy?
     
  6. Sep 18, 2019 #6

    M38A1

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    With my DB/SP and variants, I typically run all the fermentation in one 6.5g bucket. I'll start it out in there, pitch the yeast, stir AM and PM and let it ferment to dry in the .990-.996 range. When it hits that mark I quit stirring and just let it start to settle out. After three days, I'll use a racking cane/gravity and empty the contents (all but the gross lees) into a clean/sanitized carboy where I'll do the k-meta/sorbate and Sparkloid clearing agent. I'll let that sit about two weeks, then rack it off again, let it sit a week or so and determine if I need to rack again or back sweeten at that time. When I do back sweeten I do a simple syrup of two parts sugar to one part water where I'll bring it to just below a boil, then back the temp off to simmer for about 20-25 minutes. Then I'll pour that into the carboy, hit it with my whip on a cordless drill and taste it in a week. 99% of the time I'll bottle at that point.

    So to answer your question, I really don't do the secondary fermentation...
     
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  7. Sep 18, 2019 #7

    Scooter68

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    My personal practice is to stir once or twice a day until I think I am within a couple of days of racking into a carboy. So that time depends upon how fast the fermentation is progressing. As a WAG i would say if the fermentation is down to about 1.025 or lower, stop stirring and let things settle. If the fermentation is really ripping along (dropping from say 1.080 to 1.050 in a 24 hour period, you could stop stirring sooner.

    There is nothing that says you have to rack before it ferments dry. So if the ferment gets ahead of you and you miss a day checking then find that it's already below 1.000 then don't stir and wait a couple of days then rack it over into a carboy. Better to let things settle down a bit before racking. so if it gets to .992 super fast, let it set 2-3 days before you rack. Maybe snap a lid on it with an airlock if its that far down. (Instead of leaving a towell over it)

    A lot depends on the amount of foam as well.
    Racking into a carboy too soon will give you the opportunity to witness a foam fountain and that's not really something you want to see.
     
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  8. Sep 18, 2019 #8

    crabjoe

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    Thanks again for the responses everyone!
     

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