Is Headspace in Carboy bad?

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Hi
I've got 1 full carboy (1 gallon size) and a half full carboy of 2 month old blackberry wine. (1 half gallons) I've just racked it and stopped fermentation with 2 Tablets of potassium metabisulphite.

(There was no signs of oxidization in the half filled carboy.)

Will the metabisulphite prevent the wine in the half full carboy from oxidizing?

If it does how often do I need to add metabisuphite?
 
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dcbrown73

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Potassium Sorbate is for stopping fermentation. I suppose potassium metaisulphite can too, but it would need to be extreme dose that wouldn't be good for drinking wine I would think. Besides, if it's been fermenting for as long as you said, it should be bone dry now and yeast most likely dead from starvation.

As for headspace, no it's not a good thing. Some people use marbles (food grade ones, not ones from China as they have chemicals and lead in them) Others top up with other wine or even water. I wouldn't suggest either for you as that would drastically change your wine's profile or water it down way too much given it's only half full.

You can also get a head space eliminator. You might ask Steve (@vacuumpumpman) about how to vacuum the air out if you don't have one of his pumps. I don't think a vaccum pump (also sold by Steve) makes a ton of sense if you're just using 1 gallon carboys, but if you ever start making the big six gallon batches. It's awesome!
 

mennyg19

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Try looking for half gallon jugs/carboys. It'll be good for your future in winemaking anyway when you do larger batches to have a smaller jugs to top up with when racking...
 

grapeman

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Let correct one thing in the above response. Potassium sorbate does NOT stop fermentation, it can prevent renewed fermentation because it prevents the yeast from multiplying. Potassium metabisulfite will kill yeast but can't reliably be counted on to stop an active fermentation. Either chilling it to stop the yeast from working or wait for it to finish up. I agree it was likely done and any occasional bubble was from off-gassing of C02. A half full anything will oxidize sooner or later.
 

Rodnboro

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You can also use #2 stoppers in wine bottles to rack down.
 

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