Is this to much head space?

Discussion in 'Beginners Wine Making Forum' started by crabjoe, Oct 24, 2019.

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  1. Oct 24, 2019 #1

    crabjoe

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    20191024_183424.jpg

    I just racked it from primary to this 6 gallon carboy. I know the right thing to do is to top this off, but is it necessary?

    I don't want to open a bottle because I feel I'd use less than a glass and I cant really store wine that's been opened... at least I don't know how to properly.

    BTW, SG is 0.994. It's the Fontana cabernet sauvignon kit.
     
  2. Oct 25, 2019 #2

    Johnd

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    For the stage you’re in, still producing a little CO2 and giving lots of it off, it’s ok. Soon, you should top it up a bit more, just put a little cab in there next time you open a bottle.
     
  3. Oct 25, 2019 #3

    crabjoe

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    Thank you for the advice.. makes a lot of sense.
     
  4. Oct 25, 2019 #4

    NorCal

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    Agree with @Johnd, ok now but he next time you remove the bung, I would top it off to the neck line.
     
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  5. Oct 25, 2019 #5

    Dom Lausic

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    Another "tool" in my arsenal is a box of marbles! I purchased a 10lb box of marbles a couple years ago, and it comes in so handy! I use clear glass marble to displace volume in my carboys and gallons to eliminate headspace.
     
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  6. Oct 25, 2019 #6

    crabjoe

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    I had thought about using marbles, but it worries me because of possible lead in marbles.
     
  7. Oct 25, 2019 #7

    Dom Lausic

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    very valid concern, and I had the same ones. I think that is why the preference is for clear glass marbles, as opposed to the ones with colours. I can't be absolutely certain that they are much better. But I imagine that they are safe enough to use in between rackings. I find that when I rack every 3 months or so, and you go from vessel to vessel, and you end up with smaller volumes of wine that you can top up with. So my wines are generally not bulk aged for significant periods of time "on gross marble lees"! I guess me being a contractor and working with various harmful materials makes me a little cavalier in this....
     
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  8. Oct 25, 2019 #8

    Ajmassa

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    For later on once co2 is gone there’s always the headspace eliminator used with a vacuum pump. Great little tool. https://www.allinonewinepump.com/product/headspace-eliminator/

    If no pump I used to use VacuVin. Different models Come with different sized stoppers — but a lot of them fit right around a universal bung. (I’ve also drilled out regular bungs to fit other stoppers) and can hand pump out the o2 (and also can use to degas)
    Works great if your buying time. Just don’t use as a crutch!
    Adjustments.JPG
     
  9. Oct 25, 2019 #9

    crabjoe

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    How well does that headspace eliminator work? I guess I'm asking how long before I have to put a vacuum on it again..

     
  10. Oct 25, 2019 #10

    cmason1957

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    mine pretty much stay sealed until the next time I want to rack, so maybe 3 months. I walk by the wine making area most days and visually check on them, they pop open. If they get to where they don't hold well, I believe @vacuumpumpman recommends a bit of mineral oil on the bulb to help everything work better.
     
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  11. Oct 25, 2019 #11

    joeswine

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    invest in dry nitrogen and don't worry about headspace or fill the wines that have a totally different taste profile even though they are supposed to be the same, add another tool in your toolbox..that's the real answer.
    all these wines you see bin this message and all the wines that I have made follow the same format ,either I rack them down or use nitrogen and monitor the process .
     

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  12. Oct 25, 2019 #12

    chicken

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    That's brilliant! I will have to try that!
     
  13. Oct 26, 2019 #13

    crabjoe

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    How do you top off with nitrogen, without it escaping before you can get a stopper, bung or whatever in place? Unless I'm mistaken, I thought nitrogen was lighter than air.
     
  14. Oct 26, 2019 #14

    joeswine

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    Air and nitrogen are almost equal in weight the difference is your desplacing the air with nitrogen under pressure forming a cap .
    I'll get back to you soon with with a pictorial ,it's a quick process and one that works and if your deals are good ,lasting.
     
  15. Oct 31, 2019 #15

    Mark Grant

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    Hi, I have a similar problem I have quite a bit of room at the top of my 54L demijohn, maybe 4L of space. Could I add Juice, Such as a Columbard to top off ? I used white Concord grapes, and wanted to stay as close as possible to the taste.
    Thanks in advance.
     
  16. Oct 31, 2019 #16

    Sailor323

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    I would not recommend using vacuum to remove air from bottles or jugs. There are many volatile compounds in wine that contribute to its taste. Lowering pressure can produce conditions where those volatiles evaporate
     
  17. Oct 31, 2019 #17

    joeswine

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    That's correct.
     

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