primary fermenter, open to air?

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gawine

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So, I'm about to undertake this new hobby tomorrow, reading the instructions on my wineExpert trinity red kit, i understand it that i should put the lid on the primary but i should not put the airlock device in the small hole in the lid, correct? guess that's just a breathing hole of sorts? I imagine i'd cover up that small hole with a paper towel to keep out dust, that okay? the wine won't take on any odors at this point will it or do i need to be concerned about it's location which would be somewhere in my basement most likely.


once into the secondary i'd use the airlock and fill w/water. i've seen some say to fill with sodium metabisulfite though? doesn't matter right?

thanks!
 
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vvolf34

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I put an airlock in the small hole, but my lid does not seal, so I airlock it to prevent dirt, dust, bugs etc from getting in.

As long as the locations temperature is within the instructions range you should be fine.

Once you rack to the secondary you will, bung it with an airlock. I fill mine with vodka... only half way though dont over fill it. Most have a line you fill too.

Good Luck it's a great experience. Try not to fiddle with it to much!

Not trying to deter you from that kit, but a lot of people say Wine Expert red kits come out a little thin. Only WE kit I have is an Ice Wine and I just started it about a week ago. I will let others with more experience elaborate on it.
 
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mmadmikes1

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what he said, Vodka that way if you get a real low temp by accident and it sucks liquid in the wont be any problem except extra booze. Now is that a bad problem?????
 

deboard

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I just put a clean towel on top of my primary, but I know that other people put the lid on loosely and plug up the airlock hole with a paper towel. I think the important part is that it can get some air, while keeping bad things out like fruit flies and dust.

I'll also second the vodka in the airlock once you rack to the secondary, just buy the cheapest fifth you can find.
 

arcticsid

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Rarely do I ever comment on anything to do with kits. I have never made one.

I never cover the primary. Yeast needs and likes oxegen at this stage. Cover it with a cheesecloth or clean towel, etc.

There may be a reason why kits say to ferment with an airlock in place. So have it it ferment "in the open" may/may not be good for a kit. I hope one of the kit people can tell you what they do regarding kits. But for now, go ahead and mix her up!

Follow the directions.

Keep everything clean AND sanitized.

Try to keep the temperature close to what is recommended.

And like someone just said, don't fiddle with it (unless instructed to do so). Once it gets to going allow it to do its thing. Staring at bubbles will make you crossed eyed.

Remeber even when it comes time to dunk the hydrometer in there, make sure it is sanitized. Most of us use a solution of 3 TBLS Metabisulfite to 1 gallon of water, put this is a cheap ole sparay bottle and spray it for a second, allow to air dry for a minute and send her in.

Good luck, welcome to the 'jungle"

Troy
 

Robrose77

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why you should have an airlock..the microbiological truth

contrary to what people say here the Fermentation process is largly an anaerobic process...meaning it really ferments well when there is no oxygen present...you can look it up anywhere online, i learned all about it in microbiology and infact that class is what led me to brewing beer and finally wine. Everybody who does beer puts an airlock on their primary fermenters...it holds in the CO2 and doesnt let in the O2 creating the perfect environment for that process to happen. It happens quicker and with greater efficiency....so airlock your wine is my opinion, but it will still ferment without it jus tnot as well or fast
 

arcticsid

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Rob, I know beer makers use an airlock, but the debate is on for wine.
 

Tom

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I never "snap" the lid on during the primary making wine. The yeasties need more O2 to help them do their thing and be "happy". As far as making beer, I know people who inject pure O2 into the primary. I have done that to and boy does that make the yeasties "happy".
I know of no wineries who put a lid on their primaries.
 

BobF

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Rob, I know beer makers use an airlock, but the debate is on for wine.
IMO, it doesn't matter what the bucket is covered with during ferment. Think about it. How long does it take for a co2 blanket to develop over the surface of the must?

The o2 gets introduced during the initial/daily/periodic stir.
 

NSwiner

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Ok I rechecked this on the videos Tim Vandergrift has on youtube here's the link so you can have a look [ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qg-UOHQLcRc[/ame] .Since he works for wine expert and has lots of experience with thier kits I find he's a good source .We do white wine and our store told us to use the airlock I guess with thier experience that works best . i don't do red wines so I don't know they says something different for them but I know whewn our friends did a red mist kit they used the airlock .
 

Robrose77

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guys, i know you can do it fine without an airlock all im saying is it is a process which occurs without the presence of oxygen....oxygen helps promote yeast cell multiplication not the fermentation process....that is why beer brewers will sometimes use pure O2 to oxygenate there wort before pitching the yeast...and wine and beer though different still ferement the same way using the same yeast that uses the same exact science process to accopmlish fermentation...all fermenting yeast are Saccharomyces cerevisiae. different yeasts used to do wines or different types of beer are just different strains of that particular species...there are hundreds.
 

gawine

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Thanks for that video post NSwine, I didn't know that was up there and it was great to watch and use as a resource!

Juice is in the primary fermenter, all done for today! go yeasties go.. :h
 

NSwiner

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Your welcome . I use it when I get stuck or forget the little things .There's a whole series from him the process and there's some from a couple guys I found useful just have to sift though the useless ones to find them .
 

Wade E

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I definitely would never say that airlocks work better then without as that would be a false statement! It will work better without or work the same if you have enough headroom in there and stir it occasionally to aerate it. In the beginning of a wine making process it is best to give the yeast plenty of 02 (how much depends on how the yeast thrive and multiply) but none the less it needs lot of air. After a certain point the aerobic fermentation stops (the process of when a yeasts multiply using most of their energy for this) anaerobic starts (usually about 4-7 days after fermentation has started) and this is where air is not good as this is when you want the yeast to forget about multiplying and concentrate on making alcohol. This process can take much longer and and be much less active.
 

wyntheef

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"once into the secondary i'd use the airlock and fill w/water. i've seen some say to fill with sodium metabisulfite though? doesn't matter right?"

this is the first I have heard about filling an airlock with meta, and might even work, but it seems to me you would be taking a chance on having some of it leak into your container. that may cause problems if you don't know how much went in. So it's safer to use the water, or better yet as others have suggested, vodka.
 

rawlus

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ive always used kmeta in the airlock without issue. my primary doesnt have temp swings that would cause contraction, but even if it did, the small amount that might be sucked in would probably not have much effect on 6 gal of wine. since i check for SO2 before making additions, id find it if it were to massively change the situation and make adjustments for it.

but like many things, i think airlock liquids is one of those things that can be debated for a long time but in the end, what matters more is that it is properly filled with liquid and maintained more than what liquid you use.
 
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i agree with rawlus on this one. it's more important there's a barrier. a slight amount of k meta won't hurt, IMO. just don't use a heavy concentration for the water.
 
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