What do you do during the clarifying stage?

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skyfire322

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I'm two days in, and have really only checked for bubbles, water level on the airlock, and also the aroma to make sure it doesn't smell funky.

Do you typically check SG, degas/stir, taste, etc.? Or is it just a matter of watching to see when it's clear?
 

salcoco

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patience and watching. tasting after everything clears and minimum three months passed.
 

heatherd

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@skyfire322, that depends on whether you're making wine from a kit or grapes/juice.

For a kit, you'll want to follow the instructions. You can degas more and age more than the instructions with good results.

I typically degas a bit, add kmeta every three months, and let time do the degassing and clearing. So I don't regularly use clearing agents.

That said, I have 13 gallons of Muscat Canelli from grapes and juice that is still gassy and cloudy at 10 months. I'll keep racking and stirring until the wine clears. I find that cloudiness can often be because of gas; when I get a cloudy wine degassed, it will clear like magic.
 

Scooter68

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SG checks aren't that critical but I would check the pH. Once fermented dry, the likelihood of change in SG is nil. The acidity on the other hand could change and an occasional check is worthwhile.
 

boofloveswine

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I am in the same spot, make a LE16 kit wine which is my first one. I am 2 1/2 weeks into clarifying and it has a slightly gassy smell. Vacuum splash racked both times i transferred. But I should also wait three months to bottle?
 

jgmann67

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I am in the same spot, make a LE16 kit wine which is my first one. I am 2 1/2 weeks into clarifying and it has a slightly gassy smell. Vacuum splash racked both times i transferred. But I should also wait three months to bottle?

You should wait until your wine is ready to go into the bottle. Maybe 3 months... maybe 6. Rack it at three months and see - is it clear? Is it degassed? Is it good? Can you keep your hands off of it while it ages another 9-15 months?

If you're "yes" to each, okay, you can bottle.
 

Mismost

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I fish, hunt, or go shoot sporting clays. But, most days I actually just work because it makes my boss look good.

I do peek under the tee shirts covering the carboys once in a while.
 

Scooter68

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Wine under airlock and topped off properly is exposed to less oxygen than a bottled wine and able to de-gass itself. Nothing bad is going to happen if aged in bulk properly. On the other hand once you bottle, no more gas can escape, no additions can be made - you have locked it up as far as adjustments. Should the wine need a little pH adjustment or a little back-sweetening down the road, practically speaking that's not possible.

Rushing to bottle is not in your best interest. A minimum of 6 months and normally don't serve until at least a year. You and those you share you wine with will never regret the wait.
 

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