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first batch of mead

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tazimna

NewBee
Registered Member
May 28, 2005
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0
0
Hey folks, a newbee here with a question. Attempted first batch mead 1 week ago. Used the recipe Ken Schramm recommended in his book for a 1st try. Used 15# clover honey, 2 tsp nutrient, 1 tsp energizer, 4 gallons water. He reommended for yeast lalvin 71B-1122, couldn't find here, so used lalvin k1-v116 instead. It's been 1 week, and I have seen only 1 bubble thru the fermentation lock, This doesn't seem right. Later in his book, he mentioned different yeasts, not sure if it was a typo, but it lists k1v-1116 as the "original" killer yeast and that it has high "N" requirments. My yeast package was k1-v1116(notice the difference), Anyway, is this batch a bust? Can I jump start it somehow? Any input is appreciated. Steve
 

Oskaar

Got Mead Partner
Administrator
Dec 26, 2004
7,874
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The OC
Welcome to Gotmead.com and the discussion forums!

Would you post your exact recipe please in case you left anything out of your previous post, line item style as below:

# Type of honey
gal of Water
nutrient
energizer
etc. etc. etc.

You're finding out first hand why substituting ingredients in recipies is generally a bad idea unless you have some experience in meadmaking under your belt, or have someone working with you who does. K1V-1116 is a killer yeast that will naturally ferment to 18% ABV (and you can feed it to well over 20% ABV), whereas 71B-1122 will peak out at 14% and can be fed up to about 16% or so.

OK, a couple of questions.
What temperature was your must when you pitched the yeast?
How did you re-hydrate the yeast and what temperature was the water you used?
Did you check the expiration date on the yeast packet?
What is the current ambient temperature of the location where your must is sitting?
What kind of water did you use, and is it high in chlorine content?

You can always re-pitch, but let's see where you are, and if we can figure out what is going on first.

Cheers,

Oskaar
 

tazimna

NewBee
Registered Member
May 28, 2005
3
0
0
Here's a few more specifics:
15# clover honey(I'm as beekeeper so have ample supply)
4 gal. chiller distilled h2o
2 tsp I.D. Carlson nutrient
1 tsp Carlson energizer
2 pakets Lalvin k1-v1116 yeast
yeast sat in 4 oz. warm water for 15 min. before pitching
must temp was 80 degrees when pitched
oxyginated must vigorously for 7 minutes before putting lid on and fermentation lock on.
Put vodka in lock instead of water.
Think thats it. Any recommendations? Steve
 

Oskaar

Got Mead Partner
Administrator
Dec 26, 2004
7,874
5
0
31
The OC
Is that distilled as in de-mineralized H2O?

Also did you check your expiration date on the yeast pack?

What size is your fermenter? You have a five gallon batch going so the question about the size of the fermenter is to find out how much headspace you have. If it's a lot then that could help to explain, but my experience with EC is that it's fast, vigorous and an agressive metabolizer. I usually see some really rapid popping in the airlock.

Also, did you check to see that your fermenter is sealed tight? I mean . . . really tight?

EC-1118 is not a shy resigning yeast so if it's a week old already and there's only been one bubble it's time to take a gravity reading, and check to see if you have an infection. Smell it, taste it, look for surface colonies. If it's all good, then re-pitch with K1V-1118 rehydrated per Lalvin spec, and mix the snot out of it when you pitch.

Cheers,

Oskaar
 
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