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Lorrainelovesplants

checking the progress of cider

So..........
on our cider making day on 13th oct we pressed a fair bit of juice, which we added yeast to and it has been bubbling away gently since.

Now, Im unsure if its because the weather has got colder or if we are getting to the end of fermentation, but its all slowed down.

Should I be taking a hydrometer reading around now?  The original reading at pressing was 1005 (John thinks he remembers)
Lorrainelovesplants

Ive bumped this to see if Bodger is awake and can give me a response...
bodger

I've just woken up Lozzer, I'll be back in a jiffy.
bodger

Take a hydrometer reading now and then let me know what it is. Depending on what it is, I'll be able to say whether its nearly finished, or if the cold weather has stopped the fermentation prematurely.
Lorrainelovesplants

will need a bit of time to do this.cant remember where the damn thing is.....
Lorrainelovesplants

Okay found the hydrometer and the sample jar, and now STINK of cider as I had a little incident getting the syphon to work.

First, took the temperature of the cider 14 degrees.
Then put the hydrometer in, let settle (didnt float much) and spun to get rid of the bubbles.
Then read the miniscus. I think.
The reading is 1.002 which I think means there is bugger all alcohol.


I think Im redaing this wrong, because it smells cidery and tastes cidery, and has been bubbling gently from the 14th Oct till a few days ago.  I know there are still bubbles going up through the trap.

What am I doing wrong?
midlandsman

Are you sure that the SG wasn't 1.050: that'd be more likely for apple juice.

MM
Lorrainelovesplants

havnt a clue what Im doing.  had a bit of a stressy today.  Will look at the thing again tomorrow.
midlandsman

On the basis that ciders are usually above 5% alcohol, the starting gravity of the juice would be over 1.035 (about 7.5 per 1%) I think you (or OH) misread the starting gravity and that it was 1.050 not 1.005. This will give you around 7% alcohol in the cider. I'd go as far to say that it's almost impossible for natural apple juice to have a starting gravity of 1.005.

HTH
MM
Lorrainelovesplants

We did take the starting gravity but cannot remember what it was - he was supposed to write it down (I was teaching at the time). All I remember was that it did have a 1 and a 5 in the reading.
The gravity I took yesterday was at 14 degrees and the hydrometer hardly floated at all.  I dont remember this being the case when I did the cider making course in May.

Im just concerned that it is coming to the end of fermentation OR is it just the drop in temperature that is causing the bubbles to slow right down?
Should I add some sugar just to make sure?
Lorrainelovesplants

have gotten the hydrometer out and looked again.  I clearly remember the line being at 2 notches below the 1.000, so I make this to be 1.040.  Does this sound more correct?  The notches obviously(well, I think) go in  increments of 20.

John vaguely remembers the starting SG to "have a 1 and a 5 in it".
bodger

You're looking at getting your SG down to about 1.015, so that you have enough alcohol in your cider but not to make it taste too dry. If its only at 1.040 it might be worth adding a bit more champagne yeast inorder to give it a kick start.
midlandsman

2 notches below the 1.000?

That's not anywhere near 1.040!

2 below would be 0.980 or something similar.

Please taste the product - is it incredibly sweet? (1.040) Reasonably dry? (1.0??) Dry? (1.002) Paint stripper? (0.995)

MM
Lorrainelovesplants

Having moved the cider somewhere warmer, and just waited till its almost cleared, Ive been buggering with the hydrometer again, and after a bit of frustration, (and John's help) we now KNOW that its finished at 1000, and we have cider of 6.7%.  And quite nice it is too.

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