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January 29, 2014
Last updated

How to Know When Fermentation Has Finished

Chief Operating Officer at Clawhammer
Outdated. New article here.

Emmet Leahy is the Chief Operating Officer and lead product developer at Clawhammer Supply, a small scale distillation and brewing equipment company. He loves the process of developing new equipment for making beer at home just as much as he does using it to brew his own beer. He's also passionate about teaching people how to use distillation equipment to produce distilled water, essential oils, and with the proper permits, fuel alcohol and distilled spirits.

  • I have a Apple mash 3 pounds rough chopped apples 3 gallons apple juice and topped with water to make 10 Gallon total with 10 pound sugar don’t have a way to check gravity but mash still bubbles after 8 days how do I tell when ready to run been kept in constant 70 degree room since yeast pitched any help appreciated

    Posted by Jeff on May 15, 2023
  • This is my second five gallon run and it was week so I was wondering if I could run it again

    Posted by Roger on August 15, 2022
  • My blueberry mash is still working after 10 Days is that alright

    Posted by Lee on December 14, 2021
  • Making 90-130 proof booze 101. If your just starting out Here is the most simple mash recipe out there.
    Step 1: go to the store and pick up 3 to 5 lbs of “dark” brown sugar, active dry yeast, “and if your a city slicker” 5 gallons of spring or purified water.
    Step 2: bust out your biggest pot, throw in at least 3 lbs of your dark brown sugar, all 5 if you like your booze “in this case rum” to be on the warm side and you know how to party. Mix in about 2.5 gallons of water.
    Step 3 bring it to a boil and shutter down about 30 seconds later.
    Step 4: poor it in to your carboy or 5 gallon bucket and poor in the rest of your water. “Hopefully this will help get it cooler quicker”
    Step 6: “very important” wait for your mash to cool down to room temperature
    Step 5: if your mash is cooled down thrown in 1-1.5 table spoons of yeast “I throw in an extremely heaping teaspoon”
    Step 6: find a nice consistently warm around your house or property “preferably not outside” and wait two weeks occasionally giving your mash a whiff to make sure everything is copacetic and up to par.
    Step 7:….. Well considering that I should have told ya how to build a fermentation chamber and added more specific shopping list I’ll have to make this a part two but if ya know how to make a fermentation chamber and can run a still the this was likely to much info for ya but if not then I’ll leave another comment tomorrow on all that

    Posted by Ketfeshkellen on December 07, 2021
  • In prison my cellie would make 6 water bottles of fire. He used fruit sticks and Mango juice and bread.

    Posted by Jesus on November 28, 2021
  • My mash is bubbling but my airlock is not haven’t opened bucket its been fermenting for 4 days now I used instant yeast so should it be ready this fast

    Posted by Swamp Daddy on November 13, 2021
  • What’s the deal with all these questions and no answers? What’s the point in asking?

    Posted by Brian on November 13, 2021
  • If my mash doesn’t start to work after adding the yeast by 48 hours can I add more yeast?
    This is my first try at making shine.
    Thanks Gutbucket

    Posted by Gutbucket on November 13, 2021
  • What happens if you add the yeast too early to a warm mash is it still any good I’m making a pineapple run

    Posted by Mike on May 12, 2021
  • just started my first i guess it would be a mash tonight. juiced 25 or 30 pounds of apples and 1 small bag of baby carrots made about a gallon of juice. added 5 1/2 gallons water 12 pounds of sugar disolved the sugar let cool to 77 degrees f added lemon juice and yeast. amazing 30 minutes after i covered my 9.6 gallon pot the airlock started to bubble about every 8 to 10 seconds i am hoping that is a good omen.

    Posted by al on March 04, 2021
  • Your followers have great questions. Several I would love to see your expertise and opinions concerning your solutions / answers.

    Washington State Shiner

    Posted by Rob Stark on December 21, 2020
  • i forgot to add a step to the 5+5+5 recipe i posted. finally after getting your mash going by pitching the yeast (DADY yeast), top off the five gallon fermenting bucket with water at a temperature of 80+/-10 degrees f, then cap it off.

    Posted by kevin on December 02, 2020
  • heres a simple recipe, using the “5+5+5 method.” for fermenting in a 5 gallon bucket, bring 3 gallons water to a boil, add 5 pounds of granulated sugar, stir til the sugar is dissolved and the water is clear. turn down the heat, slowly add 5 pounds of corn meal, stirring constantly, stir for a while. turn off the heat, let the mixture cool til its temperature is about 150F. add amylase enzyme, stir for a few more minutes and let it sit for an hour or twq. put the mixture in your fermenter, let it cool til no warmer than 100F. add yeast nutrient according to directions. a can of tomato paste with no additives works instead of fancy nutrient. throw your yeast in there, stir it up. cap it off. i usuall wait until my mash is totally done bubblimg in the airlock before i figure its ready. syphon out the clear stuff, get rid of the mud at the bottom and there ya go. drink as is or do whatever you wanna do with it.

    Posted by Kevin on December 02, 2020
  • Thanks for all the info. Is there a chRt- formula for how much water to how much solids- such as sugar- corn /corn meal- etc?

    Thanks Dano

    Posted by DAno on December 02, 2020
  • Are there answers to the questions ppl post?
    q: My mash is going passed 3rd wk of fermenting. I still get the water pushed to the other side in my airlock (bbl’s too slow to watch, but it’s still working).
    Is my mash going to turn to vinegar? I used 20lbs of corn sugar to make 5 gals. The S.G. hasn’t changed (started at 1.150, went to 1.012 & staying) but it’s still giving off Co2. I’m afraid if I wait too long, it’ll turn to vinegar.
    Should I just go ahead & run it, while it’s still giving off Co2? Or wait until no more Co2, & risk it turning? Please help!

    Posted by Tim on June 23, 2020
  • Just a comment regarding questions about airlock not bubbling;
    A real fermenting bucket has a rubber/silicone bead ring built into the lid that makes a tight seal. When I started, I was using a bucket and lid from Tsc or home depot. Those lids seem tight when they snap on, but aren’t air tight.
    When I bought a couple of buckets from a brew shop i saw the sealing bead the light went on.
    I had always figured there was something wrong with my mash…

    Posted by Tim Guther on May 11, 2020
  • Been running a brown sugar mash with daddy yeast for 3 weeks now and am still getting bubbles every 20 seconds or so…

    Do I just let this keep running? I’ve never had it take this long to stop bubbling but want to make sure I get the best yield

    Posted by TOny on April 08, 2020
  • Can someone please share A recipe for vodka everclear 120 proof I understand is needed to make sanitisers for our community please?
    I have vevor 9 gal still and many in need

    Posted by ALlicca on March 26, 2020
  • My corn mash sat for 6 weeks. The seal and airlock were good but I couldn’t run after two due to travel. I noticed oil droplets on the top from I guess the corn. Is this mash still good to run?

    Posted by George on May 28, 2019
  • Should your fruit mash taste like sugar. I put fleshmans
    Year in it but it stopped bubbling after two days and it tast real sweet

    Posted by Ward on March 25, 2019

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