alcohol in cider vinegar

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Noodlynoo, Oct 2, 2014.

  1. Noodlynoo

    Noodlynoo Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm making my own ACV from large healthy mothers and apple juice.
    However, what should my hydrometer reading be to show all the alcohol has gone?
    Everything I've read is about wanting the alcohol, but I obviously dont.

    Anyone else that makes their own I would love to hear your opinions!
     
  2. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

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    Vinegar is Latin for "sour" wine, therefor for you to make vinegar you must first make wine. The acidic acid in vinegar is produced by first converting sugar into alcohol by using yeast to ferment sugars suspended in a liquid into alcohol, then once the yeast are through doing their thing a bacteria culture is introduced into the finished wine, distilled alcohol, or brewers beer. This bacteria culture is known as "mother of vinegar" because it converts alcohol into vinegar.

    The biggest concern for home brewers or wine makers is to deprive their new wine or beer of oxygen or air. The reason for this is because the acidic acid bacteria that converts alcohol into vinegar or acid MUST have oxygen to live, eat, and reproduce. It will often require months to create vinegar out of wine or beer under natural conditions. You can speed up the process to less than one day however by circulating pure oxygen under pressure through your wine or beer.

    The types of vinegar are: red wine vinegar, white wine vinegar, rice wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar and malt vinegar, all made from fermented fruit juice or fermented malted grains. White or distilled vinegar is made by cutting distilled moonshine whisky aka "white lightning" to 15% alcohol and fermenting the result by using the same bacteria process used to make the other vinegars. Your hydrometer only reads the specific gravity of your wine or must and it will not measure the amount of alcohol remaining. Only a complete acidic acid bacteria fermentation will remove all the alcohol remaining in your apple cider in a fashion that you'll find acceptable.

    I hope that the above helps.

    Something to consider: You need 2 1/2 to 5% percent acidic acid or vinegar plus a big shot of salt and some scalding high heat to keep vegies pickled in vinegar from spoiling. What great good do you expect your chickens to derive from a teaspoon or two of ACV added to each gallon of their drinking water? Also vinegar will completely eat away the calcium carbonate eggshell creating a 100% man made soft-shelled egg. Do as you see best, but I don't see apple cider vinegar laced drinking water dissolving your eggshells any more than I see ACV keeping your birds in tip top health. Like I said, "Do as you see best" just don't expect too much out of ACV.
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2014
  3. pdirt

    pdirt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sorry I can't help you on the hydrometer reading...I've only used mine a couple times for acidic brews to determine sugar content and honestly i don't recall how the thing works.

    I have read, though, that it takes from a few weeks to a couple months to completely convert apple juice to hard cider to vinegar. Just be sure to keep it covered in cheesecloth and open to the air. I could always smell the alcohol and I could watch the pH drop as time went by. It would get pretty acidic, I think 3.0 or something. But since you're starting with an ACV mother (which isn't necessary), it will speed up the process, but I don't know by how much. Try smelling or tasting, once the pH has gotten below 4.0 and see if you can detect alcohol. If you can't, then you're probably right.
     
  4. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    Should be less than 1.005
     
  5. Noodlynoo

    Noodlynoo Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for that! My reading is 1.003. So no alcohol in that?
     
  6. Noodlynoo

    Noodlynoo Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for all that everyone, very insightful. It seems its a more complicated process than I first thought! :)
     
  7. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    When purified water is at 60* F it reads 1.000
    So there is little to no alcohol in a reading of 1.003

    Remember that liquid must be at 60* F for a acetate reading.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2014
  8. Noodlynoo

    Noodlynoo Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks Chris. My last reply seems to have disappeared! Though there is no alcohol left in it, can I assume there is no sugar left it in either?
     
  9. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    There should very little if any at all left.
     

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