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Other than temperature is there anything else that could be happening over an hour to cause the reading to change so dramatically?
I'll take another reading in the next few days and see what it comes out as. I also have a refractometer but from my research refractometer readings are inaccurate once there is alcohol in the sample.
I've heard of the paper scale slipping inside the hydrometer.
You might want to try it in water (as close to the hydrometers rated temperature as you can) which will hopefully give you a result around 1.000 SG. You should be able to add/subtract any major difference there to your cider reading, provided that you account for any temperature differences.
Good idea. I will try this. Based on my calculations the difference in the 2 readings is too high to be accounted for due to temperature calibration difference alone.