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Basics Of Making And Using A Yeast Starter

Discussion in 'General Brewing Techniques' started by Wolfy, 18/5/11.

 

  1. nosco

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    Posted 20/1/17
    I have never worried about cell count estimates but I should. I would follow Mr B's advice but since you are doing a lager it wont hurt to over pitched a bit. What ever quantities the calculator gives you, add a bit more slurry. Use boiled and cooled water to wash your yeast. Making a good lager is very satisfying.

    My 2c.
     
  2. Chris79

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    Posted 20/1/17
    cheers nosco.

    Ok, here's a screen print from the inputs I've put into Brewer's Friend.

    If I'm reading it right it's saying there is a great enough cell count in the slurry, so I won't need a starter?

    see attached.

    Screen Shot 2017-01-20 at 10.55.48 PM.png
     
  3. nosco

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    Posted 20/1/17
    I dont think you do need a starter. Plenty of yeast in the slurry plus the washing is a extra step. There will be a bit of dead yeast but fresh yeast from a slurry should have tonnes of healthy cells in there. Always be a sanitary as you can but especially when making a lager. I use a large stainless steel soup ladle that I have washed and then sanitised to scoop out some yeast. about 1 cup is heaps for an ale. 2 and bit for a lager to be safe (dont quote me on that).

    Works for me but see what other say (discalaimer :D )

    Edit: if you want to save some extra yeast then do a yeast rinse but its a lot of work in my book. I prefer to save 1/3rd of my first starter and then keep that to make more starters.
     
  4. nosco

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    Posted 20/1/17
    Alot of people say that yeast gets better with every brew that its re used in. Until about 5 or 6 brews then it starts to mutate and the taste is affected. If you are more organized than me then you can plan your brew around it. ie start with a pilsner then use the yeast from that in a bo pils or a helles and then a dunkel, etc. Youd only have to buy one lot of yeast for say 5 brews.
     
  5. nosco

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    Posted 20/1/17
    Thats based on a 20-23lt batch.
     
  6. Rocker1986

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    Posted 20/1/17
    I harvest yeast from starters rather than fermenter trub so my process and calcs are a bit different. I've been reusing a 2001 smack pack since April of 2015 and still haven't produced a shit batch with it. Fucked if I know how many generations it's up to. I can't even believe it myself.

    From that graphic it looks as though you only need to harvest about a third to half of the yeast cake. Overpitching by that much isn't ideal, even in a lager.

    In any case, it doesn't look like you'll need a starter if pitching quite soon after harvesting.
     
  7. Chris79

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    Posted 20/1/17
    Cheers Norco and Rocker.

    Norco, your talking about ladling yeast out of your fermenter after you've moved the beer out? So I guess, you'd have a mix of yeast and trub then, that you'd pitch in your next brew.

    I hadn't thought of saving a third of the original liquid yeast. Do you buy/use anything more special then say a sanitised jam jar when you're separating some of the original yeast?

    I was def planning on using this slurry/yeast for 3 brews at the most, maybe I'll do a 4th with it.

    Yes, similar to do I'd like do up to 22 litres at the most for me.
     
  8. Rocker1986

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    Posted 21/1/17
    I make my starters too big and harvest the excess into a mason jar. It sits in the fridge until the next time I use that strain, and the process is repeated. I have three strains that I rotate between batches. I don't save a third of the original smack pack or whatever though. The third I was referring to was from the yeast cake in the fermenter after the beer is removed from it.
     
  9. nosco

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    Posted 21/1/17
    Yep what Rocker said. The Ball mason jars are 1oz i think and also mls. After the starter is finished i let the yeast settle and then tip of the excess liquid until i have 1lt left. Give it a swirl and then fill the jar to 300ml. The rest goes in the beer.
     
  10. Rocker1986

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    Posted 21/1/17
    My mason jars are about 800ml, and I don't tip off any excess "beer" before harvesting. I do let it ferment out, but then I just stir the whole lot up and tip 800ml into the jar. The jar goes into the "storage" fridge, which is just a normal food fridge, while the flask goes into either the brew fridge or the kegerator if there's room, for a day or two, and then the "beer" is decanted off and the yeast cake is swirled up and pitched.
     
  11. theredone

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    Posted 23/9/19
    Quick question. Made a 3ltr starter for some wlp hazy over the weekend, 300g ldme, fermentation did not seem very vigorous and appeared done after about 18 hours. I left it another 12 and the cold crashed. When I went to decant off the top there was no yeast cake to be seen, the yeast was down the bottom but very slurry like, so much so I only decanted a third off the top for fear of losing yeast. Not sure if I have not given it enough to feed on of if it’s just the way this strain behaves. Tasted the starter and it’s nice and banannery. This is going into a 50ltr batch tonight, should I be worried? Or should I drop a pack of us05 in as well? Or ditch the wlp and just go 2 packs us05?
    Appreciate any advise u might have
    Red
     
  12. theredone

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    Posted 24/9/19
    ^^ pitches it last night anyways, bit warmer than I wanted at about 25 but it was bed time and wouldn’t take long to cool down in fridge, it was absolutely smashing away this morning, about 1-2 inch krausen. Can only assume it’s just the way this yeast acts.
     
  13. Garfield

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    Posted 24/9/19
    I wouldn't have seen any reason to ditch it anyway. If you're unsure if a starter is fermenting, you could always pull a hydrometer sample.

    As a "hazy" strain its very possible that it stays in suspension hence minimal floculation. Good practice to allow a full 48hrs before cold crash (first 24hr on stir plate even better).

    How's the brew tasting @theredone ?
     
    Last edited: 24/9/19

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