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Fresh Wort Starter Vs Dme Starter

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micblair

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Hi guys, need some advice on making a starter. Been using US05 for all my batches till now, and I'm going to give WYEAST 1272 a go to make an IPA.

According to the Activator Smack pack (125 mL) should inoculate 19-20L of wort, but from what I'm reading/told it's still highly desirable to make a starter.

The values I've found for a 20L batch, is a recommended pitching rate of 1.5-2L of starter (150-200g DME @ 150-200 billion cells) with an OG=1.040.

My question is, this will bump up the batch volume to over 21-22L once pitched, and perhaps altering/diluting to an undesired end flavour?

Secondly, if the above statement is true, shouldn't I just tap off 1.1L of wort before cubing, dilute to an OG 1.040 (approx 2L) and make a starter from this? Seems like a better representation of the end environment the yeast is going to see, and won't dilute or stress the yeast from the changing environment.

Thanks in advance.
 

vortex

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Stick it in the fridge the night before pitching, and decant the spent beer off leaving the yeast cake behind, and only pitch that.
 

micblair

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Stick it in the fridge the night before pitching, and decant the spent beer off leaving the yeast cake behind, and only pitch that.
OK, are we talking DME or fresh wort? And, RE: fridge, I'm assuming my yeast starter as fermented out by this stage. Also, I've read that the cake contains lipids and other nutrients.
 

Hippy

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Either will work fine micblair. Wort is cheaper as you don't have to buy DME. I prefer to use unhopped wort myself which I will draw off just before my first hop addition in the boil, which is usually at 60 mins on a 90 min boil. If you use DME go with around 85 g per litre to give you a SG of between 1030 and 1040
 

micblair

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Either will work fine micblair. Wort is cheaper as you don't have to buy DME. I prefer to use unhopped wort myself which I will draw off just before my first hop addition in the boil, which is usually at 60 mins on a 90 min boil. If you use DME go with around 85 g per litre to give you a SG of between 1030 and 1040
Ok cool, and since it's the start of the boil, the gravity should be I'm the 1050 region - or do you still dilute down to 1040?
 

mwd

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It dosn't matter go with what you got it will not make any difference in the end.
 

micblair

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It dosn't matter go with what you got it will not make any difference in the end.
Yeah I would like to think that is the case, since good old 05 takes a beating in terms of the high gravities and temperature variations at my place, and yet I've been pretty happy with the job its done to date.
 

Yob

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Its my understanding that yeast will produce a certain set of enzymes for a particular wort profile.. So in an ideal world, you will be fermenting the same profile ad the starter.. Naturally this is not always possible and is not the end of the world but still.. If you can do it, and give a shit, use the same wort you will be fermenting.. Ive just adjusted my volumes to allow an extra litre.. lol.. Yet to put it into practice myself and doubt i will see a noticible difference.. But hay..
 

seemax

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If the smack pack is fresh (<1 month old) you could just pitch it directly... smack it first and confirm the yeast is viable (pack with inflate). I've done this a few times with good results.

I've also used year old packs int a 1L starter and brewed some great ales.

So.. ideal world follow mrmalty yeast counts... but not to say you can't brew good beer if you don't.
 

micblair

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If the smack pack is fresh (<1 month old) you could just pitch it directly... smack it first and confirm the yeast is viable (pack with inflate). I've done this a few times with good results.

I've also used year old packs int a 1L starter and brewed some great ales.

So.. ideal world follow mrmalty yeast counts... but not to say you can't brew good beer if you don't.
Cheers, whats the risk of longer lag times, apart from wild yeast/bacteria pipping the good guys to the post? Stressed yeast and off flavour profiles?
 

Gavo

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What cause of lag times are we talking about now? From an older smack pack or from under pitching? Just throwing the questions out there, rhetorical really.

I have been using 1272 for some time now; three to four years and it can do a number of things for you depending how you treat it. If you want a low ester profile then use a large starter and ferment at 18C. If you want to get the esters out of it (and that is where it shines for my liking) then under pitch and and ferment around 20C and finish at 22C before crash chilling. Now for the shock and horror I only use a 500ml starter in 20lt. Don't be afraid of this yeast as it can highlight the hop profile very well through its ester profile.

If it were me and was using the smack pack (I split the pack and then use fresh wort starters) then I would just use the the smacked smack pack and not bother with a starter in a 20 litre batch.

Oh and it will still finish where it should even with under pitching, as long as what is pitched is viable, active and healthy.

Cheers
Gav
 

micblair

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^^Thanks Gavo, I was primarily talking about under pitching, but you make a good point about yeast viability. The 1272 yeast hasn't arrived, so I can't calculate viability using Jamil's calculator yet. Haven't been brewing long enough to appreciate the nuances of esters, although US05 seems to give a lot of banana/mango aromas which I could take or leave. To be honest I just want a big citrus hop aroma, which I've failed to get using dry hopping with fresh cones.
 

Gavo

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Well don't know what it will do for you in the citrus aroma but it will highlight the hops better than US05. What I do tend to get is more fruit salad, without banana and mango and I would know as I can't stand mango and there is definitely no banana.

Cheers
Gav
 

Wolfy

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If you no-chill, the 'best' option would be to take some of the wort and use that for your starter (it should be easy to quickly cool 2L in the fridge) however yeast starters are best in the 1.030-1.040 gravity range, so dilute or strengthen until it's within that gravity range.

Starters are all about growing healthy yeast, and the best conditions for that (temperature, oxygen etc) are not always the best conditions for making good beer, so most people generally let the yeast from the starter settle out, decant the spent starter beer and then pitch only the yeast.
 

micblair

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If you no-chill, the 'best' option would be to take some of the wort and use that for your starter (it should be easy to quickly cool 2L in the fridge) however yeast starters are best in the 1.030-1.040 gravity range, so dilute or strengthen until it's within that gravity range.

Starters are all about growing healthy yeast, and the best conditions for that (temperature, oxygen etc) are not always the best conditions for making good beer, so most people generally let the yeast from the starter settle out, decant the spent starter beer and then pitch only the yeast.
Just had a look at the activator pack manufacturing date was June, and the range for direct pitch is up to 1.060 for the 1272. I'm half inclined just to direct pitch into 1.070 OG. Can anyone make a good argument to why I should absolutely not do this?
 

manticle

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I reckom Mr malty overestimates but even so, 1060 is the uppermost limit of the wyeast recommendation. 1070 is above that and by enough to make me want to grow some more yeast.

Anything above about 1050 ish, I make starters (often make them below as well but only because I often recoup some of my worty trub by allowing separation overnight).

To answer the first question - I make all my starters from the same wort that will be fermented. I rarely dilute.
 

micblair

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http://www.mrmalty.com/calc/calc.html
Put in the numbers and decide yourself, I know what I'd do when it says I need more than 2.5 times number of yeast cells the pack provides.
Direct pitch up to 1.060 and 5 gallons of Wort? I wonder if the microbiologists at Wyeast aagree with Jamils calculator? Based on 1.060, u would still need 2 packs without a starter.
 

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