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Liquid Yeast (again)

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jgriffin

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Story for you.
Yesterday i went to the LHB and got some ingredients and a White Labs Pilsener yeast in pitchable tube. The ingredients were for a porter, and i was going to use my existing Irish Ale yeast.

Get home, start making porter. 1/2 way through, realise that i forgot the small step of making the yeast starter.
So i pull one out of the fridge, qucikly boil up some dme and cool it, and throw the stubbie starter into it.
2 hours later, pitch into fermenter. Wake up this morning, massive krausen almost coming out of fermenter, bubbling like mad.

Story 2. The Pilsner yeast.
Poured EBS fresh wort ale into fermenter, from a height with much splashing to aerate.
Pitched brand new ( oct expirey) tube of yeast as per instructions.
Wake up this morning, nothing. Not a bubble to be seen, no krausen at all. After 14 hours i would have expected a single bubble at least.

I'm thinking of pouring it into a 2l bottle and re aerating it, in case it didn't get enough. Any comments?
 

JasonY

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Im no expert on lagers having brewed only one so far but my understanding is that lager yeasts are usually not as vigorous as ale yeasts. Lager yeasts are bottom fermenting so I am not sure if they get a decent krausen in any event (fermenter I had mine in wasn't transparent so I couldn't see). Are you fermenting at low temp?

As long as it gets going I wouldn't loose too much sleep.
 

jgriffin

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Problem is that it hasn't started. I'm fermenting at 18C until she starts.
 

lou

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What yeast was it?

I used the wlp800 whitelabs yeast and it took at least two days for any sign of activity but otherwise the yeast was fine. Its still lagering in the frdge but from early testing should come out fine. You are meant to use big starters with these yeast if you want a quick start - otherwise I think its fine just to pitch it and wait (out side the frdge) until activity starts

lou
 

Hoops

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From memory when pitching yeast for a lager you need to double the starter size. I haven't done a lager for a while so I can't be of too much help sorry.

Hoops
 

jgriffin

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Yeah it's the WLP800. Guess i'm an impatient bastard. Just i've had failures with liquid yeasts before, and was worried i'd blown another $16.
 

pint of lager

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Is the starter wort cloudy? This is an indication that something is going on.

From the date of your yeast, you should be seeing lots of activity by now. Many of my lagers at warm temps rise to the surface, as seen in the starter bottles. Another good indication, when the starter is swirled lots of CO2 bubbles out the airlock.

Lager yeasts grow at about half the rate of ales, this is why pitching rates and starters are bigger for lagers.
 

jgriffin

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I think i got sucked in by the "Pitchable tube, no starter required" propogander on the yeast tube. I just pitched the tube, as per instructions - they're supposed to have 60 billion active cells so that you don't need a starter.
I figured being a fresh wort, and being in a hurry, that i'd propgate later off the yeast cake without having to worry about hops or other crap getting into it.
 

Hoops

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I am chilling an ale as we speak and I have made a starter of around 500ml of WLP001 Calafornia Ale. If I was doing a lager I would make a 1L starter.
The down side to whitelabs is that they are not at full activity if you pitch them straight from the tube whereas the wyeast are. That is why i make a starter up - to make sure the yeast is good and to get it churning away when I pitch it. The large Wyeast packs would probably work better if you were pitching directly from the packet.
 

Darren

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jgriffin said:
I think i got sucked in by the "Pitchable tube, no starter required" propogander on the yeast tube. I just pitched the tube, as per instructions - they're supposed to have 60 billion active cells so that you don't need a starter.
I figured being a fresh wort, and being in a hurry, that i'd propgate later off the yeast cake without having to worry about hops or other crap getting into it.
Howdy,
If your beer hasn't started yet, give your fermentor a swirl for about 2 mins to try and get the yeast roused. Then pop it in the fridge. 18 deg C is too hot for lager yeast. Once it starts it will finish before you can cool it to lager temps.
cheers
D
 

Snow

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When I do a lager, I always make up a 4L starter, then save 1L for storage and pitch 3 L. Most lagers need a lot of yeast. I wouldn't worry too much, John. My last Bock took around 30 hours before it started bubbling, and that was with 3L of starter. Some strains just take time to propogate.

Cheers - Snow
 

Murray

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Never bothered with starters for the WL tubes and haven't had any trouble, but haven't used a lager one yet. Sometimes I'll start it an hour or so before pitching with a litre or two of wort.
 

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