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dicko

Boston Bay Brewery
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Hi all,
I want to brew on thursday (3 days from now ) and i have just taken an ale yeast liquid starter out of the fridge.
Can anyone tell me what procedures they would use to build a starter to pitch on Thursday into a wort that will be sg 1050 and how to tell if the starter will be big enough or too small.
The starter is 400 mls that has been grown from a smack pac built up six times and then divided by six.

Is "bigger" - "better"?

Cheers
 

JasonY

The Imperial Metric Brewery
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same way you made the 6 stubs more than likely :) I boil 1 cup DME in 1L water, chill, pour off 80% of liquid in stubbie, shake the stubbie like shite, add to chilled wort, shake wort like shite .... away you go ....

If you are really good let the stubbie warm to room temp b4 mixing but I haven;t had problems not letting it warm.
 

dicko

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So Jason Y,
You only need to do it once and that will be enough?
My problem is not really how you do it but how big does that starter have to be.
The reason for my question is that I have been building a starter using a similar method to yours over the last few days while I have been waiting for ingredients to come from Adelaide.
They were later than expected and now the starter has got a funny/ different smell although it still tastes ok (I think) and I am now reluctant to use it.
so what I want to determine is how many times should i feed the starter to get the correct size yeast prior to brewing the beer. The way I see it these starters need to be ready when the brew is completed and in the fermenter.
If you were using dry yeast there is a formula for how much you should pitch but with these liquid yeasts there seems to be no guide at all except statements like "awsome starters" etc.
I must apologise for putting this post in the wrong topic - it not meant to be in Humour.
Cheers
 

JasonY

The Imperial Metric Brewery
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Personally I have settled on 1L starters for pitching. If I am really organised (rarely) I start it 2 - 3 days before the brew and shake the shite out of it every time I pass it until brew day. I let it settle on brew day and decant as 2/3 of the liquid down the drain and then shake it what is left to get mainly the yeast in 300ml of liquid.

On the second last or last stubbie I make another 6 stubbies so I dont run out. After about 10 - 15 I jsut buy a new smack pack to make sure I am not risking pushing the strain.

If your sanitation is good then I can't see any problem in it being 5days+ before you brew or even more. If the stater has fermented out and you are not ready to brew for a few days I would chuck it in the fridge and then take it out on brew day to slowly warm before pitching.

I am sure there are many methods but this is what I do at least. Hope your yeast gets to that tasty wort you will be brewing B)
 

dicko

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Thanks for that info Jason y,
I am on the right track but I have been a bit put off by the slight smell that my current starter has got.
I still might tip it out and start another one as It is a lot of work in AG brew to have it wasted by an off yeast.
Cheers and thanks
 

wedge

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Hey Dicko,

Make sure you pitch at high krausen to ensure the activity of your yeast and to ward off infection
 

dicko

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Batz,
Got that from you before and was happy with your procedure but then I read of guys building "massive starters" etc and it started me wondering.
Then when the ingredients didnt come before the weekend for my next brew, I fed the current starter two more times and now it has a very slight odour and I am reluctant to use it.
I am not experienced enough with these liquid yeasts to recognise smell and taste yet but I will get there.
Thanks to all for your help.
Cheers
 

pint of lager

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Golden rule of starters, pitch 5% of volume for ales, 10% for lagers. So ideally for a 23 litre ale, you want a 1.2 litre starter just at krausen.

Step up in multiples of ten, so 100ml starter would be stepped up to 1000ml starter.

Starter wort should be 1.040. Which works out to be 100gms DME in 1000ml

Step up at krausen, that is when starter is showing activity, co2 coming off, wort is cloudy, yeast is starting to sediment on bottom of starter.

For higher og beers, use a bigger starter.

Sniff everything, if not happy use your standby dry yeast.

Sanitise everything.

Oxygenate your starter by shaking regularly.
 

johnno

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Interestingly enough a few weeks back now I was preparing a Wyeast 1056 starter to make an ale. I had around 1.5 liters in a coke bottle. The thing was going really well and I had timed it so I would brew on the weekend.
Then it turned out I wasn't able to brew. It had slowed right down a couples of days after my proposed brew day on the weekend.
I ended up capping the bottle and putting it in the fridge. It was in there about 5 weeks.
Last Sunday I had a window of opportunity to brew that day. I took this old starter out of the fridge first thing in the morning thinking it was dead. By late afternoon it had started going again.
I decided to use it and see what happens. I made up a 23 litre brew using DME at 1044.
Pitched this old starter at about 7 that night.
By 7 the next morning it was bubbling away and still is like mad.
Pretty hardy stuff this yeast.
Anyway thats one experience I've had with liquid yeast.

cheers
 

warrenlw63

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No probs. there Johnno :lol:

As long as it's healthy and made quite cleanly it should last several months. There's never any guarantees in a perfect world and it won't work for every strain. Some are just more robust than others. Just always remember if it sits in the fridge for more than a couple of weeks to wake it up with some more malt extract.

If mine have been sitting in the fridge for some time. I'll usually feed 'em again. Let them ferment out completely and decant the clear beer from the top. This is then sampled to make sure there are no off-flavours. I then just feed it again and it's usually good to go.

Warren -
 

PostModern

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pint of lager said:
Oxygenate your starter by shaking regularly.
Once the starter is fermenting out the wort, surely the headspace in the bottle will be full of CO2. How does this help aeration?

I've made several starters - generally I step up to 2 litres, giving enough to pitch as well as preserve some in stubbies. I just aerate like hell before initial pitching. Never needed to aerate as the starter grows.
 

Murray

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I agree PM, there will be very little, if any, oxygenation achieved by shaking during fermentation. However I'll give my starters a swirl to rouse the lazy buggers on the bottom every now and again.
 

RobW

The Little Abbotsford Craftbrewery
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PostModern said:
pint of lager said:
Oxygenate your starter by shaking regularly.
Once the starter is fermenting out the wort, surely the headspace in the bottle will be full of CO2. How does this help aeration?

I've made several starters - generally I step up to 2 litres, giving enough to pitch as well as preserve some in stubbies. I just aerate like hell before initial pitching. Never needed to aerate as the starter grows.
If you make your starter in a 2 or 3 litre PET bottle you can squeeze all the gas out & replace it with air when the bottle pops back into shape. Then put the lid on & shake it to oxygenate. Do this regularly until you are ready to pitch and the yeast will really fire up. Graeme Sanders on Craftbrewers recommends this, I've tried it & it works well. He claims a really well oxygenated starter is more important than aerating your wort although it's best to do both.
 

Murray

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Given that my starters are in a pyrex flask I don't think that is an option for me ;)
 

RobW

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I can see how that would be a problem :p

BTW Murray, what makes the forests grim?
 

Murray

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KenEasy said:
I can see how that would be a problem :p

BTW Murray, what makes the forests grim?
Winter? I'm not sure. The tree cover makes it quite dark.
 

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