Harvesting yeast - where's the yeast?

Discussion in 'Beginners Brewing Forum' started by Tal Orbach, Mar 21, 2019.

  1. Tal Orbach

    Tal Orbach Member

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    I've been harvesting yeast for a while, but I still don't feel like I know what I'm doing.
    Yesterday, I kegged a batch and harvested everything from the bottom of the fermenter.
    Now, I look at the jars, after they'd set there for a while, and it seems like there's just beer and trub, and no clear yeast layer.
    Is this OK? Is there anything I'm supposed to do now?
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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  3. Tal Orbach

    Tal Orbach Member

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    Can rinsing be done later on?
    What I mean is - can I collect the slurry, keep it in the fridge, and perform the rinsing process at a later date (maybe after a couple of weeks or so)?
     
  4. Mase

    Mase Well-Known Member

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    Easier just to split your initial yeast, that way you don’t have to deal with yeast that’s been through a brew and has a ton of trub with it.
     
  5. Tal Orbach

    Tal Orbach Member

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    Do you mean to split the first generation, before pitching (i.e. pitch just half of the store-bought yeast)?
     
  6. Mase

    Mase Well-Known Member

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    Yep! Just make a double size starter, pitch half to your wort, and keep the rest to do the exact same thing with your next brew.
     
  7. Tal Orbach

    Tal Orbach Member

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    So that's a fine piece of advice, and I thank you for it, but it does not answer my question about rinsing the yeast from the slurry that I already collected.
     
  8. Mase

    Mase Well-Known Member

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    Well we kind of tangented (if that’s a word), off subject with my alternative proposal. Unfortunately, I have not harvested yeast post a brew fermentation session, so others will have to chime in on their comments/suggestions. Fear not, someone will be by soon to pick up where I left off.

    Cheers!
     
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  9. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    You know you can also collect the yeast off the top of fermentation with a cleaned spoon at high krausen its called "top cropping". Try googling yeast washing too it will yeild some good results for you to check out Tal. You know you dont even need tp "wash" your yeast just dump the slurry into your next batch a beer.
    Now remember cleanliness and sanitation is king with helping culturing clean yeast. I've gone a few generations just fine and actually was watching a YouTube video the other day where this Scandinavian dude repitched 34/70 for over 20 generations and used same fermentation vessel for over a year without cleaning it out :eek::D! Cool eh
    If using your slurry then use the yeast pitch calculator in the recipie editor to find the right amount of slurry to pitch. Cheers.
     
  10. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    I also haven't done that many batches, so this isn't based on a lot of thinking or observing, but to me the contribution of the original harvested beer and solids is so small that I can't detect it. I don't harvest from the bigger ABV or dry hop beers though.

    And I can't see the image in the original post. But I don't see the obvious layers of beer, yeast and trub in the yeast I harvest either.
     
  11. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    There are many ways to harvest yeast for future use. I am no expert, I have only made one attempt so far. What I can tell you is that if you google harvesting yeast, there are numerous videos to view. Everyone has there own unique process. I attempted harvesting yeast last weekend, not sure how it went yet.
     
  12. philjohnwilliams

    philjohnwilliams Well-Known Member

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    I use the method shown in this video.
    I find that I can get very clean yeast using this method, and because I can let the yeast settle while I bottle, it doesn't really add any time to my bottling day. You generally want to do the rinsing when you transfer your beer out of the fermenter, not really something to be done at a later date.
     
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  13. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    Here are some pictures of how I harvested yeast recently. I have no idea really what to do with it mind you. I first boiled the mason jars for about 10 or 15 minutes then filled them all with the boiled sterilized water and let it cool. Once cooled I added the water from the three large jars to the carboy. I swirled and mixed it all up until nothing was sticking to the bottom of the carboy. I then set it on its side and let the trub settle for about 15-20 minutes. I then poured off the liquid from the top of the trub (as best I could) back into the three large jars. After letting them settle out for about 1.5 hours, I decanted them off into the three smaller jars. I have no idea how you know, or how I could figure out how many yeast cells I collected. I suspect that when I decide to use this yeast that I would decant most of the liquid off, swirl up real good and add the contents to a starter...
    The last two pictures are after 1 week refrigerated, I have three jars like this.
    IMG_20190317_1350502~(1).jpg
    IMG_20190317_1525280~(1)~(1).jpg
    IMG_20190317_1704317~(1).jpg
    IMG_20190317_1948157~(1)~(1).jpg
    IMG_20190324_1114036~(1).jpg
    IMG_20190324_1114478~(1).jpg
     
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  14. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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  15. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    There's your yeast 3 photos down from top.
     
  16. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    Oh, so I missed it all together then, in the next photo down I decanted and left that behind. I thought that was trub, and the goal was to leave it behind.
     
  17. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Nope that creamy white layer is your yeast well it sure looks like it in the photo. I'd expect more like what you got in them first jars than in the last. As is you'll need a good starter with what you've collected their still good to go though Craig you'll just have to propogated them.

    See I think this defeats the purpose of this yeast collection method you don't want to go to all that effort to wash yeast and still have to propogated again.

    Next time just collect slurry Into one of them jars and just pitch that into your wort it may look messy but it's just that simple.
     
  18. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    yep this is pure yeast

    WP_20190325_22_58_10_Pro.jpg
     
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  19. I_playdrums

    I_playdrums Well-Known Member

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    Harvesting off the starter is a good google search. IMO
     

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