yeast starter part II

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Brewer #11471, Apr 19, 2013.

  1. Brewer #11471

    Brewer #11471 New Member

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    Ok, so I brewed last weekend with a yeast starter for the first time and now i am hooked. I had airlock activity within 4 hours of pitching my starter. My question now is - everything I read talks about dme for starters, can I use LME? How would it be different? And would I build a starter differently with LME?
     
  2. LarryBrewer

    LarryBrewer Active Member

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    Yes, you can do a starter with LME. You just need to add more since LME has a lower ppg.

    Create a recipe called 'starter', and add the necessary LME. Or, the shortcut - add about 20% more LME than DME by weight to hit the same gravity.
     
  3. Foster82

    Foster82 New Member

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    For my starters I have been soaking my spent grains in enough warm water just cover them and let them sit while I finish my brew day. Then I drain that off and let in simmer on the stove for awhile until I get the quantity down to a amount that I can store. I then take a gravity reading and place it in the freezer for use in starters. The last time I did this I saved about 1.25 gallons of 1.027 wort which will be almost enough for my next starter. I do add some DME to bring the gravity back up to 1.036 before using. I find that by doing this I am able to drastically reduce the amount of extract that I am buying. Just have to make sure you decant very well before pitching.
     
  4. Krimbos

    Krimbos Member

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    Foster

    Did you start with fresh yeast or did you reuse from a previous batch?

    My attempt to make a starter from reused yeast failed. The reclaimed yeast was in the fridge for nearly a month.

    My rehydrated my yeast this weekend, and saw definate improvement.
     
  5. Foster82

    Foster82 New Member

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    I actually use yeast that I have stored on slants. For me reusing a yeast cake poses to great a risk in several areas. However if was going to make a starter from a stored yeast cake, I would toss approx a tablespoon of the yeast cake into about 250 ml of wort and let that set for 24 to 48 hrs. At that point you should know if your yeast are alive and happy, this mini starter can then be used to make up to a 2.5 liter starter (cell count in the 250ml starter should be approx 50 billion). By using a smaller amount of the yeast cake you are actually ending up with a larger percentage of younger healthy cells to get the party started.

    At a month old your yeast should have been plenty healthy, and I would not blame the yeast. Using the above method I would bet that I could revive 6 month old yeast, however I would be worried about bacterial infections in a cake that old (which is why I slant).
     
  6. Krimbos

    Krimbos Member

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    YEah, I am sure it wasnt the yeast :x

    What is a slant?
     
  7. Foster82

    Foster82 New Member

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    If you go back to this post
    http://www.brewersfriend.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=508
    The first picture is of my slants. The white streaks you see are yeast colonies growing on a gelatin/wort medium. The second picture is the plates (also with the gelatin/wort medium) that I streaked my yeast onto in order to identify individual colonies. The basic process starts with a yeast cake with a know yeast strain. Then a extremely small amount is basically smeared on the plate; once done you can't even see the yeast. After 3 to 5 days the yeast starts to become visible, and individual colonies are selected to be "smeared" on the slant. After another 3 to 5 days and visible growth is seen the slant is stored in the fridge for later use. When needed the yeast is scraped from the slant and pitched into a starter. Storing the yeast this way ensures the yeast have been isolated from any possible bacteria that could have been in the original yeast cake, and last for a year plus. After a year replating and slanting should be done. It is called a slant because the medium is allowed to cool and gel at an angle in order to increase surface area inside the small vial. Main benefits include long time storage of multiple strains without taking up space and very pure yeast samples. Downside is building a starter up takes at least 72 hours and multiple steps which increases the likely hood of contamination and requires prior planning.
     
  8. MrBIP

    MrBIP Active Member

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    This thread reminded me of this 2 video series I found just a couple of weeks ago:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HA7gsVu3JpA

    (Pretty neat, not sure I'm up to it ... yet ;) )
     
  9. Krimbos

    Krimbos Member

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    Sorry I asked. :roll: :D

    Good stuff.
     
  10. Foster82

    Foster82 New Member

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    Are you really? Or now inspired? :mrgreen:
     

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