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Old 03-22-2007, 11:57 PM   #1
TheJadedDog
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Default Doh - Urgent Forgot to Smack Nutrient Pack

I am used to using white labs yeast vials so I totally forgot to smack the wyeast pack this morning. I was planning to make a starter tonight:

Can I still make it and just forget about the nutrient?

Can I smack the nutrient and pitch that too?

Do I have to wait until tomorrow?

Can I brew 16 hours after making a starter?

Help!

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Old 03-23-2007, 12:04 AM   #2
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Is this the ACTIVATOR pack?

I have used those in the past and smacked it a couple hours before brewing and have had very good fermentation. in fact the last time 2 hours after smacking it I thought the pack was going to explode. The trick is to get it warm, I put it in the bathroom with a heater on.

I never knew you needed to make a starter for the smack packs.

Hope this helps.

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Old 03-23-2007, 12:07 AM   #3
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I thought I had smacked it last week when I made a hefeweissen, but turned out it hadn't smacked...

It still fermented fine


I think you'll be ok to make a starter with it then....

If you want you can add the nutrient pack thing to the smarter....i mean you're supposed to add it to the wort

Good luck!

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Old 03-23-2007, 02:31 AM   #4
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Well, I went ahead and made the starter, followed my typical procedure and just pitched the liquid in the smack pack without the nutrient. It didn't seem like I poured much in but then I'm used to the white labs vials. If the starter doesn't take off I have some muntons and some windsor dry yeast so brew day will proceed as scheduled.

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Old 03-24-2007, 02:37 AM   #5
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When you make a starter (and you should almost always make a starter) you don't need to smack the thing. All smacking the pack will do is to let you know that the yeast isn't dead. There is just enough nutrient in there to wake up the yeast and that is it.

In spite of what even the Activator packs say, there is still only about half the number of yeast cells for proper fermentation of a 5 gallon batch of beer. A 2 quart starter will more than double the amount of yeast in 18-24 hours. This will give you a proper amount of really healthy yeast. If you underpitch the yeast, you will get a slow start to fermentation which will give any competing bacteria to get a foothold before the yeast multiplies enough to crowd it out. Also if the yeast spends a long lag time reproducing, you will get excessive esters which may not be pleasant in the resulting beer. Underpitching will also stress the yeast leading to it shutting down before eating all available fermentable sugars, leaving you with an underattenuated, too sweet beer.

Wayne
Bugeater Brewing Company

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Old 03-24-2007, 02:44 AM   #6
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IMHO, you should've smacked the pack and dumped the entire contents into your starter (without waiting for the pack to swell). The nutrient would likely have helped your starter take off. Either way, it you're probably doing the right thing by making a starter.

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