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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Put a widget in your starter?
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Old 07-21-2012, 03:52 PM   #1
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Default Put a widget in your starter?

I'm having a hard time justifying the purchase or a stir plate and Erlenmeyer flasks, but I'm still looking for ways to improve the cell count in my starters.

I'm an 'Intermittent Shaker' to use the term from the Mr. Malty calculator. I was thinking about adding a widget to my starter vessel ( a growler, normally) to help stir the yeast when shaking it.

Is anyone currently doing this? Have you noticed any improvement in the quality of your starters?

What sort of widget are you using? I immediately thought of a Guinness style ball, but I wonder if a flat widget (or just a stir bar) would work better.

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Old 07-21-2012, 08:34 PM   #2
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What about something like this?

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Old 07-21-2012, 08:38 PM   #3
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Just build your own stirplate with a $2 computer fan, magnet, and an old cell phone charger. There's hundreds of threads on building these on the net. It took me about 20 minutes to build mine and it works amazingly well.

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Old 07-21-2012, 08:40 PM   #4
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Hmm...the purpose of shaking is to turn the liquid over to facilitate gas exchange. I'd be very surprised to learn that a mechanical would actually help to this end. But, give it a go and let us know what you find! A stir bar would at least be useful if you eventually decided to go the stir plate route, and they're easy to sanitize.

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Old 07-21-2012, 09:25 PM   #5
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You don't have to purchase a stir plate or use flasks. I use a glass jar, and the stir plate cost nothing. Made out of stuff that was laying around.

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Old 07-22-2012, 01:15 AM   #6
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The cost of a diy stir plate is pretty insignificant. As far as flasks go, **** that ****. I use a 1/2 gallon glass jug from one of those cheap wines they sell at CVS.

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Old 07-22-2012, 01:35 PM   #7
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Thanks for the replies folks. Seems like I should revisit making a DIY stir plate and renew my interest in bad wine.

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