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Old 08-06-2008, 05:15 PM   #1
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Default reusing yeast with out washing

I have been reusing my yeast lately to save on costs. I was thinking about a couple of things.

I have had problems with washing yeast in the past (a sour smell) probably due to poor technique.

so I have been thinking that I will have less chance of contamination reusing the slurry with out washing it. I use a paint straining bag during the boil to pull out the hops so I think there should only be hot/cold break in my trub.

I plan my brewing around the yeast; the last series of brews - a belgian blonde, pale then a triple. As far as I can tell the trub being present has had minimal effect on the next batch, I try not to stress the yeast with to much alcohol or IBU.

When Im measuring the slurry there doesnt seem to be very much trub; I have been thinking I should pitch a larger amount due to some trub being present, maybe about 25 percent does this sound ok? Im sure the answer is to remove the trub but how much difference does it make?

Can I use my whitelabs vials in my pressure cooker?

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Old 08-06-2008, 07:27 PM   #2
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I've kept and used yeast without washing with no ill effect so far. I just use quart mason jars after i rack to the kegs and try and collect from the very bottom. Since my batch sizes have gone up to 20-25 gallons I usually collect a few quarts, one per carboy more or less. My fermentation usually starts within a couple of hours of pitching.

Why in the world would you put WL vials in a pressure cooker? 8|

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Old 08-06-2008, 07:47 PM   #3
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A lot of people have their next batch ready to pitch yeast into, and will rack a previous beer off the yeast cake, and rack the wort directly onto that cake. I have only done this a couple times, but it works great. I now wash most of my yeast, so I can defer the cost across several batches of beer. If you are following the procedure properly, you shouldn't have any issues.

As far as the WL vials, if they are glass, you could definitely sterilize them in a pressure cooker. Just be careful, they could probably break very easily. If they are plastic, they will probably heat up too much, and get distorted. I just had something like this happen to a plastic jar, just heating up some BBQ sauce in the microwave. The whole jar just about collapsed in on itself.

Good Luck

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Old 08-06-2008, 08:02 PM   #4
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I have a bunch of them and I would use them for easy storage of yeast in the refrigerator.

I think Jamil said that he uses nalgene bottles in his pressure cooker.

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Old 08-06-2008, 08:15 PM   #5
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I just want to emphasize there is no need to aerate when racking onto an established cake. You want to do this 'quietly' so to speak, the reason for this is the colony is well established, you do not want to push it through the growth phase again and there is no need. This is a great approach for brewing two styles a smaller beer and then a bigger beer with the resulting cake. I have done this many times with very good results.

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Old 08-06-2008, 10:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoebisch01 View Post
I just want to emphasize there is no need to aerate when racking onto an established cake. You want to do this 'quietly' so to speak, the reason for this is the colony is well established, you do not want to push it through the growth phase again and there is no need. This is a great approach for brewing two styles a smaller beer and then a bigger beer with the resulting cake. I have done this many times with very good results.
good comment. A yeast cake leftover from a batch is A TON of yeast. You do NOT need to add more yeast.

Just rack the freshly made and cooled wort onto the cake, and seal it up. you'll likely have VOLCANIC fermentation in less than 6 hours.

Even a 7 gallon bucket could not contain the krausen of a 5 gallon batch that I dumped onto a fresh yeast cake. I was blowing krausen out the airlock by the next morning, at 67F temperatures...
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Old 08-06-2008, 10:58 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by killian View Post
Can I use my whitelabs vials in my pressure cooker?
I did. Once.
They turned all grey and opaque.
And the cap seals shriveled up.
YMMV

For lack of any better ideas I soaked the next batch in StarSan.
Now I'm using half-pint Mason jars.
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Old 08-06-2008, 11:17 PM   #8
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I've re-used unwashed yeast on several batches with no ill effects.

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Old 08-07-2008, 12:19 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by killian View Post
I have been reusing my yeast lately to save on costs. I was thinking about a couple of things.

I have had problems with washing yeast in the past (a sour smell) probably due to poor technique.

so I have been thinking that I will have less chance of contamination reusing the slurry with out washing it. I use a paint straining bag during the boil to pull out the hops so I think there should only be hot/cold break in my trub.

I plan my brewing around the yeast; the last series of brews - a belgian blonde, pale then a triple. As far as I can tell the trub being present has had minimal effect on the next batch, I try not to stress the yeast with to much alcohol or IBU.

When Im measuring the slurry there doesnt seem to be very much trub; I have been thinking I should pitch a larger amount due to some trub being present, maybe about 25 percent does this sound ok? Im sure the answer is to remove the trub but how much difference does it make?

Can I use my whitelabs vials in my pressure cooker?

IMO you really don't need to wash yeast unless you want to make slants or store it for long periods. As far as the trub goes, RDWAHAHB. Dead yeast and protein sludge make pretty good yeast food. White Labs tubes are blanks for 2 litre soda bottles. They are made from PETE, polyethylene terephthalate. This material has a heat deflection temperature of 115C/239F. If you have any concerns I would chemically sanitize them.
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Old 08-07-2008, 04:58 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by malkore View Post
good comment. A yeast cake leftover from a batch is A TON of yeast. You do NOT need to add more yeast.
Can I split the yeast cake in half when I brew a 10 gallon batch (split equally into two 6.5 gal carboys)? Is the Yeast cell count high enough? I have had much success in using the full yeast cake for the next 5 gal batch - needed blowoff tube within 2 hours.

I plan to use a US-05 yeast cake of an 1.060 OG IPA and make another 10 gallons of a 1.067 OG IPA.
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