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Old 01-25-2010, 04:00 AM   #1
ChuckinWA
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Default 2nd attempt at yeast washing and still haven't figured it out...

So,

I made an IPA a couple months ago and pitched one vial of WLP001 (my best beer yet, btw ). I then read the yeast washing thread and harvested the yeast form the bottom of the primary. It wasn't clear to me where the "line" in the jar was between the yeast and the trub, so I pretty much kept the whole jar in the fridge.

On New Year's Day I did a double beer brewing session and pitched this harvested yeast/trub mix (after bringing the yeasties back to life with some wort). I sent 1/2 of the mix to one batch, and 1/2 to the other. Fermentation took off like a shot.

Fast forward to today, when I kegged/bottled these two brews and harvested the yeast yet again from the bottom of the two primary ferms. I now have the same problem - I can't tell what is yeast and what is trub!!! After racking to the keg, I poured the remaining contents of one of the fermenters into the other, swirled it up, then poured into the jars shown in the pictures below. The pictures show what settled out at 2 minutes, 20 minutes, and 60 minutes. I still don't see a line defining the yeast on top and the trub on the bottom??? The only decernable lines are about 1/4" from the top which I belive is leftover beer, but certainly there's more yeast than than??? That would be less yeast than I started with the first time!!







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Old 01-25-2010, 04:40 AM   #2
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are you pulling a lot of hot break into the fermenters, or are you running clear wort in? looks like a lot of trub to me but i'm not very experienced with washing.



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Old 01-25-2010, 06:54 AM   #3
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You have too much stuff in there and not enough liquid.. The yeast is stuck with all the other crud and can't separate..

You need enough liquid to resuspend all the yeast you are going to keep and let the trub settle.

You probably have way to much yeast in there anyway.. Do another wash cycle by using just one fourth of one of these jars and mix with a lot of water, it will work much better..

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Old 01-25-2010, 07:35 AM   #4
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are you crash cooling your yeast washings? always helps me tell the difference between yeast and that which I decant.

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Old 01-25-2010, 10:10 AM   #5
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check this thread out, gives you all the information you will need:

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f163/yeast-washing-illustrated-41768/

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Old 01-25-2010, 11:43 AM   #6
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You're not adding enough sterile water to the primary.

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Old 01-25-2010, 12:49 PM   #7
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They are right about there not being enough water. The separation is taking place after 15 or 20 minutes but it just doesn't look like it. What you can do is shake them up, let them sit for 20 minutes and pour off the thinner liquid from the top (you really can not see the separation but you will be able to tell when pouring). You will still have a lot of trub in there but you will be getting rid of the more dense solids.

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Old 01-25-2010, 05:21 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChuckinWA View Post
After racking to the keg, I poured the remaining contents of one of the fermenters into the other, swirled it up, then poured into the jars shown in the pictures below.
As others have said, more water. It sounds like you used none.

Re-read the yeast washing thread. You should pour your pre-sterilized/de-chlorinated water into the fermenter, and swirl, let settle. Pour off the top of that into your first jar(s). Let that settle again, then pour that off into your storage jars.
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Old 01-26-2010, 04:11 AM   #9
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OK, thanks gents. For grins, below is a picture of what it looks like after 24 hours - much different! When I return home from a biz trip in a couple of days I'll pour off the "beer" on top, combine both of these bottles, add a bunch of preboiled and cooled water, and try to separate again. Hopefully I'll see a "line" at that time. You guys are spot on in that I used a minimum of water in the fermenters to suspend the yeast/trub mixture - maybe that was my downfall. Any suggestions as to how much extra water to add?

http://i931.photobucket.com/albums/ad153/chuckinwa/IMG_1094.jpg

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Old 01-26-2010, 04:19 AM   #10
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I use about gal of distilled water per carboy.... Might be a bit much, But it gets the job done.
H20 is cheap....



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