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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > 460bil yeast cells needed - 5L starter or step?
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Old 06-24-2013, 06:56 PM   #1
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Default 460bil yeast cells needed - 5L starter or step?

Hey everyone,

I need approx. 460billion yeast cells in 5 days, starting from one wyeast smack pack, American Ale II. I'm using yeastcalc.com, stir plate (Zainesheff).

If I went the step method with my 2L flask, I could start tonight (Monday night) with 1.5L, give it 24hrs, and place the flask in the fridge tomorrow night (Tuesday night). On wednesday night, I would decant, warm-up, and pitch another 1.5L of fresh wort. Thursday night I would place the flask in the fridge, and be ready to pitch on Friday night into my 10gal of wort.

Does this schedule seem alright?

OR, I was thinking of making 1 very large starter, approx. 5L. I'm not sure if I'll be able to do this though. I need to experiment with some larger containers I have this evening.

Either way, I need to brew by Friday night to meet a deadline I have for the finished product. I know this is poor planning on my part, and I should of started building the yeast up sooner, but other things got in the way...

Thanks

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Old 06-24-2013, 07:13 PM   #2
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I hear ya on the planning thing. That will work as long as you trust the yeast to ferment out and drop that quickly.

If I needed that much yeast I'd probably just make a gallon and a half of lager and use the cake. I'd think you could ferment most of that out in 5 days. Transfer to 3 growlers for a d rest then lager each growler in the fridge. No reason to waste all that time and money when another dollar's worth of hops will net you 15 beers

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Old 06-24-2013, 07:18 PM   #3
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Didn't realize that was an ale. Even better. I'd definately do a gallon and a half of cascade hopped 1.040 ale

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Old 06-24-2013, 07:33 PM   #4
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you mean just an all DME, 1oz cascade hopped ale? Interesting. That's basically a drinkable version of the 5L starter I was thinking off. I was just concerned with aeration, as I"m not sure If I can get that large of a vessel on my stir plate.


Also, I guess I could just use two packets of dry yeast, in a pinch. I just can't justify spending $12+ on two wyeast packs.

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Old 06-24-2013, 09:33 PM   #5
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Dme is expensive too... for a 5 l starter you're looking at over a pound of dme. I'll do up to a 2 liter non stepped starter... beyond that (time and money) its worth it to just make a gallon or two of something drinkable on the stovetop.

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Old 06-24-2013, 09:55 PM   #6
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A large starter is really just a small batch.

Rather than beat yourself up on this, dry yeast might be an easy way out as well.

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Old 06-24-2013, 10:00 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wilserbrewer View Post
A large starter is really just a small batch.

Rather than beat yourself up on this, dry yeast might be an easy way out as well.
Yea, I think that may be wise. I usually brew 5gal batches, and then collect the yeast to make 10gal batches for a while. Problem is I haven't brewed in over 3 months, and I'm concerned with the viability of the yeast that's been sitting in my fridge for 4+months.
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Old 06-24-2013, 10:04 PM   #8
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I would just do the 2 steps, let the first step ride until Wednesday morning, cool and decant in the evening and do your next step.

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Old 06-25-2013, 03:34 AM   #9
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Don't overthink it either. I'm guilty of getting into that mindset sometimes. Make as big a starter as you can to start. If it doesn't ferment out in a day, let it go for two, cold crash for two and pitch a bunch of healthy cells. You'll still be ahead of most brewers out there...

Interesting read here http://woodlandbrew.blogspot.com/201...ll-growth.html

http://woodlandbrew.blogspot.com/201...-starters.html

http://woodlandbrew.blogspot.com/201...nction-of.html

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Old 06-25-2013, 03:41 AM   #10
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If you're using a stir plate, the wort will be oxidized- great for yeast growth, not for drinking it- maybe if you drink it super quick if it isn't oxidized in fermentation.

Go as big as you can. Each step significantly reduces growth. I've used a glass 1G juice jug on a plate without issues, just at a slower speed.

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