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Old 04-13-2012, 03:20 PM   #1
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Default First Attempt At A Yeast Starter

Last night I made my first attempt at making a yeast starter. I'll be brewing the AHS Anniversary IPA with Wyeast Greenbelt yeast. I picked it up a couple weeks ago when it was on sale. $21.99 was a bargin.

Using http://www.yeastcalc.com/ I made a 1.5 liter starter based on an estimated 1.059 SG and 66% viability of the yeast. It was packaged on 2/28. I have it going on my el-cheapo stirplate right now.

I just wanted to double check a few things I did...
- After the boil there was only about 750ml of wort so I topped it off to 1.5L with boiled cooled water. Is this correct?
- How much krausen should I expect if any? The temperature is a little cooler than what is recommended, probably around 60 degrees, so I want to make sure that it's fermenting. The picture of the flask was taken about 12 hours after I started. There looks like there's a little krausen on top. Do you think it'll be ok?

Here are some pics...

2012-04-12_18-05-06_952.jpg   2012-04-12_18-05-13_769.jpg   2012-04-12_18-24-23_11.jpg   2012-04-12_07-12-02_466.jpg   yeastcalc.jpg  

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Old 04-13-2012, 03:25 PM   #2
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Awesome picture documentation here. Replying so I have a good reference when I need to make one.

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Old 04-13-2012, 03:31 PM   #3
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Your process looks good. In the cooler months I put my starter on top of my kitchen refrigerator, it generally get me closer to the 66-70 degree range I shoot for on most of my ale yeast strains.

As stated already, nice job!

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Old 04-13-2012, 03:43 PM   #4
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Looks great.

Im surprised you boiled off 50% of the starter, mine are usually in the 10-15% range for boil off. At that rate I never calculate for boil off. Maybe tone down the boil a little bit or boil in the flask with some fermcap.

With a starter on a stirplate you might never even see the krausen so I wouldnt worry too much. When you pull it off the sitrplate and let it settle check for a creamy white layer at the bottom, If you have that youre golden. Your process looks great so I dont think you have anything to worry about.

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Old 04-13-2012, 03:53 PM   #5
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Thanks for the replies guys. It was suprisingly easy.

@Coff
I was also suprised at how much boiled off. I'm guessing the pot I used and the 30 minute hard boil conrtibuted to so much boil off.

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Old 04-13-2012, 04:05 PM   #6
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I'd recommend topping off in the flask to 1.5L or a tad less before you add the yeast so you don't go over.

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Old 04-13-2012, 04:10 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumbs71 View Post
I'm guessing the pot I used and the 30 minute hard boil conrtibuted to so much boil off.
Nice photos! To make your process a bit quicker, you dont need to boil a starter for 30 minutes. 5 to 10 minutes is plenty and you wont have to top up. I usually boil for 5 minutes...
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Old 04-13-2012, 04:16 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wobbegong View Post
Nice photos! To make your process a bit quicker, you dont need to boil a starter for 30 minutes. 5 to 10 minutes is plenty and you wont have to top up. I usually boil for 5 minutes...
Oh jeez! That's good to know. Everything I read said to boil for at least 20 minutes.
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Old 04-15-2012, 04:46 PM   #9
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Here's the starter warming up the next day. Looks like I had pretty good reproduction. I pitched it at about 1:30pm and I had activity in less than 4 hours and very aggressive activity in 8 hours.

forumrunner_20120415_124517.jpg   forumrunner_20120415_124504.jpg  
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Old 04-15-2012, 04:58 PM   #10
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Looks about right. I pour off the liquid after I take the starter out of the fridge so it will warm up in only a few minutes.

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