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Old 01-21-2013, 12:07 AM   #1
jonmohno
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Default How do you harvest from a starter?

So I made a starter for a 2.5 gallon batch. I know it doesnt need one most likely,but I made a liter starter so I could splitt that up into maybe 3 other 8oz jars possibly.
So,unable to find answers Ive found nothing. So I poured 8 oz of the starter into my 2.5 gallon batch(there is 24 oz of starter left now), didnt seem like the starter was exactly finished yet either because it still had krauson but was definatly a healthy fermentation. THe starter is still bubbleing a little (i used an airlock),so Im thinking tomarrow would be good to jar this up.

So my question is:

Do I need to wash this starter or can I just jar it up as is? I may be keeping these for a few months also,Im brewing about every 2 or three weeks. There is about 24 oz left and was thinking 3- 8 oz jars. Is the trub from dme and the bit of hop debrie I used ok to jar or bottle up and refrigerate?

I thought maybe I read Papizan doing this ,but maybe putting into sanitized beer bottles.Is this something I could do with 8 oz each of starter slurry- put it into 3 beer bottles?,then when I use them warm them to room temp and make a small starter for a new 2.5 gal batch I do? Or should I wash it and seal them into jars of water?

And if I use beer bottles to store it would I need to top off the 8 oz slurry per bottle with 4 oz of water to store it?

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Old 01-21-2013, 02:44 AM   #2
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Let it completely ferment out. When finished, swirl all the sediment up back into suspension, and pour into your sanitized containers. Cap and store in fridge.

For long-term storage (6+ months), you probably want to pour off the liquid after the yeast has settled and replace with distilled water (or boiled and cooled water).

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Old 01-21-2013, 02:45 AM   #3
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Whether you decide to wash or jar as it, in my opinion either way is not wrong. Since you have extra starter left over, it is not like there is a lot of hop and break debris mixed in.

My method when I buy new liquid yeast is to start two weeks early with a 2.5L starter, let it ferment out, cold crash, decant, add cooled boiled water and then pour into three ball jars. One of which will be used for my starter next week. This works great for me and I only buy a type of yeast once. Savings on the other hand are questionable..

There has been some research that I have read lately that states there is a large amount of bacteria growth present in the top layer of the starter medium, it is probably a good practice to decant off the top portion of stored starters.. wish I could cite the source, was good research.

Good Luck!

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Old 01-21-2013, 03:00 AM   #4
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I've started using Yeast Calc to get an idea of how many cells I've grown, and then divide that into used WL vials.

For example, I'll buy a vial of CalV, do a stirplate 2L starter, decant, do another 2L starter, and then pour that into 6 vials, so each has roughly 97B cells. When I want to use one, I'll plug the variables back into Yeast Calc and go from there. Anything older than 6 months get tossed.

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Old 01-21-2013, 03:10 AM   #5
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Yeah,thanks guys! Very helpfull. I still have some thinking to do though I guess. Is headspace a problem,in jars? How about storing it in beer bottles with headspace? How long do you guys let a starter ferment out before storing? It was just one liter and am thinking 3 more 2.5 gal batches out of this yeast. Making a small starter at least before each batch of course,depending on the age its been stored.

Also roughly how much yeast does a 1 liter per wlp vial typically produce compared to what it has? Double ? Tripple? I understand stirplate is more effective and all, I shook the crap out of it and kept shaking it as well as yeast nutrient so I feel it was pretty sufficiant for not having a stir plate. It had all the appearances of a good fermenting batch of beer without foaming out like crazy though.

Just a random thought: It also reminds me of how I bought a 3 gallon carboy and a bubbler.Well I dump my pot of wort using a strainer and funnel and I find that I almost dont even need a bubbler. I typically plug it in for a few minutes if that sometimes, till it starts foaming out the neck, l let it settle then do it later for another minute. I really think I almost dont even need the bubbler. Im starting to reconsider not getting that pure o2 adapter that I origionally wanted.

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Old 01-21-2013, 03:45 PM   #6
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You definitely do not need to wash your yeast when you're saving it from a starter. The concentration of stuff you're trying to get rid of in the trub isn't as high as when you're taking it from an active fermentation.

What I do with a new liquid yeast is make a 1.5L starter on a stirplate and let it go for 3 days at my fermentation temperature. I pour off 250mL into a sanitized jar and place it into the fridge with the lid just barely on (do not tighten!) and use the remaining 1.25L for fermentation. 1.25L is good up to 8 gallons of 1.050OG wort.

After 2-3 days when the yeast in the fridge has mostly settled out, I boil 150mL of water in another sanitized jar and cool it. Then I decant the liquid off the yeast, shake it up, and pour it into the pure water jar. Stored like this, the yeast definitely lasts 6 months. To use it, I create a new starter.

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Old 01-21-2013, 10:34 PM   #7
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Ok,here's my plan I think. For another day or two Ill let it finish,then since I have an airlock on it Ill keep it in the fridge,let it settle (a day or two?) then decant and preboil some water to cool to store it in 3 half pint jars. Or use enough water for three half pints of water into the growler after decanting swirl and pour it into the 3 jars. Ill probably swab the rims with isopropanol alcohol.I should be good to seal them tight in the fridge from here on out,right? This is a pic from last night,seems to be dropping more today but stilll has froth.

JUst another thought: I have 3 wl vials I could use adding the straight slurry/yeast after decanting instead of storing in water,can you boil these vials to sterilize? or are they just good to sanitize, I thouroughly cleaned then sanitized them when I first used them before.

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Old 01-22-2013, 12:35 AM   #8
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Don't put it in the fridge. Let it ferment out completely (up to 2 weeks) at room and then you can put it in jars/vials. Have a look at my write-up here.

MC

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Old 01-23-2013, 02:11 AM   #9
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Holy crap this thing is generating some heat(my Pliny primary) and starting to blow off,used 8 oz of starter of my liter, think my cat took a nap by it,cuz I felt it and was warm in one spot yet my house temp was 65 and ambient next to the fermenter was 58-60. Damn cat.Rousing yeast cat. I feel good about this one though,Im a starter fan. Seriously I harvested yeast but the first time I made a starter for a saved yeast was the best beer out of the saved yeast without starters. I actually entered it into a hombrew comp and got a good score and that yeas I used before.That actually ended up infected even in the non starter batches because it probably got on my hand when I was adding the yeast to that batch-first time noob mistake then- yet I still harvested from it stupidly.

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Old 01-24-2013, 05:02 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Satisfaction View Post
There has been some research that I have read lately that states there is a large amount of bacteria growth present in the top layer of the starter medium, it is probably a good practice to decant off the top portion of stored starters.. wish I could cite the source, was good research.
I would really like to take a look at that if you can remember where you read it.

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