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Old 05-15-2010, 02:20 AM   #21
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Hey billc68:
I have an old friend named Joyce Larrabee that lives up on PEI. If ya know her, tell her hi from steve haun.
thanks!

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Old 05-16-2010, 10:38 AM   #22
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OK, so I started a German Pils on the 13th, using Wyeast 2278 Czech Pils (what I had on hand) This is my first time trying to Lager at proper temps. I smacked the yeast about 24 hours before pitching, I pitched the yeast at 74 degrees, let it sit 2 1/2 hours and then moved it to my fridge set at 57 degrees. The yeast pack was very swollen by the time it was pitched.

Now it is approximately 60 hours later, the air lock looks like it has some pressure in it, but not bubbling at least not while I watch it. I took a hydrometer reading and adjusted it according to temp, looks like it has changed by .002

Are lagers generally slow to start? Next time, I might try a starter. I should also add the Wyeast packs are designed for 5 US Gallons while we make our beer here in 6 US Gallon batches, so this will obviously add some start time to the brew.

Should I be concerned? add some dry Lager yeast which I happen to have on hand or just RDWHAB???

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Old 05-16-2010, 12:54 PM   #23
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OK, so I started a German Pils on the 13th, using Wyeast 2278 Czech Pils (what I had on hand) This is my first time trying to Lager at proper temps. I smacked the yeast about 24 hours before pitching, I pitched the yeast at 74 degrees, let it sit 2 1/2 hours and then moved it to my fridge set at 57 degrees. The yeast pack was very swollen by the time it was pitched.

Now it is approximately 60 hours later, the air lock looks like it has some pressure in it, but not bubbling at least not while I watch it. I took a hydrometer reading and adjusted it according to temp, looks like it has changed by .002

Are lagers generally slow to start? Next time, I might try a starter. I should also add the Wyeast packs are designed for 5 US Gallons while we make our beer here in 6 US Gallon batches, so this will obviously add some start time to the brew.

Should I be concerned? add some dry Lager yeast which I happen to have on hand or just RDWHAB???
First, yes, RDWHAHB (or RDWHAB if no HB on hand).

Maybe wait the full 3 days. At the cold temps bacterial infection is probably not going to be an immediate problem. If you don't see any activity in the next day, you probably do want to take action. I would raise the temp up to 65 for 12 hours and get the fermentation started.

I pitch around 70 (depends on temp of my pool) and immediately drop the temp to 50F (takes about 4 or 5 hours to get it that low). Fermentation takes off within 24 hrs. I don't get the crazy blowoffs at these temps; it is a subdued fermentation compared to ales.

A starter would be a great idea for your lagers, but not necessary. Underpitching and/or warmer fermentation will result in some fruit esters in your lager. Not the end of the world, just not ideal.

BTW, I have two G. Pils lagering at 32 right now. One has a liquid yeast (from starter) and the other was 2 packs of dry S-05.
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Old 05-16-2010, 02:06 PM   #24
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Even Wyeast's website recommends starters for lagers. By using just a smack pack, you seriously underpitched and there will be a long lag time. That's why we all make starters for lagers, especially if pitching cold or pitching at 70 and immediately dropping the temp. Directly from Wyeast's own website, http://www.wyeastlab.com/hb_lagerbrewing.cfm:

Lagers typically have a reduced ester profile and are characterized as clean with discernable malt character. It is very important to recognize that pitch rate is directly related to ester production. Increasing the quantity of yeast pitched is the most effective method of reducing the ester profile in the finished beer. A minimum of 12 million cells per milliliter is recommended to keep esters at a minimum.

One Wyeast Activator pack will deliver about 6 million cells per milliliter to 5 gallons of wort. In order to increase this rate to 12 million cells per milliliter it is necessary to either pitch two Activators or to make a 0.5 gallon (2 liter) starter with an Activator.

Wyeast's instructions say to pitch at 70 and wait for signs of fermentation before dropping the temp. That's not ideal, but they tell you that so the yeast can get started without such a long lag time.

One of the most common questions we field is, “should I start my lager warm or cold?” The answer depends on how much time you have for your primary fermentation and how clean you want your final beer. The best results will be achieved by pitching at least 12 million cells per milliliter into cold and well aerated wort (48 to 58°F, 9 to 15°C).

If a faster primary fermentation is desired or you are pitching less yeast, then it is best to start a little bit warmer and then cool to the desired fermentation temperature once signs of fermentation are evident.

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My feeling is that they "let" you pitch one vial at warm temperatures and say it's ok is because most people really don't want to make starters and the instructions lead you to believe that it's not really necessary. Then, they turn around in the FAQs section and admit that you'll get better results by making a starter and pitching at the correct temperature.

Your lager will be ok, but the yeast have to reproduce quite a bit before they can start fermenting. That's why you are having such a lag time. It may be way over 72 hours before anything happens, in a lager without a starter.

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Old 05-16-2010, 05:17 PM   #25
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Thanks, that's teh part that was confusing, thier website says to make a starter BUT the yeast package, says to pitch immediately.
Next time i am making a starter as the estery flavours is EXACTLY why I want to make a Lager, I prefer a clean crisp lager for light/golden beer. For a darker ale a little estery flavour is ok.

What about when I do make Ales, if I double my yeast can I reduce the Esters a little?

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Old 05-16-2010, 09:34 PM   #26
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Thanks, that's teh part that was confusing, thier website says to make a starter BUT the yeast package, says to pitch immediately.
Next time i am making a starter as the estery flavours is EXACTLY why I want to make a Lager, I prefer a clean crisp lager for light/golden beer. For a darker ale a little estery flavour is ok.

What about when I do make Ales, if I double my yeast can I reduce the Esters a little?
Temps are best way to reduce esters. Also, some yeasts produce more fruity notes than others, so take a good look at the notes on the yeast co.'s website.

And yes, pitching more yeast will result in less esters.
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Old 05-16-2010, 10:18 PM   #27
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Temps are best way to reduce esters. Also, some yeasts produce more fruity notes than others, so take a good look at the notes on the yeast co.'s website.

And yes, pitching more yeast will result in less esters.
And that applies to both Ales and Lagers? One of the kits we buy here comes with a double pack of yeast, but not sure if I am going to do kits anymore.

So brew on the low end of the temp scale? And more yeast. I have my current lager at 57 ish as Wyeast stated there would be less Sulfur at58, maybe I should have kept it lower and used a good starter. And where do you draw the line? when is too much yeast going to be an issue, I hear too much will give you a yeasty flavor.
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Old 05-16-2010, 11:04 PM   #28
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And that applies to both Ales and Lagers?
Yes .

Regarding amount of yeast, www.mrmalty.com
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Old 05-17-2010, 07:32 PM   #29
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Ok, somewhere between the 72nd and 96th hour, my airlock is quite active and the fridge is pretty smelly... This is good. So I am not going to worry, but what can I expect from this? more estery flavors? should still be better than most Ales in the Ester dept. right?

This fall I plan to make 3 lagers all at once in my small heated room in my garage. I can set the temp to whatever I want and hope it stays cold outside (I'm in Canada, I should be ok) I just have to find a thermostat that will give me temps below 10 Celsius (about 40) for the laggering stage of my brew. My plan is to brew in November and serve in Spring-Summer and brew ales in the summer to drink in the fall-winter.

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Old 05-17-2010, 10:20 PM   #30
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My lager yeast aren't doing much of anything, and rather than clutter up the page I figured I'd toss my questions here. I bought a Wyeast 2007 activator, and activated 3 hours before use but the bag never swelled (bag was kept at 40 degrees since purchase a week prior). I had no other options since it was sunday and added the "unyeasting" yeast. It has since been 24 hours and I am still getting nothing. The beer is currently sitting at around 46 degrees but it just cooled to that temperature so it hasn't been there long. I pitched the yeast at 70 degrees. Any ideas? Is it possible to add more yeast?

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