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Old 01-20-2012, 05:27 AM   #1
ChadChaney
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Default Mr. Malty question w older yeast

So, I want to brew a Rye IPA, OG of around 1.065 and I want to use Pacman yeast. I have 2 Smackpacks with a manufacture date of July 2011. Mr. Malty is telling that with a stir plate I need to use 8 smack packs to achieve my goal of 236 billion cells, and even if I slide the bar to make bigger starters, I can only get down to 4 packs. Is this a realistic calculation, I mean I know he knows what he is talking about, but the yeast has been stored extremely well this whole time. I see people talking about using washed yeast that they harvested a year ago with no issues. I am not sure what to do... I want to brew Sunday. I guess I could use dry yeast, my LHBS is out of everything else.

Could I just make a starter of about 1 liter of the Pacman and then continually grow it up to what I need? Actually, I would like to grow it up over what i need for this brew and save some for the future.

Any ideas and advice welcome!

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Old 01-20-2012, 05:38 AM   #2
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Do you only have a 1 liter flask? That is probably the limiting factor.

I would do something like make a 500 ml starter, then refrigerate, decant, and pitch that into a 1 liter starter. That will give you a good quantity of 100% viable yeast that should be more than enough for a 1.065 beer.

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Old 01-20-2012, 05:39 AM   #3
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No, I have a 2 liter flask, should have mentioned that. So you think if I just make a 2 liter starter that would be enough?

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Old 01-20-2012, 05:44 AM   #4
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2 liters is certainly better than 1 liter, but with yeast that old, it is still definitely better to step it up if you can.

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Old 01-20-2012, 05:46 AM   #5
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Two-Stage Starter Calculations « SeanTerrill.com
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Old 01-20-2012, 05:59 AM   #6
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Yeah, I am just not sure how exactly to figure out the step up stages, and the above posted link is a little confusing, not sure where the calculations come from.

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Old 01-20-2012, 06:05 AM   #7
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Look at the last reply on that seanterrill.com thread. The guy posted his site YeastCalc Yeast Calculator which makes the step up calculations for you. Couldn't be easier !

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Old 01-20-2012, 06:19 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChadChaney View Post
Yeah, I am just not sure how exactly to figure out the step up stages, and the above posted link is a little confusing, not sure where the calculations come from.
Basically you change the gravity and volume to an amount that it allows you to use two packs (and take note of the number of cells), that's your first step.

So say in your example 1.030/5.25gal batch on stir plate requires 2 packs and 1.54L starter and provides 112 billion cells.

Then you plug 112% into the Viability Rate (there's ~100 billion cells in a new pack), and your normal 1.065/5.25 gal batch, and it says you need a 1L starter for the second step.
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Old 01-20-2012, 03:52 PM   #9
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I have always read that step ups should be around 10x for maximum yeast growth. With really old yeast I usually start with a 200ml starter then step that up to 2 liters. Really that yeast is not that old. I don't get to brew as often as I like sometimes so sometimes I end up using yeast that is way older then that. A step up from a smaller starter should get you in the ball park I would think.

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Old 01-20-2012, 05:46 PM   #10
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Thanks for all the help, here is what I decided to go with; made a 2 liter starter, going to ferment that out and make another 2 liter starter.. Needed to get this thing rolling so I can brew Sunday, I might not even make the step up depending on how long this one takes. I need to brew this batch for a function I just found out about. Next time I will know how to do with the older yeast!

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