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Old 03-30-2012, 02:50 PM   #1
Phyrst
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Default Oh noes! My yeast starter overflowed!!!

I'm planning on brewing a Black IPA this weekend with an OG of 1.075. I've never done a beer with this high of an OG before so for the first time I figured I would need a yeast starter.

I mixed it up okay but kind of overestimated how much I would boil off in the pot. I was shooting for 1.5 quarts in my two quart jug, but ended up with more like 1.8 quarts (I also didn't account for the volume of the liquid yeast pack). I went to bed worried it would overflow, and when I walked out to the kitchen at 1 AM to check on it, sure enough it had.

Do you guys think it'll be alright? Or should I run to the homebrew store and buy a few emergency liquid packs? The lid is covered with sanitized aluminum foil. I've probably lost less than 5% of the volume.

Luckily I anticipated this and put my stir plate inside a cake pan for spill containment. And I put the stir plate on top of some rubber stoppers and put a paper plate between the stir plate and the jug to keep my stir plate from getting guncked up. When SWMBO saw the mess was contained inside the pan this morning she said it was a good thing I thought of that or my brewing days would have been over in the kitchen.

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Old 03-30-2012, 02:56 PM   #2
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I'm not an authority on the subject, but this happens to me frequently and I've had no issues. My thoughts/experience has been that just the krausen overflows and theoretically the yeast are suspended in the wort and not krausen. I may be wrong there, but I always cold crash after about 24 hours and have a nice fresh layer of yeast to pitch on the bottom of my flask.

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Old 03-30-2012, 03:02 PM   #3
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Default Thanks

Nice to hear I'm not the only one. Everything inside the jug I imagine should still be okay. I just weep for the poor little yeast cells dying a horrible death in the cake pan never getting to taste my delicious Black IPA wort. Haha!

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Old 03-30-2012, 03:15 PM   #4
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I always place the stir plate completely in a 1 gallon ziplock bag zipped up and onto the top of my washer. I have not seen overflow or much krausen for that matter on the first step of a 1L or even 1.5L iirc with the proper gravity. It is always a risk on the 2nd step though for me. I suspect possibly too much dme. Did you add more than 150 g dme?

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Old 03-30-2012, 03:24 PM   #5
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I don't think I added too much DME. I'm not on the metric system yet, so I followed the John Palmer 0.5 cup DME per 0.5 quart water rule. I was shooting for 1.5 quarts so I added 1.5 cups DME. If anything I think I probably undershot the 1.040 OG since my final volume was more like 1.8 quarts. I think I just didn't leave enough head space.

A metric kitchen scale is definitely on my list of things to get, but I spent about $350 on brewing equipment in March (mostly on a chest freezer and temp controller) so I have to cool it for a while.

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Old 03-30-2012, 03:29 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badbrew View Post
I have not seen overflow or much krausen for that matter on the first step of a 1L or even 1.5L iirc with the proper gravity.
I'm surprised to hear that. I've only mad a few starters, but all of mine have had decent krausen on the stir plate, atleast for the first 24-36 hours. I make a 1L starter in a 1L flask (as you can see below, it doesn't take much to overflow and this one is just starting so no krausen), and always hit the target gravity of 1.037 according to www.yeastcalc.com starter calculator.
starter.jpg  
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Old 03-30-2012, 03:38 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djevans3 View Post
I'm surprised to hear that. I've only mad a few starters, but all of mine have had decent krausen on the stir plate, atleast for the first 24-36 hours. I make a 1L starter in a 1L flask (as you can see below, it doesn't take much to overflow and this one is just starting so no krausen), and always hit the target gravity of 1.037 according to www.yeastcalc.com starter calculator.
I use a 2L flask and usually do 1L starters on the 1st step. It almost always leave a thin orange juice head with a slightly whipped up center. I think I have only done a couple 1.5L's so maybe that's it.

BTW, I would worry about that one. ^^^
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Old 03-30-2012, 03:49 PM   #8
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It's happened to me, I didn't worry but I don't worry about lots of things!

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Old 05-12-2012, 12:03 AM   #9
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Default Just happened to me

So how did the brew go?

I always make starters and never had an issue . . . until today. I made a double yeast starter, cold crashing and decanting after the first time. I put it into my fermentation locker at 68 and whoa did it take off. This morning, it had overflowed everywhere and I was left with liquid and not much dormant yeast at the bottom. I'm only slightly worried, but do need these guys to power a DIPA I'm brewing tomorrow. Smells yeasty and bready. Hoping for the best.

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Old 05-14-2012, 02:29 AM   #10
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I just brewed Saturday and my starter overflowed again. I had CO2 bubbling after a few hours from my blowoff tube. I will note that I didn't cold crash this time - just went straight pitched the whole starter 18 hours after I started it.

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