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Old 08-14-2012, 06:02 AM   #1
dannyhawkins
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Default Rinsing Yeast from primary

I have been reclaiming yeast from my primary fermentations; one in particular (wyeast greenbelt) has been building pressure while stored in the fridge in its mason jar. I just crack it open and release the pressure. Am I harvesting too early? I know, what's the gravity reading right? I admit I don't check gravity before I move to secondary I just wait for airlock to slow to one bubble per minute or so. Does anyone else have this or should I leave a little head space for the pressure?

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Old 08-14-2012, 02:10 PM   #2
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Whats your harvest technique? Are you skimming or rinsing. If rinsing do you harvest from primary or secondary? I use a rinse technique from the primary. After racking to secondary, I add about a gallon of water back to the yeast cake, shake, let settle, then poor off yeast layer to my jars and refrigerate. Always using sanitary techniques. I've never had pressure issues. Knock on wood.

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Old 08-14-2012, 02:20 PM   #3
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I forgot to mention that I have harvested greenbelt with this technique without a problem. Getting those yeasties to the refrigerator quickly should help solve your issues. Good luck.

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Old 08-14-2012, 03:07 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dannyhawkins View Post
I have been reclaiming yeast from my primary fermentations; one in particular (wyeast greenbelt) has been building pressure while stored in the fridge in its mason jar. I just crack it open and release the pressure. Am I harvesting too early? I know, what's the gravity reading right? I admit I don't check gravity before I move to secondary I just wait for airlock to slow to one bubble per minute or so. Does anyone else have this or should I leave a little head space for the pressure?
While it is not uncommon to have a bit of pressure (read: the mason jar top is tight, not loose), it is not okay to have excessive pressure (read: where you think the jar might blow and need to 'crack' it).

Please, please take gravity readings BEFORE transferring. If you are transferring when CO2 is still blowing off, I can confidently say that you are transferring WAY to early.
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Old 08-14-2012, 05:06 PM   #5
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I harvest yeast for storage from the starter, not the fermenter. The containers usually have a bit of pressure, which increases as it warms up. I usually open the container cold and decant of half the starter beer before I warm the sample to prepare the new starter. Preforms tend to bubble a bit more than mason jars, but they all still make beer.

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Old 08-15-2012, 02:27 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shyanny
Whats your harvest technique? Are you skimming or rinsing. If rinsing do you harvest from primary or secondary? I use a rinse technique from the primary. After racking to secondary, I add about a gallon of water back to the yeast cake, shake, let settle, then poor off yeast layer to my jars and refrigerate. Always using sanitary techniques. I've never had pressure issues. Knock on wood.
I have been rinsing yeast from primary bucket style fermenter.
My system:
•boil mason jars and lids, Star San for everything else
•swirl the yeast cake using residual young beer and pour into 1gal. jug to settle
•decant and collect good yeast in mason jars while leaving trub behind.
•store in the fridge till next brew
I guess my concern is that with the greenbelt I cracked it to release pressure and large bubbles formed throughout the yeast cake releasing a large amount of dissolved CO2. Now there are 3 layers. From top to bottom- "krausen like substance", young beer, and compacted dormant yeast at the bottom. It's not a terrible thing just curious if anyone has seen this and should I skim this and decant before making a starter or pitching?
This is the jar in question

image-3414515242.jpg

These are the ones that act as I expect


image-2511460506.jpg
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Old 08-15-2012, 11:59 AM   #7
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I should preface this comment by saying that I'm just learning about this process and have not done it myself - however the picture of the "jar in question" appears to have a lot of extra head space between the harvest and the lid than the others you pictured - would this additional oxygen be the potential culprit? Other articles I've read seem to stress filling to lid which is what your other jars look like.

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Old 08-16-2012, 01:11 AM   #8
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That baby was filled to the brim and then some. I had yeast on bottom and liquid on top, cracked it to vent some pressure and this is the result. I'll just scrape this off with a sanitised spoon and decant before adding to the next starter. Thank you guys for your input it was just one of those weird things I became curious about

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