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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > Starter Fail?
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Old 09-11-2011, 05:01 PM   #1
ChickenBeer
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Default Starter Fail?

I have very little experience with Wyeast smack packs, but i wanted to try the 3522 Belgain Ardennes. The package came via mail on a mildly hot septmeber day in a padded envelope with a cool pack (that had been exhausted) the smack pack didnt know seem to hot or swelled. I refriderated for 3 days untill i could get around to it. Pulled it out warmed it up to room temp (68-72 degrees) and followed instructions. (found inside pack and smacked etc.) it didnt show any major signs of swelling but i though enough after 3 hours so I made some wort (1 cup of dry malt extract to 32oz water) boiled for 15 minutes cooled to 70 degrees and pitched Wyeast pack into starter. Inside the wyeast pack there are two little packages of nutrieints, one had not been opened so i cut it open and placed into mixture. Not seeing any signs of fermentation in such a small starter along with the seemingly not expanding Wyeast pack is leading me to beleive that it was not good or the yeast died in the heat of transit. Any thoughts? (all was done under cleaned well maintained equipment. Particularly interested in any ones experience with this yeast?

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Old 09-11-2011, 05:18 PM   #2
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I've never seen two nutrient packs inside a smack pack...might be that you never opened it so there was nothing to cause activity. As well, you don't always get swelling. How long has the starter been going for?

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Old 09-11-2011, 05:21 PM   #3
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Inside the wyeast pack there are two little packages of nutrieints, one had not been opened so i cut it open and placed into mixture.
you reached into the yeast packet to cut open the nutrient pack?
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Old 09-11-2011, 06:37 PM   #4
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I think we need a special category for "Classic Posts".

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Old 09-11-2011, 07:39 PM   #5
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you can burst the nutrient packet inside by holding the sealed yeast pack in one hand and smacking it hard with the other. after the pack swells (or doesn't) you just cut one of the corners of the pack and pour into your starter wort or fermenter.

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Old 09-11-2011, 09:10 PM   #6
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First the starter has been going for over 24 hours now, but i figured an entire pack pitched into a 32oz wort with a OG of 1035 would certainly be humming along by now. @eastoak I poured the yeast into the wort and extracted the nutrient packet with sterilized tongs and cut it with sterilized scissors dumping its contents to wort. Second It had two nutrient packs one clearly opened, though i suspect if that is not the normal case then one never opened and the other was a fluke from the factory. I will keep you uptodate but it seems as though no fermentation is happening still. And i have an airlocked measuring device to view.

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Old 09-11-2011, 10:31 PM   #7
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Airlocks are not a measuring device, just an air barrier that is not a reliable indicator of fermentation. Is this in a glass container? If so give it a gentle swirl to get the yeast on the bottom to mix back into solution, you should see a bit of foam form on the top from CO2 escaping. If you look close you should see a bunch of really tiny bubbles coming up the side.

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Old 09-12-2011, 04:03 AM   #8
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As I've posted before my starters always fail to move until around 40hrs even then it's just fizzing and ta da done! I've also use the smell test if it smells like bread let it sit, beer smell then I usually start seeing signs shortly.

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Old 09-12-2011, 04:49 PM   #9
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Quote:
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As I've posted before my starters always fail to move until around 40hrs even then it's just fizzing and ta da done! I've also use the smell test if it smells like bread let it sit, beer smell then I usually start seeing signs shortly.
there really is no normal with starters but i'd be troubleshooting if my starters always took 40hrs to finish out.
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Old 09-12-2011, 08:43 PM   #10
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Quote:
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there really is no normal with starters but i'd be troubleshooting if my starters always took 40hrs to finish out.
agreed
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