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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > Will this method work for saving yeast?
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Old 02-15-2013, 08:12 PM   #1
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Default Will this method work for saving yeast?

I would like some commentary on my procedure to save/culture yeast:

1) Using WL 400 (belgian) pitching into 1.040 1L starter in E Flask (Starter 1)
2) 24 hours later, shake and pour 0.5 L into sanitized mason jar, cold crash, decant, store sluury in jar for future brew
3) Add 1.5 L fresh cooled wort to .5L still in E flask, ferment 24 hours, decant and pitch into my 5 gallon fermentor.
Should I change anything? Maybe start with a 2L starter? Lots of conflicting info out there








I havent actually done this yet, but am very close (about 1 hour). I figure I can repeat this procedure as requires when I want to use the yeast.

I also figured after doing the first starter would give me 200 billion cells, so splitting would give me 100 billion in storage then doing another starter so back to 200 billion for pitching.

Any thoughts?

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Old 02-15-2013, 08:20 PM   #2
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What OG is the beer you're pitching the starter into?

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Old 02-15-2013, 08:21 PM   #3
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I don't see anything wrong with the process but you have to make sure you are getting the proper pitch rate for the beer you are brewing. In order to figure out cell counts you would need to make sure that you divide the first starter exactly in half so all of the yeast must be in solution. I am not sure that just shaking it will do that. You would probably need a stir plate.
I use the website, yeastcalc.com to determine how many yeast cells I need for the beer I am brewing and then determing how big my starter needs to be. It will also calculate yeast viability by how old the yeast is so if you store that half starter in the fridge for a few weeks or months you will know exactly how much you would need to step it up for your next brew. yeastcalc.com is very easy to use and is a great resource.

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Old 02-15-2013, 08:24 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyclman
What OG is the beer you're pitching the starter into?
1.053
I used mr malty calculator and it said 1.85 L starter required
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Old 02-15-2013, 08:26 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phuff7129
I don't see anything wrong with the process but you have to make sure you are getting the proper pitch rate for the beer you are brewing. In order to figure out cell counts you would need to make sure that you divide the first starter exactly in half so all of the yeast must be in solution. I am not sure that just shaking it will do that. You would probably need a stir plate.
Thanks, don't have that yet

I use the website, yeastcalc.com to determine how many yeast cells I need for the beer I am brewing and then determing how big my starter needs to be. It will also calculate yeast viability by how old the yeast is so if you store that half starter in the fridge for a few weeks or months you will know exactly how much you would need to step it up for your next brew. yeastcalc.com is very easy to use and is a great resource.
Ok,I will check this out.
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Old 02-15-2013, 09:15 PM   #6
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I would decant the .5L for the starter and pitch that into 2L of 1.040 DME. This will give you a true 2L starter and enough yeast if you are using a stir plate. You are only growing yeast in a 1.5L starter the other way because the .5L has already begun to ferment. If I didn't have a stir plate then I would decant this new "true" 2L slurry along with your original starter slurry in the mason jar and pitch all of it leaving you nothing for further use. I would then wash the yeast after primary and save that for future use. You will have more than enough to pitch your next five gallons.

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Old 02-15-2013, 10:19 PM   #7
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I'm trying to avoid washing the yeast after fermentation. I'd rather just have a clean sample in a jar from the get go.

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Old 02-15-2013, 10:46 PM   #8
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So what if I split into two mason jars,saving one and pitch the other into 2 L fresh wort for my starter? I only have one flask

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Old 02-16-2013, 06:31 PM   #9
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That works. Just make sure you pitch only the slurry into the 2L. Are you using a stir plate or shaking? oxygen is the key to growing the yeast instead of fermenting your wort. Do your best to keep it aerated. I think you will be fine in the end but keep in mind that a 2L starter on a stir plate will give you proper pitching levels for 5 gallons. Typically, if you are only shaking, you will still slightly under pitch. You can make a stir plate for about $40 or even much less depending on your ingenuity. We have links to websites on how to make one on our website under DIY projects. I have made 3 of them and it only takes about 2 hours, excluding the drying time of the glue.

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Old 02-17-2013, 02:05 AM   #10
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Thanks, yeah im considering my buddy works in IT and has hundreds of fans and hard drives in his apt...I may just buy a stir starter...

I'm just too cheap to buy yeast at 6.99 a pop

Paul do you brew commercially?

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