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Old 02-13-2014, 02:14 PM   #41
kombat
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Originally Posted by jcorn View Post
I am assuming that only the top portion of the cake contains yeast though right?
I presume it depends. I use a process which prevents virtually any trub from making it from my kettle into my fermenter, so I consider the trub content negligible, and treat the entire mass as though it were all yeast.

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If the cake splits into 4 different jars and you did not use a jar within one week of capture you would need a starter,right?
Some would say so, but in my experience, I've successfully pitched directly from the jars several weeks after capture and had fermentation take off quickly and vigorously, so to be honest, I don't bother unless it's been more than a month.
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Old 02-13-2014, 02:22 PM   #42
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Some would say so, but in my experience, I've successfully pitched directly from the jars several weeks after capture and had fermentation take off quickly and vigorously, so to be honest, I don't bother unless it's been more than a month.
Looking at my brew notes, I regularly reuse my saved yeast cake 4-6 weeks later without a starter. I've done a few here and there that were up to 8 and 10 weeks later. I don't remember having any problems with those either.
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Old 02-13-2014, 02:38 PM   #43
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I almost always just top crop yeast. Obviously certain strains are better suited for this, but US05 seems to top crop nicely as does any british strain obviously.

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Old 02-13-2014, 09:02 PM   #44
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The reason I love this method is because I am harvesting unstressed yeast and I can ensure that I don't over or underpitch. For example, my last brew was at 8.3% (OG of 1.081). I was using WLP002 which was a new strain for me and I one I'd love to use again in the future. I needed ~300B yeast cells to pitch the correct amount so I made a 2.1L starter creating (calculated by yeastcalc) 377B cells. I decanted & pitched 5/6th of the starter and froze the other 1/6th.

Now I know I have anywhere between 20 and 50B cells in a vial, and lets say when I use it, its only 50% viable. At worst case scenario I'd make a 500ml starter then step to 1.5L. Boom, I've got my 300B cells for another 8% brew. If I was going for a beer with OG 1.060 as my next one I would skip the 500ml step and just do a 1.5L starter and I'd have the perfect pitching amount.

EDIT: As I was writing, I realized that not everyone has a stir plate. If you use the intermittent shake method of starter aeration, this method would not be for you as the amount of starters you'd have to make would make it very cost and time ineffective.
I absolutely love this method but not having a stir plate kills me for it. Is it possible to make a stir plate large enough to turn a 1 gallon flat bottom growler?

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