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Old 11-01-2011, 09:21 PM   #1
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Default Expired yeast?

Hi all. I have two vials of WLP810 that I was planning on using sometime last month for a California common. However, life and tree limbs seem to have gotten in the way of my beloved hobby, and it seems the "best if used before" date has passed(sept 29th). Is it still possible to use this yeast(perhaps I could make a starter and ensure viability) or should I just buy new yeast?

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Old 11-01-2011, 09:27 PM   #2
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All you need to do is make a starter a few days ahead, which you should be doing anyway. The yeast are still perfectly alive enough to make a starter. You can use the Mr Malty calculator to figure out how much starter you'll need to make.

http://www.mrmalty.com/calc/calc.html

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Old 11-01-2011, 09:29 PM   #3
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Minus well do a starter, better yet to do a few step up starters. Do it three to four hours prior to pitching. Actually probably a bit longer if you do a couple step up starters...

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Old 11-02-2011, 01:25 AM   #4
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A lot of folks on here use expired yeast for the reason that most LHBS will sell them at a discount just to get rid of them. As stated above, make a starter and you will be fine.

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Old 11-02-2011, 01:35 AM   #5
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Can anyone describe some physical signs that would demostrate that the yeast starter has been successfully "started" using older yeast? With recent purchases of yeast I have seen large amounts of bubbles produced when shaken that shows activity. Not sure what to look for using older yeast on a stir plate.

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Old 11-02-2011, 03:47 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msa8967 View Post
Can anyone describe some physical signs that would demostrate that the yeast starter has been successfully "started" using older yeast? With recent purchases of yeast I have seen large amounts of bubbles produced when shaken that shows activity. Not sure what to look for using older yeast on a stir plate.
Still learning myself, (might be obvious to some) but what I've noticed so far is the older the yeast the slower the bubbling occurs. One slurry that was 4 months old took half a day to wake up, but it did. First a thin layer of bubbles formed on the surface then eventually much later a krausen formed.

I just did a starter today with a week old yeast and it took right off, I mean less than an hour. I actually had to transfer to another container because the krausen was reaching 5 inches high in the mason jar I had it in. This is American Ale 1056 yeast.
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Old 11-02-2011, 04:23 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msa8967 View Post
Can anyone describe some physical signs that would demostrate that the yeast starter has been successfully "started" using older yeast? With recent purchases of yeast I have seen large amounts of bubbles produced when shaken that shows activity. Not sure what to look for using older yeast on a stir plate.
With a stir plate you will see the the starter thicken up is the best way I could describe it. You might see a slight krausen or a lot. But you should see the yeast activity happen. What once was a swirling flask, canning jar, growler, of semi clear wort will appear more cloudy, You will be able to see the change. If your eyesight is not the best, shine a flashlight on it, you can see the change happening better. 24 hours should be enough time on the stirrer.
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Old 11-02-2011, 06:46 PM   #8
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Also, if you're doing a bigish starter, you should cold crash the starter and decant off a fair portion of the fermented beer, and pitch mostly yeast cake using a bit of the left over "beer" to resuspend it and make it easier to pour.

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