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Old 02-04-2013, 01:01 PM   #21
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I think that I am starting to get the picture! If I use a 5 L starter I have to wait for it to flocate and pitch only the trub! I was thinking of pitching it at peak activity. Is there a difrent yeast that you guys would recomend? I pitiched the 2035 Wyeast into a 1L starter last night befor going to bed and there still appears to be no activity this morning! I think I'll try and order some from Northern Brewer or the like. Would I be better off with a dry lager yeast, and is there even such a thing?

I am in no real hurry for this beer so I can wait if it means not waisting the entire batch on a bad pack of yeast! I really would like this to turn out as well as it can, and don't really mind waiting if there is somethig I can do now to make it the best it can be!

I hate the idea of dumping a bunch of money on mulitiple packs of yeast. Can't I just get 1 or 2 and step up from there?

Is mail ordering yeast a bad idea? A company like NB is way more likely to have a lot more sales, and, therefor, fresher packs, than my LHBS. Temps are in the 20's around here for the highs this week. I think the pack of yeast that I have may have frozen, and this would be a concern for me.

I don't have a stir plate and I'm not really planning on spending the money on one untill I find out, for myself, if my lager is worth all the hassle. I would certainly spend the $$$ if this batch, and maybe a couple others, turn out well! Is there an alturnative to the stir plate? I know that I can shake the container often, and that will help, but I was trying to figure out something in the house that would keep it shook up. I was thinking about setting it on top of the washing machine, but I did all my laundry yesterday! Just a thought!

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Old 02-04-2013, 01:10 PM   #22
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kirkwooder - good luck with your beer. i have had good luck with starting with a 1L starter, cooling and decanting, and then pitching 2L more on top of that and pitching the whole thing when it is at high krausen.

i have had lager starters take up to three days to show any activity (that is, stop smelling sweet).

once you do this beer, consider reusing your cake. it saves you a lot of effort in the starter department.

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Old 02-04-2013, 01:36 PM   #23
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kirkwooder - good luck with your beer. i have had good luck with starting with a 1L starter, cooling and decanting, and then pitching 2L more on top of that and pitching the whole thing when it is at high krausen.

i have had lager starters take up to three days to show any activity (that is, stop smelling sweet).

once you do this beer, consider reusing your cake. it saves you a lot of effort in the starter department.
You think My starter might take off, yet?

I made the mistake of dumping a cake from a first run Kolsch that my Raspberry wheat was on. I didn't save any of it. I thought that I could just as easily retrieve it from one of the bottles!

I obviously have so much to learn, but I find it fun!
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Old 02-04-2013, 02:10 PM   #24
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You think My starter might take off, yet?
oh, definitely. give it time and occasional swirls. does it still smell sweet?
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Old 02-04-2013, 02:27 PM   #25
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Hey Kirkwooder. Yes, you CAN use 1 or 2 packs of liquid lager yeast and build the starter from that. It will take a few days and at least two steps (as someone described a couple posts ago).

Nothing wrong with mail ordering at all! It's a good idea to ask the store (online or otherwise) what the dates are on the yeast you want. I sell only "fresh" yeast at Mile Hi and toss any liquid yeast over 4 months old. Maybe a bit wasteful but it ensures you always get a good fermentation.

Finally, you should always refrigerate liquid yeast. If you suspect it has been frozen, the yeast is almost definitely no longer with us!

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Old 02-04-2013, 02:42 PM   #26
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progmac; it smells sweet and like the yeast pack stink mixed! It's still really sticky. (spilled some on the table)

Mile High: I had it in the fridge for the weekend, but the wife filled my beer fridge in the house with frozen beers from the garage beer fridge, and it got really cold in there.( Yeah I have 2 just for beer! Well there are a few sodas and juice boxes in the one in the house, but not many !)

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Old 02-04-2013, 02:55 PM   #27
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There are a few ways to know if your starter has actually fermented: There should be a white layer of fresh yeast on the bottom of the container. There should be a slight (w/lager) ring around the wort line where the foam (though slight) may have dried. And, when you swirl the container, it should foam up, as Co2 comes out of solution. If any or all of these signs are evident, it's likely fermented already. If not, warm it up to 70 - 75 degrees and let it go another day.

I wouldn't think the yeast pack would freeze by simply being in a fridge containing ice. It should be fine...just a little old and a lager (both of which mean it will be slow to grow).

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Old 02-04-2013, 03:13 PM   #28
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I don't see any signs of activity. When I say cold I mean there was some ice crystals in a diet coke that I pulled out the next day. There was about 4 cases of beer out there, and temps have been dropping below 0* alot lately. So the beer might have been as cold as 10* or so.

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Old 02-04-2013, 03:41 PM   #29
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just be patient. if no activity after 72 hours, check back. the second step won't be nearly so slow to take off.

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Old 02-04-2013, 04:01 PM   #30
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Well, I hate to be a pessimist, but that's really cold for liquid yeast! It may well have been killed if the pack froze. But, I agree with the last post...give it some time before tossing it and starting over.

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