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Old 09-10-2006, 03:26 PM   #1
Catch20two
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So I want to begin to use starters, and had a couple questions. I'm going to buy a starter kit from nothernbrewer which will come with a 1000 ml flask and 1 pound of DME.

1) how many batches will the one pound of DME last? (or, how much do I add to make the starter?)

2) I am only at the stage where I'm making beer from the ingredient kits either ordered online or at my LHBS. Since its often LME I can't "steal" some to make the starter. Is it ok to use the same kind of DME for any type of beer. Does it matter what you use in the starter or is it too little to affect the taste of the beer?

I know things can get pretty advanced with starters, but I'm just looking to take the first step at this point.

Any help is appreciated, thanks.

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Old 09-10-2006, 04:44 PM   #2
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As long as it's light DME your fine.

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Old 09-10-2006, 05:44 PM   #3
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You will probably recieve instructions with the kit but here is a link to their online documentation. > http://www.northernbrewer.com/documentation/Hi-Res/yeast-starter-kit.pdf
For what it is worth I don't use an airlock. I just cover the mouth mouth with some foil.

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Old 09-10-2006, 06:17 PM   #4
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Any kind of DME or LME is fine. If you are worried about colour just let it ferment out then pitch the slurry. Your key factors for success are: sanitation (ideally cooking the wort in the flask); aeration (aerate more than you would aerate a 5 gal batch, and keep aerating for the first couple of hours, then swirl it every so often while it's fermenting).

Add enough DME to get a 1.040 OG wort for your starter.

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Old 09-10-2006, 10:57 PM   #5
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A good rule of thumb I have found as to the amount of DME to add to a given amount of water is to use the metric system. A 10:1 ratio of water to DME will yield an SG of about 1.040. For example, if you want to make an 800 ml starter in a 1000 ml flask, just add 80 grams of DME and top off with water to get a final volume of 800 ml.

FWIW, a 1000 ml flask will not really allow you to make a starter big enough for a 5 gallon batch. Check out this Yeast pitching Calculator.

John

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Old 09-10-2006, 11:33 PM   #6
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Man.... you guys are making this sound like a lot of work..... I use a 1/2 gal jug. Fill it with water about half way and dump this in a pot. Get the water warm and put a cup or so of DME in (could be LME). Let it boil for a few minutes. Cool it to pitching temp and I put it back in the jug. Shake it a bit to aeriate. You dont have to go crazy here.... it's just a couple of pints ok. Pitch yeast. I use an airlock on it cause sometimes I'm not sure when I'm going to use it.

Thats it really. Many don't even use a starter. When I used dry yeast I did not use one and it took off with a very small lag time. I like useing a starter with liquid yeast cause I've seen it GREATLY helps lag time.

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Old 09-11-2006, 12:39 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beer Snob
Man.... you guys are making this sound like a lot of work..... I use a 1/2 gal jug. Fill it with water about half way and dump this in a pot. Get the water warm and put a cup or so of DME in (could be LME). Let it boil for a few minutes. Cool it to pitching temp and I put it back in the jug. Shake it a bit to aeriate. You dont have to go crazy here.... it's just a couple of pints ok. Pitch yeast. I use an airlock on it cause sometimes I'm not sure when I'm going to use it.

Thats it really. Many don't even use a starter. When I used dry yeast I did not use one and it took off with a very small lag time. I like useing a starter with liquid yeast cause I've seen it GREATLY helps lag time.

Same here- I use a 1-gallon apple cider jug. I use a half- pound DME with a half-gallon of water, boil it for about 5 mins, cool, add yeast, cover with tin foil, & let it ferment out. Easy- Peasy. I did start an experiment with my last brew. I purposely mashed a little extra grain, then collected a half- gallon extra wort from the sparge, & froze it with the intention of thawing it and using it for my starter for my next brew. If it works, and I don't see why it wouldn't, I won't have to shell out $ for DME for starters anymore.
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Old 09-11-2006, 12:37 PM   #8
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Thanks all for the tips, seems simple enough.

They sell the starter kit with either a 1000ml and 2000ml flask. I thought the 1000 ml was more common so I was planning on getting that (plus the DME would go further). Is this a mistake, should I be getting the 2000ml?

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Old 09-11-2006, 06:20 PM   #9
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1000 ml is too small, IMHO for any beer with an OG over 1.030. Keep in mind that a 1000 ml flask can only be filled to a max of about 75% to give some head space for boiling and fermentation. Go with the 2000 ml at the very least. I use a 3000 ml so that I can make 2500 ml starter. There is a school of thought that pitching too much yeast in a relatively small starter wort (500-1000 ml) may do more harm than good. It could stress the yeast. This Pitching calculator can be very helpful in determining how much yeast to pitch for a given volume and OG.

John

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Old 09-12-2006, 12:04 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Catch20two
Thanks all for the tips, seems simple enough.

They sell the starter kit with either a 1000ml and 2000ml flask. I thought the 1000 ml was more common so I was planning on getting that (plus the DME would go further). Is this a mistake, should I be getting the 2000ml?
Oh you mean you did not buy it yet....? DONT GET ANYTHING! Probably overpriced for what you get really. Go to the store and get some apple juice in a glass gal bottle. DME you'll get when you get supplies as well as a universal stopper and airlock. Juice is 3, stopper is what.... 80 cents or so.... airlock is what... another buck.... get the picture
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