Happy HolidaySs Giveaway - Winners Re-Re-Drawn - 24 hours to Claim!

Get your HBT Growlers, Shirts and Membership before the Rush!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Going to make my first starter ever. Is a stir plate required?
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 12-24-2013, 05:46 PM   #1
electrotype
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Montreal
Posts: 29
Likes Given: 52

Default Going to make my first starter ever. Is a stir plate required?

I'm going to make my first starter ever! For my first two batches, I used dry yeast (2 packs each time) and it worked well. But this time I'm using a liquid yeast and it seems it's better to make a starter for those.

Is a stir plate required to get a good starter?
If I do not have a stir plate, is making a starter still a good idea?
Does a stir plate really make a big difference?

Thanks!

__________________
electrotype is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-24-2013, 05:50 PM   #2
theck
Feedback Score: 3 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: lakewood, ohio
Posts: 1,156
Liked 49 Times on 46 Posts
Likes Given: 75

Default

I just started doing starters so no expert, but mine seem to do ok... I do the DME (1/2 cup, 2 cups water), boil for 10 mins, starsan mason jar and piece of foil, pour the DME into the jar, cool the DME to 60ish in an ice bath in sink, add yeast, put on foil and swirl when I walk past it. Eventually I'd like to get a stir plate but the last 7-8 starters I did seemed to do really well. I typically do it 2 days before pitching.

__________________

Co2 Taps: empty
Nitro Tap: empty
Fermenting: Saison

theck is offline
electrotype Likes This 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-24-2013, 05:51 PM   #3
FuzzeWuzze
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
FuzzeWuzze's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Hillsboro, OR
Posts: 2,185
Liked 246 Times on 186 Posts
Likes Given: 19

Default

Save this link and always use it to answer your questions
http://www.yeastcalc.com/

Enter in your gravity, it will tell you how much yeast you need...then enter in your starters and method of agitation.

You can use this to play with it to see how big of a difference no stir plate vs intermittent shaking vs stir plate makes on any given starter. It does make quite a bit of difference, but that also can be mitigated a bit by shaking the thing to oxygenate it any time you walk by.

For example

No Starter: 100b cells
2L Starter No Touching: 200b cells
2L Starter Intermittent Shaking: 250b cells
2L Starter Stir Plate: 300b cells

If you need 300b cells, but with no stir plate, it just means you will have to do a second starter. You do your regular starter no shaking to get your 200b, then stick it in the fridge overnight and decant off all the liquid keeping as much yeast at the bottom as you can, then pour in some more chilled wort and let it multiply again...

Stir plates are nice because they are relatively cheap(except for the flask!), easy to DIY, give you maximum results, and saves time because your getting more cells out of each run you dont need to do as many stepped starters if your doing really big beers.

For example to get enough for a standard lager you'll need around 400b cells, without a stir plate thats 4 step starters, thats basically 8-9 days of planning ahead of brew day to have it ready and even then you arent even fully at 400b(380ish). Where with a stir plate you do 3 starters and are at nearly 500b.

FuzzeWuzze is offline
electrotype Likes This 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-24-2013, 05:53 PM   #4
DanH
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
 
DanH's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,025
Liked 82 Times on 64 Posts
Likes Given: 6

Default

Use a yeast calculator and it will show you the difference in resulting yeast cell counts of stir plate vs no stir plate.

Stir plates are not mandatory at all, but they definitely help to produce much more yeast cells. Another option is to simply pick up the starter and swirl it every hour or so.

Don't forget, though, that you can easily build your own stir plate in an hour. Stuff like that is tons of fun, so worth it on its own.

__________________
DanH is offline
2
People Like This 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-24-2013, 05:55 PM   #5
theck
Feedback Score: 3 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: lakewood, ohio
Posts: 1,156
Liked 49 Times on 46 Posts
Likes Given: 75

Default

Thanks for the yeast calculator! I gotta start using that.

__________________

Co2 Taps: empty
Nitro Tap: empty
Fermenting: Saison

theck is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-24-2013, 06:03 PM   #6
theck
Feedback Score: 3 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: lakewood, ohio
Posts: 1,156
Liked 49 Times on 46 Posts
Likes Given: 75

Default

Oh duh I just noticed that BeerSmith has the calculator too.

__________________

Co2 Taps: empty
Nitro Tap: empty
Fermenting: Saison

theck is offline
electrotype Likes This 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-24-2013, 06:10 PM   #7
electrotype
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Montreal
Posts: 29
Likes Given: 52

Default

Thanks for your help everybody.

Would a fermentation benefit from a big stir plate, if that existed?

Does all this starter process means it is good to shake the primary fermenter once in a while?

__________________
electrotype is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-24-2013, 06:11 PM   #8
FuzzeWuzze
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
FuzzeWuzze's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Hillsboro, OR
Posts: 2,185
Liked 246 Times on 186 Posts
Likes Given: 19

Default

Yea im not sure how up to date that is, honestly i find the step starter portion of YeastCalc so useful, much more than other tools like MrMalty or Beersmith having to do it manually.

__________________
HOWTO - Build a BrewPi Fermentation Chamber Cheap

View Current Brew via my BrewPi setup!
FuzzeWuzze is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-24-2013, 06:16 PM   #9
FuzzeWuzze
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
FuzzeWuzze's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Hillsboro, OR
Posts: 2,185
Liked 246 Times on 186 Posts
Likes Given: 19

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by electrotype View Post
Thanks for your help everybody.

Would a fermentation benefit from a big stir plate, if that existed?

Does all this starter process means it is good to shake the primary fermenter once in a while?
The stir plate size doesnt matter it just needs to agitate the yeast and keep it in suspension. It DOES benefit from a larger starter. You will get more yeast out of a 2L starter than a 1L starter but less than a 5L starter....obviously.

If your doing 10G batches a 5L starter might make sense, if your doing 5g batches and arent just constantly making barley wine or something at > 1.1 sg you can get away with a 2L starter, 5L flasks are just ridiculously big and way overkill for most. I wouldnt waste money on a 1L flask, i did and found it was just too small, and a 2L flask is like an extra $5 or something...

But no, do not shake your beer. You should agitate it when you FIRST put it in before you pitch your yeast, a lot of people just shake their carboys/buckets to aerate, some use pumps or oxygen tanks and aeration stones to inject oxygen into the wort.

Shaking during a starter basically "ruins" the starter by oxygenating the hell out of it, it will be super stale tasting...but you dont care your not after the liquid, you should decant all of that off and only pitch your yeast. Stick it in the fridge for a day, it will all form a nice cake on the bottom, then slowly pour the liquid out until you start to see some of the yeast making an escape...leave a bit of liquid in there just enough to shake up the yeast and get them in suspension so you can pour them in!
__________________
HOWTO - Build a BrewPi Fermentation Chamber Cheap

View Current Brew via my BrewPi setup!
FuzzeWuzze is offline
electrotype Likes This 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-24-2013, 06:18 PM   #10
electrotype
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Montreal
Posts: 29
Likes Given: 52

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by FuzzeWuzze View Post
Shaking during a starter basically "ruins" the starter by oxygenating the hell out of it, it will be super stale tasting...but you dont care your not after the liquid, you should decant all of that off and only pitch your yeast.
Got it, thanks!
__________________
electrotype is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply



Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Stir plate required? theCougfan97 Fermentation & Yeast 17 04-04-2013 08:52 PM
Calculating Required Amperage For Stir Plate thadius856 Chillers and Stir Plates 2 01-24-2013 06:58 PM
vortex size required for stir plate starter? psubrewer Fermentation & Yeast 1 07-18-2012 11:38 PM
Dramatically improve your Stir Starter stir plate wildwest450 Chillers and Stir Plates 27 03-24-2012 01:05 AM
Please, Make Your Own Stir Plate bernerbrau Chillers and Stir Plates 67 06-10-2011 09:10 PM



Newest Threads

LATEST SPONSOR DEALS