Electric Brewing Supply 30A BCS Giveaway - Last Chance to Enter!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Need advice on Yeast Starter
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 04-10-2012, 04:43 PM   #1
KavDaven
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Greensboro, NC
Posts: 85
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts

Default Need advice on Yeast Starter

I was going to brew up a NB Big Honkin' Stout this weekend but I was intimidated by the instructions calling for a starter using Wyeast NW Ale. So, I just bought two smack packs instead of one. I figure two smack packs should work.

In the meantime, I've been sifting through the bottomless cask of knowledge on yeast starters. Looks easy enough.

I think I'll put off the Stout until the following weekend, waiting on the 2nd smack pack anyway. This weekend I'll brew up the NB Cream Ale instead.

Here's where I need advice. I'm thinking about attempting the yeast starter on the Cream Ale now that I've read enough on the subject to be dangerous. BUT... Wyeast states that their liquid yeast is enough for 5 gallon batches of small to medium brews. So, if I was able to do a starter for the little brew of a Cream Ale wouldn't I end up over pitching? Is over pitching bad?

And, I'm not buying an erlenmyer flask and stir plate just yet. So, I thought I'd use a 1/2 Gallon Growler and foil using the walk by and stir method. That should give OK results right?

__________________
KavDaven is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-10-2012, 04:57 PM   #2
duboman
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Glenview, IL
Posts: 6,220
Liked 488 Times on 452 Posts
Likes Given: 216

Default

Go to yeastcalc.com, plug in the numbers and you'll see what the starter size should be.

__________________
Nothing Left to do but smile and drink beer.....

The Commune Brewing Company-Perfecting the "art" of beer since 2010
duboman is online now
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-10-2012, 05:04 PM   #3
BrewerinBR
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
BrewerinBR's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Big Rapids, Michigan
Posts: 1,290
Liked 121 Times on 91 Posts
Likes Given: 42

Default

I do starters all the time in growlers with foil and walk by and shake. Use the same method for harvesting yeast.

__________________

I seek not a hobby to fill my time; I seek a passion to fill my life!

Basement Brew Room Build:
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/base...-house-247971/

"Shame on the man of cultivated taste who permits refinement to develop into fastidiousness that unfits him for doing the rough work of a workaday world." -Theodore Roosevelt

BrewerinBR is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-10-2012, 05:13 PM   #4
homebrewdad
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Birmingham, AL
Posts: 3,091
Liked 334 Times on 246 Posts
Likes Given: 231

Default

You are going to have a hard time over pitching beer as a homebrewer. Most homebrewed beer is underpitched - even severely so.

As for starters being intimidating, relax. Starters are stupidly easy - way easier than making beer.

Boil 1/2 cup of DME in 2 cups of water for ten minutes. Cool and pitch the yeast. Shake it when you think about it.

Voila, a starter.

You'll see pics of cool, chemistry lab type beakers for starters. I'm sure that they are great, and I want one... but look what I have used for my last two starters - both of which gave me explosive fermentations.



Yep, that is a sanitized grocery store tea jug. Seriously, starters are THAT easy.

__________________
Homebrew Dad - blogging about making my own beer and raising a lot of kids.
Check out the priming sugar calculator and the beer calorie calculator.

Fermenting: nothing
Lagering: Swarthy Satyr (traditional bock)
Bottled: Royal Goblin (Hoppy Hobgoblin rendition), Treasure Type "T" (oatmeal toffee stout), Enchantress (big Irish red ale), Frostfire (Oktoberfest), Thundersmoke brown ale
homebrewdad is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-10-2012, 05:25 PM   #5
helibrewer
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
 
helibrewer's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Santa Rosa, CA
Posts: 3,402
Liked 232 Times on 204 Posts
Likes Given: 57

Default

A good trade off between size and results is a 2L starter. One smack pack in 2L gives about 50 million cells per Liter which gives you about a 1.1 doubling factor. A smaller 1L starter will give you about a .5 doubling factor.

If you go with a plastic milk jug setup just run (2) 2L starters, one for each smack pack, that will yield about 450 billion cells which should be plenty for a medium gravity starter.

Use 200 gr of DME to make a 2L starter...the gravity should be about 1.030

__________________
Something is always fermenting....
"It's Bahl Hornin'"

Primary:
Brite Tank/Lagering:
Kegged: Hefeweizen, Chocolate Hazelnut Porter, Kumquat Saison, Tart Cherry Cider, Belgian Tripel, Maibock Bock, Ommegang Abbey Ale Clone, Belgian Golden Strong, German Pils (WLP830)
Bottled: Belgian Quad (Grand Reserve), Derangement (Belgian Dark Strong)
On Deck:
My Site: www.restlesscellars.com
helibrewer is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-10-2012, 06:44 PM   #6
gmcastil
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: denver, co
Posts: 212
Liked 7 Times on 6 Posts
Likes Given: 4

Default

A Wyeast smack pack or a White Labs yeast vial each contain about 100 billion cells. Both companies claim that is sufficient and both companies are wrong. Proper pitching rates are really important to making quality brew and it's really easy to make starters. When I got started brewing, I found the following article really helpful:

http://www.mrmalty.com/pitching.php

Once you've read that, then use the calculator that site provides in order to calculate how big of a starter you need.

__________________
gmcastil is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-10-2012, 07:21 PM   #7
LiquidFlame
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
 
LiquidFlame's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Normal, IL
Posts: 398
Liked 21 Times on 14 Posts

Default

+1 on the Mr Malty, just use that and your set, tells you everything you need to know.

__________________
LiquidFlame is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-10-2012, 07:33 PM   #8
dbhokie
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Lynchburg, Virginia
Posts: 407
Liked 8 Times on 8 Posts

Default

The only reason it seems to get more complicated is because of efficiency in culturing up cell counts.

Most standard gravity beers, won't even require too awful much of a starter, when you get into really high gravity and you are making do with one culture of yeast cells, and you have to start stepping starters (make starter, crash, decant, make bigger starter, repeat) in order to get to your pitching cell counts, that is when you see people using those beakers and such.

Yeasties love Oxygen, my first three starters I just shook them every time I thought about it randomly, it worked well, then I made a stir plate using some great instructions here, or kind of using them. That was just to prevent me from having to go through quite as many steps because it is just about as much more effective than shaking as shaking is than letting sit still.

Most programs BeerSmith, Mr Malty, Jamil's yeast calculator all well tell you about how many cells you need, and about what size starter you need, most of them ask how you will be oxygenating, and shaking works just fine.

__________________
On Deck
Abbey Ale #2
Rye Imperial Pale Ale
Primary
20 Gallons of Apple Cider
Secondary
Bourbon Vanilla Imperial Porter
Conditioning (Bottle)
---So Sad
dbhokie is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-10-2012, 09:35 PM   #9
KavDaven
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Greensboro, NC
Posts: 85
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by dbhokie View Post
Yeasties love Oxygen, my first three starters I just shook them every time I thought about it randomly, it worked well, then I made a stir plate using some great instructions here, or kind of using them. That was just to prevent me from having to go through quite as many steps because it is just about as much more effective than shaking as shaking is than letting sit still.
You made a stir plate? How?

@homebrewdad - You just reminded me to keep it simple. Thank you.
__________________
KavDaven is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-10-2012, 09:43 PM   #10
homebrewdad
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Birmingham, AL
Posts: 3,091
Liked 334 Times on 246 Posts
Likes Given: 231

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by KavDaven View Post
@homebrewdad - You just reminded me to keep it simple. Thank you.
No worries. I love get detailed on tasks... but to start with, just figure out the basics.
__________________
Homebrew Dad - blogging about making my own beer and raising a lot of kids.
Check out the priming sugar calculator and the beer calorie calculator.

Fermenting: nothing
Lagering: Swarthy Satyr (traditional bock)
Bottled: Royal Goblin (Hoppy Hobgoblin rendition), Treasure Type "T" (oatmeal toffee stout), Enchantress (big Irish red ale), Frostfire (Oktoberfest), Thundersmoke brown ale
homebrewdad 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
Starter advice. TheBrewLebowski Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 3 12-30-2011 02:25 AM
Seeking Advice for starter kit sing66 Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 14 12-14-2011 12:33 AM
Need advice on pitching starter ASAP!! Wort is in fermenter, waiting for yeast! pinkfloyd4ever Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 5 09-13-2010 08:36 PM
Starter Kit advice please. mm415202 Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 18 12-19-2007 05:43 PM
Looking for Starter Advice Clerk Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 4 02-09-2007 07:12 PM