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Old 10-18-2008, 12:46 PM   #11
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I don't always pitch a starter on small beers, but I think Yuri's recent post said the advantages best - Pitching a large starter into properly temperature controlled wort can keep any off flavors from being produced. This will allow your beer to be drinkable much faster.

Your other option is time, let it sit longer in the fermenter, and condition longer in the bottle/keg and you can achieve the same results. (Until you get to a high ABV beer, then you have to do starters or double pitch)

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Old 10-18-2008, 07:34 PM   #12
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I'm a little too OCD for that! If you don't want or are ill-equipped to make starters, don't despair! Just keep pitching as best you can. Oh, and make good beer...
I'm with you on that. I know I don't HAVE to go with a starter but I figure that the more varables I make an effort to control means less variables are left to chance. Even the ones that probably don't need my control.

At least by making a starter I don't have to worry about whether my yeast is good. One less thing to think about = one more homebrew to relax and enjoy...

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Old 10-18-2008, 09:18 PM   #13
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You could just look at it as a five gallon starter, lol.

I'd just use dry yeast unless there is a need something more specific. I have only used liquid yeast once and I made a starter the way How to Brew says too do it. I probably was still under pitching and it took several hours longer to start bubbling than any of my other brews. I have some hefeweizen yeast coming and I want to do 10 gallons with it so I will use a larger starter.

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Old 10-19-2008, 08:11 AM   #14
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Can a lazy-A brewer like myself compensate with a high OG brew by simply re-hydrating and pitching twice as much dry yeast?

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Old 10-19-2008, 09:51 AM   #15
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dont be lazy...but yes....good beer comes about with patience and planning. And always a bit of luck and a starter helps the odds.

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Old 10-19-2008, 11:29 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by yeoldebrewer View Post
Can a lazy-A brewer like myself compensate with a high OG brew by simply re-hydrating and pitching twice as much dry yeast?
Yes - that is actually the correct way to pitch higher counts of dry yeast. I have read that its a bad idea to make dry yeast starters and that if you need more yeast just toss in 2 packs.
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Old 10-19-2008, 07:56 PM   #17
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Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure that a pack of dry yeast has way more cells than liquid yeast. A starter is not normally used with dry yeast for this reason.
Not when it comes to live, functional cells. I counted them myself on multiple samples.
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Old 10-19-2008, 09:59 PM   #18
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Regarding the Wyeast Activator slap-packs: When you slap it and "activate" the bag, will the numbers of yeast increase from the stock level (assuming you let it sit for a few hours)?

I just brewed up my first batch last night, and used the Wyeast. Slapped the pack and let it roll for 12 hours before I pitched it (looked like it was going to explode at that point). My question is, the Oatmeal Stout I'm brewing has a listed initial gravity of 1.062. Was this single Activator grossly inadequate? Did the 12 hour activation time negate that somewhat?

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Old 10-19-2008, 10:05 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pelikan View Post
Regarding the Wyeast Activator slap-packs: When you slap it and "activate" the bag, will the numbers of yeast increase from the stock level (assuming you let it sit for a few hours)?

I just brewed up my first batch last night, and used the Wyeast. Slapped the pack and let it roll for 12 hours before I pitched it (looked like it was going to explode at that point). My question is, the Oatmeal Stout I'm brewing has a listed initial gravity of 1.062. Was this single Activator grossly inadequate? Did the 12 hour activation time negate that somewhat?
The smack packs with the activator show activity, but don't increase cell count, from what I understand. Check out this site: Mr Malty Pitching Rate Calculator to see what kind of cell count you should have.

For ANY beer over 1.045 (maybe smaller) I'd use a starter, unless that yeast was so fresh it was made yesterday.
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Old 10-19-2008, 10:07 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by YooperBrew View Post
The smack packs with the activator show activity, but don't increase cell count, from what I understand. Check out this site: Mr Malty Pitching Rate Calculator to see what kind of cell count you should have.

For ANY beer over 1.045 (maybe smaller) I'd use a starter, unless that yeast was so fresh it was made yesterday.
The yeast was actually extremely fresh, the born on date was something like a week ago. Regardless, it's too late for me to do a starter culture, the deed has been done. Did I screw the pooch on this one? It's only been 12 hours and I have constant bubbling from the airlock (first saw activity at about 4 hours, first notable bubbles at 8), but I don't know if that's necessarily an indicator of A-Okay status.
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Last edited by Pelikan; 10-19-2008 at 10:23 PM.
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