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Old 05-07-2009, 11:01 PM   #1
geodave
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Default Old smack pack, bad starter?

Hello,

So due to poor planning I activated a smack pack and about a week went by without it being used, a day or two at the beginning spent at room temperature before I put it back in the fridge. Then after that week or so I made a starter at around 1.040, 2 quarts, and dumped in the smackpack. I left for two days (with the starter on the stirplate) and coming back, there's no ring to indicate any krausen. Should I just assume this thing is stone dead and use a new smack pack?

Or is 48 hours not enough time? Is there any other way to test viability or bring it to life?

It's not a big deal, as my horrible handling of this yeast pretty much made me assume it'd screw up, but I figured I'd try and salvage it all the same.


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Old 05-08-2009, 12:51 AM   #2
Joe Camel
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Give it some more time. If the smack pak swelled up initially the yeast are likely still alive. Check the temperature around the starter, if it's too cool, the yeast won't grow that fast. Ideally starters should be around 70-75F for good growth.
I almost never see a krausen ring, if the starter is stirring fast, it gets broken up as fast as it forms. I look for colour change in the wort, going from amber to butterscotch, to know there is growth.


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Old 05-08-2009, 01:53 AM   #3
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Yeast don't die, they just sleep

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f13/one-...-story-118108/

Be patient!
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Old 05-08-2009, 02:03 AM   #4
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Yes, I've done pretty much the exact same sequence. Came out great!
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Old 05-08-2009, 05:13 AM   #5
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Dang, it's the colour change I should be looking for? It's definitely a distinct butterscotch colour. I was totally expecting a krausen ring!

That's fantastic. One more question; I intend to crash cool it in the fridge, extract the yeast and add to glycerin-vials for freezing...how long should I cool it in the fridge before extracting? Do they drop right out as soon as the liquid cools?

This is great news.


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