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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > White Labs is horrible!!!... maybe.
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Old 06-12-2009, 03:25 PM   #1
Nickhouse80
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Default White Labs is horrible!!!... maybe.

Maybe I'm being impatient. This is the second time I've tried using White Labs yeast. The first time absolutely nothing happened and the beer just soured- had to throw it out. Last night I made an American Hefeweizen and used White Labs American Hefeweizen liquid yeast. It has been about 12 hours and I'm not seeing any activity. I know everyone says it can take a while to get started but I'm really nervous this will sour also. Expiration date is good, pitched at approx. 75 degrees and it was well aerated. Any thoughts?


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Old 06-12-2009, 03:26 PM   #2
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Did you make a starter?


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Old 06-12-2009, 03:29 PM   #3
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I have to absolutely disagree that "White Labs is horrible."

I've never had any trouble with White Labs yeast that was White Labs' fault.

I had one tube of dead yeast due to having been in shipping for 5 days in the summer heat, but I've used WL yeast at least a half dozen times with no issues, and thousands of others have too.
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Old 06-12-2009, 03:31 PM   #4
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Before saying the whole company sux I would consider that you are new to brewing. Did you check the date on the yeast packages? Did you properly care for the yeast pkg? Like Flyangler said, did you make a starter? I have pitched just a vial of WL and everything turned out ok everytime, but a starter is the best idea. There are many commercial and homebrewers using their yeast with great results. Have you considered that something is wrong in your personal process that may have detremental effects on the viability of your yeast? Pitching too hot or otherwise? Lots of factors could be at work here. what yeasts have not worked and what was your process.
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Old 06-12-2009, 03:33 PM   #5
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Not enough info on your specifics, but fly's right for the generic answer anyone should give. I use WL and love it, but unless I'm pitching on a cake I like a starter. Is this a 5 gallon batch? Also, are you using the airlock as a proof of fermenting device (cause... that's a whole nother' thread), or are you judging by surface bubbles? Either way isn't a good judge of fermentation. Wait and I am sure you are fine, but please let me know more. I'm betting your dandy though and have nothing to fear this time.

EDIT: Dang you guys are fast, lol I was thinking I was third post, lol. Fast bastids!
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Old 06-12-2009, 03:34 PM   #6
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Sounds like you didn't make a starter. If you underpitch any brand of yeast your results will be mediocre at best.
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Old 06-12-2009, 03:39 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nickhouse80 View Post
Maybe I'm being impatient. ... It has been about 12 hours and I'm not seeing any activity. Any thoughts?
You're being impatient.....http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/ferm...e-signs-43635/ Before that, especially without making a starter you often get lag time....

And if you are going by airlock activity as a "gauge" don't,it's really faulty, the only way to truly know what is going on in your fermenter is with your hydrometer. Like I said here in my blog, which I encourage you to read, Think evaluation before action you sure as HELL wouldn't want a doctor to start cutting on you unless he used the proper diagnostic instuments like x-rays first, right? You wouldn't want him to just take a look in your eyes briefly and say "I'm cutting into your chest first thing in the morning." You would want them to use the right diagnostic tools before the slice and dice, right? You'd cry malpractice, I would hope, if they didn't say they were sending you for an MRI and other things before going in.....

But until it's been 72 hours I wouldn't worry...and also if you don't make a starter with liquid yeast, I would encourage you to do so in the future.
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Old 06-12-2009, 03:41 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mew View Post
Sounds like you didn't make a starter. If you underpitch any brand of yeast your results will be mediocre at best.
I learned this as a beginner too. Proper or slightly above correct pitch counts are critical but temps are nice too.
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Old 06-12-2009, 03:43 PM   #9
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Gang...he's going by airlock activity...that and impatience is his only problem....

The rate of airlock bubbling, lack of airlock bubbling or airlock bubbling in general really means nothing except that co2 is being vented and the top of the fermentor will not explode spewing your beer all over the palce...It is NOT any type of a gauge.

Some bubble fast, some bubble slow, some never bubble, some people don't use airlocks....and yet the yeasties do their thing and beer is made, that's all that matters.

So, get out of the idea of using "airlock bubbling" as a sign of fermentation, you have to realize that airlock activity is not an accurate indication of fermentation...an airlock is a vent for excess co2, nothing more...and half of my beers never bubble.

Read this for why airlock analysing is useless, and what is the only gauge of ferementation...http://www.homebrewtalk.com/1217925-post3.html
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Old 06-12-2009, 03:44 PM   #10
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I always use a starter now for liquid yeasts, but I didn't used to. I have never had a problem pitching White Labs directly from the vial into the wort. I think the real problem here is you're impatient. 12 hours is nothing. It frequently takes longer than that for fermentation to start up if you didn't make a starter. I think the most common advice on these forums is to wait 72 hours before thinking about pitching a second vial of yeast.


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