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Old 06-30-2010, 12:59 PM   #1
Mar 2008
Posts: 364
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I'm doing a batch with Lager yeast and have no experience with it

I did a 2000ml starter for 24 hours split between 2 five gallon carboys.

The starter looked a little slow but I thought it was just because it was a new yeast that I have never used before.

I'm not seeing any activity in the air locks

You guys think I should warm the carboys up to 68F till I see fermentation??
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Old 06-30-2010, 01:12 PM   #2
david_42's Avatar
Oct 2005
Oak Grove, Oregon, USA
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I pitch lager yeasts warm and cool down when they start fermenting. Other people get upset with this idea.
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Old 06-30-2010, 01:18 PM   #3
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Nov 2007
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2 things
1)Lager yeast take longer
2)Lagers require much larger starters so 1 liter in each is very small for a lager. Check out the Mr Malty calculator.

For example, making 5Gallons of 1.045OG lager and using a stirplate with one pack of yeast, require a 2 liter starter. Bmp that OG to 1055 and you go up above a 3 liter starter.
that same 1055 beer as an Ale only requires a 1 liter starter, likely less. If you're not using a stirplate and just using intermittent shaking, you're starter for the 1055 lager jumps to 5 liters.

And even if this was 5G of ale with a 2000ml starter, you'd still have 36 more hours before needing to worry.
give it another day or two before you worry, you under pitched and it's going to have a longer lag time, especially at lager temps.
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Old 06-30-2010, 01:19 PM   #4
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Dec 2007
"Detroitish" Michigan
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Your beer is fine.

#1, and by visible signs we don't necessarily mean a bubbling airlock.

It IS a sticky at the top of the beginners forum for a reason, afterall.

As already stated in the linked sticky, Fermentation often can take up to three days to start. And by visible signs they do NOT mean airlock bubbling.

I don't see anything by what you are saying to indicate that your fermentation actually wasn't. All I see is that your airlock wasn't bubbling, and that you didn't take a gravity reading before panicking and and starting this thread.

BUT without a gravity reading all you are telling me is that your airlock wasn't bubbling....That is NOT the same thing as a fermentation happening.

Whether it's in a conical, a bucket, or a carboy, it's the same thing. An airlock is a VENT, a VALVE to release excess co2, nothing more.

If it's not bubbling it just means that there no excess co2 to be vented out.

In your case, more than likely hadn't even started yet, or that it was working fine, and just didn't need to vent any co2 yet.

A beer may ferment perfectly fine without a single blip in the airlock.

That's why you need to take a gravity reading to know how your fermentation is going, NOT go by airlocks. The most important tool you can use is a hydrometer. It's the only way you will truly know when your beer is ready...airlock bubbles and other things are 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....

Thinking about "doing anything" without taking a hydrometer reading is tantamount to the doctor deciding to cut you open without running any diagnostic tests....Taking one look at you and saying, "Yeah I'm going in." You would really want the doctor to use all means to properly diagnose what's going on?

So wait at least 72 hours and take a grav reading if you are worried still.

Thirdly you are pitching a lager yeast in a cold environment, you will get very little airlock activity as it is, and since it's a bottom cropping yeast, you may not even see much of a krausen.

You just have to have faith, the yeast seldom let's us down. You made a starter, so you proved your yeast is viable. SO they will get going when they are ready!

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