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Old 11-14-2010, 09:31 PM   #1
zanemoseley
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Jan 2009
Cookeville, TN
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I've washed yeast before but have always taken the yeast from the bottom of a corny keg so it was pretty much pure yeast. This time I decided to try to wash the yeast from the bottom of two better bottles that had been fermenting an american lager for 2 weeks.

I put in some boiled/cooled water and let it sit for 15-20 minutes. I tried to just get the top layer of sediment/yeast as directed but it never seemed to separate out much. The same thing happened when I poured the better bottles into my 1 gallon jar. So what I ended up with in my 2 mason jars is a mystery to me. I can see a faint line toward the top that is definitely yeast but the rest I'm not sure of. If the white line is the only part that is yeast then it doesn't seem like much at all.

Here's some pics of one of my mason jars. Should I just dump the mason jars and harvest from the bottom of the corny keg after they're empty? Any advice for next time.




 
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Old 11-14-2010, 09:51 PM   #2
OHIOSTEVE
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Sep 2009
SIDNEY, ohio
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Unless I am mistaken, you don't want the sediment at all initially... pour the water into the fermentor and swirl it around.. wait 10 mins or so and decant leaving the sediment behind and using the decanted liquid. ...swirl around again and wait 10 mins or so and decant the liquid into the final storage jars again leaving the sediment behind......put in the fridge. when ready to use pour off the liquid and NOW use the sediment.... I have only done it a few times and may be 100% wrong but I am pretty sure this is the way to do it.
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Old 11-14-2010, 10:40 PM   #3
zanemoseley
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Jan 2009
Cookeville, TN
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Sounds right but I thought you wanted the top layer off of the sediment in the fermenter as this was the yeast, although I'm sure there's plenty more in the liquid. Perhaps this is where I went wrong. I never got a good separation of the trub/yeast in the bottom of the fermenter so I ended up pretty much pouring the entire contents of the fermenter into the second 1 gallon vessel. Is a lager more tricky to wash?

 
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Old 11-17-2010, 12:52 AM   #4
0110x011
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Jul 2008
San Bernardino, CA
Posts: 93

The yeast you have is fine. You might have more trub in there than you'd like, but if you're too worried about it, just pour off the liquid and make a starter out of the slurry to up your cell count.

If anything, this yeast is better than what you've been harvesting from your kegs. You generally don't want to harvest yeast from anywhere after your primary, mainly because the yeast you harvest in the later stages has been in suspension for longer, and therefore has a lower level of flocculation. Reharvest the yeast in those later stages too many times, and your yeast will refuse to flocculate and you'll end up with a super cloudy beer.
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Old 04-13-2013, 08:51 PM   #5
samorg42
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Jan 2013
salt lake city, utah
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That looks like a normal harvest to me. I swirl the bottom of my glass carboys and wash per Palmer's instructions. I usually get more yeast at the bottom than your photo. I have a decent microscope packed away somewhere. I have been meaning to find it so I can take a visual of actual yeast cells when I have any doubt.

 
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