Originally Posted by rack04
I was toying around with the pitching rate calculator in BrewMath and I have a couple questions. According to the calculator I would need 3 vials of White Labs yeast for a 1.050 SG 5 Gallon gallon batch. This is according to the directions saying that the SG should be 1.050 and the FG should be 1.010. Does this sounds right? If so, why are the kits only shipped with 1 vial?
Depends on the age of the vial I guess. for 20 L of 12 plato wort (slightly more but slightly lower gravity than your figures but it makes the math easier for me) you would need 240 billion cells to hit the commonly quoted target of 1 billion cells per ml per degree plato. That is about 2 vials if very fresh and perhaps 3 if they are a few weeks old.
But yes, starter.
Kits ship with one vial because it will make acceptable beer. A starter can help you make exceptional beer.