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Old 08-25-2011, 12:41 PM   #1
gtwarren1966
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Ok, usually my starters start fermenting within 3-4 hours. I started a Pilsen 2007 starter in my stir plate last night at 10pm. This morning at 8am I've got nothing. Does this stuff usually take this long?


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Old 08-25-2011, 12:55 PM   #2
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Pilsen yeast doesn't make a lot of krausen, maybe you're just not seeing the yeast that are multiplying?


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Old 08-25-2011, 01:31 PM   #3
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There are no bubbles coming thru the airlock at all and yes I'm 100% sure its sealed. The yeast is a couple months old so i'll give it until I get home from work today.
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Old 08-25-2011, 01:36 PM   #4
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Activity in a starter really only means one thing and one thing only.

It doesn't matter one blip in your fermenter or your starter flask if the airlock bubbles or not (if you are using an airlock and not tinfoil if you are using tinfoil, you aren't getting bibbling anyway,) or if you see a krauzen. In fact starter fermentation are some of the fastest or slowest but most importantly, the most boring fermentations out there. Usually it's done withing a few hours of yeast pitch...usually overnight when we are sleeping, and the starter looks like nothing ever happened...except for the little band at the bottom. Or it can take awhile...but either way there's often no "activity" whatsoever....

I usually run my stirplate for the first 24 hours, then shut it down, if you are spinning your starter it is really hard to get a krausen to form anyway, since it's all spinning, and there's often a head of foam on it from the movement.


All that really matters is that creamy band o yeast at the bottom.





This is a chilled sample so it's flocculated, but even with an unchilled sample you should see a band of yeast at the bottom. Here's an unchilled version



Same thing, a band.

As it is I've only ever seen two or three krausens actually on my starter (one blew off a bunch of krausen and knocked the tinfoil off the flask,) and the evidence of one on the flask at the "waterline" once. But I've never not had a starter take off.

Look for the yeast at the bottom, don't worry what it looks like on top.

If you have yeast on the bottom....that's all you really need.

If it looks anything like that, your are ready to either feed it again, or use it.
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Old 08-25-2011, 02:30 PM   #5
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Yeah I'll check it out after work, if no yeast or anything it may be time to get some fresh yeast
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Old 08-25-2011, 02:42 PM   #6
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Read up. The current idea is to allow the yeast oxygen to do their thing. Foil or a foam stopper, sanitized of course. - no airlock.

I have done 2 starters one in the morning and the only activity I could see were bubbles rising in the wort. The second one was overnight and I had the same problem as you - Did it do anything? I had a layer of yeast but I didn't know how much would be just from the smack pack. I added some wort, got online and got these same answers, then did my brew late that day. With both, the fermentation started overnight and went very well. I will always do starters from now on.
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Old 08-25-2011, 03:33 PM   #7
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ok, i'll pull the airlock off and put foil on, if nothing overnight i'll probably get me some 34/70


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