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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > Does my yeast packet with built in starter, need a starter?
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Old 01-21-2012, 03:54 PM   #81
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I just don't get why folks resist it so much...it's either laziness, or ignorance of how simple it is.
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Old 01-21-2012, 04:11 PM   #82
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I just don't get why folks resist it so much...it's either laziness, or ignorance of how simple it is.
Yeah, thatís just the point. Itís not that simple. I think thatís where Bob was going with this. Best case, your over simplified six step plan will get you from 100 billion cells to 112 billion. It might proof your yeast, but doesnít exactly set the bar very high since your average homebrew recipe needs over 200. I could be wrong, but I think heís saying that you should treat pitching rates the same way you treat other ingredients. With a degree of accuracy. Going through the motions of making a starter without regard to pitch rate might make you feel like youíre doing something useful but itís no guarantee that youíre going to get better beer.

Iím thinking that Bobís ďbest practiceĒ would be to buy or build a stir plate and learn the importance nutrients and oxygen play in making a starter. Until then you have a better shot of getting the proper cell count by direct pitching enough liquid yeast or using dry yeast. It's not being ignorant or lazy. It's using the resources you have available to you at the time to make the best beer possible.


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Old 01-21-2012, 04:16 PM   #83
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Yeah, that’s just the point. It’s not that simple. I think that’s where Bob was going with this. Best case, your over simplified six step plan will get you from 100 billion cells to 112 billion.
Then you start it a week early and feed it every day or so with fresh wort, til you get your cell count...It's still not hard to do.

And you don't necessarily need a stirplate, they're nice, but in reality people have been making and building up starters for decades without them. I have a labgrade one from work, but half the time I'm brewing at my GF's and make my starters there, without it.

Having one is great but it should dissuade someone from NOT making a starter.
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Old 01-21-2012, 04:52 PM   #84
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Then you start it a week early and feed it every day or so with fresh wort, til you get your cell count....
Thank-you for confirming that making a starter is not as simple as the original description you posted.



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And you don't necessarily need a stirplate,
Never said it was. I just suggested that it might be part of the "best practice" that Bob was refering to.
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Old 01-21-2012, 05:06 PM   #85
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Thank-you for confirming that making a starter is not as simple as the original description you posted.

Wait a minute, did I miss something? The last time I made a starter, I pretty much followed a 6 step process just like the one Revvy posted, and it worked fine.
When did making a starter become complicated?
If your already brewing your own beer, making a starter should be a no-brainer.
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Old 01-21-2012, 06:08 PM   #86
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Then you start it a week early and feed it every day or so with fresh wort, til you get your cell count...It's still not hard to do.

And you don't necessarily need a stirplate, they're nice, but in reality people have been making and building up starters for decades without them. I have a labgrade one from work, but half the time I'm brewing at my GF's and make my starters there, without it.

Having one is great but it should dissuade someone from NOT making a starter.
It's a lot easier than continued feeding. A smack pack might not have enough yeast for 5 gal. of wort, but it's got more than enough for 2-3 qt. I make one step, 2 or 3 qt. starters in a gal. glass jug. Without stir plate, I start them a week ahead, let them ferment out, refrigerate and decant. With a stir plate, I start about 5 days ahead. Dead easy.
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Old 01-21-2012, 06:23 PM   #87
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Wait a minute, did I miss something? The last time I made a starter, I pretty much followed a 6 step process just like the one Revvy posted, and it worked fine.
When did making a starter become complicated?
If your already brewing your own beer, making a starter should be a no-brainer.

You're no different than the many posters here who pitch a single pack of liquid yeast into 5 gallons of 1.060 wort and say, “it worked fine.” Making a starter is not what’s important. Pitch rate is. Using the accepted pitch rate of one million cells, the best you could expect to achieve from that method is a rate recommended for a 1.024 beer.

I’m not in complete agreement with all these numbers, but that’s what you get using the formulas that Mr Malty is based on. It’s the one the Revvy uses when he says a single liquid yeast pack is only good for a 1.020 wort.

My point is that there is science and math behind understanding yeast and pitch rates. There’s even more science behind making a starter and knowing that the end result is what you were expecting. It’s not as simple as the outdated graphic that Revvy posted. Just blindly making a starter and tossing it in your wort is not what's going to make your beer better. Adjusting your technique after understanding why you're doing what you're doing will.

You may even come to the conclusion that I have. That making a starter is not what makes great beer.
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Old 01-21-2012, 06:28 PM   #88
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You're no different than the many posters here who pitch a single pack of liquid yeast into 5 gallons of 1.060 wort and say, ďit worked fine.Ē Making a starter is not whatís important. Pitch rate is. Using the accepted pitch rate of one million cells, the best you could expect to achieve from that method is a rate recommended for a 1.024 beer.

Iím not in complete agreement with all these numbers, but thatís what you get using the formulas that Mr Malty is based on. Itís the one the Revvy uses when he says a single liquid yeast pack is only good for a 1.020 wort.

My point is that there is science and math behind understanding yeast and pitch rates. Thereís even more science behind making a starter and knowing that the end result is what you were expecting. Itís not as simple as the outdated graphic that Revvy posted. Just blindly making a starter and tossing it in your beer is not what's going to make your beer better. Adjusting you technique after understanding why you're doing what you're doing will.

You may even come to the conclusion that I have. That making a starter is not what makes great beer.
Come on, man. There is literally not a singular thing that "makes great beer". People on here say all the time "fermentation temp control makes great beer!" or proper pitch rate or aeration, etc. All of these things contribute to great beer, but no one flips their lid when someone corrects another poster's fermentation temp.
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Old 01-21-2012, 06:42 PM   #89
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Come on, man. There is literally not a singular thing that "makes great beer".
Who said there was? I said that making a starter isn't one of them.

No one flips there lid (as you say) when someone correct another posters fermentation temperature is because it's one of the most important parts of making a great beer. The act of making a starter isn't.
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Old 01-21-2012, 06:52 PM   #90
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Who said there was? I said that making a starter isn't one of them.

No one flips there lid (as you say) when someone correct another posters fermentation temperature is because it's one of the most important parts of making a great beer. The act of making a starter isn't.

I would be willing to bet you a trillion dollars that we can find a number of people who would swear that they make "great" beer without controlling their fermentation temp.

And it's hilarious that things like temperature controlled fermentation chambers, constantly changing ice, swamp coolers, monitoring temps, etc. is NOT considered daunting for a new brewer, but putting some numbers into MrMalty and spending 15 minutes making a starter is.


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