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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > Infected Starter?
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Old 02-16-2012, 02:38 AM   #1
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Default Infected Starter?

http://youtu.be/IkwMs1a0S38
What the hell are these things in my starter?!?!?!

I've made 40 or 50 starters in my brewing career, and never seen something like this before. The yeast is WYeast London ESB in a 1.040 starter. It was on the stir plate for 18 hours, and the video was taken about 10 minutes after I took it off of the stir plate, just before I had planned to pitch it into my first batch from my new Kal clone electric setup. Any ideas? I had a fresh smack pack of 1968 that I just smacked, assuming that something is absolutely wrong with the starter. Nothing in my cleaning/sanitation procedure has changed, so I don't know how this could have happened. It should be noted that the smack pack was dated 2/4/12.

Any ideas?


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Old 02-16-2012, 02:43 AM   #2
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The stuff looked like huge curdles of milk in my starter. That strain clumps really bad and wants to drop out of suspension. I brewed my esb and it took off like a rocket.


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Old 02-16-2012, 02:45 AM   #3
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I've used it many times before, for all of my FFF clones, and haven't seen this. They look like some kind of larvae, and have been rocketing to the surface an dropping back to the bottom for the last 30 minutes.
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Old 02-16-2012, 02:46 AM   #4
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Holy sh1t funny that this strain comes up I just used it for the first time as well and this yeast is crazy it looks nasty in the starter but seems fine in the fermentor your good bro no worries Chopps
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Old 02-16-2012, 02:50 AM   #5
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I've only done one starter and it was with a WLP007 English strain in an Erlenmeyer flask on a stir plate. After a day there were huge chunks of what I assumed are growing yeast flying around inside. I thought that was normal? Starter worked great though.

How could a starter be infected after 18 hours in sanitary environment?
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Old 02-16-2012, 04:45 AM   #6
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1968 looks similar, its like a small lava lamp.
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Old 02-16-2012, 04:49 AM   #7
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Flocculation sure is interesting
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Old 02-16-2012, 02:50 PM   #8
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Well, I decided to pitch this anyway. I pitched the smack pack that I smacked in a panic into an identical starter. However, this time I pressure cooked the flask to sterilize it and then boiled the starter wort on the stovetop. I want to see what happens this time around. Likely, I have not payed much attention to a starter just after pulling it from the stir plate, as usually I throw it right in the fridge for a few hours to drop the yeast out of suspension to decant.

I will report back tonight.
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Old 02-16-2012, 03:12 PM   #9
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From my experience 007 is highly flocculent and cleans up fast. It's almost powdery when not being stirred and clumps when flying around...that and the belgians 500/3787 I use regularly are cool to watch as the starters take off the latter start to resemble cottage cheese
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Old 02-16-2012, 06:45 PM   #10
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I think that is normal for many English strains. That yeast likes to clump together. I've see pics of some English yeast starters that look like brains in a jar. You'll be fine


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