Harvest yeast from primary or secdonary? - Home Brew Forums

Register Now!
Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > Harvest yeast from primary or secdonary?

Thread Tools
Old 02-19-2012, 08:23 AM   #1
Oct 2009
Osaka, Japan
Posts: 31

I'm about to harvest some wyeast 1056 for the first time on an IPA I have fermenting at the moment.

I plan to transfer to a secondary and dry hop after initial fermentation has dyed down (4-7 days).

When is the best time to harvest the yeast?

Should I take it from the primary or secondary fermenters?



Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2012, 09:58 AM   #2
Oct 2010
Seattle, WA
Posts: 75
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts

Generally, you'd want to harvest the yeast from primary since it should be a bit healthier the less time it spends in an alcoholic environment. Plus, there will be a lot more yeast to harvest from the primary. There's basically two ways to harvest: 1)on the day you rack from primary to secondary, follow the yeast washing sticky at the top of this forum or 2) skim some of the yeast at high krausen, mix it into some boiled and cooled water, and then seal the mixture in sterilized mason jars (this method works great if you ferment in a bucket, but skimming from a carboy is difficult). Both methods work great, but the second option is a bit easier.

Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2012, 10:25 AM   #3
QueenCityALER's Avatar
Jan 2009
Charlotte area NC, NC
Posts: 292
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

+1 Rory. Get it from the primary!
The blood of Vikings runs through my veins... and sometimes their beer.

Hell or High water Brewery


Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2012, 11:57 AM   #4
Dec 2011
Durham, NC
Posts: 1,553
Liked 92 Times on 80 Posts

+2 to primary. 1056 washes really well too. Follow the sticky.


Kegged Two Hearted, Dragonmead Final Absolution
Bottled Robust porter, Founder's Breakfast Stout, Ommegawd Hellepin, Ed Wort's Apfelwein
RIP Snake Dog IPA, Biermuncher's OktoberFAST, Falconer's Flight IPA, Two-Hearted clone (Culturing Bell's Yeast), Noberon wheat, Skeeter Pee using dry yeast, Smooth Oatmeal Stout

Simple and easy wort aeration - Harvest yeast from your blowoff - Homebrew Spicy Mustard

Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2012, 12:01 PM   #5
Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
Revvy's Avatar
Dec 2007
"Detroitish" Michigan
Posts: 40,921
Liked 3192 Times on 1885 Posts

You also have to realize that any of the yeast that ends up not flocculated by the time you want to rack to a secondary is going to be the second string yeast. The slowest, least active; least flocculnat yeast. You really want the bench sitters to be your main fermenting strain next time?
Like my snazzy new avatar? Get Sons of Zymurgy swag, here, and brew with the best.

Revvy's one of the cool reverends. He has a Harley and a t-shirt that says on the back "If you can read this, the bitch was Raptured. - Madman

I gotta tell ya, just between us girls, that Revvy is HOT. Very tall, gorgeous grey hair and a terrific smile. He's very good looking in person, with a charismatic personality... he drives like a ****ing maniac! - YooperBrew

Reply With Quote
Old 02-19-2012, 12:13 PM   #6
bullinachinashop's Avatar
Oct 2009
NE Ohio
Posts: 1,046
Liked 30 Times on 27 Posts

Couple of things....

You really don't want to harvest yeast from an high abv and highly hopped beer.

I like to ferment for a couple of weeks in the primary before harvesting the yeast cake for washing or re-use. That way I know I'll get a true mix of the yeast including the the "second string" yeast which will be more attenuative.

Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2012, 06:34 AM   #7
Oct 2009
Osaka, Japan
Posts: 31

Thanks a lot guys

Reply With Quote
Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Is it a good idea to harvest yeast from 3gen washed yeast? bratrules Fermentation & Yeast 5 04-26-2011 03:29 PM
Whats the best way to harvest yeast from primary? BrewerofBeer Fermentation & Yeast 12 04-01-2011 01:07 PM
Anyone harvest yeast from Starter vs Primary?? hbhudy Fermentation & Yeast 5 01-30-2011 10:14 PM
Harvest Pacman from Dead Guy Primary? midlifecrisis Fermentation & Yeast 3 04-13-2010 02:29 AM
hacker pschorr yeast HW yeast harvest mtags Fermentation & Yeast 4 01-04-2010 08:08 PM

Forum Jump