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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > Need help with WL029 that is close to exipiration
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Old 07-01-2012, 11:23 AM   #1
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Default Need help with WL029 that is close to exipiration

So I"m going to brew my first all grain BIAB recipe tomorrow. I went to mrmalty and YeastCalc to figure out what I need for my starter and due to the age of the yeast I'm getting crazy numbers. The Yeast's "best before date" is 7/3/12 so that means it was produced on 3/3/12 and has a viability of around 12%.

I"m brewing a 3G batch and yeastcalc is saying I need a 4L starter with 19oz and marmalty is saying I need 3 packets with a 1L starter. What do I do? BTW, I do not have a stir plate so I will be shaking it randomly throughout the day.


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Old 07-01-2012, 11:53 AM   #2
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Make the biggest starter you can and dump in the yeast. Shake it as much as you can. You won't be producing the optimum amount of yeast, but it's Sunday morning....what else you gonna do? It'll be fine.


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Old 07-01-2012, 01:09 PM   #3
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Good deal, I did a 3.5L starter with 16oz DME. I don't mean to sound like a cheapo but it there a cheaper alternative than using DME for a starter? My grains & yeast were less than $20 then I spend $6 for a lb of DME for my starter. I've been washing my yeast so next rounds will be even cheaper yet
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Old 07-01-2012, 01:20 PM   #4
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First of all, you should be using a 10 to 1 ratio when making starters. so 100 grams for 1000 ml. Your gravity is too high, especially for stessed yeast.
If using old or stressed yeast, I reduce the gravity to around 1.030 and step it up once to get the yeast healthy again.
Also, the volume of started used, is important and bigger isn't always better. Take a look at How to Brew in JP's yeast tables. You'll see that after a certain amount, there are much smaller gains in cell count, so it'd be better to grow a low gravity starter with the maximum cell growth for 24 hour and then pitch that. Otherwise the yeast are going to start making beer instead of just reproducing.
Hope this makes sense.
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Old 07-01-2012, 01:24 PM   #5
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Oh...for some reason I thought you were to match the OG of the starter to the beer.... hope it turns out ok!? Need to read a bit more about these starters!!

So I transfered to a larger container and added 2.5L more water to lower the OG I essentially made a 6L starter, I obvisously can't add this near 2G starter to my 3G batch, should I just go buy more grains to make a 5.5G batch or can I decant the liquid off and just transfer the yeast to my wort?
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Old 07-01-2012, 03:37 PM   #6
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To make your DME stretch as far as it can, make a stirplate from stuff around the home. There are lots of threads on here. Just lookup "DIY stirplate". You get the biggest bang for your DME when you run a starter on a stirplate. Look at the required starter sizes using the various methods on Mr. Malty's Yeast Pitching Calculator. Good luck!
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Old 07-01-2012, 03:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cbehr
I obvisously can't add this near 2G starter to my 3G batch, should I just go buy more grains to make a 5.5G batch or can I decant the liquid off and just transfer the yeast to my wort?
If the starter is finished, You can put the starter in the fridge. The cool environment will make the yeast come out of solution and fall to the bottom. When the starter has fully separated, you can decant (pour) off the "spent wort", leaving some liquid left and all the yeast behind. When you're ready to pitch, swirl the remaining starter liquid so all the yeast gets mixed with the spent wort. This volume will be significantly smaller than your current volume. Pitch the starter into your fermenter and you're ready to ferment!
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Old 07-01-2012, 04:34 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cbehr View Post
Good deal, I did a 3.5L starter with 16oz DME. I don't mean to sound like a cheapo but it there a cheaper alternative than using DME for a starter? My grains & yeast were less than $20 then I spend $6 for a lb of DME for my starter. I've been washing my yeast so next rounds will be even cheaper yet
Unfortunately, you can't make a starter with plain sugar...the yeast will express different enzymes in the presence of simple sugars compared with a malt wort. One thing I've heard of people doing is actually making a highly fermentable (low mash temp) wort with just 2-row and then canning the wort to use for starters. 2-row is definitely cheaper than DME, but it takes a bit of work on the front end to save that money. Up to you to decide if it's worth it.

Personally, for smaller beers, I will occasionally just pitch two vials/smackpacks of yeast...the expense for me is worth it compared to the work of making a starter. I've also been exploring using dry yeast more, which makes it infinitely easier to achieve proper pitch rates with minimal work.
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Old 07-01-2012, 04:35 PM   #9
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what kind of yeast is it?
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Old 07-02-2012, 10:24 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eastoak
what kind of yeast is it?
White Labs 029 kolsch yeast


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