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Old 07-18-2007, 01:16 PM   #1
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Default Making a Starter Questions?

O.k. I'm not a complete newbie to brewing.. I brewed a few batches several years ago but I'm back this time and wanting to get much much more into it. I've got 2 batches done and I've pitched the yeast right in the primary and it seems to be fermenting just fine, but I keep reading make a starter!!! And it has me thinking I guess that I should be doing this all along... Now I've gathered from reading that you do this by boiling some water with LME and putting the yeast in there a day before but I've got a couple of questions as to the specifics... O.k. first off how long before you brew do you make this starter? What are the specific measurements you use for a pack of yeast? How much LME and how much water? And what kind of container do you keep it in? After that where do you put it and for how long before you pitch it into your brew? Any help you all can provide would be fantastic!

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Old 07-18-2007, 01:54 PM   #2
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It is generally thought that liquid yeast does not contain enough yeast cells for optimum fementation. They work but there are many brewers with a lot more experience than me that recommend a yeast starter which effectively doubles the amount found in a smack pack or vial. There is some good information found on these 2 pages plus a search of the forums should produce a lot of threads about the subject.

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Old 07-18-2007, 02:12 PM   #3
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Generally there is no advantage to making a starter with dry yeasts unless the package is over the expiration date. Dry yeast packs have much more yeast cells than liquid and a starter does not give them enough space to multiply.
When using liquid yeast boil 1/2 cup DME in 1 quart/liter of water or 1c in 2 liters. Boil for 10 min to sterilize. Cool to below 90F. Pitch you liquid yeast that you have allowed to warm to room temp.
This should be done 24 to 48 hours before brewing. However it seems even 12 hours is sufficient for the yeast to multiply several times.
I try to pitch the entire starter while it is aggressively fermenting to get the most active yeast, but others wait until it has finished and crash cool the wort. This drops the yeast out of suspension and allows you to decant the wort of the top of the yeast and then you can just pitch the yeast slurry.
mrmalty.com has some excellent information on this subject.

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