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Old 12-17-2007, 05:38 PM   #51
explosivebeer
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Someone pointed me to this fantastic thread and I have now harvested two yeast cakes, putting each into five sterilized 12-oz bottles and capping them. Each bottle had about 6 oz of settled yeast cake.

I was actually able to put one of them to use. I don't know if I did it right, but I put the refrigerated bottle in lukewarm water to help activate the yeast. Then I poured off the watery top layer and shook out the yeast into my primary. The fermentation went like gangbusters! Instead of one bubble in the airlock, sometimes three were making their way up in succession. I've never had a fermentation go that fast.

I assume that's due to the large amount of yeast I started with. Does that mean I should split my next yeast cake into ten bottles instead of five?

Another question that comes to mind is how many generations is yeast usually good for? Should I harvest the yeast cake from this rapidly fermenting batch? Or just use the rest of my second-generation bottles when the appropriate batch calls for them and start anew after that?

Thanks for any insights you can provide.
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Old 12-17-2007, 08:02 PM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by explosivebeer
I assume that's due to the large amount of yeast I started with. Does that mean I should split my next yeast cake into ten bottles instead of five?

Another question that comes to mind is how many generations is yeast usually good for? Should I harvest the yeast cake from this rapidly fermenting batch? Or just use the rest of my second-generation bottles when the appropriate batch calls for them and start anew after that?

Thanks for any insights you can provide.

As to splitting it into more bottles, your whole point of doing this is to get a good strong fast fermentation, and if you are getting five more batches out of the previous batch, you are getting a good return on your money, so why bother?

As to how many generations, that is a common topic of discussion. There are those that will only go five generations, there are those that say you can go to ten or more generations, if you are using good sanitation techniques. The biggest thing to remember is, if the you know the yeast well, and know how it should ferment, and it is still doing that, then it is still good. If you are getting odd flavors, or it is taking forever to kick off, etc, then you have probably had a mutation happen, and you should start with a fresh batch.
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Old 12-17-2007, 09:06 PM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rabidgerbil
As to splitting it into more bottles, your whole point of doing this is to get a good strong fast fermentation, and if you are getting five more batches out of the previous batch, you are getting a good return on your money, so why bother?
Logistically, I guess I don't really want my fridge filled with ten bottles of every yeast strain I try. I was just curious if there was a minimum amount of yeast you'd want in each container. As it is, I think I'll have more than enough with my current process.

If I find some smaller, stackable containers I might split my batches up a bit more but for now I'm happy to have seemingly learned how to wash and store yeast!

Thanks again to the OP.
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Old 12-17-2007, 10:23 PM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by explosivebeer
Logistically, I guess I don't really want my fridge filled with ten bottles of every yeast strain I try.
I try to do just that. Hell, I've got strains that I haven't brewed with yet.

But I'm quickly finding it to be a bit pointless since I've used English Ale in a ratio of 5:1.

I keep my yeast banked in baby food jars and just line them up in the freezer door. Each jar is enough to grow a starter and replace the jar. That said, I've got a few dozen strains in there and it doesn't take up too much space though using vials in a rack could dramatically reduce the amount of space that collection is using up.
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Old 12-18-2007, 12:52 AM   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by explosivebeer
Logistically, I guess I don't really want my fridge filled with ten bottles of every yeast strain I try. I was just curious if there was a minimum amount of yeast you'd want in each container. As it is, I think I'll have more than enough with my current process.

If I find some smaller, stackable containers I might split my batches up a bit more but for now I'm happy to have seemingly learned how to wash and store yeast!

Thanks again to the OP.
I use half pint canning jars, they hold enough to make the next starter with, so that is perfect, and they stack pretty nicely, and are easy to label with some freezer tape.
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Old 12-19-2007, 11:42 PM   #56
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Sweet thread!
Thanks for sharing.
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Old 01-13-2008, 08:10 PM   #57
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Thanks Bernie, I gave it a shot today. I had just racked 10G of a Fat Tire clone with the Wyeast VSS Fat Tire yeast.

I had to much yeast in that fermenter I was able to dump about 2 quarts of sterilized water into it and come up with this gallon of mostly suspended yeast & left almost all the trub behind.



I had only boiled 5 mason jars, or I am sure I could have easily filled 7 or 8 jars. But chances are I wont even use the 5 before it's too old.



I used the Fermtech Mini Auto Siphon, it worked great I was able to keep the tip right in the middle of the suspended yeast and not disturb the trub at all.

All labeled and put in the fridge. Now just waiting for them to clear to see how much I ended up with.

 
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Old 01-13-2008, 11:09 PM   #58
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Old 01-13-2008, 11:25 PM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SuperiorBrew
That's just a beautiful picture!
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Old 01-14-2008, 12:25 AM   #60
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That's just a beautiful picture!
Indeed!!!!!!!!!

 
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