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Old 03-02-2012, 12:16 AM   #261
ICWiener
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Feb 2012
Northern Cali
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My LHBS owner takes all of his old unsold White Labs vials and marks them down to $3.50 each. I was thinking of picking one up for the ESB I'm making this weekend. It's a good deal, but I don't know...

I would obviously get a starter going but if the yeast poops out I'm not sure if it's worth the savings. Although I've got a packet of dry yeast in the fridge, at least I won't have to run out in the middle of a brew session.

What do you guys think? Take the risk on an old vial or just play it safe?
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Old 03-02-2012, 12:27 AM   #262
KevinW
 
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Dec 2009
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I've done this several times and saved a lot of money!

In fact I usually ask if they have any expired vials before buying fresh!
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Old 03-02-2012, 02:40 PM   #263
Zoltanar
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Nov 2010
Montréal, Québec
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The Yeast *should* still be good enough. Making a starter is probably a must, allowing you to build up the number of cells, and activating these dormant beasties, but as long as you see your starter moving (thickening of the bottom layer of white stuff and/or foaming of the starter), you should not have any trouble.
Some people claim to have kept yeast for over a year. I don't particularly have enough experience to claim this, but I have reactivated pretty old yeast this way.
God luck, and keep us posted!

 
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Old 04-05-2012, 07:46 PM   #264
JoshBrews
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Apr 2012
Portland, OR
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I was talking to the owner of a LHBS near me last week and she mentioned that they decided to try brewing a beer with yeast that was close to a year old. The lag time on the starter taking off was 4 days, but it did take off and they were (eventually) able to brew with it.

 
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Old 04-05-2012, 07:59 PM   #265
Zoltanar
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Nov 2010
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JoshBrews.
I am no expert, but from what I understand, the liquid yeast has a lot of active cells. With age, some of them die, and the date on the package is mostly a "Best before" date, meaning it should take a long time before they are all dead.
Doing a starter will help grow back the number of live cells, and thus will allow you to recreate enough to brew with it.
I have heard numerous time people that kept liquid yeast for more than a year.
You might have to step up your starter quite a few times, but I don't see why you could not do it.

 
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Old 04-05-2012, 10:01 PM   #266
Jukas
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Dec 2011
Santa Rosa, CA
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There's a thread here on someone using a 26 month old wyeast pack.

When possible I'll buy up to a six month expired yeast pack (heavily discounted) as I know it'll have enough viable yeast to get it up and running with a starter.

 
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Old 05-12-2012, 03:00 PM   #267
henrik
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May 2012
Boise, Idaho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glibbidy View Post
Actually an airlock is definitely not recommended when making yeast. You need the O2 transfer in order to grow the yeast. If you were making beer, well...that's another story.
The foil is best, or one of them fancy stoppers.
Have a question about this. If you want some oxygen exposure, but you also want to keep it mostly covered, why not just use an empty airlock?...no water or sanitizer in it so air exchange is free to move back and forth, but it is still protectively covered?

 
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Old 05-14-2012, 01:12 AM   #268
Zaarin
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Mar 2011
Tucson, Arizona
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I made my first yeast starter last night and followed the pictorial directions. I did not read on and neglected to add any additional water. So I've got 2 cups of water and the yeast in the starter. I plan on using the starter tonight. Should I do anything else to it before pitching it?

 
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Old 05-22-2012, 06:38 PM   #269
DanPoch
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Wow! This is a fantastic amount of information here. I'm moving to making starters due to an experiment I did this winter between dry and liquid yeast. From having spent over an hour reading this all here's what I think I can do. I'm currently limited to a single 2L flask with a stir plate.

For a 6 gallon batch up to about 1.070, a 1.040 1.2L starter will work.

For a 12 gallon batch (in two carboys) make the starter above and then create another mix (1.2L @1.040) and pitch the decanted first starter into that.

For higher gravity beers (6 gal) begin with 150g in 1L (1.055sg) and while that's humming away add a mix of 125g in 250ml to bump it up to 1.080. Repeat if needed to get higher.

Does this read right to you folks with more starters under your belt?
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Old 05-30-2012, 03:20 AM   #270
taterosu
 
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I bought the yeast nutrient to add with my brew. Do I add it to the starter or wait for the primary? Also should I use the corn syrup or the liquid malt extract for the starter? Thanks for all the help.

 
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