Just started a yeast starter

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Mencken

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I did it from four bottles of Bell's Beer. Not really sure what I should be looking for to see if it's working. I didn't have a glass jar for it, so it's in a little white tub with foil over the top. What signs should I look for to indicate that the yeast is developing?

Also, I plan on brewing on Friday, so should I look to add a second batch of the malt mix before then to give it a secondary bump?
 

rsmith179

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You should start to see some bubbles forming on the top of the starter within the first few hours. There may be a small krausen as well, depending on how big your starter is. What did you use to make the starter? What is the little white tub you speak of?

Pitching on Friday will be no problem. You may want to throw it in the fridge Wednesday night and pull it out a few hours before you start brewing on Friday.

By the way... what type of Bell's beer? Ever have their Hopslam???
 
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Mencken

Mencken

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The tub is just a little plastic bucket. It's what the AHB use to ship their liquid extract. I just cleaned and sanitized it. For the starter, I used 2 Pale Ales, and 2 Amber Ales. Kind of an odd choice, considering I'm making an Oberon clone, but as I understand it, all their ales use the same yeast. To get the starter going, I used half a cup of DME Wheat with a pint of water, boiled for ten min with a few kernels of Saaz hops thrown in. Then cooled and dropped the yeast in.

If strongly recommended, I can get a glass container tomorrow.

As for putting it in the fridge on Wed, you're saying that I only need 48 hours of starter to get it going? I will be brewing only a 5 gallon batch.

And no, I've never even seen their Hopslam. Is it seasonal? I'm a big Bell's fan, so I'd definitely like to try it.
 

oswiu

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I followed almost the exact same procedure a few weeks ago, and had pretty much the same question.

I used only one bottle (an Emerson's weissbier) to start with and then stepped it up afterwards, but with four bottles-worth of yeast to start with you should be okay.

It took about 36 hours, but I knew it was working when foam (rather like head) appeared on top of the liquid. I imagine you'll be fine with the plastic container except, perhaps for the difficulty in seeing what's going on inside.

Hope it all works out for you :)
 
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Mencken

Mencken

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Haha, thanks, I hope so too
 

sparkyaber

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MMMMMM hopslam.:D I have two bottles left, one to be sent to my grandfather on the east coast where bells is not available, and one for a special occasion.
 

RKrizman

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Pitching on Friday will be no problem. You may want to throw it in the fridge Wednesday night and pull it out a few hours before you start brewing on Friday.
When I've done starters I've been leaving them at room temp to settle out for a few days before pitching. Is this a bad thing? Is the reason for refrigerating the starter to preserve it or settle out the yeast faster? (I'm trying to track down the cause of some bad batches)

-R
 

rsmith179

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This may just be personal preference but I have always put the starter in the fridge for at least 12 hours after it has been going strong for a while. Kinda puts the yeast to sleep until it's time to go and it also really helps get the yeast/trub compacted down on the bottom to make decanting easier. Just remember to bring the starter out of the fridge in enough time to allow it to slowly come back up to pitching temps.
 
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