Pack didn't expand

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aekdbbop

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Ok, so my smack pack didnt expand.. so I am making a starter.. first time this has happened

if I dont see any signs of fermentation, i guess the only other thing i can do is run up to the LHBS and buy some replacement yeast right?
 

cwhill

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Ok, so my smack pack didnt expand.. so I am making a starter.. first time this has happened

if I dont see any signs of fermentation, i guess the only other thing i can do is run up to the LHBS and buy some replacement yeast right?
I just had a Wyeast do the exact same nothing! No expansion at all. I built my starter. After a few hours I still didn't see any signs of life. This morning 12 hours later I had action. Tonight after 28 hours..It is jammin. It will be ready for pitch tomorrow morning. I thought exactly like you did and I did go to my LHBS and buy and extra pack to the tune of $7. So now it sits in my fridge.
 

TheFlatline

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Ok, so my smack pack didnt expand.. so I am making a starter.. first time this has happened

if I dont see any signs of fermentation, i guess the only other thing i can do is run up to the LHBS and buy some replacement yeast right?
Smack packs don't necessarily inflate. It even says that on the bag. Also, it says to let the thing cook for 24 hours per month that has passed since it was packaged. You may need to give it time. The pack I pitched tonight went from zilch after a day to almost exploding 24 hours later. Sometimes it takes time for the little buggers to get rolling.

Still, a starter isn't a bad idea at all.
 
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aekdbbop

aekdbbop

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yep, did a starter, and no fermentation at all.. it was on a stirplate.. and nothing.. looks like i am making a trip.
 

nostalgia

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yep, did a starter, and no fermentation at all.. it was on a stirplate.. and nothing.. looks like i am making a trip.
Hey bbop,

Edit: How long did you give the starter to ferment?

What kind of signs of fermentation are you looking for? With my first starter I didn't see any kraeusen or bubbling when I finally put an airlock on it.

What I *did* see was a nice layer of yeast that separated out at the bottom of the starter.



And it turned out to be a very viable starter. Others with more experience should be able to help you out with some more info.

-Joe
 
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aekdbbop

aekdbbop

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yeah its been 18 hours.. i was hoping to brew this morning, but looks like i am going to have to postpone till tomorrow..

I will get some new yeast later on this afternoon if they have the strain, and use it tomorrow if the starter doesnt take off..
 
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aekdbbop

aekdbbop

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nost. whats your recipe for a starter, I wonder if i am making mine too small after looking at yours..
 

TexLaw

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I use a cup of DME per quart of water. The size will be somewhere between one and two quarts, depending on what I am brewing.

Overnight may not be enough time to get a starter started, especially if your pack did not inflate. Unless I just get one of those wild hairs, I give my starters at least two days, and I prefer three. Sure, if you get a super fresh and enthusiastic pack of yeast, it will be going like gangbusters after just a few hours or so, but not so much for yeast that is a little older.

When I do get one of those wild hairs, I often go to the LHBS and see what yeast is fresh. Then, I'll see what works for brewing. Of course, sometimes I just tell everyone to go to hell, buy whatever yeast and other ingredients I want, and roll the dice. :D


TL
 
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aekdbbop

aekdbbop

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thanks tx,

i think i may get another pack going in a starter for tomorrow anyway.. its a 10gal batch.. so if the first doesnt get going, ill at least still be able to pitch.
 
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For 10 gallon batches, you ought to be making 2-3 liter starters. The bigger, the better. Because you'll have a lot of starter wort, allow the yeast to settle, decant the starter "beer", and pitch the slurry. It takes at least 3 days to get a starter like that ready to pitch.
 

fishops

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Don't give up on a starter after 18 hours. I've had them take 24 to 48 to take off, especially on packs that have been shipped in the summer.
 
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