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Author Topic: Yeast Question  (Read 2684 times)

Offline chrismccull

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Yeast Question
« on: March 25, 2013, 08:57:53 PM »
I brewed 10 gal. on Saturday of IPA and pitches a 1 litre starter with WLP001 into each carboy.  Since then, I have seen no air lock activity.  It has basically been 48 hrs. and the wort was kept at about 20 C since then.  At what point should I re-pitch some new yeast?  The WLP001 was the stuff that froze in delivery, the WLP002 that also froze fermented without issue.  I think that I will give it another day and then pitch some US-05 after work tomorrow if things don't pick up.  What are your thoughts?

Offline Chris Craig

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2013, 09:18:04 PM »
Since they're both similar, I'd pitch the 05 now.

Offline brew

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #2 on: March 25, 2013, 09:35:33 PM »
Honestly ive had a couple of batches that never took off until the third day. I think it might be getting late to pitch again (might not be much oxygen left...) i'm not sure what would be a good rule of thumb for that though...
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Offline fakr

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #3 on: March 25, 2013, 11:22:39 PM »
Quote from: "ChrisCraig"
Since they're both similar, I'd pitch the 05 now.


I agree.
"If God had intended for us to drink beer, He would have given us stomachs."

Offline pliny

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2013, 10:07:07 AM »
ChrisM,
Your original plan is good in my opinion. It can't take 72hours for yeast to take off. If nothing happens after 72 hours, put in the SO5.

Just curious what did your starter look like? Any creusen on top?
Did things look ok when it was spinning on the plate?
Wierd question: Did you smell it?

Offline brew

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2013, 10:24:17 AM »
Hey Chris - any action in the fermenter today?

As a side note, both times I had a batch that didn't take off until the third day, I came very close to pitching a different yeast (05). Fortunately I waited both times and the morning of the third day I finally saw some activity (after some advice from this forum actually - be patient). Both were wyeast packs (3787 trappist and 1084 Irish) - both times I did not make a starter and the packs were not completely brand new (a bit over 6 months on the dates). I've learned my lesson and will always make at least a 500ml starter for my smack packs.

Chris I'd be interested as well to find out how the starter progressed? I made a stepped starter for my lager yeast I'm about to try (2124) it tooks over 24 hours to start in the 1L I began with, and has not gotten very active until I got up to 3L (4 days total). I have one more step to go...
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Offline fakr

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2013, 10:25:04 AM »
a couple of years ago I bought 2 packs of wyeast in the winter time and I assume they froze as the packs didn't swell after I smacked them.
I read that some smack packs didn't swell much, depending on the yeast strain so I used them in a bitter.
3 days later, no movement in gravity so I was forced to pitch S-05...the beer didn't turn out very well...too much of a fermentation lag...the beer just didn't taste good.

I've noticed an off flavor from any of the beers I've made that had fermentation lag...that's why I always aerate and use yeast nutrient now.  Fermentation always takes off between 8-12 hours after pitch.
"If God had intended for us to drink beer, He would have given us stomachs."

Offline brew

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2013, 10:30:20 AM »
I've also had starters that didn't "start" very well, got impatient and pitched them. After 48 hours they go and don't taste all that well (didn't attenuate, although I think it was my batch with DMS rather than the yeast). I have to say though, the 3787 that didn't start until the 3rd day was awesome. (I have witnesses!). The 1084 is still in the primary so time will tell with that one...
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Offline DandyMason

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2013, 10:42:45 AM »
Yeah just to add, ive also had some bad luck with wyeast smack packs not taking off. I would worry about leaving a batch 3 days without any activity also. I would repitch.

Offline chrismccull

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2013, 11:07:06 AM »
I re-pitched this am with a pack of US-05 each.  There has been no activity in almost 3 days, what a piss off.  This was going to be a killer IPA with a hop bill that Richard came up with.  My 2 litre starter had two vials of WLP001 and ran for 24 hrs with no krausen or bad odor.  I also used White Labs nutrient in the last part of the boil.  I suspect that the yeast was shot due to freezing during delivery, not sure why the WLP002 was okay though.  

We'll see what it tastes like, it should take-off now with the dry yeast.  

Often times I wonder whether the liquid yeast is worth the hastle, this thing would have taken off 1 1/2 ago with US-05 and would have been fine.

Offline fakr

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2013, 11:25:04 AM »
Chris, I'd suggest you dry hop this batch real good to mask a bit of the fruity aroma you will most likely get.  When you keg it, chill it for 2-3 weeks, then pull off the first couple of glasses to get the remaining yeast out... this is exactly what I did with my last batch of beer that had lag, and it went from "I'm going to throw this out" to "this isn't that bad"....
"If God had intended for us to drink beer, He would have given us stomachs."

Offline Chris Craig

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2013, 11:33:10 AM »
Man, that's a pisser!  I've been pretty lucky with liquid yeast so far.  I guess the optimal strategy would be

1. Make an appropriate starter so that it's ready the day before you brew
2. Check the gravity of that to make sure fermentation did occur and you have viable yeast
3. Brew
4. Aerate for a minute with O2, then pitch.
5. If, for some reason, you have no activity after 24 hours, aerate again and pitch a backup pack of hydrated dry yeast.

Like fakr, when I pitch the proper amount of yeast into properly aerated wort, I see activity within 12 hours.

Offline chrismccull

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #12 on: March 26, 2013, 11:35:50 AM »
Fakr: Thanks, I can do that.  I was planning on using 2 oz of dry hop, but, I'll step that up a bit.

CC:  I should try that process next time, typically, I don't check the starter gravity.   Should I aerate when I go home?

Offline Chris Craig

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #13 on: March 26, 2013, 11:44:10 AM »
If you still don't see any activity, then yes.

Offline brew

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Re: Yeast Question
« Reply #14 on: March 26, 2013, 12:37:51 PM »
I've wondered about that - at what point does aerating (like after an initial pitch fails) constitute oxidizing the beer rather than aerating the wort?
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