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Knucklehead needs help!

Hi folks, I am half way through steeping the grains of an extract kit that calls for a 60 minute boil.

Here’s the issue. I have a white labs and a Wyeast yeast on hand and both call for a minimum 3 hr.s before use. With the steeping and the full boil, I will have at least an hour before the yeast is ready.

Suggestions?

You’re ok. They just like for it to warm up to room temp slowly as to not shock the yeast. It’ll be ok.

What did you end up doing? I noticed this post about an hour too late. I only use the smack packs (Wyeast), so I would’ve just smacked it while the grains were steeping. After steeping the grains and doing an hour long boil, if the smack pack expanded at all you’d know if the yeast were viable. And if they were viable, I would just pitch them even if it hasn’t been three hours. The main thing is to make sure the yeast are viable.

Excellent folks!

I slowed the time from the steep (finish) to the boil. Considering the time added for the cool down, I should be ok. This is my first smack pack…so thanks for the confidence on the expanding pack. It is already beginning.

Whew…never brew when you are multi-tasking…especially many (way) less important tasks than brewing!!!

:cheers:

Next question…

I have a white labs vial best before Aug 14 date on it as well as the fresh wyeast smack pack. Both are Irish Ale.

If I pitch both into this porter (OG 1,056), will I have problems? First time with this issue, so thanks for the help in advance!

I’ll finish out the thread. Thanks for the help!!

Ended up pitching the wyeast (it did inflate) and half the expired white labs vial.

Already bubbling. :smiley:

Notes to self:

*Get the yeast ready plenty early.

  • Focus on brewing on brew day! Well, except for some Phish in the background and an IPA in hand that is. :wink:

Use this link next time:

http://www.brewersfriend.com/yeast-pitc ... alculator/

It will help estimate viability of the yeast you have and if you have enough cells to make the right pitch. You can still work with less, but it may lead to some issues if you have a heavier beer and too little viable yeast cells.

I used this to help me estimate the starter I needed for my 1.078 christmas style extract beer, and I was bubbling away in under 6 hours.

[quote=“Templar”]Use this link next time:

http://www.brewersfriend.com/yeast-pitc ... alculator/

It will help estimate viability of the yeast you have and if you have enough cells to make the right pitch. You can still work with less, but it may lead to some issues if you have a heavier beer and too little viable yeast cells.

I used this to help me estimate the starter I needed for my 1.078 christmas style extract beer, and I was bubbling away in under 6 hours.[/quote]

This is the pitch rate calculator I use also. Check out the calculator a week before your planned brew date. This will give you the time to complete a starter, if one would would be necessary for the age of your yeast. Always keep some light DME on hand so there isn’t an extra shopping trip to work into your schedule.

I don’t think the actual smacking of the smack pack is absolutely necessary, nor is the 3 hour time period they recommend. Obviously, it helps because it gives the yeast a dose of nutrient and gets them to “wake up” a bit before they get pitched into 5 gallons of wort, but they’ll still do the job without the smacking or the full 3 hours. I’ve made starters with barely inflated smack packs that worked just fine. As has been said, it’s more important to make sure you have enough of them to do the job appropriately.

True, it’s just to proof the yeast. I usually forget to smack before adding to a starter.

Does the yeast need to warm up? A cold crashed starter would be pitched around 40*F. Just curious if there’s a difference.

No, it doesn’t and there’s some evidence that it’s better of it doesn’t. When it warms up the yeast start consuming their nutrient reserves and you want that to happen when the yeast is in the beer, not before. For the last 350-400 batches I’ve taken my yeast (starter) out of the fridge, decanted it and pitched immediately. No problems, great performance.

No, it doesn’t and there’s some evidence that it’s better of it doesn’t. When it warms up the yeast start consuming their nutrient reserves and you want that to happen when the yeast is in the beer, not before. For the last 350-400 batches I’ve taken my yeast (starter) out of the fridge, decanted it and pitched immediately. No problems, great performance.[/quote]

Yeah, that’s also my SOP. Thanks for the confirmation.

Thanks for all the responses folks. Thanks for the pitching calculator as well.

This has turned into a very informative thread…

:cheers:

Not sure if it’s the better way to do it or not, but when I cold crash a starter, I’ll pull it out of the fridge right when I start brewing and dump off most of the liquid so that there’s just the yeast cake and enough liquid left to slosh it around and get it out of the container when I pitch it. Then I set it on the counter and let it sit at room temp until I’m ready to pitch, so generally around 3 hours or so. Helps it warm up a little bit before pitching.

Not sure if it’s the better way to do it or not, but when I cold crash a starter, I’ll pull it out of the fridge right when I start brewing and dump off most of the liquid so that there’s just the yeast cake and enough liquid left to slosh it around and get it out of the container when I pitch it. Then I set it on the counter and let it sit at room temp until I’m ready to pitch, so generally around 3 hours or so. Helps it warm up a little bit before pitching.[/quote]

Just as a test, try not warming it up for a few batches. See if you notice any difference.

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