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Mr. Malty Pitch Calculator Question

I am going to make the Black IPA and will need to make my first starter. OG is 1.075.

When calculating the size of the starter, it asks for the volume in US Gallons, is this for the wort (which I boil) or is this for the whole entire 5 gallon batch of beer which will be fermenting?

Want to know if I should be saying 2.5 gallons or 5 gallons for the volume.

Thanks!

The amount that you are fermenting.

I don’t recall the tool, but I did a 1 1\2 liter starter for mine a few weeks ago.

Ok thank you! Looks like I will be making a 3.58 liter starter (seems really big).

Ok, I opened the tool. Be sure to put in the production date if you did not do that. That seems mighty big. I did the extract kit and my 1 1/2 seemed to work just fine.

Must be a production date over 1 month old?

Maybe you time would be better served if you made a 3-5 gallon session beer with the yeast. Then pitched the big boy onto the whole cake?

I read in palmer that doing a smaller starter 1L, decanting it and then doing another 1L starter on top of it will result in higher yields than doing 2L starter. If this is true then i would think you could apply the same ratios and do it with a 1.5L starter.

I purchased the 1272 wyeast so I plan to use that for my yeast. However, I did harvest some 1056 yeast from my chinook ipa batch.

I must not have adjusted the date when using the Mr. Malty calculator.

Seems the consensus is to do a 1 1/2 liter starter so I will do just that.

Cheers!

I adjusted the production date and now it says to make a 1.69 liter starter. This seems more accurate and reasonable.

Thanks for all of the advice and help, it is always greatly appreciated!

The calculator has a fixed viability reduction of 5% per week, with a floor of 10%. I believe Jamil got these numbers by opening yeast packages of various ages and doing cell counts, but he doesn’t give the details (storage conditions of yeast packs, brand, # of trials, etc.). I wouldn’t just change the manufacturing date just because it lets you make a smaller starter, unless you have reason to believe that the viability is higher than predicted. At the end of the day, making a starter that is 100% bigger than is actually needed isn’t really going to do any harm, overpitching isn’t really detectable unless it is orders of magnitude more yeast than is needed. But making one 100% smaller than you need can cause a bad beer.

When it comes to larger starters, you can make them in multiple stages as mppatriots suggests, in the best case using about 1/2 the wort as an equivalent single stage starter. Sean has a guide for this on his site: http://seanterrill.com/2010/03/08/two-s … culations/

One other rule of thumb that JZ recommends when doing starters is to keep the ratio of starting cell count to starter size at a minimum of 100 billion cells/L. You need a minimum amount of wort to get any real cell growth, and a very small starter can hurt viability by consuming yeast storage reserves without an opportunity to replenish. In other words, when stepping up a starter don’t put 300 billion cells into just 1L of wort.

Did you choose “Intermittent Shaking” or leave the default “Simple Starter” If you shake it multiple times per day you won’t need such a big starter.

Thank you for all of the help!

I did leave the default as a simple starter not an intermittent shake.

If I were to do the intermittent shaking, how often do you need to do that? Also, do you need to wait for the kraeusen to go back into the wort or is it ok to shake any time?

Cheers!

I usually shake it every time I walk by. Maybe 5-10 times a day. Shake it anytime, the point is to keep the yeast suspended and continue to introduce oxygen. If a krausen forms, it’s been too long between shakes :wink:

Im using a brown glass growler as a yeast starter. It is really hard to tell if the starter is working or not. It has some foam but not like krausen foam, more like foam from star san. Everytime I shake the starter I have to watch to avoid having the foam come out under the tin foil.

I boiled 3/4 cup of DME and added 1.5 liters of water, would you recommend I do another mini-starter before I pitch to ensure there is enough yeast cells? Or am I just a newbie who is worrying too much?

I plan on brewing the black ipa on Sunday so I have time.

[quote=“Shenanigans”]Im using a brown glass growler as a yeast starter. It is really hard to tell if the starter is working or not. It has some foam but not like krausen foam, more like foam from star san. Everytime I shake the starter I have to watch to avoid having the foam come out under the tin foil.

I boiled 3/4 cup of DME and added 1.5 liters of water, would you recommend I do another mini-starter before I pitch to ensure there is enough yeast cells? Or am I just a newbie who is worrying too much?

I plan on brewing the black ipa on Sunday so I have time.[/quote]

I think you are fine with what you have. You won’t get a krausen because you are continuously (or intermittently you might say :wink: ) adding new oxygen and releasing built up CO2. The foam is the indicator that the starter is working.

A suggestion I have is if you possibly can, use weight for your DME instead of volume. I bought a cheapy 1lb scale (grams & oz) for $10 to weigh out priming sugar and starter DME. The easy way with weight and the metric system is 100 grams for every 1L. so 150g for 1.5L gets you around 1.038.

All-in-all, your starter will be ready for the Sunday brewday.
:cheers:

Awesome, thanks for all of your help!

I plan to place the yeast starter in the fridge tonight so I can decant most of the wort before pitching on Sunday. Does this seem like a wise plan of action?

When did you make the starter? Do 3 days to propagate, 2 days to cool and you should be able to decant the starter beer and pitch just yeast.

I have never bothered to cold-crash a starter…I just siphon out as much of the liquid as possible.

If I’m doing a light lager or something where even a 1/2 pint or so of oxidized starter wort might be perceptible I’d be a little more careful, but for a big black IPA, there’s no way it will show up in my experience.

We’re not going for crystal clear beer here, we just want to keep significant quantities of fermented starter-beer out of your primary…

Maybe I’m nuts, but I feel like I get good starters in 48 hours or under.

I made the starter yesterday (Thursday) at 2pm I pitched in the wyeast 1272 smack pack. It has been sitting at room temperature since then. I was planning on putting it in the fridge tonight (Friday) and brewing on Sunday, so it would be in the fridge for a little under two days.

Super excited to taste the Black IPA, bottling the Chinook IPA tomorrow!

[quote=“Shenanigans”]I made the starter yesterday (Thursday) at 2pm I pitched in the wyeast 1272 smack pack. It has been sitting at room temperature since then. I was planning on putting it in the fridge tonight (Friday) and brewing on Sunday, so it would be in the fridge for a little under two days.

Super excited to taste the Black IPA, bottling the Chinook IPA tomorrow![/quote]

Yup, that should work. If it were me, I’d take it out of the fridge a few hours before pitching to avoid a drastic temp change, but other than that, I think you’re good to go!

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