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Settled virgin liquid yeast billion cells/ml

I have started pitching virgin yeasts I buy with several successive pitches then saving the yeast in pint mason jars. I do this to get the best handle on amount of yeast I am pitching. Its easiest for me to judge the ml of settled yeast volume. Has anyone measured the volume of settled yeast in a wyeast package?

I am getting this level of accuracy because I want to make a Belgium triple similar to trails to ales in franklin PA. The brewer gets a banana flavor by stressing the yeast with combination of higher fermenting temperature and I think with lower yeast pitch rate as well. I recognize its easiest and best to pitch extra but this is a special case.


Hmmm never measured this. The WHOLE package of a wyeast is about 4.25oz or 125mls. White labs pure pitch is 35ml total and is about 2/3 of the packaging. So I would say you are looking at approximately 25ml of pure yeast. This is totally a ballpark figure.

Ok thanks. I will sterilize a graduated cylinder and measure the next few I open prior to pitching starter. I hit an all grain squished NB kit with ~97 ml of settled yeast and it was bubbling fast with thick kreuzen in less than 12 hours at 63F(direct wort temp measure) wyeast oyl 004 west coast ale 1. OG 1.070. Gravity dropping 0.007 per day. Its behaving like pitched with plenty of yeast so your ball park may be right order of magnitude. Keeping temp low for flavor as well as avoiding a blow off. When I measure it I will reply to my own post with data for the next guy.

correction it was omega yeast

Good deal. Your pitch rate is dependent on SG, pitching temps, and ferm temps. Although LIQUID yeast manufacturers say their product is direct pitchable into 5gal of wort up to 1.060 that has not been my experience. Sure you’ll get fermentation but it will be lagging.

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Yes it will lag but when making Belgian ale and heffenweizenen i do it. Lag time is desirable and traditional for beers that where started in a coolship historically

Followup-measuring the volume of settled liquid yeast from fresh packages that I receive is problematic because it takes so long for the yeast to settle cold and then the volume is so small that its difficult to measure without making a lot of scatter in the data. I am changing the way I do this and will followup many months from now. I am going to pitch the virgin liquid yeast in a starter and when done cold crash, decant beer, then put yeast in half pint sterilized jars. Let it settle in frig for many days and then measure the height of yeast and calculate the volume. This will give me the volumes for a variety of virgin yeasts after pitching. Depending on volume, may even use quarter pint jars.

My gut feel is I may wind up with a ridiculous amount of scatter in the data but that’s a learning experience. May find out that the only way to really do this is to break out the microscope and count the critters with the grid lines on the slide. :frowning:

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Every yeast is remarkably different in how it compacts and flocculates. So you’ll need to use the same yeast to be at all scientific about it. On a similar I have been a yeast saver for many years. I now save my yeast in the smallest 1 oz jar I can find. I prefer the results of pitching the smallest amount and there is no need to bother with all the decanting and transferring with a tiny vessel. Eliminating steps minimizes the risk of contamination.

FYI for wyeast 1308 london III the settled volume after 13 h at 34 F was 45 to 47 ml. This was right out of package without the smack pack being broken. Package was rinsed with sterilized and cooled water. Getting more data.

I store my yeast in ball 8 ounce canning jars. Thinking of switching to 4 oz but that may be too small for double batch of yeast. For the 8 ounce jars there is a good correlation between height as measured from counter top and volume.
The equation is ml=height in inches x 68.1 - 22.8. The y intercept is not zero because I am measuring height above the countertop its sitting on which includes the glass at the bottom of container. So as received, this is about 1 inch height of yeast in the 8 oz ball jar. This equation is good for 1 inch and higher measurements. Slightly different equation for the lower end due to the curve at bottom of jar.

I attach my labels using scotch superhold tape, corner fold for easy removal and apply to the jars before chilling so no moisture thus tape sticks. I do the same labeling of my primary secondary and kegs and move the labels from container to container lest I forget what the heck I am brewing. When you have 4 things brewing at a time, it can get confusing!

Don’t rinse your yeast. It has already made the perfect environment for its slumber. Changing fluid the yeast lays in changes the osmotic pressure between the inside and outside of the cells and hurts your viability. Just leave them alone. People used to rinse yeast but that was like 2018

thanks good point in not rinsing. No sense in rinsing out the yeast package just to get that last little bit of yeast out and risk osmotic pressure hurting yeast. Rinsing is a false economy. Out of curiosity, I will measure the TDS of the beer when I decant the beer off my starter and compare it to the well water I use.


Ok here is the information I promised. Short version- on average (eliminating outliers) the volume of the settled yeast is roughly on average 18.5 ml. If its the newer omega with 50% more, its roughly 50% more. :slight_smile:
The range was 15.4 to 23 ml.

Longer version here is the data

try two in case simple paste did not work above.
yeast hours settling time height in initial volume used ml
wyeast 1308 london III which was good 15.2 1 45.4
omega oyl 018 abbey ale c 30.3 0.4375 15.4
white labs wlp051 california V ale yeast 141.7 0.5 19.7
omega yeast oyl 071 lutra kviek 13.6 0.53125 21.5
omega yeast oyl 015 scottish ale 24.2 0.5 19.7
omega yeast oyl 028 belgian ale W 13.6 0.4375 15.4
wyeast 1388 belgiam strong ale 141.6 0.4375 15.4
wyeast 1272 american ale II 141.5 0.5 19.7
wyeast 1214 belgian abbey style ale 141.5 0.5625 23.0
wyeast 1728 scottish ale 30.3 0.4375 15.4
white labs wlp 028 edinburgh scottish ale 172.9 0.5 19.7
omega oyl 400 banaza ale 50% more 25.0 0.6875 26.0

The first in list, london III is a top fermenter and had a lot of foam at the top. I used half the distance of the foam. Volume measured by using a polynomial fit to the height above the counter vs ml for 1/2 pint mason jars. The settling is done at 34F and generally its settled out in 12 hours.


Wow. This is some impressive work. Thanks for taking the time to do this and post it.

Very fun. what did you use as your wort recipe in these and what volume of wort?

I used the london III yeast to make a clone of cinderlands squish. I used 7.5 gallons (6 gallons in pot, 1.5 gallons for 4 trickling sparges) 5.85 lb vienna malt and 5.85 lb malted oats. BIAB with multiple drainings and stiring during mash. 153 F Yield to fermentation 5.5 gallons SG 1.056 vs commercial brewer getting 1.054. 90 minute boil with slightly too fast boil.

I also used the london III to make a northern brewer squished all grain kit recipe except I used different hops. 6 gallons total water with 1 gallon for multistep sparge. 13.5 lb grain 153 F. Yield 4.5 gallons then added 1/2 gallon of oatmilk to fermenter. OG was high 1.084 (prior to oatmilk addition) vs 1.064 in kit instructions (this often happens to me I think because of my meticulous sparges/ boiling some sparges). Since the OG was so high, I did an additional sparge and boiled and saved sparge as a starter wort for another yeast.

The oyl 028 was used to make a belgian tripel all grain kit. 7.5 gallons water total treated (1.5 for sparge). 13.25 lb grain. Yield 5. gallons OG 1.09 (at 69F) vs 1.076 recipe multistep mash

All of the above 3 blew off not surprised

The kveik was used in a czech pilsner kit 7 gallons total water 1.5 of which held for sparge. 9.75 lb grain OG 1.06 vs 1.047 kit target. Yield 5.1 gallons. multistep mash

For all the above, I used a single dose of yeast from a starter. I just measure the height of the settled yeast, the total height of yeast plus liquid, shake it up and pour off the the shaken yeast into a graduated cylinder to the appropriate volume. In most cases, the settled volume of yeast is about a half an inch for a single dose in the half pint mason jars. I spreadsheet does all the calculations for me not rocket science. Could probably just wing it and use eyeball LOL

TMI sorry

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While I’m not going “deep” about the amount of yeast… I do plan to try something on a parallel…
I ferment in an Anvil SS bucket… I did cut off the collection tube supplied with the fermenter so it wouldn’t suck directly off the bottom… I put a half gallon of water in… marked the top of the water and cut it there…Trying to leave more trub behind… With me?
I always pick up yeast no matter what, and I do save yeast from time to time… You know… sanitized spoon… reaching into the bucket to get some yeast AFTER racking…
Lets change that today… I’ll take a pint glass, sanitized, Slowly crack the valve open (racking under pressure with CO2) collect 3/4’s of that pint glass, cover and put in the fridge to settle…
I’ll be curious to see how much yeast I collect… The plus side… maybe I’ll have less yeast going into my fermenter…

This may be a little too deep for you unless you use spreadsheet. The equation for volume in a canning pint jar is
ml in jar=inches^3*(-2.6282)+inches^215.947+inches82.996+(-16.177). This polynomial equation is safe to use from 7/16 inch height to 4.25 inch height. Yeah that’s probably too deep LOL

Simplifying further, if you measure 5/8 of an inch height of yeast in a pint canning jar and its pure yeast, its roughly two charges of yeast on average. If you later transfer into a half pint jar after it settles to save frig space, half an inch is roughly one yeast charge on average.

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I was going to use my highly inaccurate beer pint glass… of unknown thickness of glass walls so I could speculate the approximate volume… using the “thats pretty damn close” method and means of," good ‘nuff fer me"… method… :joy:
I’m certain I could use your math equation… but it would take me some time to do long hand on paper… If you’ve followed for a few years, you’ll understand… This PC beats me up… I just can’t get the digital media to understand my analog tube thinnin’… :grin:

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Additional learning from this work…my taste buds are learning the differences between beers brewed with pilsner starters and different yeasts. Since I make the starters frequently in gallon quantities and treat it like a regular brew and let it go for weeks I don’t get the typical nasty starter beer flavor of green beer. I decant the beer, save the yeast, hop, then bottle. The yeast goes into pint jars to settle. Once it settles, I pour off the top, put yeast in half pints and taste the uncarbonated and un hopped beer. I now know that they mean by phenolic taste in a wit yeast for example. One surprising find to me is that pilsner comes out really clean with wlp 028 edinburgh yeast.

It will be a few months before I can try making a pilsner with this yeast but will post results when I make it and can taste it.


Update-I mashed a 5 gallon pilsner fermented 1 gallon of it with 028 edinburgh yeast 70 F and 4 gallons at 53F with real pilsner yeast. Taste comparison the other day and the 028 beer had a slight off taste, and not in a good way. So much for my surprising find above. sticking with real pilsner lager yeasts in cold months and Kveik lutra in warm months.

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