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Yeast starter lag time

Last night (about 8:00pm) I made a starter for a 10 gallon batch of the Number 8 that I plan to brew on Saturday. I made a 1.6 liter starter o and added two smack packs of wyeast 1762 and put it on the stir plate. This morning before I left for work at 6:30, it appeared their had not yet been any activity. No foam or line on the flask to indicate activity. I looked at the packages and noticed one was dated May 28 and the other June 6th. I called the brew store where I purchased the packs and asked of they might be bad. The employee told me that often times that strain can take 3-4 days to take off in a starter. I have used this strain before and have never had this happen.

Has anyone experienced a long lag time with this strain?

Belgian strains can start slow especially if the date is expired but don’t let that bother you, I’ve used expired strains up to 6 mos. old with a large starter and even tho they started slow they finished well. I would give it some time. That’s been my experience.

My concern is the lag time with the starter, especially with it sitting on a stir plate.
Can DME go bad?
I had some older dme that had clumped together. Wondering if I need to cold crash and start over with fresh DME???

I say let it ride.

The dates on the smack packs aren’t expiration dates, they are packaging dates. Where I live, I will rarely get a pack of yeast that is less than 6 months old.

Plan on your starter taking about on one day per month since production date to get going and be ready for pitching into your wort. So that means about 4 days for your yeast.

DME can go bad if it gets wet (from liquid or humidity), but if it isn’t clumped, it’s probably fine.


DME can go bad if it gets wet (from liquid or humidity), but if it isn’t clumped, it’s probably fine.[/quote]

The DME was clumped into two chunks. I would not have used it for brewing, but thought it’s sugar content would still work for a starter. As of of this morning, no action ( 35 hours) . I did find two jars of harvested 1762 dated 11-8-13. I poured 700 ml into a 1/2 gallon started to see if I could get any activity last night. No activity as of this morning. Looks like I may have to postpone brewing the number 8 on Saturday.

The clumping means that water got at it, and it therefore MIGHT get something to infect it, most likely mold. The sugar content is too high for most microorganisms. The sugar itself is all still there, so it should still work fine as food as far as the yeast are concerned, and if you boiled it before use you killed most anything that might have been there.

I suspect you just have to wait longer or your yeast has gone bad. Or it all fermented out fast and you didn’t notice. Can you take a gravity check?

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