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Yenren
04-02-2016, 08:19 AM
I made a starter of wyeast 1388, 3 and a half days ago 4 liters SG 1.030 Ambient temp of 20C. It was 29 hours before I saw any activity, I checked gravity today and it is 1.020. This seems very slow to me. I do not have a stir plate so I shake it every chance I get.
The MFG date is 22dec2015. I am thinking the cell count must have been very low. If this dose manage to attenuate should I make a new starter from it as I wanted to grow this yeast split it into 5 jars using each jar for 1 gallon and using one to make a new starter and begin the whole process again.

Masbustelo
04-02-2016, 12:37 PM
Of what does your starter consist? And what is the pH?

Yenren
04-02-2016, 01:03 PM
sterilized 12ozhoney & 3.8 liter water 2 pinches of energizer nd nutrient na smack pack 1388

Yenren
04-02-2016, 09:12 PM
4 days in O.G. 1.015

Mazer828
04-03-2016, 09:38 AM
Are you sure about those gravity readings? Seems very very low for an original gravity. Oh! It's a starter. That makes more sense. Ok. So your starter is really not going to drop all that much in gravity. In truth, all the times I've made one, I've never measured gravity because the goal is to get the yeast through the lag phase, during which they reproduce, giving you a bigger biomass to start your main ferment with.

In my opinion, if you've seen any fermentation activity, the lag phase is over, and it's time to pitch. Four days is a bit long, though. I might think about pitching the slurry into a second starting medium, oxygenating and giving it another 24 hours before pitching to your must.

Yenren
04-03-2016, 09:52 AM
Thanks mazer, Hope you dont mind Dr. I would like a second opinion. I would reckon that the yeast should attenuate fully given this much time.
If i was making a starter and pitching at full activity then I wouldnt expect full attenuation.
My goal to increase the population of yeast so as to pitch some and reserve some to make a new starter and start the process again.

Mazer828
04-03-2016, 11:16 AM
Definitely check with others. This is one of the biggest benefits of this site.

Yenren
04-03-2016, 02:55 PM
day 4 + 18 hours down to 1.014
I think this one is going to be a right off.
Increased temp from 20C to 22C
Would a little pinch of nutrient help?

Stasis
04-03-2016, 03:39 PM
What exactly do the energizer and nutrients contain? Many generic energizers or nutrients contain only dap. Ideally you have something more complex. How much nutrients did you add? You also said you're shaking the carboy. The point is not to shake the carboy but to aerate it. Are you removing the bung and airlock? After shaking the carboy are you letting it degas, allowing for time to enter the carboy and shaking again to make sure some oxygen has entered the must? When I'm aerating a narrow necked carboy I take minutes to degas and aerate the must through shaking alone. Masbustelo also asked about the ph. Ph can be a problem when adding dap, this is why LoveOfRose buffers the must with K2Co3 (potassium carbonate/bicarbonate)
If your yeast is having a hard time fermenting maybe just make one batch out of this. Create multiple starters once you're sure the yeast have been as unstressed as possible

Yenren
04-03-2016, 04:10 PM
Tronozymol: Diammonium phosphate, magnesium sulphate, magnesium carbonate, albumin, nicotinamide, aueurine hydrochloride, trace minerals and vitamins. I added two small pinches of this stuff. As for aerating, Im sure it got enough to deal with a starter of 1.030. After degasing I use a sanatized soda bottle and use that to "inject" air into demijohn.
I do not have the means to measure PH. LoveofRose dose not mention K2Co3 in his starter protocol
I might make a new starter as I dont trust it in a full batch

Stasis
04-03-2016, 04:48 PM
It seems you did a good job. I do wonder how much a pinch is though. You might be right about ph: since you have little honey there should be less acidity, which means less of a need to buffer. It would be nice to test ph nonetheless.
Without a very detailed mead log it's a bit difficult to say for sure that the batch of yeast was faulty. I do remember hearing that liquid yeasts need to be stored more carefully than dry yeasts though, so it's surely possible

Yenren
04-03-2016, 05:48 PM
A pinch .1 of a gram!
I have not made many starters and in 3 years of brewing never had anything fail to ferment had to happen at some stage I suppose. The only thing I did differently was to sanitize the must in a pressure cooker for 10 minutes, I was trying to be as meticulous as i could so as to get as many generations of yeast as I could.
I will make a new smaller starter from the tiny cake tomorrow

Stasis
04-03-2016, 09:21 PM
I think your nutrients might be too little. Did you just add 0.2g of nutrients and energizer? But then again LoveOfRose does not write down any nutrient requirements to create a starter. I wonder how the yeast are expected to build up biomass with so very little nutrients. Also, you are effectively creating 4 starters, which means you need to create much more biomass. This should require more nutrients.
Since you followed LoveOfRose's instructions I'd suggest asking him though

djsxxx
04-04-2016, 01:33 AM
I think your nutrients might be too little. Did you just add 0.2g of nutrients and energizer? But then again LoveOfRose does not write down any nutrient requirements to create a starter. I wonder how the yeast are expected to build up biomass with so very little nutrients. Also, you are effectively creating 4 starters, which means you need to create much more biomass. This should require more nutrients.
Since you followed LoveOfRose's instructions I'd suggest asking him though
LOR tends to use Wyeast smack packs which contain a bubble of nutrients that get released when smacked

Sent from my SM-G925F using Tapatalk

Yenren
04-09-2016, 06:06 AM
So, I am still trying to reserect this yeast.
2L starter @ 1.030 @ 20C for 4 days
There was more visable signs of fermentation this time but it only managed to reach 1.010
I will try again with a half liter starter this time but I think these guys are goosed.

Stasis
04-09-2016, 06:53 AM
Some very basic questions:
Did you smack the pack? It seems wyeast 1388 should come with a smack pack of nutrients. Did you break this pack and allow it to mix with your yeast?
Did you add any additional nutrients? How much?
To my knowledge you should be adding nutrients. According to wyeast's own site (https://www.wyeastlab.com/hb_makingastarter.cfm) you are still making a starter twice as large as they suggest. They also suggest adding 0.5tsp of nutrient to a wort. I would go with at least 1 tsp of nutrient. In LOR's recipes he always add nutrients prior to the yeast growth phase (of course!). This helps yeast create more biomass. I don't know why it should be different for a starter. The smack pack of nutrients is not enough to create unlimited biomass, if that were true everybody would be using liquid yeast and saving up on tons of nutrients.

@djsxxx yes, liquid yeasts have smack packs. But shouldn't nutrients be scaled depending on how much biomass one wants to achieve? Also, LOR provides instructions for dry yeasts and doesn't mention any nutrients. So even if liquid yeasts do not need extra nutrients (which in the case of mead I think they need them), dry yeasts certainly do!

Yenren
04-09-2016, 07:07 AM
The pack was smacked and it swelled. To this starter I added a pinch .2g nutrient, I read somewhere cant remember where this is the recommended amount.
I have made starters like this before with washed yeast that had been in the fridge for weeks and it took off like a rocket

Stasis
04-09-2016, 07:50 AM
Was the recommended amount for mead? Very often there would be recommended amounts for musts which already contain good amounts of nutrients. Mead musts are pretty deficient in nutrients so you'd have to ignore those instructions and add more. Also, were the amounts for a 2l starter? What I'm saying is: you have to scale nutrients according to must type and volume