Wyeast smackpack viability

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Wyeast smackpack viability

Unread postby Sportyone » Tue Jul 08, 2014 11:57 am

Hi guy's,

I have 2 wyeast 1318 London ale III smackpacks dated 18.3.2014
Planning on doing a brew of 50 litres with est og 1.042

When inputting this info into mr malty yeast calc, it suggests 8 vials or packs with stirplate and 2.08l starter
Would I be better off buying 2 x new smackpacks? as, if they had current date, mr malty suggests just 2 smackpacks then.

thanks
Stephen
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Wyeast smackpack viability

Unread postby BrauTim » Tue Jul 08, 2014 12:23 pm

A brand new fresh out of the factory smack pack contains 100 billion cells, to brew an English style 23l batch you need approx 180 billion cells so a starter is needed or 2 x smackpacks. Therefore brewing 50l will require 4 x smackpacks without starter and within a certain date range.


The manufacturers of liquid yeast state that a single smackpack will ferment a single batch but it's not the whole story. I've read lots of people that do this and seem to enjoy the results, but if you want to brew to style then you need to try and get correct pitching rates.

You don't say if you are using a starter, you need to step up to around 360 billion cells which you could do with your existing yeast or as you are looking to do buy two more packs and pour all 4 into the batch and you might be in the ballpark.
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Re: Wyeast smackpack viability

Unread postby Sportyone » Tue Jul 08, 2014 1:49 pm

Hi Tim,

I was planning on using a 2l starter with my existing packs, hoping that would suffice for my 50l brew, but after using mr malty calc, I now have my doubts.
Do you think I would be getting my cell count in the ballpark doing this or should I order more smackpacks.

thanks
Stephen
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Re: Wyeast smackpack viability

Unread postby paulg » Tue Jul 08, 2014 9:25 pm

you could play with this calculator for a multi step starter

http://www.yeastcalculator.com

although it might be easier to buy 2 new ones
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Re: Wyeast smackpack viability

Unread postby BrauTim » Tue Jul 08, 2014 10:12 pm

This is not straightforward, there are differences between the two calculators, however I have split the difference to get 30% viability for your 2 smackpacks and 300Bn cells required, you have a couple of options using both your smackpacks:

Stir Plate (I like Kai Troister so I'm using his calculations), a single 1.75 litre starter will give you 304Bn cells, that should be enough for your batch.

Intermittent shaking - 2 step starter 1st is 1.5 litre, 2nd 1.5 litre will give you 304Bn cells.

No shaking - 2 x 2 litre steps will get you 264Bn cells so maybe a little shaking when you can will help things get up to 300Bn or 2 x 1.5L steps to get you 216Bn cells and buy another smackpack, there is no guarantee that a new smackpack will be fresh enough to get you 85Bn cells, it would have to be dated 23rd June or later.

So the answer is to use/buy a stirplate not buy more yeast :)

Second best is to step them up with as much shaking as possible, third option is to shake as much as possible and buy another smack pack to be sure.
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Re: Wyeast smackpack viability

Unread postby Sportyone » Wed Jul 16, 2014 9:19 am

Have made the starter according to one of the calculators.
It's been on the stir plate now for about 18 hours, my question is how long should I keep it there before, I plan on doing a brew within the next 48hrs.

Stephen
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Re: Wyeast smackpack viability

Unread postby Dicko » Wed Jul 16, 2014 12:44 pm

Sportyone wrote:Have made the starter according to one of the calculators.
It's been on the stir plate now for about 18 hours, my question is how long should I keep it there before, I plan on doing a brew within the next 48hrs.

Stephen


You should see the yeast get a krausen develop or I trend to look for the starter the change to a lighter colour.
I made a starter last weekend from a quarter of a Wyeast pack that was 16/3/14 and it took 24.5 hours to kick in then I allow another 8 hours for the second step.
Fresh yeasts usually kick in overnite, but each result is subject to a lot of other conditions such as oxygen levels temperature and wort gravity.

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Re: Wyeast smackpack viability

Unread postby BrauTim » Thu Jul 17, 2014 9:06 am

2-3 days I usually leave mine for, then chill 24 hours and decant the spent wort from the starter, then a few hours to allow the yeast to warm to pitching temp on brew day, so my starter process takes around 4 days leading up to brewday.

Quite often I see no or little krausen on a stir plate because the stirring action tends to knock out the CO2 keeping the foam down, some people do get krausen though and most do on a non-stirred starter. Every yeast (batch) can act differently.
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Re: Wyeast smackpack viability

Unread postby Sportyone » Thu Jul 17, 2014 10:44 am

Thanks for that info, was starting to get worried as I haven't seen any evidence of krausen.
Will follow your example Tim and leave for another day or so.

thanks
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Re: Wyeast smackpack viability

Unread postby Nesto » Thu Jul 17, 2014 3:22 pm

Hopefully time will help. Once it gets going, WY1318 should have a pretty healthy krausen - it's one of the yeasts that makes me use my 5L erlenmeyer for a 2L starter ;) With about 30% viability, you should still get there.
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