Author Topic: Lager Starter Help!  (Read 1363 times)

Offline mac2000

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 4
    • View Profile
Lager Starter Help!
« on: October 18, 2011, 09:59:25 PM »
I'm making Jamil's Munich Madness and doing a starter for it.  This is my first lager.  I checked out the calculator at Mr. Malty.  It recommended 2 packs with a 2L starter.  I put 200g of light DME and filled to 2L.  Boiled for 15 min., cooled to 55F, added the yeast and started the stir plate. 
It's been going for 4 days now.  There is still some foaming at the top, so i'm assuming it's still fermenting.  I wanna let it flocculate and decant the beer out.  The yeast is wyeast 2206 and I put 2 smack packs in.  How long should this take to flocculate out so I can crash the temps and decant?

Thanks in advance :)

Offline hopfenundmalz

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 4548
  • Milford, MI
    • View Profile
Re: Lager Starter Help!
« Reply #1 on: October 18, 2011, 11:50:48 PM »
IIRC 2206 is equivalent to WLP-830.  That one crashes out over night in the frige.
Jeff Rankert
Ann Arbor Brewers Guild, AHA Member, BJCP Certified
Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!

Offline davidgzach

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1499
    • View Profile
Re: Lager Starter Help!
« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2011, 04:46:57 AM »
IIRC 2206 is equivalent to WLP-830.  That one crashes out over night in the frige.

+1 to overnight.  Don't put it in the fridge that morning or you will be waiting to pitch ......
Dave Zach

Offline mac2000

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 4
    • View Profile
Re: Lager Starter Help!
« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2011, 10:08:20 AM »
Is 4+ days normal?  It seems like its taking a long time.  How much longer should it take on average to finish the fermenting?

Offline linenoiz

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 49
  • West Valley City, UT
    • View Profile
Re: Lager Starter Help!
« Reply #4 on: October 19, 2011, 10:38:58 AM »
Is your starter going at room temperature or fermentation temperature? I usually do my starters, even lager starters, at room temperature and they are usually done in 24-ish hours. I can see a starter at 55F taking longer to finish.

Offline beersk

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1893
  • In the night!
    • View Profile
Re: Lager Starter Help!
« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2011, 10:59:34 AM »
Is your starter going at room temperature or fermentation temperature? I usually do my starters, even lager starters, at room temperature and they are usually done in 24-ish hours. I can see a starter at 55F taking longer to finish.
I do mine at room temperature also.  I think the last time I crashed cooled it in my chest freezer set at the temp (46F at the start) I was going to ferment at.  Then took it out right after the wort was chilled, decanted, and pitched.
Watch out for those Cross Dressing Amateurs!

Offline mac2000

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 4
    • View Profile
Re: Lager Starter Help!
« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2011, 11:38:17 AM »
Yeah it's at 55F, not at room temp.  I read somewhere that you get less mutants if you keep the yeast at most +5 over the fermentation temp for the lager your making.  Maybe it's too anal I don't know.

Offline denny

  • Administrator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 11696
  • Noti OR [1991.4, 287.6deg] AR
    • View Profile
    • Dennybrew
Re: Lager Starter Help!
« Reply #7 on: October 19, 2011, 11:43:53 AM »
Yeah it's at 55F, not at room temp.  I read somewhere that you get less mutants if you keep the yeast at most +5 over the fermentation temp for the lager your making.  Maybe it's too anal I don't know.

I believe you're going on incorrect info.  You;re trying to grow yeast and yeast will grow better at room temp than 55.  Mutants aren't a problem.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

www.dennybrew.com

The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

Offline James Lorden

  • Brewer
  • ****
  • Posts: 337
  • Forest Hill, MD
    • View Profile
Re: Lager Starter Help!
« Reply #8 on: October 19, 2011, 12:09:10 PM »
Yeah it's at 55F, not at room temp.  I read somewhere that you get less mutants if you keep the yeast at most +5 over the fermentation temp for the lager your making.  Maybe it's too anal I don't know.

I believe you're going on incorrect info.  You;re trying to grow yeast and yeast will grow better at room temp than 55.  Mutants aren't a problem.

I agree with denny, mutants aren't an issue at room temp.  I believe that what you may be thinking of is that some people recommend pitching temps within 5 degrees of fermentation temps to avoid thermal shock to the yeast.  I don't think this will be an issue for you if your crash cooling a fully fermented starter.  Pitching an active starter at room temperature into a cold wort might not be a great idea though.
James Lorden
Beer Drinker Beer Maker & Beer Judge

Offline mac2000

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 4
    • View Profile
Re: Lager Starter Help!
« Reply #9 on: October 19, 2011, 12:26:28 PM »
That does make sense... I wish I could remember where I read that... It was a quote from one of the White labs guys.  I'm sure it's fine to go at room temp if you're doing it and have no problems with diacetyl and such.
I was being extra careful, since Jamil's recipe doesnt call for a diacetyl rest.  I thought I'd try and keep everything as consistent as possible. 
Chris and Jamil's Yeast book does recommend to go at around 65 for a lager starter and around 75 for an ale starter. MIght just be splitting hairs and room temp is fine.  Though they strongly recommend a diacetyl rest for lagers and don't mention that pitching at fermentation temp results in very little diacetyl production, supposedly. 

I'm just worrying over something that doesnt really matter, since the starter is going to be decanted anyway.  Someone's quote just convinced me to go too conservative by feeding my unnecessary worry into my wort lol.  \

Offline tubercle

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1639
  • Sweet Caroline
    • View Profile
Re: Lager Starter Help!
« Reply #10 on: October 19, 2011, 04:37:58 PM »
I'm just worrying over something that doesnt really matter, since the starter is going to be decanted anyway.  Someone's quote just convinced me to go too conservative by feeding my unnecessary worry into my wort lol.  \

 Yes you are. Just let it go.

 The brewing experience should not involve any concerns. If there are any, then re-evaluate and enjoy. Just enjoy.
Sweet Caroline where the Sun rises over the deep blue sea and sets somewhere beyond Tennessee