Repitching onto yeast cake within 3 days

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by BoardwalkBock, May 15, 2018.

  1. BoardwalkBock

    BoardwalkBock Devotee (464) Aug 18, 2012 New York

    Hey all,

    I've seen many threads about reusing yeast and the many methods people use. I have a very simple question here.

    I have a pale ale fermenting away in my 6.5 G Carboy right now. I am planning on transferring to secondary tomorrow while fermentation is still on-going and racking on top of 6 oz of dry hops. I plan on brewing the same exact beer Friday but with a different hop bill.

    I plan on reusing the yeast from this batch as it is nice and healthy. I am wondering with the 2 days between removing the current beer and adding the new beer, what steps should I take? Could I just leave the yeast cake in the Carboy and seal the carboy nice and tight? Or should I move it to another container and repitch into the carboy when I add the new wort?

    Thanks!
     
  2. GreenKrusty101

    GreenKrusty101 Crusader (706) Dec 4, 2008 Nevada

    When pitching on a cake, timing is everything if you are lazy like I am. Rack the 1st beer and immediately dump the 2nd beer (higher gravity, imho) into the 1st beer's pail/carboy...imho, ymmv
     
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  3. Prep8611

    Prep8611 Aspirant (234) Aug 22, 2014 New Jersey

    My best advice would be to take the slurry and disperse it into three sterile mason jars so then you have three batches of yeast ready to go. That way you aren’t overpitching and you have yeast for another two batches. $$$ saver.
    Also I wouldn’t secondary for dry hopping but that’s just me.
     
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  4. BoardwalkBock

    BoardwalkBock Devotee (464) Aug 18, 2012 New York

    I like to add my pale ales/IPAs to the secondary while fermentation is still chugging along to reduce potential oxidation from adding the dry hop.

    I do like the advice of the three mason jars. I’ll give this a try for this batch. Thanks!
     
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  5. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Disciple (370) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    Mason jars is good if you have the jars and time. Dumping into the bucket after racking works as well. It's harder to save yeast after dry hopping in the primary with out washing,,,, or you
    L have mason jars with yeast and hop residue, especially if you use a bunch of pellets.
     
  6. PortLargo

    PortLargo Devotee (421) Oct 19, 2012 Florida

    Once after racking a beer from primary I was pressed for time (aka, lazy) and left the yeast cake (with lid sealed) to be cleaned later. Two days later when I went back there was mold growing on the krausen ring.

    After racking, the entire primary will be filled with air and all the assorted microbes that go with it. If your air is really free of microscopic critters you'll be okay . . . but it's a risk I would not take. Based on my experience it's likely to be infected.

    If you plan on storing in jars it's really not too difficult to go ahead and wash/rinse your yeast and eliminate as much of the trub as possible. After transferring to jars, the yeast will floc out within a day if you refrigerate. Here's a decent video on the subject:



    BTW, even if you don't wash/rinse I would store the jars in the fridge. This will inhibit growth of anything you might pick up in the process.
     
    #6 PortLargo, May 16, 2018
    Last edited: May 16, 2018
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  7. BoardwalkBock

    BoardwalkBock Devotee (464) Aug 18, 2012 New York

    Thank you! I’ll definitely be washing/rinsing and storing in sterilized mason jars based on the feedback. I’ll be storing the jars in my keezer which is set at 38F at the moment.
     
  8. Prep8611

    Prep8611 Aspirant (234) Aug 22, 2014 New Jersey

    I don’t wash or rinse or any of that Jazz. Take the slurry for what it is and seperate it into three jars. I do this for not dry hopped beers and it works fine. If people are so lazy they are willing to pitch on a yeast cake than why take the time to wash or rinse yeast. One batch makes 3 jars of yeast slurry. I just used the final jar of saison yeast from the first batch. Now I can either buy new yeast
    or make another three jars from the next batch and I’m still only on my second generation.

    Edit: I also top crop to get ale yeasts pure sample at times.
     
  9. BoardwalkBock

    BoardwalkBock Devotee (464) Aug 18, 2012 New York

    So long story short but I accidentally (dont ask) poured about a cup and a half of water around 200 degrees onto the yeast cake. Did I just kill the yeast?
     
  10. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,445) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania

    Well, you certainly killed at least some of them. How many would be a function of the thermal mass of the yeast cake, the starting temperature of the yeast cake, and how well dispersed/mixed in the added water was. The latter factor would make this very hard to model.

    Then of course there's thermal shock to some cells that aren't killed outright.
     
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  11. Prep8611

    Prep8611 Aspirant (234) Aug 22, 2014 New Jersey

    Dump it. Easier not to wash it.
     
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  12. BoardwalkBock

    BoardwalkBock Devotee (464) Aug 18, 2012 New York

    So basically you are saying just to get rid of it? Probably wont be effective now to get to terminal gravity?

    I poured about 350 mL into a 1250 mL slurry. The temp of the water was around 200 and the temp of the yeast cake was 67/68F. I mixed immediately.
     
  13. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,445) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania

    I don't know the thermal mass of the yeast cake, but it's certainly lower than water. My guess is that the 200F water probably did some significant damage.
     
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  14. BoardwalkBock

    BoardwalkBock Devotee (464) Aug 18, 2012 New York

    That's what I'm thinking too. I think I'll chalk this up as a loss and go pick up another liquid package. Looks like I am not brewing tomorrow since I'll have to get my yeast starter going. Next week it is.

    Thanks for the help guys. I guess you can't really learn until you make mistakes haha.
     
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  15. Eggman20

    Eggman20 Initiate (48) Feb 14, 2017 Minnesota

    Especially if there's not a lot of trub. If you see a thick layer of trub than it is probably worth at least one wash. If I do attempt a wash I'll mix in some water than dump in my bottling bucket. Let it sit 15 minutes than put in the jars. But most of the time I skip washing.

    Of course there are plenty of times I forget I was planning to save my yeast like last night. D'oh!
     
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  16. Push_the_limits

    Push_the_limits Initiate (30) Feb 8, 2018 Antarctica

    The first time I tried to save yeast, I had it all washed and put in sanitized jars...then put them to store in the freezer. haha. that's how I learned not to freeze them. I tried to start them but they were goners.

    Yeast is both easy and difficult in it's own ways. Earlier this year, I pitched onto a yeast cake that was sitting on it's own in a cool (68 F) room for a few days. It was in beautiful shape when it was time to ferment, but as has been mentioned, there is always a chance for contamination. There was no signs of infection. I pitched the wort. Turned out fine.
    However, to that above poster, I would suggest that the mold was possibly already present somewhere in the fermenter. Of course, it's always possible that airborne contamination occurs, at any stage.

    If It's not too late, I would consider it a big win that you dumped the 350ml of 200 F water onto the cake, because you killed maybe half the yeast, meaning as long as there is no infection, you are ready to pour some new wort on! The dead yeast will serve to nourish the new, budding yeast. Fresher than any available yeast "nutrient," and no overpitch.

    You can still save the yeast after this batch.
     
    #16 Push_the_limits, May 17, 2018
    Last edited: May 17, 2018
  17. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,445) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania

    Yeast can use parts of dead yeast cells as nutrients, which is why yeast hulls are included in some nutrient mixes. Yeast hulls, by the way, are not whole yeast cells, but I digress. Half a yeast cake's worth of dead cells is a sh*tload of decaying, autolysis prone cells. There's no way I would recommend pitching onto that.
     
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  18. PortLargo

    PortLargo Devotee (421) Oct 19, 2012 Florida

    IMO a better method than pitching on a yeast cake or rinsing/washing is to make your new starter around 1/3 more than what you need. Then pour off this excess and store for next brew day. Often I'll use the final runnings (free wort) and re-start what I just poured off and get somewhere around 60 - 100B cells to store. Overall this is easier to manage sanitation and almost no effort except for an extra dab of DME.
     
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  19. wspscott

    wspscott Champion (853) May 25, 2006 Kentucky

    Or maybe he killed 90% of the yeast, there is no easy way to know
     
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  20. GreenKrusty101

    GreenKrusty101 Crusader (706) Dec 4, 2008 Nevada

    Pitch on the whole fucking cake...prove to me that potential 100% over-pitching is detrimental.
     
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  21. Prep8611

    Prep8611 Aspirant (234) Aug 22, 2014 New Jersey

    I just like splitting the cake into three different pitches cause I’m a cheap bastard... is that a problem krustyman?
     
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  22. GreenKrusty101

    GreenKrusty101 Crusader (706) Dec 4, 2008 Nevada

    Not at all if you are frugal/fastidious and want to store 2/3 of your yeast for a rainy day :slight_smile:
     
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  23. Prep8611

    Prep8611 Aspirant (234) Aug 22, 2014 New Jersey

    I want to store it for two rainy days :wink:
     
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  24. GreenKrusty101

    GreenKrusty101 Crusader (706) Dec 4, 2008 Nevada

    You'll need all of it and more if not used immediately...the whole point for me is brewing on back-to-back weeks so I don't have to make a starter to revive my yeasties :grin:
     
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  25. Prep8611

    Prep8611 Aspirant (234) Aug 22, 2014 New Jersey

    I make a small starter with some extra wort if slurry is in the fridge for more than a week. Not trying to change your mind on What works for you.
     
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  26. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Disciple (370) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    Lol.-and it's all over yeast, lol. Guess I have done all of the above, dumped on the cake, washed and or saved in multipal bottles and not saved at all.

    Like Prepper says, what ever works.