Pitching rate calculator

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Pitching rate calculator

Postby billvelek » Thu Jan 25, 2007 1:22 pm

I just came across this website link that was provided to me in another brewing forum: http://www.mrmalty.com/calc/calc.html

This is for a "Pitching Rate Calculator" to help determine how much yeast to pitch for a batch, based upon type of brew, original gravity, batch volume, and even yeast viability based on production date. A user can select from liquid or dry yeast, or even repitching a yeast slurry. I haven't used it yet, and have no idea how accurate or useful it will be. I just wanted to bring this to everyone's attention, including Jeff and Lathe, in case this is something that they could add to BTP. Obviously, we can all use that online calculator, but my thoughts for why it would be good to be incorporated into BTP is that information from that would then appear in BTP recipes and session records. Moreover, I've been brewing for a good ten years or more, and I was completely unaware of this, so I'm sure there are many others like me out there; in that event, many current and future owners of BTP would probably remain ignorant of this tool unless it were incorporated into BTP. I don't know how difficult it would be, but unless ProMash, etc., have this feature, that would be one more feature to place BTP ahead of the pack. I'd be very interested in seeing some feedback from any brewers here who have used that or something similar. Thanks.

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Postby bzwrxbz » Thu Jan 25, 2007 1:58 pm

That is a nice website. I think Jamil put a lot of time into it, so I am not sure if much/any of it can be incorporated into BTP.

But, I am sure some sort of rudimentary type of starter info can be put into BTP, based on well known info, published yeast information.

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i use this calculator for pitching

Postby warthog » Thu Jan 25, 2007 2:13 pm

it works well. before i used the calc, i would occasionally get slow fermentation, especially on bigger beers (1.070+).

i would really like to have this as a btp feature.
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Postby Speyedr » Thu Jan 25, 2007 2:59 pm

The calculator on Mrmalty is awesome. I've used it since he put it up there and I live by it now. My starters are better, they don't ferment out and waste the stores the yeast have built up, they just grow more yeast.

He gives the math on his site and it is not difficult to know how many cells you would need for a given volume at a given gravity. The tough part as I understand it is in calculating the resulting yeast counts for a given starter. You have to take into account starter size, gravity and pitch rate (number of vials or packs), not to mention whether it is on a stirplate or just in a growler, and if you're adding O2, etc.

You could just ignore those factors and ball park it though, and you'd still have info that is more useful than "make a starter".

If this were in BTP I would really consider buying it, even without a trial version...maybe :lol:
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More on Mr. Malty calculator

Postby billvelek » Thu Jan 25, 2007 3:05 pm

The main reason I'll continue to discuss the Mr. Malty calculator here in this forum/thread rather than in another forum on BT.com is that it might give Jeff and Lathe some ideas in case they decide to try to include such a calculator as a feature.

First, while admittedly there are many variables and people need to learn how to brew beer (and make starters) independent of BTP, I think such a calculator in BTP could be made a bit more helpful and probably more accurate than what Mr. Malty has done.

Take liquid yeasts, for instance. There are MANY available, and I have tried only a few, so I don't know if there is necessarily a standard yeast count that uniformly applies to all of them. I'm all out of smack-packs right now, so I don't know and can't recall what info is provided on them; they require a starter. On the other hand, I have a vial of "White Labs Pitchable Liquid Yeast", and it does NOT require a starter because the directions state to just add it to a 5 gallon batch unless it is past its 'best before' date, or the O.G. is over 1.070, in which case an 'activator' (starter) is recommended. It does not state the yeast count anywhere on the vial, but assuming yeast counts vary for liquid yeasts, then whenever such information happens to be available (maybe eventually from the BTP yeast database), then there should be a way to enter the beginning yeast count in the calculator. Presently Mr. Malty refers to packs and vials generically, when in fact they are obviously different (smack-pack requires a starter while vial doesn't), and quite possibly differ between laboratories, too.

I'd also like to see some way of entering into the calculator the number of steps used to step up the starter, and maybe even a reverse function that would tell you that for your intended batch (O.G. and volume) and for your initial yeast count, that you need to step it up to such and such size which will typically take 'X' number of steps or days using a stir plate, etc. Right now I'm using a low gravity mix with yeast nutrient that I double each time it quits venting CO2. This has been sheer guesswork on my part, although it has worked just fine. On the other hand, what off flavors am I contributing to my beer?

Under Mr. Malty's 'Repitching from Slurry' tab, I think extra user input might make it more accurate, such as some way to indicate how 'exhausted' the yeast might be, i.e., what was the gravity and pitching rate for the previous batch, etc.

Just a few thoughts.

Cheers.

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Re: More on Mr. Malty calculator

Postby Speyedr » Thu Jan 25, 2007 3:16 pm

billvelek wrote:I'm all out of smack-packs right now, so I don't know and can't recall what info is provided on them; they require a starter. On the other hand, I have a vial of "White Labs Pitchable Liquid Yeast", and it does NOT require a starter because the directions state to just add it to a 5 gallon batch unless it is past its 'best before' date, or the O.G. is over 1.070, in which case an 'activator' (starter) is recommended.


The Wyeast product also states that it does not require a starter. However, I have heard interviews with both Chris White from White Labs and David Logsdon (sp?) from Wyeast. The common response is that they make a product that CAN be pitched into 5gal of wort and ferment out a good beer. "Good" is the operative word here. They both admit that if you want to step up to GREAT and AWARD WINNING, starters are necessary as is a good understanding of how much to pitch.

Also, MrMalty has cell counts for these products on his main page. I'm a new user so a link won't work yet (good SPAM protection, I agree), but if you go to the main page and click on the second link down it will take you to the explanation of the numbers involved including cell counts.

As an FYI the interviews are available on The Brewing Network Archive page or through Itunes. Both interviews are very informative.

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Mr. Malty website

Postby billvelek » Thu Jan 25, 2007 3:59 pm

Just checked out the entire website. Very interesting. Looks like the calculator is something relatively new, so that probably explains why I had never heard of it. Very interesting article on his whirlpool immersion chiller. I still use an immersion chiller, but have been wanting to go to a CFC and hopback; now I'm reconsidering and think I'll try his method first.

As for yeast counts and his calculator, Jamil points out that different yeast strains are different sizes, and therefore the yeast count from the same lab can vary (e.g., he states that White Labs can vary from 70 to 120 billion cells; that is the type of info that might be accumulated in the BTP database and used in a calculator). Lots of other good info there that might give Jeff and Lathe a starting point in any research they'd need to do; I'm NOT suggesting that they copy his work.

Jeff and Lathe, I realize that with so many variables that it would probably be impossible to write a calculator that would be 100% accurate, but I think it would be reasonable and understandable by users if you made certain basic assumptions based on averages or typical results for some variables in order to come up with a calculator that would be reasonably good and useable. I really hope you will consider doing this.

Thanks.

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Postby just-cj » Thu Jan 25, 2007 7:22 pm

Since a vast majority of homebrewers underpitch, having some kind of pitching calculator would make BTP a hell-of-a-lot beter, in my opinion. Anything that can advance the hobby!

And Jamil's calculator is the bomb!!!
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any further comments

Postby conman » Wed Apr 22, 2009 9:18 am

I just wondered if I missed anything regarding this kind of feature being added to the program., anyone know if it could or might be added later.
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Re: any further comments

Postby jeff » Wed Apr 22, 2009 9:50 am

conman wrote:I just wondered if I missed anything regarding this kind of feature being added to the program., anyone know if it could or might be added later.


I would like to add a pitching rate calculator but there are a few things that are ahead of it on the todo list. Session recording is pretty high on the priority list closely followed by recipe uploading. Development may seem to have slowed recently but this is partly because I have been working on the new beertools.com website. Thanks for hangin in there. :)
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Re: any further comments

Postby conman » Wed Apr 22, 2009 12:43 pm

jeff wrote:
conman wrote:I just wondered if I missed anything regarding this kind of feature being added to the program., anyone know if it could or might be added later.


I would like to add a pitching rate calculator but there are a few things that are ahead of it on the todo list. Session recording is pretty high on the priority list closely followed by recipe uploading. Development may seem to have slowed recently but this is partly because I have been working on the new beertools.com website. Thanks for hangin in there. :)



Thats cool, I am in the process of starting up a real (albeit) tiny commercial brewery and much of my process will be guided by this software.
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Re: any further comments

Postby jeff » Wed Apr 22, 2009 6:33 pm

conman wrote:Thats cool, I am in the process of starting up a real (albeit) tiny commercial brewery and much of my process will be guided by this software.


Lets us know how it goes :D
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Postby jawbox » Wed Apr 22, 2009 8:27 pm

Thats cool con. You;ll have to post info on your new venture so we can all check it out.

Session recording would be awesome
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New Brewery...

Postby conman » Thu Apr 23, 2009 10:57 am

jawbox wrote:Thats cool con. You;ll have to post info on your new venture so we can all check it out.

Session recording would be awesome


well the buliding is finished, the inspections have been done and the Alabama dept. of environmental mgmt. is working on waste water treatment tests.
you can check My website at www.chattahoocheebrewingcompany.com
I'll keep you posted on the progress....
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