Which Tek?

Nan's Nook: Archives: Misc Teks & Questions: Simple Cubie Tek: PF - Tek for Dummies: Which Tek?
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By exile (Exile) on Saturday, January 26, 2002 - 02:59 am:

Okay, I've never grown mushrooms before, and I'm not sure which method I should use.

I plan to have a rubbermaid tub inside a 27" wide by 16" tall space, transluscent sides with plexiglass window on top. I'm however wondering which tek I should use, I can't seem to locate half pint canning jars anywhere, so I was debating over 1pint teks (I can get widemouth 1pint jars)...

My first question - is it possible to grow invitro in one pint jars? It seems to me as if it'd be possible - if I'm thinking of the right thing. For invitro you just never birth the cakes...right? They just stay in their jars with the right temperature, lids still on, and shrooms grow smashed against the jar? I might have to do that, if all else fails.

Also, I noticed the 50/50 tek says you're supposed to slice your cakes into slices. Since I can't get half pint jars, couldn't I just take a ready to be birthed cake and cut it right down the center? Seems like each side would be a half pint :)

Sorry if this makes no sense, I lose track of my thoughts so quickly


By onediadem (Onediadem) on Saturday, January 26, 2002 - 03:05 am:

Someone mentioned putting dry verm. in the bottom of pint jars to make half pints. worked great for me.(Sorry I cant remember who!)
good luck,

By Stewie (Stew) on Saturday, January 26, 2002 - 03:18 am:

Invitro is easy and you get a large yield for the space used.

By Imok Urok2 (Imok) on Saturday, January 26, 2002 - 04:00 am:

Hey exile,
You could make a pf cake in the 1 pint jar, birth
the cake and cut it in 1/2 cross the middle and
put each half, ala chronic007 tek with a pvc
riser, into its own 1 pint jar to fruit.
Just an idea.
Hope it helps :)

By exile (Exile) on Saturday, January 26, 2002 - 04:15 am:

Thanks for the ideas and suggestions... - I've just read over the Casing for Dummies document (http://www.nansnook.com/teks/hongus.htm), and feel as if it would be a great way to grow shrooms for me, because it doesn't really matter how large the jars are, as long as you have enough crumbled cake to evenly go across the tub. Waha.

That's a good idea, Imok - I've read Chronic007's thread where the tek is really discussed, sounds pretty good. My only challenge now is pressure cooker! I'm a poor student - and I've read mixed things about filling up a pot so the water level is half way up the sides of jars and boiling for an hour or so... but that seems to be my only option unless I can obtain a really cheap PC.

I guess if I can't find a pressure cooker for under 50 bucks that actually functions well - I'll have to boil the jars. However one thing that mystifies me is the comment in several teks including bits about boiling jars is placing something beneath the bottom of the pot and your jars. Some reccomend using a rag.. but is it okay to have a rag in boiling water?

Thanks in advanced for any further replies!


By Fishy1 (Fishy1) on Saturday, January 26, 2002 - 04:20 am:

You could put wads of foil or some of the rings for the lids under the jars, too.
Check ebay for cheap p/c. Definately have em for under 50 bucks.
Good luck, fishy1

By Ron (Clubbenguy) on Saturday, January 26, 2002 - 04:33 am:

You can get a good pressure cooker at walmart for $40.00. I was there yesterday.

By Imok Urok2 (Imok) on Saturday, January 26, 2002 - 07:45 am:

Or keep an eye out for PC's in garage sales/flea mkts/thrift shops.
I think there is a discussion on PCs in the archives.
Yes, a rag is ok.
You just want to keep the jar from touching the bottom or sides of the pot.
Hope this helps :)

By Imok Urok2 (Imok) on Sunday, January 27, 2002 - 01:31 am:

Just an update,
I was at a flea mkt today and saw two presto 6qt
PCs for $10.00 each.
One was an old style and looked like it needed
its safety replaced.
I had been looking at PCs and canning equipment
at a local hardware store.
They had a replacement kit for the rubber ring
and the safety so you could fix that if you had to.
The kit was around $6.00
Unless you are going for quantity production a
six qt PC should be fine.
Hope this helps :)

By jim brown (Shrhobbyist) on Sunday, January 27, 2002 - 02:33 am:

Exile, regular pots work fine for regular PF tek sterilizing. Make sure to put a rag under the jars before boiling for one hour (the rag will be fine in the pot). Otherwise the jars are likely to crack. Invirto is a great method but if you are using full pint jars the cakes can be very difficult to get out of the jars when they have shrooms on them.

Pam, did you fill the pint jars half way up with verm and then put a 1/2 pint of substrate on top of that? I had suggested that about two months ago, it has worked well for me. If so, I'm glad it worked for you. Actually I'm glad it worked for you where-ever you got the idea from. By the way, when I do that, I put some tin foil between the 1/2 pint of verm and the 1/2 pint of substrate so the verm doesn't soak up any of the substrate's water. Also, I put a bit of verm on top of the foil because it is hard to tell if the bottom has completely colonized as you can't see the bottom of the substrate.

By onediadem (Onediadem) on Sunday, January 27, 2002 - 04:26 am:

Yup Jim, must have been your post I read. I did the aluminum foil between the layers too. Worked like a charm, thank you!!

By An guy (Boomer) on Sunday, January 27, 2002 - 04:32 am:

>>filling up a pot so the water level is half way up the sides of jars

don't fill a pot up that much with water- you'll take a chance on drowning the lower jars. just about 1/4 or 1/3 or so up the bottom jars, if even that much- what is doing the work is the steam, and that much water will make plenty of steam. on the flip side, don't boil the water dry, either.

if you do fill that much, use a lower boil, and go longer. it will also take longer to heat the additional water.