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New Twist on PF Tek....aka "Loose cake tek"


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#1 -=Zeus=-

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Posted 10 November 2009 - 06:54 PM

My first experience with pf cakes was a disaster. I nocced them with multispore at the end of June, and about half way through they stalled....for week after week after week. In fact, I'd already started a LC, nocced some grain, and had fruiting trays before the cakes were ready. Finally I realized that they could not get any fae at all. They had regular jar lids with 3 silicone ports, but no air to them...eventually, I loosened the lids and they did take off again, but they didn't do well and only produced a few shrooms then contammed.

So, I decided to do it differently this time. On 10-19 I nocced 3 jars with an established LC of GT's. I also nocced 2 jars with a brand new LC of Texas. There was hardly any mycelia in the Texas jar, had to watch it suck it up...

But here is where I changed tactics. I did not use any verm layer at the top like usual. I left an inch or two of air space at the top. For lids, I just used jar bands that secured a double layer of tyvek. When my jars were pc'd, as soon as they were cool enough to handle, I shook the cakes all apart really well, then nocced with about 2cc of LC. Then I shook the jars up very well again, then packed them with the palm of my hand. Within a day or two, I noticed mycelia starting from all over the jars. They were not even in a very warm environment, probably around 70 or so the first 6 or 7 days. The last few days I put them in a cooler with a heat bomb at around 80. As expected, the GT's were finished first because they had a strong culture. The Texans lagged behind a bit. The GT's were ready to fruit 4 or 5 days earlier but I didn't fruit them until the Texans were ready. When I fruited them, I dbl end cased them with damp verm. The Texans have fruited well, but oddly no pins yet on the GT's. But for 22 days from noc til these pics is pretty good.

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#2 libertaire

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Posted 10 November 2009 - 07:57 PM

Looks good man.

Another thing you could do to speed up time of cakes is if you're using plastic containers of some sort, break up the mycelium once the jars are about 30-50% colonized, like people do for grain jars. Not really applicable here, but thought I should mention it, I've seem some really speedy results that way.

#3 Hippie3

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Posted 10 November 2009 - 08:08 PM

verm helps trigger pinning.
the extra air helps growth,
but i think if i were you
i'd toss in at least a little verm
to help pinning.

#4 GadgetGuy

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Posted 10 November 2009 - 08:10 PM

I've been waiting to see the results of you research Zeus! Looks like it's working well for you. :headbang::amazed:

#5 mycowarrier

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Posted 10 November 2009 - 08:21 PM

Yep i like loosely packed jars and shaking the jars while still very hot really helps to break it up. I use thick cotton gloves and shake as soon as the pressure is released. Works well for invitro also.

#6 copelandiaKidd

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Posted 10 November 2009 - 09:59 PM

interesting tek brother!!! thanx for that!

#7 libertaire

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 08:51 AM

Quick question though. Overall the method looks pretty good, but wouldn't packing the substrate down after you inoculate be detrimental? Isn't it more efficient to leave the jars shaken up, since the mycelium likes a loose environment, or would that make things TOO loose? Unless I'm just misunderstanding what you said.

#8 MLBjammer

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 08:59 AM

That is an interesting experiment, Zeus. My main concern would be the colonizing substrate drying out too much--as tyvek allows a great deal of air through. You might partially tape your lids with duct tape and see if that makes any difference next time.

#9 -=Zeus=-

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 02:29 PM

Quick question though. Overall the method looks pretty good, but wouldn't packing the substrate down after you inoculate be detrimental? Isn't it more efficient to leave the jars shaken up, since the mycelium likes a loose environment, or would that make things TOO loose? Unless I'm just misunderstanding what you said.


I didn't pack them real tight, just a few times on the palm of my hand like you would do to a pack of cigs...

#10 -=Zeus=-

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 02:32 PM

That is an interesting experiment, Zeus. My main concern would be the colonizing substrate drying out too much--as tyvek allows a great deal of air through. You might partially tape your lids with duct tape and see if that makes any difference next time.


Yeah, that would probably work even better....its still a work in progress. The first cakes done were the GT's, and I should have birthed them right away. They seem to still be very moist when taken out of the jars. The way I judged them as done, was when i could shake the cake loose in the jar. The tops do shrink up a bit, due to moisture loss probably.

#11 tenjin

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 09:00 PM

Yep that's probably why the first jars stalled because of the silicone ports, probably would have grew normally without using silicone in the holes on lids and with a verm layer ontop of cake. Pretty interesting using just the jar bands with tyvek and no verm layer though!

#12 P4ulada

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 09:06 PM

Nice did!
Congratz ^^

#13 -=Zeus=-

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Posted 15 November 2009 - 03:56 PM

The 3 GT cakes never pinned the first time, so after the Texas cakes finished I dunked all 5 for several hours. Round 2 for the Texans, and 1st flush for the GT's is coming up....here are some pics from today.

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#14 MLBjammer

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Posted 17 November 2009 - 11:27 AM

Those look very healthy, and they are pinning nicely. Thanks for sharing the pictures.

Good vibes for many big fruits!

#15 P4ulada

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Posted 17 November 2009 - 11:50 AM

Hell yeah man, it´s pinning nicely!
But some shrooms seem to open the caps pretty soon (while it´s not too big) =/
And if you raise the "dark period"?

Congratz!

#16 -=Zeus=-

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 01:05 PM

A few more pics...

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#17 Leftover Salmon

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 01:36 PM

Great job Zeus. Thanks for sharing.

Got a few ?'s if you don't mind. I didn't notice any holes in your tub, is there just some in the lid?

Is that first cake in the above pic Tex?

Lastly, what ya got going in the surrender mug?

#18 -=Zeus=-

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 04:55 PM

Great job Zeus. Thanks for sharing.

Got a few ?'s if you don't mind. I didn't notice any holes in your tub, is there just some in the lid?

No holes in the tub, just fan it a few times a day and mist it when needed.

Is that first cake in the above pic Tex?

Yes! So far I love the Tex! The others are GT

Lastly, what ya got going in the surrender mug?

A few leftover grains on pcorn tex style with a little castings and coir...got some primordia and a few little pins forming now ;)



#19 Rhyno

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 07:19 PM

Nice job man. :eusa_clap

#20 Shroomette

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 07:54 PM

Excellent job MrZeus.:eusa_clap :heart:




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