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Old 03-19-2009, 06:08 PM   #1
boodyrischous
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Default Best Refrigeration Unit for a Ferm. Chamber

I have read all of the threads I can find on fermentation chambers (and seen all of the pictures of the awesome builds people have done, SOF, Fermoire, Walk-ins, etc.). Some folks used Mini-fridges (stripped out guts or the open fridge build), some used AC units. I saw some conversation about Thermo-electric chillers. I also saw a posting about this unit- http://www.surpluscenter.com/pages/170.pdf (the mini-refrigeration unit). I am interested in building a nice cabinet to keep in the living room/ sunroom that would be very thickly insulated and would most likely be sized around 6' x 4' x 4'. Does anyone with HVAC knowledge know if the unit linked above would service my needs (which are keeping the chamber around 64 degrees). The tech guys on the surplus site were no help. If that unit won't work, what is the best unit for the job (I would rather get efficient electrical usage than cheaper purchase, and would rather buy something involving less stripping down or electrical work- I don't have wiring experience :/)? I also need a unit for a similar chamber that would be kept at 34 degrees. Ideas? Suggestion? Thanks!

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Old 03-19-2009, 06:35 PM   #2
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I've wondered about using the Peltier Heater/Coolers devices (same page) in a modified Son Of Ferm (insulated) chamber. I have periods of time (like now) where the temperature fluctuation is pretty big.

For example, the outside temp this week has been 70/48, until today now 55/40.

Indoors, temp ranges from 62 @ night to 71 day. I would like to get a little better control than that, both ways.

That refer looks good. 44lbs to ship;..

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Old 03-19-2009, 06:41 PM   #3
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Yeah, the shipping is about as much as the unit (but hey, if it works well, 40 dollars isn't bad, and the unit is already stripped down). The unit does mention a flexible cooling jacket, which I wasn't sure about. I am wondering if it only chills by touch, or if it could be used to chill a chamber.

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Old 03-19-2009, 07:35 PM   #4
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So, now it's got me thinking.... Hopefully someone with some Peltier experience will set me straight

I know that some people have had mixed results. For the sake of conversation, let's make the following assumptions.
1) I have a dual stage temp controller.
2) Enough of the proper power
3) The peltier junctions chosen meet the cooling/heating needs.

Here is what I am thinking - using 2 different peltiers/heat sinks. One for heating, one for cooling. I think this probably gives me about a 20* swing (meaning if I wanted to keep a ferm @ 67*, the outside could be 57*-77*) while keeping the temp at 67*. That would be great!

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Old 03-19-2009, 10:09 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lrr81765 View Post
So, now it's got me thinking.... Hopefully someone with some Peltier experience will set me straight

I know that some people have had mixed results. For the sake of conversation, let's make the following assumptions.
1) I have a dual stage temp controller.
2) Enough of the proper power
3) The peltier junctions chosen meet the cooling/heating needs.

Here is what I am thinking - using 2 different peltiers/heat sinks. One for heating, one for cooling. I think this probably gives me about a 20* swing (meaning if I wanted to keep a ferm @ 67*, the outside could be 57*-77*) while keeping the temp at 67*. That would be great!
Look at the 12 VDC Heating Cooling devices just below the mini refrigeration unit on that surpluscenter.com page linked above:

"When voltage
is applied one heatsink cools to 50° F,
other heatsink heats to 140° F after 15 minutes.
Changing polarity reverses action."

I have no idea how effective that would be, but it looks interesting.
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Old 03-19-2009, 10:49 PM   #6
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I would say there really is no reason to have two separate peltier units for heating and cooling, although it could depend on your temperature controller. The real beauty of a Peltier junction is that all you need to change from heating to cooling is to switch the current direction. As far as my experience goes, Peltier coolers are fairly inefficient and you will most likely be better served by a regular fridge in the long run. Cool project though, good luck.

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