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Old 02-02-2013, 03:13 AM   #1
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Default Copper for thermowell

I'm going to wrap a keg in heat tape and put it in my keezer so that i can ferment while serving.

I want to use a thermowell to control the beer temp. I have a coil of soft copper lying around. Is it ok to leave submerged for weeks? I suppose stainless is best but what is the practical disadvantage of copper?

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Old 02-02-2013, 03:30 AM   #2
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I believe I've heard that the lower pH of beer will start to leach the copper in to the beer. Too much copper can lead to copper poisoning. I wouldn't recommend it. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.

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Old 02-02-2013, 02:55 PM   #3
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+1 Copper exposure is not good in a ferment. SS or glass is OK. Measuring the outside of the vessel might be OK too.

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Old 02-02-2013, 03:54 PM   #4
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I'm going to have heat tape wrapped around the outside so i cant really measure the outside temp. I just need a thermowell that i can dangle down one of the keg post holes. If i had a sensor that was for sure waterproof i could just hang the cord down into the beer.

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Old 02-02-2013, 06:34 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BetterSense View Post
I'm going to have heat tape wrapped around the outside so i cant really measure the outside temp. I just need a thermowell that i can dangle down one of the keg post holes. If i had a sensor that was for sure waterproof i could just hang the cord down into the beer.
Taping to the outside, then insulating will work as long as the probe is a few inches away from the heat source, and a few inches below the liquid level. For your current situation, this should work as good as a thermowell. For traditional fermenting in a fridge/freezer (cooling or heating internal ambient), taping the probe to the outside and insulating actually works better than a thermowell.
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Old 02-02-2013, 06:37 PM   #6
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Make sure that the heat tape is not of the self regulating type. The stuff for pipes usually is set to heat to a certain temp

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Old 02-02-2013, 07:37 PM   #7
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I'm going to use flexwatt heat tape which is the same as fermwrap. I guess i could put a strip of heat tape on one side of the corny and tape my sensor to the other side. If i insulate the whole thing it may work but i think the cool freezer air will affect it even under the insulation.

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Old 02-02-2013, 09:42 PM   #8
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It turns out i had an old racking cane that i never use since i got an auto-siphon. I was able to heat the end up with a torch and smoosh it shut. Plastic isn't very conductive but i think it will be enough for a fermenter thermowell.

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Old 02-03-2013, 12:23 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BetterSense View Post
I'm going to use flexwatt heat tape which is the same as fermwrap. I guess i could put a strip of heat tape on one side of the corny and tape my sensor to the other side. If i insulate the whole thing it may work but i think the cool freezer air will affect it even under the insulation.
You would only want light insulation over the flex watt, and as much as you can manage over the probe. I assume you keezer is in the high 30's, so it will affect the sensor some, but not much and less the better you can insulate over the top of it.

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It turns out i had an old racking cane that i never use since i got an auto-siphon. I was able to heat the end up with a torch and smoosh it shut.
mmmmmm, BetterSense's Burnt Plastic Pale Ale. Include me out.
Seems like it would taste how Mardi Gras beads smell.
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Old 02-03-2013, 01:07 AM   #10
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I didnt burn the plastic just melt it. That's how they make buckets, racking canes, and better bottles in the first place...melting.

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