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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Thermometers
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Old 07-26-2005, 12:12 AM   #1
DuallyBrew
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Default Thermometers

Well, while brewing my first batch my Polder thermometer took a dump. It was registering over 150 while sitting on my counter! So now I have a nice, expensive kithen timer

Any insight on good thermometers? I need something good for testing the temp during the boil, etc (so something in an instant read variaty would be good)...

What about testing the temp during fermentation? What do you guys do?

Obviously I can go out ad shop/buy something, but I'd like some insight into anything you guys have used and would either avoid or recommend.

Thanks!

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Old 07-26-2005, 12:50 AM   #2
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You need to test the temp during the boil? Isn't it generally going to be 100C, or, if you prefer the more exciting/confusing/stimulating English measurement, 212F? Wort really can't get much hotter than that before it becomes steam, what with the laws of physics and all...but maybe you mean measuring the temp up to boil, in which case I recommend welding a threaded nipple into your kettle and getting one of those dial thermometers with a metal probe that screws into the nipple.

Hmm...that was sort of racy language for a beer post...hope I don't get censored

As far as fermenter temps, I don't bother personally, but they make those little sticker type thermometers that go on the side of the carboy (the outside...I'd never risk your beer by sticking a thermometer into it.) The best way to control temps in fermentors is to control the environment they are in. Build a cool box, put a thermostat on a chest freezer...something like that. That's your best bet by far.

For mash thermometers, get a non-glass one (another threaded metal probe thermometer with a welded nipple is a great option)...you always end up stirring the mash around with it, and there's nothing so lame as breaking a mercury thermometer in the mash and going through the whole...hmm...it's *really* not salvageable?

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Old 07-26-2005, 01:54 AM   #3
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Hehehe... Yeah up to boil, smartass ;-)

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Old 07-26-2005, 02:02 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Janx
...I recommend welding a threaded nipple into your kettle and getting one of those dial thermometers with a metal probe that screws into the nipple....

As far as fermenter temps, I don't bother personally, but they make those little sticker type thermometers that go on the side of the carboy (the outside...I'd never risk your beer by sticking a thermometer into it.) The best way to control temps in fermentors is to control the environment they are in. Build a cool box, put a thermostat on a chest freezer...something like that. That's your best bet by far.
Couldn't have said it better. The Polder thermometer probes are extreeeeeeeemly delicate. I've toasted 2 myself, and that was just for regular kichen cooking. The bi-metal type (the metal probe Janx mentioned) is very durable and fairly quick reading. You can even calibrate them if they start to wander a bit. Check out www.stpats.com under Test Equipment/Thermometers and scroll down to the bi-metal ones. This is the cheapest I've seen these. If you want something a little less "permanent", try this: http://www.williamsbrewing.com/AB160...D=546&CATID=18 This is a great little jewel to have around the brewery. I even bought an extra one for the kitchen.

And again, Janx nailed it on the ferment temperature. Don't put a thermometer in your beer! I've had good luck with the stick on type thermometers. If you brew infrequently, or have varying ambient conditions in your fermenter space, this can be a real help to keep an eye on your fermenter temperature.

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Old 07-26-2005, 03:38 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tnlandsailor
Couldn't have said it better. The Polder thermometer probes are extreeeeeeeemly delicate. I've toasted 2 myself, and that was just for regular kichen cooking.

I read on another forum for a possible fix for those temp probes.....just take the probe off and put the entire thing in the oven for 30 minutes at 350°.
Mine needed an hour in there but if it didn't fix it! It is now accurate with my other thermometers to within 2 degrees!
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Old 07-26-2005, 04:02 PM   #6
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I'm going to have to try that.

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