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Old 12-09-2008, 03:51 PM   #1
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Default Whats the best Temperature controller for fermentation temp controlling?

I'm going to use a mini-fridge and build it into a fermentation chamber. We've spent so much money on brewing gear, it seems kind of rediculous not to spend another 100 bucks to control our fermentation temps. That being said, I've seen people using Ranco and Johnson controllers. Obviously I'll need a two stage controller to turn the fridge and fans on and off as well as the heating pad. What are your suggestions? Is it just a matter of preference or is one superior to the other?

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Old 12-09-2008, 04:00 PM   #2
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Not sure if a two stage is necessary, but I use the analog Johnson and it does swimmingly for me.

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Old 12-09-2008, 04:09 PM   #3
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I just posted in your wanted thread as well....

but I am in your situation as well. I need cooling in the summer and for lagering, but need heating for my ales in winter.

I will be getting this:

Dwyer Instruments - Series TSS2

I will be getting the TSS2-2100



and the TS-5

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Old 12-09-2008, 04:26 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyangler18 View Post
Not sure if a two stage is necessary, but I use the analog Johnson and it does swimmingly for me.
so do it and it's worked very well for me.
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Old 12-09-2008, 05:44 PM   #5
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Quote:
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Not sure if a two stage is necessary, but I use the analog Johnson and it does swimmingly for me.
do you use both a heater and a refrigerator to control your temps?
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Old 12-09-2008, 05:47 PM   #6
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do you use both a heater and a refrigerator to control your temps?
Nope, just a fridge. Lowest my basement ever gets in the dead of winter is 58-60 and tops off at 70-72 during the hottest parts of August. Inside my fermentation cabinet, I can hit perfect ale ferm temps all year long with controlling refrigeration.
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Old 12-09-2008, 05:48 PM   #7
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As the days got colder, I just swapped out my single stage Johnson for dual. Works great, but if you want something pre-wired your choices are pretty much limited to the Ranco two stage. I was thinking of going to a Love controller, but the pre-wired Ranco is super easy - just plug and go. In the meantime, I found that the digital Johnson and Ranco are almost interchangable. Best price I found was here:

Ranco ETC-211000-000: 2 Stage Prewired Temperature Controller - The

Gordie.

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Old 12-09-2008, 05:53 PM   #8
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I like the way John Beere wired his temp-control to override the fridges thermostat such that all the other features of the fridge worked normally (i.e., the defrost cycle, lights, etc.) That is what I will be doing with the Love.

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Old 12-09-2008, 05:59 PM   #9
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I can't see using a heater and a fridge at the same time. What would be the point?

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Old 12-09-2008, 06:04 PM   #10
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They would not be ON at the same time, but for $20 extra dollars you get a single controller patched into your fridge such that the defrost cycle and all other features of the fridge work and you can have a heating element in there. This way, to set any temp, you just hit a couple arrows and the chamber does the rest. If it needs heat, it activates the heating element, if it needs cooling, it powers the fridge.

You could do it other ways, visa vi, have an outlet in the fridge and switch modes/plug in a heater or some other solution. This is just easier, cleaner, and more professional looking and feeling IMHO.

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