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Old 11-13-2012, 01:32 PM   #1
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Default Coolship build

I've had some good success so far with spontaneous batches, so I'm attempting a new project.

I'm going to be attempting a coolship build this weekend. Going to make a stainless tub, 22 guage ss, 24 x 36 x 8" high with an NPT drain in the corner. Anyone have any ideas, thoughts, etc? There aren't any threads for this AT ALL so I'm looking for input. Thanks!

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Old 11-13-2012, 01:44 PM   #2
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I read an old BYO article about building an open fermenter recently, here: http://www.byo.com/stories/projects-...enter-projects

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Old 11-13-2012, 01:51 PM   #3
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That does look cool, but I would want to be able to clean everything well and I'm not convinced grout would be easy to do. Sounds like a trap for all things microbe.

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Old 11-13-2012, 03:18 PM   #4
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Very cool. Post some pictures of the process and how it turns out. I've heard of some people building a wood "box" and then lining it with thinner metal to save on cost.

I think I'd prefer copper over stainless. I know its expensive, but maybe doing the above would help with that?

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Old 11-13-2012, 03:43 PM   #5
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I've got a friend who can get a sheet of stainless at cost. Why would you use copper? I can't see any advantage other than thermal conductivity... and I wouldn't want to risk oxidation of any kind, ever.

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Old 11-13-2012, 04:10 PM   #6
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You can't be too concerned about oxidation of your beer and a cool ship. You are, after all, exposing your beer to a large surface of air.

I've had mixed results with wild fermentation but if I were going to build a coolship I'd go with stainless steel myself, just for ease of cleaning. It's more obvious when steel is dirty than copper IMO. I'd also probably build a fairly small coolship and only open expose part of the beer and then let that portion inoculate the rest but if you have the space to coolship the whole batch why not.

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Old 11-13-2012, 04:14 PM   #7
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I'm more concerned about the copper oxidation, not the beer. Obviously I want the beer exposed. I will be using stainless. So far I've had great results with the wild fermentations I've done.
This will be a coolship for a 'comfortable' 10-15 gallons, so that can either be the whole batch or part of a larger 45 gallon batch (I've got the Blichman-55).
Thanks for the advice.

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Old 11-13-2012, 04:27 PM   #8
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Copper is a natural antimicrobial surface. Its what Cantillon and others use. Its not going to sterilize your wort, but it will help keep it clean in between uses. Also, I think there is some minerals the beer picks up from copper? Not sure on that though.

Probably not that big of a deal either way...

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Old 11-13-2012, 04:36 PM   #9
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Also, some food for thought. When I was considering doing a coolship (and hopefully still will some day), I thought doing a "swimming pool" design would be best. Having a sloping bottom and a drain at the "deep end". This would allow for variable fill levels, which would be good if you ever wanted to use it for a 5 gallon batch as well as a 10/15 batch.

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Old 11-13-2012, 05:49 PM   #10
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I like the swimming pool idea, that's a good one. I'll see how much welding/cutting I feel like doing. The other (budget) option in my mind would be to just tilt it several inches or put a wedge under one side - I don't plan on having it on a stand, just on a tabletop.

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