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Old 02-05-2008, 10:58 AM   #11
Gammon N Beer
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I bottled my Kosch last week and now am finishing an Alt using the lagering tank explained here: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=47986

It works extremly well in my garage. Some of the ambient temps in my area were -20F last week, although my garage did not go so low.



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Old 02-05-2008, 12:06 PM   #12
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I built a simple insulated box out of 50mm (2") styrofoam sheets and a roll of duct-tape. I covered the inside with a layer of aluminum foil to keep out the sunlight.

My box is pretty big (I have a huge balcony) so I can fit three buckets/carboys without problem. Since it gets really cold up here I also added a cheap 200W heater (frost guard) and a styrofoam divider so I can have one batch fermenting and two in lower temp conditioning.

H



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Old 02-05-2008, 12:32 PM   #13
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Definitely insulate and shield from light. Go down to the fish market (near the mall)where they discard lots of large styrofoam cartons, get some duct tape and you should be good to go. I 'm in maryland and serve beer out a really cold cellar room. Temps are 40-50 all winter, great serve temps. Good luck

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Old 02-05-2008, 01:54 PM   #14
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I agree that an insulated box is probably the best way to go. I'd also suggest doing something to prevent freezing. I came across a cheap device on clearance at Lowes that looked a little like a timer. It's intended use was to plug a lamp into it and set the temperature knob to 40 or 50ºF so that if your heater was broke while you were away, the neighbors would see the light on and call you. It actually said that on the package but my neighbors would sooner shoot the light out with a BB gun before calling me (but I digress). Anyway, if you plugged a 20 watt bulb into this thing, it would provide enough heat to keep the interior temp up to say 40. It was only $16 so much cheaper than a typical controller.

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Old 02-05-2008, 05:40 PM   #15
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I wired a cheap furnace thermostat to a light bulb. I use it in an old non-working fridge that sits outside. I can set and hold just about any temp I want. I think I spent $25 or so on the thermostat, light socket and lamp cord. I don't see why you couldn't build a box out of foam insulation to cover the carboy and use the lightbulb method for heating. Another option for heating it, would be to set your carboy on top of an electric heating pad and then cover it whole thing with a blanket or foam box.

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Old 02-05-2008, 08:16 PM   #16
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Great suggestions on the insulation, thanks! I think I'll take balto charlie's advice and check out the fish market.

Unfortunately I don't have any power outlets outside, so I probably can't do anything electrical. I'm not sure how worried I should be about the beer freezing, though, with average daily highs close to 50 -- it seems like it'd take many hours at a pretty cold temperature for 5 gallons to freeze (especially once insulated).

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Old 02-05-2008, 08:33 PM   #17
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I got myself a big 36 gallon plastic tub from Home Depot and filled it with water. I think that should take care of most of the temp fluctuation.

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Old 02-05-2008, 09:12 PM   #18
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This is what I came up with while falling asleep. I just noticed you can't do electric stuff outside, but here's a try.

Yay, MSpaint!



Of course you'd have to use a more stable large vessel.... I'm just lazy.



...

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Old 02-05-2008, 09:13 PM   #19
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Goshdran it!! Gammon beat me to it!



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