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Old 06-08-2008, 06:25 PM   #1
bulleitb
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Default Temperature Control - (fermentation)

I am brewing a Hefeweizen today using the white labs hefeweizen yeast. My mini fridge wont go any higher than 57 degreees but if I turn it off it gets up to like 80 degrees. I know I can buy an external controller for the fridge but I havent made that investment yet. The question is what temp should I ferment this at? 57 or 80? I know neither is ideal but Im haveing a hard time making the decision on my own and need help from you guys.

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Old 06-08-2008, 06:27 PM   #2
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Room temp 68-70.

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Old 06-08-2008, 06:38 PM   #3
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I understand that thats where it should be but I dont run the AC when Im at work during the day and since its like 95 degrees outside right now it gets really hot in my apt. So its either 80 (room temp) or 57 (in the fridge). Thats my dilemma

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Old 06-09-2008, 01:26 AM   #4
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I don't know if this will be bad for the fridge but you could buy a house light timer for ~10 dollars and plug the fridge into it. Set the fridge for the coldest temp and set the timer to only run for 30 min a day. The fridge should stay below 80 degrees but not by much. It would run and cool the fridge for 30 min cooling it down and the insulation would keep it cool until the next cycle. Keep a thermometer in there and play with frequency and duration of the cycles until you get the temp you want. It wouldn't be amazingly constant but certainly good enough for the price.

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Old 06-09-2008, 02:02 AM   #5
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Brew a Kolsch.

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Old 06-09-2008, 02:05 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bulleitb View Post
I understand that thats where it should be but I dont run the AC when Im at work during the day and since its like 95 degrees outside right now it gets really hot in my apt. So its either 80 (room temp) or 57 (in the fridge). Thats my dilemma
Well, neither one of those will work with a hefe yeast. You could put the fermenter in a big cooler with water and frozen water bottles in it to try to get it to 65 degrees.
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Old 06-09-2008, 02:20 AM   #7
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Put your carboy in a cooler and add ice as needed to maintain 67F and you will make a good hefe. Go over 70F and it may not be so good. Is that yeast German WLP300 or American WLP320. The German one will make way too much Bananna esters above 70F.

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Old 06-09-2008, 02:23 AM   #8
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+1 on these ideas. I did it with my german ale. I actually put water into my brew kettle with a large piece of ice which I made in old ice cream buckets. I set my plastic fermenter in it. Worked well.

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Old 06-09-2008, 03:21 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bulleitb View Post
I am brewing a Hefeweizen today using the white labs hefeweizen yeast. My mini fridge wont go any higher than 57 degreees but if I turn it off it gets up to like 80 degrees. I know I can buy an external controller for the fridge but I havent made that investment yet. The question is what temp should I ferment this at? 57 or 80? I know neither is ideal but Im haveing a hard time making the decision on my own and need help from you guys.
ferment at 57 and use a strain like german ale or california (steam beer yeast) ale... they will do great...
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Old 06-09-2008, 01:26 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bulleitb View Post
I am brewing a Hefeweizen today using the white labs hefeweizen yeast. My mini fridge wont go any higher than 57 degreees but if I turn it off it gets up to like 80 degrees. I know I can buy an external controller for the fridge but I havent made that investment yet.
I am a Cheap Bastid and I think the investment in a $50 controller (Johnson, in my case) was a great investment. If you can spare the cash I'd get one on order. Makes brewing in Texas easy in summer (instead of being heartache).
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