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Old 04-02-2012, 08:45 PM   #1
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Default Fermentation Chamber - Chest or Upright Freezer

1st off I am new into home-brewing. After listening to quite a few episodes of Brew Strong, I am going to take Jamil's advice and focus on fermentation temperature control before anything else. I currently use the swamp cooler method, but my wife wants it out of the house and in the garage, which will soon be way too hot considering I live in Arizona. I decided on either a refriderator or freezer, leaning towards a freezer. The freezer/fridge will be in the garage so space is not an issue.

My first question is what size freezer should a purchase? I would to like to ferment at least two carboys at once. Does a larger freezer use much more energy than a smaller one, I don't think it would cost that much to hold temperature of air (unused space). Will I really need to ferment more than two carboys at once? I would like to brew at least once a week.

My second question is what are the advantages of a chest freezer to an upright freezer or chest to upright?

Thanks for the help.

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Old 04-02-2012, 08:59 PM   #2
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Upright = easier to move carboys.

Chest = dangerous to lift carboys!!

That said, I still use a chest freezer. I just put my carboys in handled containers that make it easier to lift out. It is still heavy as a bitch, and just slightly safer. But I would have to build a strong shelf to accommodate two carboys. I often do a mutli-batch of lagers so I can knock them out at once.

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Old 04-03-2012, 05:36 AM   #3
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Agree.
Also, if you choose upright and put it high enough you can easily siphon beer without disturbing yeast.

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Old 04-04-2012, 02:19 PM   #4
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Ok. Thanks for the help. On craigslist they are only slightly more expensive than chest freezers.

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Old 04-04-2012, 04:55 PM   #5
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In defense of chest freezers, they hold their temp better since the cold spills out all over floor with uprights while it stays inside a chest freezer. Plus you can use better bottles as opposed to glass and if you let your beer sit for 3+ weeks you won't disturb the yeast too much when racking. Nothing wrong with an upright though.

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Old 04-04-2012, 04:57 PM   #6
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The other advantage of a chest freezer is that it fills with CO2 during fermentation and just sits there...singes the nostrils.

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Old 04-04-2012, 05:59 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TyTanium View Post
The other advantage of a chest freezer is that it fills with CO2 during fermentation and just sits there...singes the nostrils.
Oh ya, good point! I forgot that.
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Old 04-04-2012, 08:09 PM   #8
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I like my chest freezer, but my back says upright.

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Old 04-08-2012, 03:08 PM   #9
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Anybody use a fridge for fermenting? Around here they are way easier to find on CL. Freezers, especially chest freezers, go fast and are usually at premium price points and it's usually just better to buy new. That said, I need to ferment two carboys at a time and was wondering if I could do so in a large enough fridge.

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Old 04-08-2012, 03:21 PM   #10
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I too am deciding what to get. Since I have a bad back (it always hurts after brewing )I'm leaning towards the upright.

So just to be sure, with the proper temp controller, you can keep a freezer at 65 without damaging it?

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