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Old 04-21-2010, 07:42 PM   #1
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Default Fermentation Room?

So I had been fermenting and conditioning my brews 3-4 at a time in my closet where the temperature was very consistent and things were great. Well the wife got tired of the smell and has kicked me out. My only other option is to move to a bathroom I built in the basement, in the shower. The problem is the temperature fluctuates anywhere from 61-70* during the day and this is obviously unacceptable.

Unfortunately I don't have room for a large cabinet or chamber anywhere in this house and don't have any other location in which to use.

Therefore I am considering rigging up my extra Ranco to a fan and space heater to keep the temperature range more consistent. I am concerned about the fire danger with a space heater in the basement not well attended.

I am curious if anyone has any other ideas that may work? I am all ears and appreciate any help!

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Old 04-21-2010, 07:49 PM   #2
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If it is a bath tub - fill that thing up and put your carboys in there so you have a huge thermal mass... will make temp changes much slower... You could put an aquarium heater in there to keep the temps up...

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Old 04-21-2010, 08:01 PM   #3
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If it is a bath tub - fill that thing up and put your carboys in there so you have a huge thermal mass... will make temp changes much slower... You could put an aquarium heater in there to keep the temps up...
No tub, actually found a photo I sent to my sister, below, I have just been placing the carboys/buckets on the shower floor...perhaps this will help:

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Old 04-21-2010, 08:10 PM   #4
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I would think you could use the space heater with the door closed. At least it would be sitting on tile and not carpet...



Or... I know you said you're doing 3-4 at a time, but if price isn't an issue:

http://morebeer.com/view_product/166...ermWrap_Heater

with

http://morebeer.com/view_product/666...3_and_6_gallon

I'm not sure if you could run that many off of one temp controller or not due to electrical load... I would think the temps would be pretty similar in all the carboys... though if you have one at very active fermentation and one that has been in the carboy for a month, it might be a few degrees different.

Or build some sort of chamber... do a search on this site.

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Old 04-21-2010, 08:23 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JSomps6 View Post
I would think you could use the space heater with the door closed. At least it would be sitting on tile and not carpet...



Or... I know you said you're doing 3-4 at a time, but if price isn't an issue:

http://morebeer.com/view_product/166...ermWrap_Heater

with

http://morebeer.com/view_product/666...3_and_6_gallon

I'm not sure if you could run that many off of one temp controller or not due to electrical load... I would think the temps would be pretty similar in all the carboys... though if you have one at very active fermentation and one that has been in the carboy for a month, it might be a few degrees different.

Or build some sort of chamber... do a search on this site.
I appreciate the help, unfortunately I don't have room for a chamber or that would be perfect.

I like your ideas though, would get kinda pricey with 4 though I don't anticipate to have 4 brews fermenting at the same time so that could be a workable solution.
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Old 04-21-2010, 08:30 PM   #6
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Looks to me like you have room for a nice fermentation chamber. You just need to rip the toilet, sink and shower out of it.

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Old 04-21-2010, 08:32 PM   #7
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The other option would be to man up and tell your wife who wears the pants...

Here in Michigan, my basement gets too cold in winter to keep the carboys down there so I had to tell my old lady they were sitting on the bathroom counter wrapped in the towel whether she liked it or not. I'm man enough to say I don't usually win, but she didn't fight me too much... I just explained my other options were going to get expensive and I really needed her to support my one hobby.

From what I have heard/read... the temp is most crucial for the first part of fermentation. That is when you get a majority of the esters, etc from the yeast. So even if you just got one, you could control the youngest beer. If the temp gets a little low later on a beer that is fermented out and is just getting some bulk aging, you should be ok.

Good Luck!

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Old 04-21-2010, 08:38 PM   #8
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The other option would be to man up and tell your wife who wears the pants...
lol, perhaps if she wasn't a little out of her heard due to the baby she delivered a couple weeks back I'd have a chance at winning that argument. As it stands now she put up with it the whole pregnancy and flipped out last brew so I will have to figure somethingelse out and buy her some 501's

I agree with the idea of getting one and controlling the most important fermentor.

In this winter it actually isn't as much of a problem as the basement holds the heat fairley well. It's the reast of the year it gets too cold as the heater isn't running any more!
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Old 04-21-2010, 08:39 PM   #9
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I am concerned about the fire danger with a space heater in the basement not well attended.
I use an oil filled radiant space heater in a basement bathroom. I guess I'd be worried about the type with electric strips that get red hot, but this thing does a nice job without the worries about something combusting.
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Old 04-21-2010, 10:12 PM   #10
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+1 on the oil heaters. I had my heat go out and one of those kept a 1200sf townhouse warm for three days when it was in the teens outside. Should keep a room warm safely and cheaply.

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