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Old 07-30-2010, 11:40 PM   #1
Tim27
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Default Fermentation temps.

Hello all. Having decided that to get the best beer possible I need to control my fermentation temps I bought a chest freezer and temp controller. My question is is that when we talk of temperature are we talking ambient air or the fermenting beers temp?

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Old 07-31-2010, 12:03 AM   #2
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Hello all. Having decided that to get the best beer possible I need to control my fermentation temps I bought a chest freezer and temp controller. My question is is that when we talk of temperature are we talking ambient air or the fermenting beers temp?
Temperature of the fermenting beer. A vigorous fermentation can raise the actual beer temperature quite substantially. Good move getting yourself a ferment chamber.
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Old 07-31-2010, 12:20 AM   #3
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Thanks for the reply. So really to get to 62-63* I need to keep the chamber down into the 50's? Can I trust the Brewmometer strip on my carboys to give an accurate enough temp reading? Then I could adjust ambient temp to cool the carboy to the proper temp.

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Old 07-31-2010, 12:50 AM   #4
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Are you going to be fermenting more than one vessel in the chamber? You could use a thermowell if you'll only be using one at a time. Otherwise you will need to control ambient temps to keep multiple vessels within "range".

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Old 07-31-2010, 01:04 AM   #5
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Tim, thanks for posting this. I'm in the same position. I've been lurking around HBT for a while trying to find the best way to monitor fermentation temps. I have a digital controller and now I just need to know where to place the probe.
-Many have mentioned attaching the temp probe to the side of the fermenter. Specifically, how do you isolate ambient from vessel temp?
-If you simply hang the probe in the air, how do you accurately monitor the ferment temp? What kind of thermometer is being used here and are you putting it inside of your fermenter?
-Another way is using a thermowell. What is it and how is it used?

I'm sure this topic has been kicked around for a while but the more I read the more kicked I feel. To the OP, I hope this helps you as well.

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Old 07-31-2010, 01:06 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim27 View Post
Thanks for the reply. So really to get to 62-63* I need to keep the chamber down into the 50's? Can I trust the Brewmometer strip on my carboys to give an accurate enough temp reading? Then I could adjust ambient temp to cool the carboy to the proper temp.
Well that depends... if you want to ferment a beer at 65F I would set the temp controller a little below the intended ferment temp (58-63F). Sometimes the temp increase can be as little as 3-5 degrees and other times a lot more. Don't assume every fermentation will raise the internal temp 10 degrees, especially if the ambient temperature is constant. If you think your ferment is running a little hot, after checking with a good thermometer, lower your ambient temp until you reach your target ferment temp.

Though, don't worry if your a little over your target ferment temperature. Good luck!

Edit: I never trust the ambient temp. Get a good digital thermometer and take a reading of the fermenting wort.
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Old 07-31-2010, 01:16 AM   #7
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I just have mine keeping the ambient at 64F at the moment for the 3 different beers at various stages of fermentation.

I just set it to keep the most active one/s in check and the others are fine. I can move them to a separate fridge to cold crash and then carb in the keg.

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Old 07-31-2010, 01:44 AM   #8
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My chamber is large enough for two carboys and I do plan on taking advantage of that. I know certain yeasts can really turn up the heat 3068 being one. Right now I just have some Graff with some Notty and it seemed to raise the temp maybe 3 degrees above ambient. I am pretty certain at this stage in my brewing life I can trust the stick on thermometers to give me accurate enough readings. After all anything is better than fermenting in 76*+ house.

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Old 07-31-2010, 01:58 AM   #9
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stubbornman, I like your keg fermentor. I have 3 empties in the garage and have considered using the nicest one as a fermentor. I have some questions, if the OP doesnt mind the minor detour. 1,How do you lift that thing out of the chest freezer and 2, how do you know you've gotten all the crud out when you're cleaning it? Do you ferment 10 gallon batches it there or what?

I have an old Hotpoint refrigerator with the temp probe/controller on mine. Better that the hot garage. I normally set all ales at 65 and let them go.

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Old 07-31-2010, 03:33 AM   #10
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I've found that the majority of my fermentations only raise the beer temp 2-3 degrees during the most active stage. I usually keep my controller set at 64F with a 2 degree differential, and keep the temperature sensor taped to the most recent batch. If I only fermented one batch at a time, I might adjust the temps throughout fermentation, but with an average of three batches going at once, it's just not practical for me.

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