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Old 06-22-2010, 04:49 PM   #1
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Default Temperature Talk re: Wyeast 1764 Rogue Pacman

I have a brown ale fermenting with Pacman. I didn't realize that Rogue usually ferments this yeast at 60 degrees, and never over 70. About the best I can do with my current homebrew setup is 66-68. This involves putting the carboy in a cooler with some cold water and a wet towel with a fan running. Classy, I know.

What kind of flavor differences should I expect at this higher end of the temperature range, as opposed to going lower toward 60?

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Old 06-22-2010, 05:13 PM   #2
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In my experience with Pacman (which is a starter that I've been cultivating from a bottle for a couple weeks now), if you get it to about 75-78 then it starts to put out a lot of sulfur and smell like crap. I didn't temperature control the starter so its just been the normal temperature of my house.

I think that with the temperatures that you mentioned you should be okay. This yeast is supposed to be very clean, and I just think that the closer you get towards 60 the cleaner it's going to be.

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Old 06-22-2010, 05:24 PM   #3
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that makes sense. i'm limited by my equipment. the only way i can get it lower than 66-68 is to increase the ice used in the cooler, but then i risk going too low.

and, this limit creates the possibility for a large temp flux. i hate to fluctuate the temp too much. if i work for 8 hours, and the ice melts, there might be a 8-10 degree swing in temp from 60 to 68, then back down to 60 when i re-ice, only go back to 68 by the time i get up the next morning. i think staying at a constant 66-68 is a safer bet.

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Old 06-22-2010, 05:31 PM   #4
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How big is your cooler? I ask b/c I'm using the same technique (ice + water) in a 60 qt. cooler and I only change the ice every 12 hours or so. I've managed to keep it between 57 and 62 so far. The trick is to get the biggest water mass around the carboy you can, that way the temperature changes will be more gradual. I've got an Igloo Ice Cube I picked up at Target for $28 bucks.

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Old 06-22-2010, 05:40 PM   #5
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It's a 10 gallon drink cooler I use for mashing, I just took the manifold out and my carboy fits snug inside. That explains the temp flux.

I am assuming you don't put the lid on the ice cube, since the carboy is taller. Hmmm, I have a bigger cooler, one of those Coleman Xtremes, that may be better. So do you fill with water and then just put a bag of ice in?

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Old 06-22-2010, 06:02 PM   #6
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My Fight Night Pale Ale is fermented with PacMan (1764). I always try to maintain 64-66 with it and it turns out very clean and attenuates pretty well. It does have a minerally finish at that temp, but I've noticed that at any temp I've fermented it at. I believe you will be fine. I love this yeast.

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Old 06-22-2010, 06:19 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Powers View Post
It's a 10 gallon drink cooler I use for mashing, I just took the manifold out and my carboy fits snug inside. That explains the temp flux.

I am assuming you don't put the lid on the ice cube, since the carboy is taller. Hmmm, I have a bigger cooler, one of those Coleman Xtremes, that may be better. So do you fill with water and then just put a bag of ice in?
Yeah, the lid stays off, but one of these days I'm going to build a lid out of that pink insulation stuff like Yooper has. That should help with temp. control as well.

Nailing the initial temperature is the hardest part I think, just add ice slowly and stir until you hit the temp you are looking for. In my case, the temp. of the wort in the carboy wasn't where I wanted it (it was too hot), so I took the ice bath water to ~50F and started there. It climbed to 60 eventually which is where i've been trying to keep it. I'm sure the yeast would have liked less temperature variation, but they survived.

I cut up a bunch of 1 gallon water jugs and kept the bottom 3-4 inches to make little trays, which I fill with water and freeze. I add about 2 of those every 12 hours or so, and scoop out overflow water with a jug. It's cheaper than buying a bunch of ice, although one 10 pound bag might be nice to get the bath to the right temperature if your tap water is as hot as mine.
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Old 06-22-2010, 08:24 PM   #8
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oddly, my experience so far has been that a water bath temp of 70-75--along with the wet towel and fan of course--keeps the primary at a fairly constant 68 degrees. getting the bath down to 65-70 brings me near 66, but then the water bath goes up pretty fast again to 70-75 once the ice melts.

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Old 06-22-2010, 08:25 PM   #9
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that foam insulation lid looks like a good setup!

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Old 06-22-2010, 08:46 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Powers View Post
oddly, my experience so far has been that a water bath temp of 70-75--along with the wet towel and fan of course--keeps the primary at a fairly constant 68 degrees. getting the bath down to 65-70 brings me near 66, but then the water bath goes up pretty fast again to 70-75 once the ice melts.
Well to be fair I have no way of measuring the temperature of the fermenter itself, and I'm just going with the generally accepted assumption of a ~1-2 degree difference between the fermenter and the water bath around it.
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