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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > Fermenters > Large fermentation chamber
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Old 10-31-2012, 05:28 PM   #1
SteveWPG
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Default Large fermentation chamber

Here is my new fermentation chamber, almost finished. It is build to fit two of my 60 gallon inductor tank conicals. I'm going to cover the open side with styrofoam panels as I couldn't think of an easy way to have a regular door while still being able to remove one or both conicals/stands for cleaning etc. Planning on brewing 30g Sunday to try 'er out.

img_20121029_211050-1632.jpg   img_20121029_211105-1632.jpg   img_20121029_211125-1632.jpg   img_20121029_213610-1632.jpg  
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Old 11-01-2012, 06:23 PM   #2
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Very nice. I may be going down this road soon and was just curious what the dimensions are? Also what size AC unit is it? What temp will it get down to (I.e. lagering)? Thanks.

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Old 11-01-2012, 06:45 PM   #3
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I have a similar contraption: http://www.restlesscellars.com/photo...gory=1&image=9

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Old 11-01-2012, 07:49 PM   #4
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Old 11-01-2012, 07:58 PM   #5
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Hm pretty nice project.

A/C unit looks like a 5000btu.

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Old 11-02-2012, 03:17 PM   #6
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Yup, its a 5500 BTU unit. The inside dimensions are 5' 3" W x 3' D x 6' 10" H. I made it just big enough to fit the conicals as I didn't want to take up more space than necessary in my house.

As for the temperature I am not sure; I haven't actually used it yet. The controller temp probe goes into a thermowell on the side of the conical, so that the temp of the beer is controlled as opposed to the air temp. I have no doubt it would do lager fermenting temp. Actual lagering temp? Maybe if I sealed it up real well. I will have to do a test before I put the first batch in here.

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Old 11-02-2012, 08:16 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveWPG View Post
Yup, its a 5500 BTU unit. The inside dimensions are 5' 3" W x 3' D x 6' 10" H. I made it just big enough to fit the conicals as I didn't want to take up more space than necessary in my house.

As for the temperature I am not sure; I haven't actually used it yet. The controller temp probe goes into a thermowell on the side of the conical, so that the temp of the beer is controlled as opposed to the air temp. I have no doubt it would do lager fermenting temp. Actual lagering temp? Maybe if I sealed it up real well. I will have to do a test before I put the first batch in here.
You may be a little optimistic with a small AC and so much space. I have that same AC and my chambers is less than half as big. If I cool my wort down to 50F I can ferment a lager at 53-55F but the AC runs a lot of the time. At 57F it barely runs, For that much space I would have gone with at least an 8000BTU unit. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure your chamber will be great for ales at low temps, but it's gonna be hard to maintain low 50's with your setup.
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Old 11-02-2012, 09:13 PM   #8
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Yeah, as I said I'm not sure but I don't intend to make many lagers. I could always lager in kegs in another chamber/freezer.

I would be happy if I can keep the beer at ~60. I have had success lagering in a similarly sized chamber with a similar A/C unit. The design of that one made it much easier to keep in cold air, it was just a pain to get into (open top). I am optimistic that if I seal it well it will do what I need.

I have a bigger A/C unit (12k BTU) sitting around but I was hoping to sell it. It is huge, heavy and power hungry but I guess I could use it.

EDIT: On Saturday I will turn it on and sit inside to simulate the heat of fermenting beer and I will let you know how cold it gets.

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Old 11-12-2012, 11:57 PM   #9
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How'd it go Steve?

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Old 11-13-2012, 12:08 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by corkybstewart View Post
You may be a little optimistic with a small AC and so much space. I have that same AC and my chambers is less than half as big. If I cool my wort down to 50F I can ferment a lager at 53-55F but the AC runs a lot of the time. At 57F it barely runs, For that much space I would have gone with at least an 8000BTU unit. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure your chamber will be great for ales at low temps, but it's gonna be hard to maintain low 50's with your setup.
You're also in New Mexico while he's in Manitoba. He may be able to accomplish lagering just because the climate is so much colder.
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