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Old 02-03-2007, 03:05 PM   #1
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Default Using a wind chill of -5 to chill wort

I'm brewing my Black Pearl Porter today and I'm about to move the batch to the burner in the garage. It is way to cold outside to run a garden hose to my wort chiller so I was wondering if anyone has had luck/experience setting the brew pot out in the frigid cold to cool down.

I plan on keeping lidded and stirring every 5-7 minutes or so.

Thoughts?

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Old 02-03-2007, 03:47 PM   #2
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Seems like it should work. It might work better if you have a snowbank around.

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Old 02-03-2007, 03:48 PM   #3
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I use stainless steel milker bucket as a fermenter, and I tried sitting it outside to chill in the winter weather.

It took forever...................I set it outside about seven in the evening, and I didn't pitch yeast until nearly midnight.

I don't think it will chill nearly fast enough, unless your bucket sits inside a water bath or ice water bath also.

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Old 02-03-2007, 04:13 PM   #4
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Put it in a tub of SALT water. The salt will allow the water to get colder and will help chill it quicker.

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Old 02-03-2007, 04:36 PM   #5
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I think cheesefood and jim are right... I've tried the air temp thing when I found that my chiller had a hole in it (from freezing). Even at those temps it's gonna take a long time-- heat transfer is a lot slower to air than it is to water.

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Old 02-03-2007, 04:45 PM   #6
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I stand corrected. We dont have that kind of problem much in Texas.

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Old 02-03-2007, 04:56 PM   #7
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Looks like I'll have to split the batch after the boil and carry it downstairs to the work shop. Reassemble back into the brew pot and run my chiller out of my shop sink.

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Old 02-03-2007, 05:17 PM   #8
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Bathtub? Ice? I've done that too... -p

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Old 02-03-2007, 05:22 PM   #9
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Um, do you really stir the wort as it is cooling?? Methinks that is just asking for an infection.

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Old 02-03-2007, 05:40 PM   #10
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I've had some success with wort chilling in the cold and snow.

I've brewed outside in sub-zero weather and then put the brewpot in the snow. This, however, took a bit of work.

I have to pack the snow against the brewpot really, really well, and repack it every few minutes. And I stir often. It will work, if you keep at the snow and stirring. I can get my five-gallon batch down to pitching temp in 25-35 minutes usually. Be careful: the brewpot will sink through the snow and rest on the frozen ground (not a bad thing). But watch out that the the surrounding snow doesn't flip the pot's lid.

The lesson I learned: the cold air alone won't do it.

I did three batches using the snowbank wort chiller (since I didn't want to mess with hoses in these temps). Well, I gave in and got an immersion chiller. I'd rather haul in a pot of hot sub-boiling wort and use the immersion chiller at the kitchen sink. Still, though, there is something about putting on the Carhartt "wind bag" and brewing under the stars.

The salt water idea is excellent, though. I wish I'd tried that.

Good luck.

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