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Old 10-11-2010, 10:17 PM   #11
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Are you guys doing AG with your swamp coolers? Just a day or two ago some folks on here were saying don't bother going AG until you have "real" cooling (aka dedicated fridge with temp control). I was thinking of going AG soon and just have something similar to what's in the photos above.

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Old 10-11-2010, 10:22 PM   #12
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Are you guys doing AG with your swamp coolers? Just a day or two ago some folks on here were saying don't bother going AG until you have "real" cooling (aka dedicated fridge with temp control). I was thinking of going AG soon and just have something similar to what's in the photos above.
AG or extract does not affect whether to use a swamp cooler or not.
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Old 10-11-2010, 10:31 PM   #13
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Are you guys doing AG with your swamp coolers? Just a day or two ago some folks on here were saying don't bother going AG until you have "real" cooling (aka dedicated fridge with temp control). I was thinking of going AG soon and just have something similar to what's in the photos above.
Yes I do all grain with a swamp cooler. One of the posters on that thread obviously has a lot of space and a lot of money. A fridge is nice but a swamp cooler works very well. I would highly recommend buying a cube cooler that fits a carboy. It holds the temp much better and there's no condensation to run on the floor. It also can be used as a keg tub and to crash cool.
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Old 10-11-2010, 10:31 PM   #14
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AG or extract does not affect whether to use a swamp cooler or not.
Agree. Use it unless you know your ferm temps stay within range and are stable over the ferm time.

I used a swamp cooler quite a bit earlier this year. My problem was that I travel a lot for my company, so I had to build a collar for a mini-fridge becuase I wasn't around to rotate ice in and out. Aside for being out of the house so much, the swamp cooler worked great to keep temps within desired ranges. It does take some practice to figure out how much ice, and the frequency of rotation, you need in your particular swamp cooler application. Depends on how much water you have in the cooler and the water temp, your ambient air temps, how frequently you rotate ice packs, and how vigorous your fermentation is.

Note that I had to rotate ice packs more frequently during the first few days of primary fermenation. Those days are much more rigorous and more exothermic reactions are occuring. Hence the need for more ice to keep temps down. After fermenation slowed, and during secondary fermentation (optional step), I was able to let it ride longer without swapping out ice packs.
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Old 10-11-2010, 10:32 PM   #15
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Pooh poohing a swamp cooler as a method of temp control for AG didn't make a whole lot of sense to me as long as you're successfully keeping temps in the correct range.

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Old 10-11-2010, 11:05 PM   #16
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Are you guys monitoring the fluid temp in the cooler or the temp of the beer in the fermenter?

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Old 10-11-2010, 11:19 PM   #17
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Usually I just use the thermometer sticker I have attached to my carboy. I just finished making my swamp cooler and it works great. I basically used a plastic tub that I got from Walmart and monitored the temp on the side of the fermenter.

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Old 10-11-2010, 11:45 PM   #18
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What if I want to boost the temp by like 3 degrees or so?

My carboy with WLP300 is at 65, and I would like to crank it up to like 68 or so to get some banana goodness.

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Old 10-12-2010, 01:22 AM   #19
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Stop adding ice?

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Old 10-13-2010, 02:05 PM   #20
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Add a little hot water.

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