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-   -   Which temperature controller for newbie? (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/temperature-controller-newbie-369532/)

lhommedieu 11-23-2012 02:34 PM

Which temperature controller for newbie?
I'm pretty sure I want to control my primary fermentation temperatures using a freezer and a temperature controller. The container will sit in an uninsulated garage so it will be cold in the winter and hot in the summer. I've looked at 3 different kinds of controllers so far: the Love TS2, Johnson (digital), and the BCS 460. My thoughts so far:

Love TS2: looks easy, inexepensive, not sure if I can regulate both cooling and heating. Like the clean mount to the freezer.

Johnson (digital): looks easy, inexpensive, will control both cooling and heating but you have to switch manually between them.

BCS: involves some wiring (something that I've never done), more expensive, but will control both cooling and heating as needed. Need to wire to separate cooling and heating devices as it will merely switch to devices with a higher voltage, Room for expansion. Wireless connection to computer software (something I like because I already do this for smoking and bbq).

Am I on the mark here or am I wrong about some things?



Psych 11-23-2012 02:57 PM

If you don't mind a little bit of wiring (really not bad), the STC-1000 "Ebay temp controller" is a good way to go. It heats and cools, has most of the bells and whistles of the Love/Ranco/Johnson's, but costs only $20 shipped...from China :)

It's an aquarium temp controller originally I think, but works fantastically for fermentation chambers.

meadmazer 11-23-2012 04:03 PM

Lots of members on this forum are using the STC1000. Just ordered one last week for a fermentation chamber build.


diS 11-23-2012 06:19 PM

Agree, STC1000 in one of best-buy devices in our hobby.
It meets two most desirable criteria: cheap and effective.

b-boy 11-23-2012 06:59 PM

I own a Love and an STC1000. I think the STC1000 its the better deal as long as you don't mind converting C to F.

lhommedieu 11-23-2012 07:15 PM

OK - sounds good. Any "wiring for dummies" tutorials out there? I'm a complete novice at wiring anything. Update: found quite a few already...

Psych 11-23-2012 09:16 PM

Yeah just think of it like the two 'plugs' per se for each method (heat or cool) on the stc-1000 are for the same length of wire, and it just connects that wire inside the plugs when it wants that method active.

So if you have a regular wall plug you basically chop the end off, strip a 1/8-1/4 inch of the sheath off and expose the wire itself on each, one of these goes directly the wall again, like wire it to one side of a plug and the other you take from the other side of the plug, to the stc-1000 terminal for your method (heat/cool), and then put the other side of the stripped wire from your device into the other terminal for that method.

It comes with zero instructions really, but there's a few threads here that show diagrams instead of what might be really confusing words that I just wrote hehe

Marret (wire caps, twist caps, whatever you want to call them) work well for this :)

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