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Old 10-14-2008, 03:29 AM   #1
cafeviking
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Default Temperatures

What is the approximate temperature of 5 gals of fluid vs ambient temperature? Fluids tend to stay slightly cooler, don't they? I'm in the northwest and it's been 40-50 outside which might translate a little through the floorboards(?), but on the other hand the fermentation process generates heat, right?

I need to learn a good method for regulation in a home setting because I think my first brew (albeit a mediocre can kit) might have cooked a little for the first few days and I don't want to be digging into my fermenter with a thermometer too much. I initially kept a pint glass of water containing a thermometer on top of the fermenter but found the readings to be vastly different [from the wort] by 5 to 8 degrees.

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Old 10-14-2008, 04:59 AM   #2
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The fermentation process does indeed generate heat.

To regulate the fermentation temp, you can either use the wet t-shirt swampcooler trick or use an icewater bath. I personally use the latter process and swap out frozen water bottles twice a day. I'm able to maintain 66-68deg temps.

You can't see the frozen water bottles in this pic, but you get the idea.

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Old 10-14-2008, 05:24 PM   #3
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Looks like a good system. Are you actively monitoring your temperatures? Was there a point where you did? I would hate to risk infection from measuring and messing around too much.

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Old 10-14-2008, 07:22 PM   #4
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To keep an eye on temps during fermentation just use an adhesive thermometer. Then there is no need to invade the beer to check temps.

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Old 10-14-2008, 07:30 PM   #5
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yeah, I use a stick-on thermometer, but in a pinch, I've used a probe thermometer taped to the side of the carboy/better bottle/bucket.

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