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-   -   Fermentation/Lagering Chamber build by a not so handy man. (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/fermentation-lagering-chamber-build-not-so-handy-man-325763/)

cpatel479 05-02-2012 05:58 PM

Fermentation/Lagering Chamber build by a not so handy man.
 
Hey all,
I watched everyone else building fermentation chambers and was envious. I finally got up enough courage to build myself one. Here is my attempt. I don't have a lot of experience working with power tools or building things so any advice on what I could have done better are welcome.

I took the guts of an old mini fridge I had. I only wanted to make it big enough to hold two carboys to ensure that I could get the temp down to freezing.


Day 1:

Build Frame

http://i.imgur.com/0CuQY.jpg


Day 2:

Add sides and mount fridge guts

http://i.imgur.com/aUlqz.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/S8DSE.jpg


Day 3:

Finish enclosure and calk the crap out of it
http://i.imgur.com/Ib9R5.jpg


Day 4:

Insulate

I probably should have insulated it before I put up all the sides and added the top. It was a pain cutting the insulation to fit through the small door opening. I added an AC cooling fan to try to keep frost from forming on the cooling coils.

http://i.imgur.com/aiwSh.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/Gyx9g.jpg


Day 5:

Install ebay stc-1000 temperature controller and mount door. I hooked up the compressor to the cooling part of the controller. Couldn't decide on a heating source at the moment, but ended up going with the old light bulb in a paint can heater. I also threw an electrical outlet on the back of the cabinet just that is hooked up to the controller just in case I need it in the future.

http://i.imgur.com/xoG3P.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/lmdIk.jpg


I'm having issues with the door staying shut. I need to come up with a solution for this still...Any help would really be appreciated. Right now a case of water bottles is pressed up against the door to keep it shut :cross:

I was able to get it down to 32F but because of the door, once the compressor went off the temp began to climb back up pretty fast.

In Action:
http://i.imgur.com/D5gVB.jpg

Hooray!
http://i.imgur.com/3JRVd.jpg

vinper 05-02-2012 06:38 PM

use a window sash latch on door

cpatel479 05-02-2012 07:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by vinper (Post 4050576)
use a window sash latch on door

Sweet! Thanks!

inamays 11-12-2012 11:20 PM

I like this build, nice job!

inamays 11-12-2012 11:24 PM

Oh and on your door staying closed deal, that fridge stripping is usually magnetized, so try putting tin around the opening, and cover with aluminum tape and see if the door stays closed/seals after that. That's how it closes/seals on the fridge unit itself, by the magnets being against the metal body of the fridge.

TrainSafe 11-12-2012 11:34 PM

I will be curious to see how well you can hold a lagering temp. I haven't tried that yet with my chamber.

dfess1 11-13-2012 12:23 PM

i was going to suggest some toggle latches, but the window sash should work just fine. Out of curiosity, since you made the rest of the cabinet, why even bother trying to use the door from the fridge?

cpatel479 11-13-2012 12:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dfess1 (Post 4584662)
i was going to suggest some toggle latches, but the window sash should work just fine. Out of curiosity, since you made the rest of the cabinet, why even bother trying to use the door from the fridge?

I just figured that it was already insulated and had a weather strip around the edge so why not...

SteveMillerTime 11-13-2012 12:46 PM

I just use a hook and eye latch to keep my fermenter closed, works pretty well.


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