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Old 10-13-2011, 05:25 PM   #1
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Default Input request: DIY Cooling Tank

This is a project that might appeal to us who's tap water rarely gets below 60ºF. For the past several years I've used a lot of different techniques to get my wort from boiling to pitching temp quickly. The best way I have found was by recirculating the wort through an Ice bath. But with 10 gallon batches I needed 20lbs of ice, and lost of times I have been too lazy to get out an get the ice. Lately I have settled on one pass through my convoluted counter flow chiller to get the wort down to 80-90º and then putting the carboys in my fermentation chamber and pitching in the morning. But now I'm planing on brewing with a 25 gallon steam kettle, and eventually getting a brewhemoth in the near future. So Id like a way to get the temp knocked down right away. As well I'd like to have something akin to a glycol chiller to control fermentation temps in the conical.

I've read a few posts (Derrin in OC) that built a nice set up with a window AC unit, and a similar build from Wild bill? on the northern brewers forum.

as well I came across this build on a aquarium forum about using a dehumidifier as a glycol chiller.

What I am thinking is to build some thing similar to the glycol chiller out of the dehumidifier. But instead of using glycol, I will just be using water. My Idea is to submerge the cooling coils from the dehumidifier in to a 70qt cooler, this will act as a coolant reservoir for chilling the conical. For chilling wort after brewing, my plan was to have a 55gallon barrel that I recirculate the water through the 70qt cooler to bring its temp down into the 40's and use this water for chilling. I plan on insulating the barrel too.

I'm also considering adding a air cooled radiator to cool the hot water out of the CFC before it returns to the 55 gallon tank, and or having a second tank for the hot water return. I have space on the side of my garage where i keep my garbage cans where the hot water return and the insulated cold water tank would sit, so space is not that big of an issue.

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Old 10-13-2011, 05:51 PM   #2
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This is what I did.

Took an igloo cooler, drilled two holes in the lid. Used brass fitting and quick connectors to my 50ft IC can attach to it. I found a submersible pump, made a connector so it can pump out of the cooler, and ran the return water to the opposite side of the cooler.

Two days before brewing, I freeze the whole cooler filled with water and use a 2L bottle to make space for the submersible pump. 15 minutes before the boil is done, I pour hot water into the 2L bottle so it'll loosen and I pull it out. Put the pump where the bottle was, fill with cold tap water until the pump is covered, and it is ready to roll.

So the how return water returns right on top of the ice block. By the time it gets down to the pump, it is cooled to the 40 degree range. All you have to do is decide how big of a cooler you want, and remember to put the cooler in the freezer at least 36 hours before you brew.

Cools 5 gallons of wort in approx 8 minutes. No water waste -- either refreeze the old water dump it in the yard or flowerbed.

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Old 10-13-2011, 06:07 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rhamilton
This is what I did.

Took an igloo cooler, drilled two holes in the lid. Used brass fitting and quick connectors to my 50ft IC can attach to it. I found a submersible pump, made a connector so it can pump out of the cooler, and ran the return water to the opposite side of the cooler.

Two days before brewing, I freeze the whole cooler filled with water and use a 2L bottle to make space for the submersible pump. 15 minutes before the boil is done, I pour hot water into the 2L bottle so it'll loosen and I pull it out. Put the pump where the bottle was, fill with cold tap water until the pump is covered, and it is ready to roll.

So the how return water returns right on top of the ice block. By the time it gets down to the pump, it is cooled to the 40 degree range. All you have to do is decide how big of a cooler you want, and remember to put the cooler in the freezer at least 36 hours before you brew.

Cools 5 gallons of wort in approx 8 minutes. No water waste -- either refreeze the old water dump it in the yard or flowerbed.
Dude. This is friggin awesome. I might try this one day.
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Old 10-13-2011, 06:31 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rhamilton View Post
This is what I did.

Took an igloo cooler, drilled two holes in the lid. Used brass fitting and quick connectors to my 50ft IC can attach to it. I found a submersible pump, made a connector so it can pump out of the cooler, and ran the return water to the opposite side of the cooler.

Two days before brewing, I freeze the whole cooler filled with water and use a 2L bottle to make space for the submersible pump. 15 minutes before the boil is done, I pour hot water into the 2L bottle so it'll loosen and I pull it out. Put the pump where the bottle was, fill with cold tap water until the pump is covered, and it is ready to roll.

So the how return water returns right on top of the ice block. By the time it gets down to the pump, it is cooled to the 40 degree range. All you have to do is decide how big of a cooler you want, and remember to put the cooler in the freezer at least 36 hours before you brew.

Cools 5 gallons of wort in approx 8 minutes. No water waste -- either refreeze the old water dump it in the yard or flowerbed.
You got any pics of this setup?
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Old 10-13-2011, 08:06 PM   #5
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sounds like a good idea, but I'm looking to cool 20 gallons, and have some thing I can use to cool conicals during fermentation.

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Old 10-15-2011, 12:34 PM   #6
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Wow. You guys are far more industrious than I am. I just cool as far as I can (when brewing in summer with warm tap water) and then put her in the fermenation chamber. I can usually pitch in 6-12 hours.

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Old 10-17-2011, 04:51 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carrotmalt View Post
You got any pics of this setup?
I'll post pics next time I brew
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