The Great Bottle Opener Giveaway

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > New Take On Freezer Conversion

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 09-10-2009, 09:45 PM   #1
RighteousFire
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Jacksonville, NC
Posts: 224
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default New Take On Freezer Conversion

So my awesome Fiancé found me this sweet freezer on Craigslist for free. It was in a basement flood and one of the connectors shorted out. I took it apart fixed the short and plugged it in and it kicked on. It got cold immediately and sounded fine.





Right now it’s just hanging out with some buckets in it (Scottish Ale and Russian Imperial Stout) that are done fermenting and are now conditioning. I put some frozen jugs of water in there to get it chilly in there. As you can see it has been holding steady at an ambient 49F for about 18 hours now and the buckets are reading about 53F on the thermo strip. Theoretically it can hold 4 fermenters (got to strengthen that shelf).

Now, for my idea. I have a programmable Honeywell Thermostat. It doesn’t matter that it’s programmable because I can set it on a permanent temperature and keep it held there. I'm thinking of adopting an idea from the Son of a Fermenter Chiller and Mother of a Fermenter Chiller concepts. I'm thinking of using the Thermostat to control a relay to control the power of the freezer. It would have to be a 12VDC Coil capable of supporting 120VAC on the switch side. The freezer is only 5 amps so I won’t have a problem with supporting that.

The Thermostat has a swing of +/- 1F and the freezer seems capable of holding temperature very well so my question is:

Has anyone tried this, or heard of this idea?

And, does anyone have any comments/concerns/ideas?

As soon as I get out and find a relay I will report back.

Edit:

How does this look?

http://www.123securityproducts.com/r...1&CS_010=rdc12



* 12VDC operation.
* Coil draws 80mA.
* 10 amp/120VAC/28VDC or 10 amp/277VAC DPDT contacts.
* DIN Rail mountable.
* Dimensions (approximate): 1.375”W x 2.7”L x 2.375”H

I know it's a Double Pole, but I don't have to use both poles. its $14.00 plus shipping.

__________________

Cheers.


Last edited by RighteousFire; 09-10-2009 at 09:58 PM.
RighteousFire is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-10-2009, 09:57 PM   #2
McKBrew
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
McKBrew's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Hayden, Idaho
Posts: 8,292
Liked 30 Times on 27 Posts
Likes Given: 8

Default

Not sure what a relay costs, but this isn't really any different than buying a Ranco controller for $50 or so and using it.

If you can get a relay cheap, then it should work just as well.

__________________

Make Beer, Not War.

McKBrew is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-10-2009, 10:44 PM   #3
theacolyte
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Berkeley, CA
Posts: 50
Default

Was actually just talking to someone today about this. Apparently they make thermometers that do this... off the shelf.

__________________
theacolyte is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-10-2009, 10:45 PM   #4
McKBrew
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
McKBrew's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Hayden, Idaho
Posts: 8,292
Liked 30 Times on 27 Posts
Likes Given: 8

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by theacolyte View Post
Was actually just talking to someone today about this. Apparently they make thermometers that do this... off the shelf.
Yes (10 char)
__________________

Make Beer, Not War.

McKBrew is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-10-2009, 10:46 PM   #5
McKBrew
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
McKBrew's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Hayden, Idaho
Posts: 8,292
Liked 30 Times on 27 Posts
Likes Given: 8

Default

If you can't adjust the temperature swing by more than 1 degree, you might be cycling the freezer a bit much. Most temp controllers have increments of up to 10 degrees allowing more change in ambient temperature before the power kicks back in.

__________________

Make Beer, Not War.

McKBrew is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-11-2009, 01:04 AM   #6
RighteousFire
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Jacksonville, NC
Posts: 224
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

I just committed to buying a Johnson Controls Unit on ebay for 24.99+7.95.

I'm still going to try out my idea on another unit.

__________________

Cheers.

RighteousFire is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-11-2009, 02:11 AM   #7
shortyjacobs
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 2,511
Liked 29 Times on 29 Posts
Likes Given: 3

Default

see these links:
ENGINERDIA: Fermentation Temperature Controller
Digital Controller
temp controller - Realbeer.com Beer Community

It's been done, and you can do it!

__________________
shortyjacobs is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-11-2009, 02:54 AM   #8
hopsoda
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Iowa
Posts: 289
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

subscribed

__________________
hopsoda is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-11-2009, 04:16 PM   #9
shortyjacobs
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 2,511
Liked 29 Times on 29 Posts
Likes Given: 3

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by McKBrew View Post
If you can't adjust the temperature swing by more than 1 degree, you might be cycling the freezer a bit much. Most temp controllers have increments of up to 10 degrees allowing more change in ambient temperature before the power kicks back in.
To follow up on this, the problem is that air temp swings wildly, and the probe will pick up on that.

To solve that issue, you want to build in a thermal buffer, something with a lot more thermal mass than your probe so that the wild swings aren't constantly cycling your fridge.

Easiest way to do this is to immerse the probe in some liquid. Fill a pop bottle with water, punch a hole in the cap, and stick your probe through the cap and into the water. Voila...now your probe will take a lot longer to respond, (as the water will take a while to heat up and cool down), and your fridge wont' cycle as much, BUT will still hold the same temperature on average....and you are worried about the temp of your beer anyway, right?

If your probe isn't waterproof, a quick dip in some hotglue/wax, or plasti-dip, should do nicely.
__________________
shortyjacobs is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-11-2009, 04:38 PM   #10
leboeuf
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Posts: 322
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

Your idea with the relay and home thermostat will work just fine. Just remember that you need to supply low voltage to the thermostat relay so that it can turn on the external relay.
All in all though you made a good decision, there are so many temp controllers out there that are cheaper than the cheapest digital thermostat...

__________________
leboeuf is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
chest freezer conversion outofmire DIY Projects 8 10-30-2009 01:22 PM
Yet Another Freezer Conversion juvinious DIY Projects 29 10-09-2009 01:16 AM
Fridge/freezer conversion bhatchable Equipment/Sanitation 3 08-29-2009 04:36 PM
Freezer conversion brewjunky Equipment/Sanitation 5 08-29-2008 04:37 AM
Freezer Conversion Help durin Equipment/Sanitation 6 10-25-2006 04:16 PM