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Old 12-13-2007, 05:07 PM   #1
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Default Northern Brewing! - Aquarium heater

Initially I was just going to post pics of the much discussed method that I use for fermenting in northern climes. The water bath aquarium heater techniuque.

However, please feel free to post any cold weather brewing techniques here.

Such as Bradsuls fine post and any others I may have missed or new ones to add...

Okay. Here 'tis. Naysayers i say thhpppptt! to you. It works GREAT for me and am happy with the results:

Cheap Aquarium heater $10 from the local farm and feed shop


I lowered it with wire so as not to fill the bucket all the way, but it is not necessary.



holding steady...


That is it. The "secret" to my ability to brew when the temp is -10° F outside (as it was last night) or lower. Brew room in the basement gets down to the 40's - 50's in the winter. Great for lagers, not so great for ales, which is pictured here. An APA.

Come on folks, we don't all live in the tropics, eh?

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Old 12-13-2007, 05:16 PM   #2
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Clever idea. Thanks for sharing.

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Old 12-13-2007, 05:20 PM   #3
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Thats pretty cool...but you've got nothing on this guy!

http://byo.com/feature/208.html

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Old 12-13-2007, 05:31 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flyin' Lion
Clever idea. Thanks for sharing.
Well I am certainly not taking credit for this idea. It has often been dicussed here and debated. I just figured I would post some pics for those interested in actually using it. Any other cold climate tips and tricks most welcome, especially with pictures! Please post!
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Old 12-13-2007, 06:04 PM   #5
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I'd only suggest getting the tub off the concrete to save a little energy, even up on a piece of plywood would help. The slab is probably pretty cold. To take it even further, if you can do this with a sparge cooler, it would use even less energy. I know some guys cut a hole in their icecube coolers for the neck of the carboy to stick out of. That would be perfect.

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Old 12-13-2007, 06:04 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by knights of Gambrinus
Initially I was just going to post pics of the much discussed method that I use for fermenting in northern climes. The water bath aquarium heater techniuque.

Cheap Aquarium heater $10 from the local farm and feed shop
I do the same thing except I throw in a small fountain pump to keep the water bath moving.

http://brewing.lustreking.com/gear/fermwarmer.html

-S
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Old 12-13-2007, 06:25 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobby_M
I'd only suggest getting the tub off the concrete to save a little energy, even up on a piece of plywood would help. The slab is probably pretty cold. To take it even further, if you can do this with a sparge cooler, it would use even less energy. I know some guys cut a hole in their icecube coolers for the neck of the carboy to stick out of. That would be perfect.
Hmmm. Good point. Did not take into account the floor temp.
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Old 12-13-2007, 06:28 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lustreking
I do the same thing except I throw in a small fountain pump to keep the water bath moving.

http://brewing.lustreking.com/gear/fermwarmer.html

-S
I have not noticed signifigant temp differnces in the water bath or fermenter. I have placed thermometers (calibrated together) in each corner of the tub to check and they were at most ~1° different. Doesn't hurt though if ya got the stuff I suppose.
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Old 12-13-2007, 06:29 PM   #9
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Great solution!

I actually have the opposite problem on the fermenting side of my setup. My apartment is set at 70F so I have to use my son of fermentation chiller no matter what time of year.

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Old 12-13-2007, 06:31 PM   #10
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I use this method in the summer as well sometimes. Only instead of the heater I throw frozen water bottles in. Kind of a pita as they need to be changed regularly. I think I may end up building a chamber such as you mention some day.

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