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Old 08-21-2010, 03:39 AM   #1
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Default Please help with fermentation chamber - Window AC or fridge.

I'm looking for some advice on a fermentation chamber.

Current situation: Living in N Minn, Summer gets up to 95, Winter gets -30 (both temps in F), I have no basement, fermenting happens in the house on ground level.

So, my problem is 2-fold. 1) My swmbo doesn't like the 15 gal of beer fermenting in 3 containers around the house. 2) In the summer our house gets to abou 75 F - upper end of yeast fermentation temps. THe best place for the chamber is likely the garage unless i can build something that looks nice like furniture. I also have more room in the garage too.

SO, if i build a box style chamber what are the pros and cons of using a fridge vs window air conditioning unit as i see those are the more popular ways to go. Last resort is that i only brew beer in winter months when the house is a more cosnistant 65-68 degrees.

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Old 08-21-2010, 03:53 AM   #2
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I think a fridge might put off less heat. Plus the fridge will be quieter. Just get a mini fridge, build a nice looking insulated cabinet and use thermostat controlled low noise (QUIET) pc fan to move the air from the fridge to the chamber as needed. Fill the fridge with some kind of drinks and then it serves two purposes.

SHMBO might like getting some of HER fridge space freed up. ( I know it is a popular topic around my house. )

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Old 08-21-2010, 12:00 PM   #3
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I agree with the small refrigerator concept. Just make sure the size of the cabinet is not so big that the capacity of the refrigerator can not properly cool the space. Using a small fan inside is a necessity. You want good airflow in and around the space.

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Old 08-21-2010, 01:17 PM   #4
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This is the same thing I've been thinking about. I can build a fermentation chamber in my attic...get's up to about a 100s f in the hottest part of the summer and in the 40s f in the winter. I've been thinking a mini fridge in the summer and a fermwrap or heat belt for the winter.

Would a dorm fridge be big enough?

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Old 08-21-2010, 01:19 PM   #5
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I chose the window AC route because my cabinet size is not limited should I want to expand (I can currently fit 4 6gallon carboys in the chamber), I can keep fermenting beer at lager temps ~48-50 even in the dead heat of Oklahoma summer in my garage, and should I ever kill the compressor I can just pick up another used AC off craigs list and swap it out, no major surgery to my chamber.

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Old 08-21-2010, 04:27 PM   #6
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If you're using the garage, build a room (maybe 4x8) around a garage window and use an AC unit. you could fit a number of fermenters in it as well as homebrew supplies...easy walk in cold room

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Old 08-21-2010, 06:39 PM   #7
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not sure i want to make a cold room, just a room at 68 +/- 2 degrees or so.

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Old 08-21-2010, 06:43 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by strat_thru_marshall View Post
I chose the window AC route because my cabinet size is not limited should I want to expand (I can currently fit 4 6gallon carboys in the chamber), I can keep fermenting beer at lager temps ~48-50 even in the dead heat of Oklahoma summer in my garage, and should I ever kill the compressor I can just pick up another used AC off craigs list and swap it out, no major surgery to my chamber.
this is interesting. do you have pics? what did you do for the walls - 2x4's or 2x2's, plywood or dry wall, etc????
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Old 08-21-2010, 07:18 PM   #9
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This is not my post= http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/side...-build-105054/ = but this is in my future. I really like it side by side refers dirt cheap 50-75$

a two stage temp controller= http://www.etcsupply.com/ranco-etc21...er-p-110.html=

small heater 20$

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Old 08-22-2010, 03:09 AM   #10
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