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Old 09-05-2012, 04:13 AM   #1
Mogget
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Default Upright Freezer

Just scored a beautiful, large upright freezer. My eBay temperature controller has been ordered. Getting ready to rock.

Anybody have any suggestions for this type of unit? Going to use it initially as a fermentation chamber/lagering cave. Then maybe transition it to a keezer later. It's taller than a standard fridge, so I am assuming that I am going to need to build at least one shelf in it. Looks like it could easily hold 5+ carboys.

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Old 09-05-2012, 05:37 AM   #2
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I use an upright freezer as a fermentation chamber ... I love it ... Easy to load/unload ... Here's my build if you're interested http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/dutc...-build-251579/

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Old 09-05-2012, 11:28 AM   #3
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I shopped around craigslist till I found an upright that didn't have the cooling coils going through the shelving.
What I found was the freezers like that are always frost-proof, and seem to have a higher cooling capacity than the chest freezer or coiled alternatives.
They also tend to have a fan of some sort blowing the cold air around.

I'm very happy with my upright freezer ferm-chamber, but I have to keep an eye on it. It gets DARN COLD FAST, and because I use a thermowell in a 13 gallon batch, the more powerful cooling tends to overshoot the set temp. I want to ferment at 65, but my actual temps float around 60-63.

I've noticed that with this big freezer, my fermentation stops very abruptly. I'm starting to think it is caused by the freezer over-cooling the beer, and causing the yeast to drop out before they are quite done. I'm experimenting with blanketing the fermenter, and raising the temp a few hours before active fermentation stops.

Even with this small issue, I love the big upright freezer's ability to cool wort fast.I cool my wort down to 80 or so, and let the freezer chill those last 15 degrees in 4-5 hours, then pitch.
Plus, not having to lift batches into a chest freezer is really the best.

Oh, and if you're using a shelf system, with lots of carboys, you might set them up to share a blow-off container. (like I did) Make sure the blow-off container is lower than all the carboys, or else the first time you get some suck-back from cooling the wort, you will start a siphon, and drain the entire blow-off container into your fermenter. (yeah, it happened to me) (yeah, it still tasted great)

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Old 09-05-2012, 12:18 PM   #4
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I need to check but I'm pretty sure its a frost free without the cooling shelves. Thanks for the pics, those shelves are nice.

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