So, first off, I got the inspiration for this DIY project from Anthony Lopez (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/my-s...y-build-86252/
) and from a guy in my homebrew club who had the ingenious idea of building a single stir plate out of a rubbermaid container. Thanks to both for the ideas!
So, I decided I'd like to have two stirplates so I could use 1000 mL flasks and still do a big starter. I used cooling fans that had adjustable speed controls built in. I had them, but if you don't, coolerguys.com is an excellent source. I used an old power supply from a computer I had and it has a built in on/off switch, so that was nice. Note, in power supplies, black wires are ground, reds are 5 volt DC and yellows are 12 volt DC. I first hooked up to the red and the fans didn't spin very fast. But when I changed over to the yellows I had to turn them down. Below are a couple pics of the build:
1 Rubbermaid Container $7.00
2 Computer cooling fans (adjustable speed) $salvaged
1 Computer Power Supply $salvaged
2 Harddrive Magnets $salvaged
1 Tube of Crazy Glue $2.50
3 Wire Nuts (had them)
So, for under $10, I built a double stirplate. Still waiting for my stirrods, it's a little sad that they are more expensive than the plate, but you can't have everything.
Finished Stir Plate
Also note I drilled some vent holes in the sides of the containers. Power supplies have a tendancy to get hot, so this was important. The container's lid is water tight, but with the holes drilled for the on/off switch and vents, I would classify as water resitant. I would recommend using on a GFCI protected outlet.