Being that im in Alaska, in the winter the cross I bear is keeping my primarys at about 68F or so. I control the temp very scientifically. To be precise, the colder it is, the higher I sit the carboy off the floor.
Usually, at this time of year, I have the milkcrate the carboy is in sitting on top of another milk crate.
This year with the 50 belows and such, that hasnt quite given me what i wanted. I decided to take a large styrofoam container ( a large omaha steaks delivery box), put the carboy in it, fill it with water, then use a fish tank heater to help keep the temp under control. Now, heres where the accident discovers something. I sat the primary, itself at about 66F at the time, in the cooler, then i dump in 5 gallons of water that comes out the tap at the high 40s, low 50s mark. My thermometer says 51 degrees. Alright, ready to try the heater. Then it happens. Yes, the wife and kid distract me, and, I end up going to bed without ever installing the heater. I get up the next day, and the water and primary are at....71.1F. Im just not buying it, so i remove 3 gallons of the outer water, put in more cold, and drop it back down to 65 or so. Within 4 hours, on a floor thats barely at 60F, the temp climbs back up to 71.1 and has stayed there since. That primary is generating enough heat, that, with the combo of the water and the thick styrofoam, its able to heat itself. And Im telling you, the thermometer laying against it on the outside on the floor, reads 58-60 depending on the time of day. Not the most scientific discovery in the world, as I know folks are aware that fementation generates heat, but, with this setup, I can hold 71 with ease. I prefer 68, but at this point, a constant steady temp is better to me then one that varies 5 times a day depending on the ambient temps outside.
Thought I would let folks know, it might come in handy for someone. If nothing else, I didnt have to use yet more electricity
Anyways, this is a FYI for everyone.
I bid you all a great day!
Sean Thornton (John Wayne) "I'll have one of those black beers."
Pat Cohan (Harry Tyler) the publican "Ah, the porter. Yes sir."
From 'The Quiet Man' 1952
"Tell me, Alvis - for all wights' fate
I deem that, dwarf, thou knowest -
how the beer is hight which is brewed by men,
in all the worlds so wide?"
- The Lay of Alvis
Visit my beer blog at http://homebrew.medofernandez.com