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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > Fermenters > Help with keeping fermentor at right temp...
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Old 05-28-2009, 06:52 PM   #1
Beavdowg
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Default Help with keeping fermentor at right temp...

I'm getting back into brewing but have a problem finding a place in my house or garage that stays around 70* for fermenting. I can't seem to find one. I live in Oregon and it's the summers I'm concerned about. No way in the garage. Any one know of any dorm-size fridges that can fit a 6.5 gal carboy?
Or, any other suggestions?

thanks


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Old 05-28-2009, 07:05 PM   #2
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Well there's a few options that I know of...

1) Spend the money for a small fridge and temp. controller.
2) Put your A/C on 70 F

or I choose #3...
Place your carboy in a tub full of water and throw a frozen water bottle or two every now and then in to keep it down. The water cools/heats slower than the surrounding air, so it's easier to maintain temp. that way. Some insulation around it might help more as well.


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Old 05-28-2009, 07:09 PM   #3
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I use a cooler filled with water and an aquarium heater @ 68. Cover the top with thick foam insulation and even my garage gets up to 90 it still sticks at 68.
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Old 05-28-2009, 07:11 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beernip View Post
I use a cooler filled with water and an aquarium heater @ 68. Cover the top with thick foam insulation and even my garage gets up to 90 it still sticks at 68.

Sorry, but how does an aquarium heater help keep the temps at 68, when the garage is at 90?
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Old 05-28-2009, 07:15 PM   #5
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I used to use the ice/swamp bucket technique until I stumbled across a free full-size fridge with temp controller already installed off CL. It's great not having to swap out frozen water bottles, but that technique does work well. (just not as well as setting the thermostat and walking away)
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Old 05-28-2009, 08:59 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JesseRC View Post
Sorry, but how does an aquarium heater help keep the temps at 68, when the garage is at 90?
The insulation keeps the heat out on the hot days and the heater warm on the cold days. I see very little temp difference as long as I keep the top on with a temp probe through the top.

Also helps that at night it gets down to 50.

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Old 05-28-2009, 09:03 PM   #7
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Cheap Craigslist refrigerator and a $50 Ranco controller is all you need.

Ice bucket method works.

In Hawaii I used a cardboard box with some thick insulation and then just put in a few ice jugs to make a fermentation chamber.
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Old 05-29-2009, 12:32 AM   #8
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I'm a new brewmaster but I recently tackled this issue. I brew in the desert, it gets warm here.

Get a bucket large enough to hold your fermentor. Fill bucket with water up to, or below, the level of the beer in your fermentor. Cover the fermentor with an old, wet t-shirt dangling in the water. It works reasonably well, keeping temperature below ambient, especially if you add bottles of frozen water to your bucket.

Another option is to look up plans and construct your own fermentation chiller. Look up "son of a fermentation chiller" or "mother of a fermentation chiller" for a good starting point.
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Old 05-29-2009, 11:15 AM   #9
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You will want you ambient temp lower than 70...when it starts to ferment it will shoot up 10 degrees over ambient.

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Old 06-01-2009, 04:15 AM   #10
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I scored a like-new mini-fridge not long ago, with the intention of lagering. I was bummed to see my carboy won't fit in it, due to the compressor hump.

So tonight I thought, why not build a collar for it similar to a chest freezer. That would bump the door out, and allow room for the carboy. I'll put an empty carboy in soon, and see how it will work. Height may still be a problem...

Dumb idea?


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