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Old 03-04-2010, 05:47 AM   #1
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Default Water cooler as a fermenter cooler question

I picked up free a water cooler with a lower cold compartment below, has 100 watt of cooling power demand with the compressor and condenser mounted on the back.
The cold water cooling coils wrap around a 6" diameter stainless can 7" deep plus another evaporator in the below cooler compartment. I was thinking about ripping it apart and using it to maintain temps for a future a conical fermenter. Add a stainless "U" tube reaching deep into the fermenter as a frementer cooler. It runs off R134 as well frosts up the cooling coils it's that cold. The stat's set for 32*F to 41*F in the lower cooler section. Anyone else attack a project item like this?
The 500 watt hot water chamber had splits and leaking it's a trash item. I was thinking about the past attempts to make a Peltier cooled fermenter before but this with a small compressor with two evaporators instead has more BTU of cooling power.
Combine both evaporators into one chamber then circulate this cold fluid thru the loop tube in the fermenter lid.
Free what the hell is my thinking, fail just throw it away.

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Old 09-26-2011, 04:50 PM   #2
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Default Did you get it to work???

This sounds like a great idea. I read it and my mind is racing. Just need to figure out to create a closed loop system with hot and cold recirculating through copper tubing. Have the whole thing run off a temp. probe in the primary.

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Old 01-24-2012, 06:51 PM   #3
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How about sticking a pond pump in the stainless can full of water and pumping the cold water through a blanket wrapped around the fermentor? I've been looking into peltier cooling myself but it seems a small compressor would be way more efficient.
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Old 01-25-2012, 02:23 AM   #4
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After lurking on this site for a while, I finally have something to add to the conversion.

I've been putting together a fermentation setup for a carboy using an office cooler. What I did was re-plump the hot and cold water tanks and connnect each of them to separate aquarium pumps. From the pumps the cold or hot water goes to copper coils that sit in a 12 gallon "Ice Cube" cooler, the water then returns to the tanks. The pumps are controlled by an Ebay aquarium temp controller.

Yesterday I finished putting it together and tested it out. The cooling side worked OK, it took six hours to cool eight gallons from 73 degrees down to 53 degrees. That's not very fast, but I think it's enough to keep up with the expected load. The hot side initially worked well, taking 40 minutes to raise the temperature from 61 to 75 degrees. Unfortunately, after a while I ran into a problem with the hot side pump, it lost it's prime and/or cavitated. I believe this is due to where I chose to mount the pump in relation to the location of the hot water tank, so I'll have to do some revisions.

Here's a picture without the copper coils or cooler - http://i229.photobucket.com/albums/e...ice_Cooler.jpg
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Old 02-22-2012, 08:55 PM   #5
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@ yrewerb - I'm interested to hear if this worked out for you, this would be great for what I've got in mind.

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