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Old 03-08-2010, 07:38 PM   #1
paint_it_black
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I want to lager some beer. I don't have a spare refrigerator with an automatic thermostat thing or anything like that. But what I do have is an old fridge that no longer works. I'm wondering if I can get a sufficiently stable lager temperature by keeping this thing in my garage, putting my 6-gallon carboy in, and keeping a sh1t ton of ice in there -- essentially creating an icebox, like the old days.
I don't know if I could create legit *blocks* of ice, so I may have to fill up a bucket of ice cubes. And I realize I will likely have to change out the ice daily or every couple of days. But what do you think? Have any of you ever tried something like this before?

 
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Old 03-08-2010, 08:43 PM   #2
david_42
 
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Not too different from using a tub of water and ice.
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Old 03-08-2010, 08:45 PM   #3
arturo7
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Maybe a tub of water and ice inside the box?
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Old 03-08-2010, 09:07 PM   #4
Cpt_Kirks
 
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Before I built my fermentation chiller, I had a box I had made of 3/4" foam board. I used frozen water filled 2 liter soda bottles and would put as many in the box with my carboy as needed.

Now I still use that box for crash cooling if I don't have room to do it elsewhere.

 
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Old 03-08-2010, 09:21 PM   #5
starrfish
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cpt_Kirks View Post
Before I built my fermentation chiller, I had a box I had made of 3/4" foam board. I used frozen water filled 2 liter soda bottles and would put as many in the box with my carboy as needed.

Now I still use that box for crash cooling if I don't have room to do it elsewhere.
have any pics? or dimensions of box?
any temp info like how long did 2 liter soda bottles stay frozen? and how many bottles used to get to what temp at standard room temp?

trying to work out a foldable version for easy storage. I usually do all ales, but doing a cream ale which may require some degree of lagering... if this works it might be a viable lager option for cooler temp brewing... not sure how it will work in SC summers... but winter kitchen brew temps are usually right around 60°
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Old 03-08-2010, 09:41 PM   #6
chrispykid
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Short answer: your approach could work, but for lagering durations it sounds like a serious pain in the butt.

Test it out with a carboy full of water at your specified lager temp, stick a thermometer in it and see how much ice you need in there to hold a reasonably steady temp. The yeast in your beer will be a heat source so it won't exactly replicate the conditions of your beer, but should probably be close enough.

And I'd echo the poster above who suggested frozen soda bottles. Soda bottles, plastic iced tea bottles, water bottles, gatorade bottles - they're all dying to be big ice cubes in service of your beer.

 
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