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Old 08-13-2010, 12:06 AM   #1
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Default Infrared Thermometer

I have a "fermometer" on my better bottle but I have been also using a infrared point and shoot type laser thermometer. It is giving me a reading 2 degrees lower than the stick on fermometer (stick on says 74 laser says 72) will there be a noticable difference in the taste if my temp for secondary was at 74?


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Old 08-13-2010, 12:18 AM   #2
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Both 72 and 74 are on the high side for fermentation.


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Old 08-13-2010, 12:26 AM   #3
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What kind of beer are you brewing and what yeast did you use?
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Old 08-13-2010, 12:28 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by muscleshoalsbrewer View Post
I have a "fermometer" on my better bottle but I have been also using a infrared point and shoot type laser thermometer. It is giving me a reading 2 degrees lower than the stick on fermometer (stick on says 74 laser says 72) will there be a noticable difference in the taste if my temp for secondary was at 74?
For secondary with an ale that should be fine.
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Old 08-13-2010, 02:18 AM   #5
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Just a side note about the infrared thermometers. Harbor Freight has recently had the Cen-Tech Infrared Laser Thermometer for like 27 bucks. i picked it up and absolutely love using it with my brews. Its damn accurate.
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Old 08-13-2010, 03:12 AM   #6
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The tolerance for most of the commonly available infra-red thermometers that I have seen is only +/- 2% IIRC. I think they are probably somewhat closer than that in actual use, but generally they aren't all that accurate.

Here's a spec sheet from Omega listing some of their models and the accuracies:

http://www.omega.com/temperature/pdf/SEL_GUIDE_IR.pdf

Even the relatively expensive ones aren't all that accurate. I have a moderately priced one and it's handy for quick checks of the fermenters and the output of my chiller, but not of much use for anything else brewing related. Steam and vapor coming off of the mash will interfere with the readings and they only read surface temperature. Reflective surfaces can also interfere with them.
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Old 08-13-2010, 03:17 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Catt22 View Post
The tolerance for most of the commonly available infra-red thermometers that I have seen is only +/- 2% IIRC. I think they are probably somewhat closer than that in actual use, but generally they aren't all that accurate.

Here's a spec sheet from Omega listing some of their models and the accuracies:

http://www.omega.com/temperature/pdf/SEL_GUIDE_IR.pdf

Even the relatively expensive ones aren't all that accurate. I have a moderately priced one and it's handy for quick checks of the fermenters and the output of my chiller, but not of much use for anything else brewing related. Steam and vapor coming off of the mash will interfere with the readings and they only read surface temperature. Reflective surfaces can also interfere with them.
I love my IR therm. I trust it over the fermometer!
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Old 08-13-2010, 03:41 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by passedpawn View Post
I love my IR therm. I trust it over the fermometer!
They have about the same degree of accuracy and either would certainly be close enough for checking fermenters, but as I mentioned, IMO they have very limited other brewing related uses. It is a neat tool to have around and my cat likes to chase the red laser dot. He's easily amused. Me, not so much.
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Old 08-13-2010, 05:04 PM   #9
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I havent tried AG yet so I will take your word for it as far as mashing and such goes.

I like using it to get a feel for how close to steeping/boiling temp the wort is. It seems like theres always a hundred different things I need to be doing (brewing and non-brewing related) as soon as I get the pot on the burner, and shooting the wort quickly with the gun seems simple to get a good gauge of temp.

And I almost drained the battery in the two weeks of fermenting, especially since I just changed my swamp cooler setup and I wanted to test it (every hour it seemed for the first couple days!)

Maybe I just really am the techno-geek that my wife always says I am.
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Old 08-14-2010, 01:59 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain_Bigelow View Post
What kind of beer are you brewing and what yeast did you use?
brewing a stone DB and pitched a WLP051 ... I was thinking that the gradual warmingto 72 degrees from my 67-68 degree, 18 day fermentation,that I cuold coax the yeast into cleaning up after themsleves a little.

Also, this has been in secondary for a little over a month. brewed it 7/3/10.
will I need to pitch more yeast at botteling? or will there be enough live cells left to do the job?


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