Good Fermenter chiller? - Home Brew Forums
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Old 04-06-2012, 02:31 PM   #1
Kyled93
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Mar 2011
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
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Hey guys I want your opinion. I found a water fountain at the restore for $75. Do you think it's a good idea to use for chiller for my fermenter?



 
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Old 04-07-2012, 01:46 PM   #2
CS223
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Feb 2012
Gainesville, Florida
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The water fountain that I had apart, the type that hangs on a wall, had a compressor, had an insulated cylinder reservoir that filled with water and was chilled so I'd say no. It wouldn't work for a wort chiller either because it doesn't remove enough heat fast enough. Best I could tell from the construction, it was the equivalent of chilling a 32oz cup of water. You should be able to find a mini-fridge on craigslist easy for $75, most go for $50 esp. here in a college town.



 
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Old 04-12-2012, 12:03 AM   #3
Kyled93
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Mar 2011
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
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Hum... What I was thinking was too have a small pump to circulate the chilled water around my conical fermenter. I will have a Copper tube wrapped on the outside of the fermenter. It will then be insulated to maintain the set temperature. My thought was I will continuously circulate the chilled water and have a temp controller control the compressor. I will try to post the build once I start.

 
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Old 06-02-2012, 11:54 PM   #4
Kyled93
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Mar 2011
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
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Ok, finally started my project this afternoon. Here are a few photos of the progress thus far. The yellow line is the supply and the other was disconnected from the fountain piece. They are 1/4" lines through out the water cooler. I spoke to the manufacture and ask what were the requirements for cooling. They told me they could guarantee 50 degree water at 8gallons per min with 80 degree inlet temp and 90 degree outside temp. The good news is there is a dial temperature controller to make the water colder if needed. This should easily maintain a 70 degree set point and I think I will be able to get as low as 45 degrees.

As you see I have a RIB mounted on the side to turn on and off the pump. Next step will be to install the PID controller in the top. This should make a clean look once mounted on the wall.
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Old 07-05-2012, 01:07 AM   #5
Kyled93
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Mar 2011
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
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Well this July fourth I was able to put a little more time into the brewhemoth chiller. Take a look at the progress. I will post some better test photo's and test results once I have the vessel insulated.

Little background since the last post. I was able to wrap the brewhemouth with 50 ft of 1/4 copper tubing between the 5 and 10 gallon mark. This will be covered by 1.5 inch Armaflex insulation at a later date. The biggest issue I had to contend with was the pump due to the large head pressure through all the tubing. The pump I purchased was a diaphragm pump with a designed head of 100 psi which seemed to work just fine.
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Old 07-05-2012, 01:21 AM   #6
carlisle_bob
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Apr 2012
Carlisle, PA
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Hi

How much cooling are you trying to get?

Bob

 
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Old 07-05-2012, 01:32 AM   #7
Kyled93
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Mar 2011
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
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Enough cooling to maintain fermentation and be able to cash to about 50 degrees to drop the yeast out of solution.

 
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Old 07-28-2012, 02:41 AM   #8
Kyled93
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Mar 2011
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Posts: 247
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Ah... Sweet success!

I just received my fermentor back from the insulator. It has 1.5" Armaflex insulation wrapped around the entire brewhemouth. I have posted a photo below of the completed product. Tonight, I decided to complete a test run on how quickly the temp will be brought down to the set point. Here in Florida, my ground water temp is about 88 degrees in summer which was my starting point at 6:40pm tonight. I just checked the status at 10:20pm and I was maintaining 68 degrees!!!!
I cant believe that it only took 4 hours to drop 20 degrees and maintaining with out a problem!


I hope this build helps anyone who likes to dream and think outside the box.


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