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Old 03-09-2013, 02:36 PM   #1
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Default Fermenter chambers?

What are your setups for a fermenter chamber? I want some ideas for long term bulk storage in varying(outdoor) temperatures. It will be in my garage and I would like space for at least 2, preferably 3-4 fermenters.

What gadgets do you use in freezers/refrigerators to keep them warm in the cold months? Mine will have to be in a un-heated/air-conditioned garage. Just looking for ideas

Thanks


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Old 03-09-2013, 02:57 PM   #2
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I have a chest freezer that I ferment in. I use a stc-1000. http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/ebay...-build-163849/
for heat I was using a small heater, but it crapped out so I'm now using a 100 watt light bulb on a ceramic base. It seems to work just fine. My garage is usually above 40 degrees in the winter. I ferment in a sanke so light is not a concern, but you can put a paint can over the bulb if you need to block the light. I also have a fan the runs constantly for circulation.


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Old 03-09-2013, 03:21 PM   #3
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You are really asking two different questions. While your yeast is in the first 2 phases of fermentation the temperature needs to be controlled at the cool end of the yeast's preferred range (for most ale yeasts). Once the ferment slow down in the third phase, your temperature can be brought up to the low 70's for bulk aging. Once the aging is done, your temperature isn't very important although cooler is perhaps better than warmer.
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:24 PM   #4
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I really just need to get my fermenters out of the kitchen into the garage. Currently the daily and seasonal temperature swings make is not possible.

Seems like a johnson control thermostat/ chest freezer is a popular option for cooling, but what are people using in the winter months for warming?
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:49 PM   #5
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The STC-1000 is a dual temp controller. When you wire it into a standard 2-plug wall outlet and mount it all into a a box of some sort, you will have one plug for cooling and the other for heating. I have two, one for my fermenter chamber (an upright freezer) and the other for my keezer.

Simply plug the freezer/fridge into the cool outlet and some sort of heat source (that you place inside the freezer) into the heat outlet. I use the "DIY paint can fermentation heater" for my heat source and it works fine.

http://brewstands.com/fermentation-heater.html

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/ebay...-build-163849/


Good for you for wanting to control your fermentation temps.
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Old 03-10-2013, 12:20 AM   #6
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I like that heater!

Thanks a lot, I gotta find a chest freezer.
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Old 03-10-2013, 12:39 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BamaProud View Post
I like that heater!

Thanks a lot, I gotta find a chest freezer.

For finding a freezer, Craigslist is a pretty darn good source. I picked up my upright (a 4 year-old Kenmore) for $70. With the door shelving removed (easily done with a Dremel cutting wheel), it fits two 6.5 gallon fermenter buckets.
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Old 03-10-2013, 10:51 PM   #8
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I get a Holiday 7CU ft freezer and a Control Products TS-9102D setup this weekend. I was thinking about a 5CU ft (why would I ever want more than one carboy at a time. Fortunately I found a good deal and went with the larger size. thadius856 has an excellent thread on different freezers sizes and capacities. LandoLincoln has a great thread on the controller wiring that helped me put it all together.
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Old 03-11-2013, 02:53 AM   #9
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Quote:
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(why would I ever want more than one carboy at a time.
I once thought that too. Seems that there were two buckets in my fermentation chamber last time I looked (about an hour ago).

It does give you more flexibility with your brew schedule as well as increasing your output if you happen to have too darn many empty kegs that need filling.
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Old 03-11-2013, 03:05 AM   #10
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That was my thinking as well. Just starting out it is hard to think too much in the future, but worst case it is a freezer. I am sure I could find something to put in it (even unfermentables). And for about $30 more I doubled my available space while not taking too much room in my basement. So far I really like it. I used to have to keep one room in the low 70's in the winter for wine. Got that covered as well. The dual controller is the greatest.


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