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Old 09-13-2013, 09:51 PM   #1321
LovesIPA
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May 2012
Sacramento, CA
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I quit. I am so tired of dicking with this stirplate build. I've tried four different power supplies, two different fans, three different magnets, and I still can't get it to work reliably. It throws the bar, it stalls (even on high - in a 250ml beaker) and then works fine for the next starter.

I've spent probably $40 in parts (see above), countless hours and it's just not worth it anymore. I ordered a stirstarter from Bell's General Store. For $42 I'll have a reliable stirplate that I don't need to worry about catching on fire because it decided to stall (again!) at 2am.

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Old 09-14-2013, 02:54 AM   #1322
troyh
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In my experience, the bar will get thrown if either (1) the magnetic connection is weak, (2) the fan is moving too fast or (3) the flask is not centered (or all three).

I fixed #1 by bringing the fan's magnets closer to the flask by cutting a hole in the stir plate and raising the fan so the only thing between the magnets and the stir bar is the flask bottom.

I fixed #2 by adding a voltage regulator to the circuit so the rheostat has more finely-grained control.

I fixed #3 by noticing the bar rattles the least when centered in the flask. Me not dum.

Now I have 2 stir plates that couldn't be more reliable with as much as 5L starters. In the end, buying a good stir plate is probably smarter, but less fun, IMO.

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Old 09-14-2013, 04:07 PM   #1323
LovesIPA
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May 2012
Sacramento, CA
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I've had enough fun.

It does have a nice 1.2L starter of WLP007 grown from a slant on it right now. I'll use it as a backup or in case I want to make two starters for a double batch one day.

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Old 09-17-2013, 01:25 AM   #1324
BurgBrewer
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Jan 2012
Ellesnburg, WA
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Chalk one down for the WIN side! Came out great. I think 12v power supply is a bit much for a 500ml though. May down grade to 9v... or upsuze to 2000ml.

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Old 09-17-2013, 10:29 PM   #1325
Starrider
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Oct 2012
Grass Lake, MI
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I'm not sure how to do the math for a motor but I think it is better to drive it with the 12 volts it is rated at and control speed with the proper pot. Lower volts may indeed lower speed but it increases current and heat. With 12 volts, I can run mine from full speed all the way down to dead crawl just before stalling. Full speed will throw the bar right quick but I have not had any issues with the motor or pot heating up running it slow either.
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Lagering: Yuengling clone
Conditioning: Red's Riding Ale
Serving: Red's Riding Ale
Hard Lemonade,
Hefeweizen

 
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Old 09-18-2013, 02:46 AM   #1326
BurgBrewer
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Jan 2012
Ellesnburg, WA
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I want to say my magnet is about 1 or 2 mm under the housing so I can get a really good vortex going. It has never thrown on me and I'll have 500+ ml in it and the bar will actually be exposed to air. Now my question: I've created the stir plate and have a Erlenmeyer, how long do I run the starter for a 5 gallon batch? 10 gallon batch?

 
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Old 09-19-2013, 06:27 PM   #1327
Newsman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BurgBrewer View Post
I want to say my magnet is about 1 or 2 mm under the housing so I can get a really good vortex going. It has never thrown on me and I'll have 500+ ml in it and the bar will actually be exposed to air. Now my question: I've created the stir plate and have a Erlenmeyer, how long do I run the starter for a 5 gallon batch? 10 gallon batch?
Not sure how long but for a 10 gallon batch, you might want to step it up to make sure you have enough yeast cells.

 
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Old 09-20-2013, 08:08 PM   #1328
Hang Glider
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I usually run my starters two days before I pitch - just to be sure the yeast had a couple days to eat the barley I fed 'em and multiply...

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Old 09-28-2013, 12:49 PM   #1329
Starrider
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Oct 2012
Grass Lake, MI
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I finally found a suitable case for my stir plate. I had been just bridging my jar over 4 screws that I set into the mounting holes of the fan.

As you can see, it is just a cheap plastic storage container that I found in a drawer. It is a little deeper than I would have preferred bit it works well. As it turns out, it is just big enough to store the brick and cord in the case when not in use.

Using a coffee pot as my flask but what the heck, it was already on hand and it seems to work well.

I think the only thing I actually purchased for this build is the threaded rod for the standoffs. Everything else was found in the junk drawers.

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Lagering: Yuengling clone
Conditioning: Red's Riding Ale
Serving: Red's Riding Ale
Hard Lemonade,
Hefeweizen

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Old 11-14-2013, 03:35 PM   #1330
Pie_Man
 
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Aug 2011
Gainesville, FL
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Hey Everyone, I have two questions about this build I was hoping to get your input on:

1. Has anyone used this stir plate on both a 2L and a 5L flask? I seached "5L" using the Search this Thread tool, but nothing came up. I sometimes brew big lagers like Doppelbocks and it would be nice if the stir plate was powerful and reliable enough to stir both the 2L and 5L flasks.

2. I have a 12V .13A 120mm fan. I got the design wired up last night, but I couldn't get a reliable spin, so I'll be tinkering with it more tonight. My question is about the fan's amperage, at .13A, this seems lower than other case fans. Do you see the low amperage as a hinderance to a 2L or 5L capable stir plate?

 
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