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Digital thermometer

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drycreek

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I had some issues with my old school analog thermometer yesterday, so I'm thinking I'll get a digital one before my next brew.

I read a couple old threads and saw that Thermapen gets highly recommended, but I don't understand why. It's expensive and there is no cord for the probe, so it seems like it would be hard position/mount in the kettle.

I have 2 Acu-Rite digital thermometers that I use for my smoker that look like this:



They cost about 20 bucks and will easily cover the temp range needed for the mash and boil. Also, the probe is on a cable such that it could be submerged in the kettle with the display sitting on the counter nearby. Seems convenient.

Would something like that work, or is there a reason I should splurge on a more expensive model?
 

Sawdustguy

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Be careful, I doubt that the probe is waterproof. It may be ok when stuck into a piece of meat but if it is submerged in boiling water I bet it dies.
 

Ohio-Ed

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Be careful, I doubt that the probe is waterproof. It may be ok when stuck into a piece of meat but if it is submerged in boiling water I bet it dies.
Yup... I have 2 similar to that one. They now read about 15f different and I can't find a way to calibrate the ones I have. There have been threads posted on how to waterproof the probe if you want to go that route.

Also, the jacket of the wire doesn't hold up well to direct propane burner temps... don't ask how I know this.
 

TipsyDragon

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also be sure to calibrate it. boil a gallon of distilled water and check its temp. ill bet your digital thermometer wont read the proper temp. the temp of boiling distilled water is of course 212F but you have to subtract 1F for every 500 feet above sea level you are. also check the low temp range. put a bowl of water in the freezer and check it every half an hour and break the skin of ice that forms. when you get about a 50-50 mix of ice and water check its temp with your thermometer. this end will probably be close to 32.

now comes the math part. i don't know how inclined you are to this but here it goes.

temp = ((212 - 32)/(boiling temp - freezing temp)) * temp reading
 

Doc Robinson

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I got this one from Target for about $20. It rules. I put a small dab of marine epoxy on the joint between the cord and the metal part of the probe.

 
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