ebay aquarium temp controller build

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abarhan

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Looking for some in site on the diagram for the temp sensor. Does it matter which wire goes in either side? My probe doesn't seem to be marked with anything so its kinda hard to tell. Thanks in advance.
 

bbarr21

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BrewBug said:
Here are a couple pics of my finished controller. I wanted it to be smaller in size and I managed to fit it in a 6x4x2" project box.
Really like the outlet cut outs, must have been a pain but I wish I'd seen this first
 

abarhan

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Any ideas why my GFI would pop when some thing is plugged in the cold outlet? The unit turns on and functions fine but the hot outlet is on when the cold light is on and if u plug some thing in the cold side the GFI pops. What gives?
 

bbarr21

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Ok ok ok I started finally, couldnt wait for the controller so I got most everything else done

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Front with stainless top, 3 mm phone jack in back left for temperature probe, hot cold wired in parallel with outlet after temperature switch

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Probe connection

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Outlets hot cold (left right)

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Wires to outlet

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Most of wiring through bus ready for controller and main power in

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Probe connected with 3 mm phone jack

I think I like it better with just the black top
 

zachattack

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Any ideas why my GFI would pop when some thing is plugged in the cold outlet? The unit turns on and functions fine but the hot outlet is on when the cold light is on and if u plug some thing in the cold side the GFI pops. What gives?
Sounds like you miswired it, I'd re-check everything! It might be easiest to remove all the wires and start over again. The GFI tripping means that you crossed ground and neutral somewhere along the way.
 

bassmaster911

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Sounds like you miswired it, I'd re-check everything! It might be easiest to remove all the wires and start over again. The GFI tripping means that you crossed ground and neutral somewhere along the way.
I agree and it could also be your fridge tripping the gfci if that is what you have plugged into the cold side.
 

abarhan

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I was just testing it with a cell phone charger so no fridge yet. I only broke the hot tab on the outlet, do both need to be broke? As far as the tab goes should I take the screws off all the way off and make sure nothing else is connecting them? I also just looked at the diagram again and i think i misread the diagram and did not hook up the green wire to the green ground screw, hooked it to the cool outlet itself. That has to be my issue.

I am using a 10A PC power cord and 12/2 wire. I have read some comments on surging and burning contacts my Keezer, has listed at 1.7 running amps should I be ok?

Thanks for all the help
 

raouliii

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... I also just looked at the diagram again and i think i misread the diagram and did not hook up the green wire to the green ground screw, hooked it to the cool outlet itself. That has to be my issue.....
That's it.

A GFCI functions by comparing the current in the hot and neutral path and if it is not equal, it trips. You were sending current throught the ground. Not a safe thing to do and a GFCI makes sure that you can't.
 

abarhan

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OK so I fixed the ground issue and the GFI is not tripping any more. I thought I had it only to be greeted by this: The cold outlet never has juice to it and the "hot side" has juice when it is heating and cooling? Any ideas? Clearly im a dumb ass.
 

GhettoDickens

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Question:

I am building a Son of a Fermentation Chamber, and in the main PDF everyone seems to use for instructions it explicitly states not to use a temperature controller like this. Why not? I have one of these built already that I use to control my FermWrap...so why can't I use it to power a computer fan in my Son of a Fermentation Chamber? Am I missing something?
 

tre9er

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OK so I fixed the ground issue and the GFI is not tripping any more. I thought I had it only to be greeted by this: The cold outlet never has juice to it and the "hot side" has juice when it is heating and cooling? Any ideas? Clearly im a dumb ass.
Did you program the unit?
 

abarhan

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Yea set it up tested it but the concern comes from the cold outlet not working and the hot outlet is getting juice when it should be "heating" and "cooling"
 

raouliii

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OK so I fixed the ground issue and the GFI is not tripping any more. I thought I had it only to be greeted by this: The cold outlet never has juice to it and the "hot side" has juice when it is heating and cooling? Any ideas? Clearly im a dumb ass.
Can you post a picture?
 

abarhan

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Got it, turns out the plug was reversed. I should have just thought about it and used what I know instead of trying to replicate the image. Thanks for everyone's help!
 

Yaason

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Yeah. It looked like you had your neutral wires going to your hot side on one outlet, and the two hot wires going to the same neutral.
 

Nagorg

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I have my STC 1000 controller finished thanks to the posts on this forum! Great ideas... I did incorporate 120v neon lights from Radio Shack to give me a visual for the outlets being hot. Very cool...

Now I just need to find a good deal on a used upright freezer so I can put this thing to work!
:D
 

cinderbike

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Got my controller yesterday, booyah! Heading to 'The Shack' for a project box and then I'll start building. I'll probably make up a blog post for this sometime soon, stay tuned.
 

tre9er

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Got mine setup for cooling only Saturday. Fridge goes from 60-62 then kicks on. Basement doesn't get much below 60, even in winter, so for now I'm not going to worry about heat. When I do I may use reptile tape around the bottom sides of the fridge.
 

tre9er

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Also, FWIW I got a PVC 6x6x4 box for $12 at Menards and I think I can fit 4 sets of outlets and 2 STC's in it.
 

barryfine

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Here is my newest temperature controller! I built a fermentation chamber with 3 built into before, but this was my first standalone unit. I used a 4x4x2 junction box from lowes. Instead of using wall outlets, I just wired up extension cords to keep the box small and tidy. Here are some pics:





And here is the chamber it's going to be controlling:

 

tre9er

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tre9er

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Here's my temporary setup. Cooling only and I have room for another STC and more outlets


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cinderbike

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Well, got everything wired up yesterday:




Worked as hoped, turned on the chest freezer, shut it off when it reached temp.

However... I'm guessing this is due to the chest freezer being empty (no thermal mass) but when testing it, when it reached the target temp of 15 degrees C it shut off power to the freezer, but the temp continued to drop for a few minutes. I assume with some carboys full of beer/water etc in there this won't be a problem?
 

zachattack

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Well, got everything wired up yesterday:




Worked as hoped, turned on the chest freezer, shut it off when it reached temp.

However... I'm guessing this is due to the chest freezer being empty (no thermal mass) but when testing it, when it reached the target temp of 15 degrees C it shut off power to the freezer, but the temp continued to drop for a few minutes. I assume with some carboys full of beer/water etc in there this won't be a problem?
Where's the temp probe?

The way these freezers work is the walls get very cold, so you're seeing a lag as the cold walls chill the air then the cold air chills the probe. It's like when you pull a turkey out of the oven, the internal temp continues to rise for a bit. Since a carboy/keg has a lot of thermal mass the liquid temp change should be pretty small.
 

cwi

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However... I'm guessing this is due to the chest freezer being empty (no thermal mass) but when testing it, when it reached the target temp of 15 degrees C it shut off power to the freezer, but the temp continued to drop for a few minutes. I assume with some carboys full of beer/water etc in there this won't be a problem?
Never run freezers/fridges empty, especially using these controllers and with the probe only measuring air temp. Tape the probe to a container of something, then insulate on top of it. Always set the ASD (F3) to its max. Load in some jugs of water to add additional mass if you don't have enough beer.
 

cinderbike

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Never run freezers/fridges empty, especially using these controllers and with the probe only measuring air temp. Tape the probe to a container of something, then insulate on top of it. Always set the ASD (F3) to its max. Load in some jugs of water to add additional mass if you don't have enough beer.
Just did it to test it out, it's turned off right now until I brew this weekend. That's what I planned on though.
 

smittygouv30

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Finally finished mine. Not the smoothest project I've completed but I enjoyed the process. I ended up using a separate outlet for the fan and the lights. I had a hard time finding 120V fan/lights, so I went with 5V for both (hence the separate outlet). This is also my first experience with GFCI outlets so that added another layer of challenge.

Bottom line is that it works great, just a few bumps along the way.

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raouliii

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Since I just did a little experimenting with my 110vac/STC1000, I thought I would post some information.

The transformer provides a 12.8:1 (115:9) step down. This 9vac is then rectified by diodes and smoothed with a capacitor to 13.4vdc. The 13.4vdc is used to power the electronics and the relays. The relays are spec'd to operate at a minimum of 9vdc.


We've seen many posts associated with members obtaining the wrong version of this controller. A post in another thread shows that the transformer in the 220vac version is 23:1 (230:10) step down. If one were to apply 110vac to this transformer the result would be a 5vac output which, using the same rectification ratio, would be rectified to about 7.5vdc. While this may be enough to operate the electronics , the relays, spec'd at a minimum of 9vdc, would not function consistently or not at all. This is why the 220vac version will not operate correctly on 110vac.

FWIW
 

emjay

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raouliii said:
Since I just did a little experimenting with my 110vac/STC1000, I thought I would post some information.

The transformer provides a 12.8:1 (115:9) step down. This 9vac is then rectified by diodes and smoothed with a capacitor to 13.4vdc. The 13.4vdc is used to power the electronics and the relays. The relays are spec'd to operate at a minimum of 9vdc.
https://www.homebrewtalk.com/photo/transformer-55782.html https://www.homebrewtalk.com/photo/relays-55781.html

We've seen many posts associated with members obtaining the wrong version of this controller. A post in another thread shows that the transformer in the 220vac version is 23:1 (230:10) step down. If one were to apply 110vac to this transformer the result would be a 5vac output which, using the same rectification ratio, would be rectified to about 7.5vdc. While this may be enough to operate the electronics , the relays, spec'd at a minimum of 9vdc, would not function consistently or not at all. This is why the 220vac version will not operate correctly on 110vac.

FWIW
Because we were all dying to know why it wouldn't work on the wrong power source ;)
 
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