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Equip for fermenting belgians

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oooFishy

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I recently had my first saison, and it was so good now I'm determined to make one. I listened to a Jamil podcast and he swears by ramping up the temp over the course of fermentation for belgians (specifically a saison).

My question is- What is the best and cheapest way to do this (control fermentation temp up to 80F)? I've been looking at the Fermwraps, but it doesn't look like you can control their output unless you do a bunch of other stuff to monitor the beer temp and then feedback to the fermwrap. Can a fermwrap even heat a batch to 80F ( my garage is getting to the low 50's)? Anyone use heating blankets? Can you control their output? Any hazard to using one of them with a sleeping bag wrapped around it all?

I'll probably also just make a lager over the next few weeks :cross:
 

Soulive

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Put it into a tub of warm water and keep changing it out when the water cools. If the water is cooled off, you could probably add some near boiling water to warm it up. That's probably the cheapest way, but certainly not the best...
 

Evan!

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Depending on the ambient temp, a run-of-the-mill heating pad from the drug store will probably be able to get you up to 80f.
 

Bobby_M

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Put it in a cooler filled with water and put an aquarium heater in the water surrounding the carboy. Their built in controllers have the right temp range.
 

srm775

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Bobby_M said:
Put it in a cooler filled with water and put an aquarium heater in the water surrounding the carboy. Their built in controllers have the right temp range.
That's a really good idea ... on other thing you can do is to keep the carboy/fermenting vessel in the house and right near an airduct or whatever heat source you have for your home.
 

malkore

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Bobby_M said:
Put it in a cooler filled with water and put an aquarium heater in the water surrounding the carboy. Their built in controllers have the right temp range.
most safe method. get a shatter proof aquarium heater. these turn off if they get too warm, instead of overheating and then exploding when they touch cool water again.

putting a heating pad under a bucket of water sounds like a neat way to start a house fire :(
 
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oooFishy

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Cool, I'm gonna try this out. I just hope an aquarium heater is strong enough to be able to effectively ramp up the temp over a short period of time. I think I'll do a little testing before I put this to work.
 

malkore

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I'm an aquarium guy too. For aquarium use, you typically shoot for 2-3 watts per gallon of aquarium capacity. Any decent heater will be able to hold that temp range, plus or minus a couple of degrees. the thermostat on them might be a little off, but they do hold a pretty stable temp, since fish don't like big temp swings any more than yeast do.

so really, a small 25 or 50 watt heater should be plenty.
 
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