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Fermentation Chamber Build

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Manthony

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Ok, so I've been wanting to do lagering for quite some time now, and I finally got together with my grandfather, and this is what we came up with. Im pretty pleased thus far:

Building the frame
IMG_0459[1].jpg

Mounting the mini fridge to the top (There's some insulation underneath it)
IMG_0461[1].jpg

Almost completed:
IMG_0462[1].jpg

There's another layer of insulation going around the sides of it, and then the door and wheels getting put on it. Should be plenty tall enough to fit the new conical in there.
 
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Manthony

Manthony

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Nope, just mounted the compressor so it is facing upwards so no oil gets into the cooling lines and have the door taken off facing down. No freezer portion to this fridge so I'm not terribly worried about any frost buildup pouring onto the wood
 
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Manthony

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No beer has gone in there yet. And if you are talking about the personal consumption, its there, just not in the pics!
 
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Manthony

Manthony

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Well, the door is constructed and we took this a step further by putting another thermometer on the door to accurately measure the temperature on the inside of the cabinet as well as the inside of the conical. Let me know what you guys think!

BTW, there's now a marzen fermenting inside the new conical sitting comfortably at around 50°F :rockin:

001.jpg


002.jpg
 

starman

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That looks very nice, love the front! Target had some medium size dorm fridges today that were advertising dry erase paint. It would be cool to do what you've done with a marker board fridge band and then another hardwood cap to trim the very top.

No insulation on the door panel though?
 
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Manthony

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There is. You can't see it from the angle of the picture, or maybe i didnt have it on there when we put the door on, but it's well insulated and holding temps wonderfully!
 

chessking

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Very nice. I love the old time "Ice Box" look. I will be interested to see if you have any moisture problems. My ferm chamber is converted refrigerator with an internal freezer. With temps at 50 Deg F the freezer compartment frosts over, then thaws when the compressor stops. The freezer has a tray under it to collect the drippings from the freezer, and I find I have to empty it about once a week. I am wondering if over the span of a ferment, if you get some moisture inside. Let us know how it goes. Nice work.
 
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Manthony

Manthony

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Well this mini fridge has no freezer compartment (made sure of that!) so I'm hoping that there shouldn't be any moisture problems in this
 

crane

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Manthony said:
Well this mini fridge has no freezer compartment (made sure of that!) so I'm hoping that there shouldn't be any moisture problems in this
Doesn't matter if you have a freezer section or not you will get condensation on a cold surface. In this case it will be the walls of the minifridge. This may be more of a problem as the water will drip down the walls making it harder to catch than if you did have a freezer compartment.

Unfortunately I threw away the drip tray that was in my minifridge when I gutted the cooling portion for my chamber build. I have recently ran into mildew issues due to the recent high humidity heat wave we had in southern California. I need to rig something up to catch all the water so none of it can pool up on the wood or insulation.
 

crane

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chessking said:
My ferm chamber is converted refrigerator with an internal freezer. With temps at 50 Deg F the freezer compartment frosts over, then thaws when the compressor stops. The freezer has a tray under it to collect the drippings from the freezer, and I find I have to empty it about once a week. I am wondering if over the span of a ferment, if you get some moisture inside. Let us know how it goes. Nice work.
For my build I mounted a fan in front of the freezer compartment that is on when the compressor is on. This prevents the cold plate from getting too much colder than the air in the chamber. As a result I don't get frost buildup until I get into the low 30's.
 

chessking

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For my build I mounted a fan in front of the freezer compartment that is on when the compressor is on. This prevents the cold plate from getting too much colder than the air in the chamber. As a result I don't get frost buildup until I get into the low 30's.
That's a good Idea. Did you use an old computer fan, and is it blowing to the back, or front?
 

crane

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That's a good Idea. Did you use an old computer fan, and is it blowing to the back, or front?
I didn't use a computer fan because I didn't want to muck with a power adapter. I used a 120mm AC fan so that way I could just wire it straight up to the temp controller along with the compressor. It is mounted ~4 inches in front of the freezer compartment and it is blowing back over the freezer compartment.
 

sikkingj

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I'm curious about the build. How is the fermentation chamber with the top mounted dorm fridge holding up?

I'm on the look out for a solution and this would take up less horizontal space then adding a collar to dorm fridge.

BTW, nice looking woodwork.
 
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Manthony

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Its holding up very well. I have a doppelbock going as we speak. I haven't had one single problem and after putting a drip pan in there underneath the fridge I haven't had one single spot of water inside. The only thing I've noticed is that the temperature is usually 3-4 degrees off from where I set it (probably should have used 1" foam instead of 3/4". I'm gonna put some thermal tape on the inside next weekend and see if that helps. But as long as I set it about 3 degrees lower than what I want it works like a gem!
 

Navy_Chief

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Do you have any information on the model of fridge you used, and pictures of the modification to the compressor mount? This is an awesome build!
 

Kreno

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So you can put a mini fridge upside down like this with no problems?
 

Docbruw

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No. Changing the mounting of the compressor was one of the modifications he did to the refrigerator. Post #3
 

Badgerhops

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Great build and idea.... Anyone know the process of changing the compressor position?

Pictures of the new mounted position available?
Thanks!


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