First BrewPi setup questions.

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drovick

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Hi all. So I am still in the research phase but am planning to upgrade from my chest freezer with a Johnson A419 controller currently used for fermentation, to a BrewPi fridge setup. I currently ferment in both a SS Brewtech Brew Bucket (Brewmaster Edition with a thermowell) and a Speidel fermenter with a thermowell mod found on these fourms. I am leaning towards this Edgestar fridge (https://www.edgestar.com/edgestar-black-refrigerator-for-kegerator-conversion-br2001bl/BR2001BL.html) for what seems to be a host of added benefits over some other fridge and beverage coolers out there. It has a ton of room inside to fit whichever fermenter I chose to use, as well as a handy little opening on the back which is meant to run a co2 line when it is set up as a kegerator. I figure this would be perfect for routing wiring and temperature probes.

My question is, if I completely remove the thermostat and install my relay to control the compressor, will the fridge then be plugged in and constantly have power applied to it and the relay will just kick on when the temp probe inside tells it to engage the cooling portion? Or will the entire fridge lose power when it is not needed to cool like my current chest freezer johnson controller setup does? Also, I would like to add a fan to recirculate air inside and can't really find any information on how I would wire that in to the BrewPi setup so that it will also control the fan. My last thing I am still researching is what I would use as a heat source for this build. Does anyone have any suggestions or tips for what has and hasn't worked so well for them or things they would have done differently with their builds?

Thank you for any help, tips or general knowledge you could share. I will probably be taking the plunge in a couple of months and will post pictures as I go if anyone is interested. Cheers! :mug:
 

FuzzeWuzze

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There's no point removing the thermostat, you just build/buy the brewpi and plug it into the BrewPi controlled power socket like you would your Johnson. The fridge will not constantly have power applied too it, the BrewPi will operate exactly as the Johnson one does except it will be more accurate and of course give you the logging/data functionality. Fan is pretty straight forward, you can buy any 12V fan(like you'd use in a PC case) and wire it up to a small 12V wall plug. You want the fan to always be on if your going that route.

I still like the Lasko MyHeat heaters, they are cheap, have a built in fan, and built in safety to shut off if they(and your chamber) begin to overheat due to a malfunction.
 
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