Need to work on summer brewing

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riored4v

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Saturday was about 110* outside and go figure it was on a planned brewday. Went ahead and brewed and decided I would try putting my bucket inside a cooler with some water/ice.

How much water is everyone using in their cooler? I can only put about 4" of water before it starts coming into contact w/ my thermometer on the bucket. And unfortunately, the first day my temps were up to 75*. On sunday I got it down to 68*. I was hoping it would drop more overnight but this morning I saw that it was back up to 75*:mad: So before leaving for work I dumped a bunch of ice in the cooler along with a frozen water bottle.

This is annoying since it's my first time using Nottingham and I was hoping to have a nice cooler fermentation so I could get a good idea of that taste, but now I'm worried I've pretty much screwed myself.:(

I've got one more planned brewday this upcoming weekend and if I can't get the temps figured out then it will probably by last brewday for rest of the summer. Really sucks.
 
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riored4v

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I'd really love to as well, and i actually had the opportunity to pick up a 2nd fridge for real cheap but i declined. Kinda kicking myself in the azz now.
 

BierMuncher

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This is where a Better Bottle comes in handy.

Drop the better bottle into your cooler with 2-3 inches of cool water.

Take your least favorite t-shirt out of the closet and put it on your better bottle with the bottom of the t-shirt dipped in the water.

Turn on an oscillating fan in the room.

T-shirt wicks up the water....fan cools down the temp of the t-shirt using evaporation...fermenter is kept 20-12 degrees cooler.
 
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riored4v

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This is where a Better Bottle comes in handy.

Drop the better bottle into your cooler with 2-3 inches of cool water.

Take your least favorite t-shirt out of the closet and put it on your better bottle with the bottom of the t-shirt dipped in the water.

Turn on an oscillating fan in the room.

T-shirt wicks up the water....fan cools down the temp of the t-shirt using evaporation...fermenter is kept 20-12 degrees cooler.
I have some glass carboys I could try using..:confused: (for the next batch)

I've never actually fermented anything in them since the 6.5g one is such a PITA to move around and i use the 5g ones as secondaries.

Maybe i could try the same thing with the bucket. I was really hoping the cooler and ice would do the trick, but i guess not and i'm sure the damage has already been done.:(
 

homebrewer_99

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I have some glass carboys I could try using..:confused: (for the next batch)

I've never actually fermented anything in them since the 6.5g one is such a PITA to move around and i use the 5g ones as secondaries.

Maybe i could try the same thing with the bucket. I was really hoping the cooler and ice would do the trick, but i guess not and i'm sure the damage has already been done.:(
I never carry a full carboy unless it's in a milk crate. ;)
 

menschmaschine

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This is where a Better Bottle comes in handy.

Drop the better bottle into your cooler with 2-3 inches of cool water.

Take your least favorite t-shirt out of the closet and put it on your better bottle with the bottom of the t-shirt dipped in the water.

Turn on an oscillating fan in the room.

T-shirt wicks up the water....fan cools down the temp of the t-shirt using evaporation...fermenter is kept 20-12 degrees cooler.
This works. I tried it on my last batch. I used a washer machine basin (those 3-4 inch high square plastic basins that go under washer machines). It brought my beer down to 66-67dF from 72.
 

beerthirty

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I used my spare bath tub and a towel with a 6.5 gallon bucket. house is kept at 78-80 degrees and brew stayed at about 68 degrees. remember that evaporative cooling only works when the humidity is low. oh... vegas, then you dont have to worry about that. The best evap rate is only about 12 degrees unless you are using cold water to start with. I ran an evap 24 hours a day on my house and was able to get 20 degrees, but that was a designed system. not a towel and a fan. if you want it lower than 12 degrres below ambient then use a combination of ice bottles, towel, and fan. and dont forget to pour water on the towel a couple times a day as it can't wick up enough to keep the towel saturated only damp.
 

john from dc

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i think you're most of the way there with the water and ice. add a t shirt and a fan and you should be ok. the rapid evaporation of the water really does cool things off.
 

fratermus

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I found mine at a home depot scratch and dent.
I am really glad I did it. Way less hassle.

Same here. Scratch/dent fridge at HomeDepot + a controller and now I can set whatever temp I might want. It's fantastic.
 
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riored4v

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I never carry a full carboy unless it's in a milk crate. ;)

i have a "carboy hauler" but i feel like it's gonna snap when carrying..lol


thanks for the help guys.. i was figuring the cooler and ice/water would be enough, but for this upcoming weekend i'll toss a fan and a wet towel in the mix and we'll see how that works.

i now have the temps down to 64*, but ofcourse fermentation seems to be pretty much done.
 

WBC

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When you first start fermenting the yeast are eating like crazy and it causes a temperature rise. For this reason you need more ice at the beginning to get the carboy down to 65F. Once you have it stabilized you can back off on the ice and it will maintain fairly well. Remember that if you start at 80F the ice has to work very hard to lower the temp and the yeast are fighting to eat all the sugars at the same time. The first 3 days of fermentation will usually be the most vigorus for ales and 2 to 4 days for lagers. Lagers really need a refrigerator to ferment and age properly.
 
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