Rate my sketchy fermentation rig

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RickyBeers

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This is a classic American “lager”, fermenting with kveik yeast. Already moved from 1.041 to 1.030 in about 12 hours (per my tilt…)

spundit 2.0 on a corny keg, pressure fermenting this time at 25psi.

Small space heater, blankets… garage.

Knock off inkbird, connected to my google smart home, high at 99f, low 96f. Seems to keep the fermenter right around 98/100f after initially boosting it up from pitch around 80f (again per my tilt).

So as I asked in the subject line, please rate my rig, I expect some good criticism, suggestions, etc.
 

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marc1

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I'd be a little concerned about a space heater in a cardboard box covered with blankets. Seems like a fire hazard. Maybe swap it out with a heat belt?

Aside from that, if it's doing what you need it to, good job!
 
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RickyBeers

RickyBeers

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I'd be a little concerned about a space heater in a cardboard box covered with blankets. Seems like a fire hazard. Maybe swap it out with a heat belt?

Aside from that, if it's doing what you need it to, good job!
Good point, I was concerned with ventilation as well… probably should reconsider that. It’s certainly working but a heat wrap would be much safer.

Looking forward to upgrading to a repurposed fridge for fermentation control at some point. But fermenting hot under pressure has been what’s held me off
 

twd000

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applaud the ingenuity, but looks like a fire hazard

do you have a seedling heat mat, or electric heating pad for sore muscles? Those work really well if you bungee-wrap the pad around the fermenter
 

IslandLizard

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Agreed with the comments above, that space heater near flammables is a fire hazard!

I have an "old" fridge that doesn't cool anymore, it's become my dedicated hot box. I do use a small space heater in there, with the built in fan, it's very efficient.

Also, since you want to keep it hot, get that fermenter off the cold cement floor! Put an insulation pad under it, such as 2" styrofoam, moving blankets, etc.
 
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RickyBeers

RickyBeers

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Agreed with the comments above, that space heater near flammables is a fire hazard!

I have an "old" fridge that doesn't cool anymore, it's become my dedicated hot box. I do use a small space heater in there, with the built in fan, it's very efficient.

Also, since you want to keep it hot, get that fermenter off the cold cement floor! Put an insulation pad under it, such as 2" styrofoam, moving blankets, etc.
Ya I need to get a graveyard fridge for sure.

And ya the fan gets hot for sure, but it’s not hot to the touch, I think the space above it keeps it a bit more controlled, either way I agree it’s very sketchy. I need to use a heat wrap, but at this point I can likely just turn it off and let the end of fermentation go without boosting much heat. I can wrap in a blanket and keep temp decent.

Good call on cement floor. I do have it sitting on more cardboard but with our kitchen remodel I have enough styrofoam for the neighborhood sitting in my garage, good idea!
 
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I'm curious why you are fermenting hot? To save time? My understanding is that Kveik can ferment clean at high temps, but can't it do so at ambient temps as well? All summer I've been brewing with yeasts that are happy at the temperature in my garage, some Kveik strains and some Belgians.

I'm also thinking about fermenting under pressure myself since I have kegs available, does that help produce lager-like flavors?
 
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RickyBeers

RickyBeers

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Save time, sure, always enjoyable to get grain to glass quickly. Mostly though because I enjoy tinkering around and having something to monitor, might sound weird but half the fun for me with brewing is everything besides actually brewing. The yeast I'm using (Lalbrew Kveik) can ferment clean up to 104f and should finish in 2 days. Each bracket of temperature lower than 100f (I think) it adds a day or so. From what I have heard there shouldn't be off flavors in any of the temp brackets.

Started yesterday at 10am-ish and as of ten minutes ago it's now down to 1.013. It's slow now but it should be done by morning. Pretty cool. Then cold crash for 2 days, gelatin another 2 days, and I have a 1 week "lager".

Not sure if the rules allow for posting links, but go on Ebay and get the SpundIT 2.0 if you plan to pressure ferment with a corny keg. It's amazing. I'd never use a blow tie style again. Pressure fermentation won't necessarily produce the lager-like flavors, it will just suppress the off flavors that occur when fermenting at high temps*. So it's sort of a cheat code for producing a lager-like beer in considerably shorter amounts of time, and usually with less steps, and less equipment needs.

*Someone who knows more might be able to give more information, I'm still extremely new to all of this.
 
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RickyBeers

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Wednesday brew day, today down to 37 degrees and tasting delicious. Still hazy but should be good to go in a week or so. Garage didn’t burn down either!

Figured I would share
 

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