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Darwin18

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I'm looking into getting a better handle on my fermentation temperatures and I was wondering if using a wine cooler would be an acceptable alternative to a chest freezer or a mini fridge.

I seem to be able to find more wine coolers on craigslist for a better price compared to mini fridges. What size would you recommend for a 6.5G glass carboy?
 

lamarguy

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I use a thermoelectric wine cooler to ferment ales (60F - 80F) and a converted freezer to ferment lagers. A laptop and one-wire network/sensors control the set temperature to within +-0.2F.



I went with the thermoelectric design because it has 100% usable space inside the fermenter, fits the Cooper's brand plastic fermenter perfectly, and allows me to cool and heat with a single device.

Just keep in the mind that most larger wine coolers use a compressor, so they have a compressor hump inside the unit which makes it really difficult to fit carboys and such. And, their factory adjustable temperature ranges are not always ideal for fermenting ales (forget lagers). So, you may need to install an external temperature controller (assuming the carboy fits).

Just some things to consider...
 

JAG410

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I use a 32 bottle Vintotemp Wine Fridge, and it will NOT fit a 6.5 carboy. My 3ga carboy fits nicely, and a 5.5 gallon bucket would work, but not a carboy bigger than 3ga. There are plenty other models that should work for you though, just be sure to measure twice :)
 
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Darwin18

Darwin18

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I have a Cooper's fermentor as well. What brand and model do you use lamarguy?
 

RCCOLA

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I use a Haier 30 bottle wine fridge to ferment in.It has an adj. temp range of 45Fto 65F.The only thing I had to do to fit a 6.5gal bucket is make a shelf to slide into the existing molded in shelving slots.Works great.
 

djspray

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I use a Haier 30 bottle wine fridge to ferment in.It has an adj. temp range of 45Fto 65F.The only thing I had to do to fit a 6.5gal bucket is make a shelf to slide into the existing molded in shelving slots.Works great.
Is it the BC112G? I can get one locally for cheap but was concerned about the space that the pump takes up. I will be using a 5gal carboy and airlock.
 

RCCOLA

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Yes BC112G. I ferment in a 6.5gal bucket, but have a 6.5gal carboy. I just stuck the big carboy in the wine fridge and it fit. The only thing is, you may have to rig up a 90degree blowoff--or take the light out, b/c there's about 1 inch of clearance between the top of the 6.5gal carboy and light cover.

With a 5 gal carboy, there's about 2.5inches clearance between the top of it and the light cover.

I have the airlock hole in my bucket lid drilled offset, so it doesn't get in the way of the light cover. Looks like the cover has a couple screws in it, so it doesn't look like removing it would be a problem.
 

djspray

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But doesn't the space taken up by the pump prevent you from putting a bucket flat on the floor?
 

RCCOLA

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Yes, but I cut a shelf to slide into the bottom slot which is molded into the inside wall panels. Bucket sits flat on the shelf above the pump hump.
 
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