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Fermenter Chilling Coil

Discussion in 'Gear and Equipment' started by Aether, 20/9/18.

 

  1. Aether

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    Posted 20/9/18
    Hi All,

    I have searched multiple forums for a solution to my quandary, but haven't had much luck.

    I have a very limited space available for my brewing activities and therefore can't have a fermenting freezer/fridge.
    Conveniently, where my setup is located is at the back of a very large garage, in a house made from cast concrete. It tends to stay between 14 & 18 degrees year round.

    What I don't have the ability to do is cold-crash my beer.

    I am hoping to find an existing 304/316 stainless steel coil which can fit inside a Fermentasaurus, or locate a manufacturer in WA (or failing that, all of Aus) who might be able to provide one.

    The plan is to submerge a heat exchanger inside a 50L ice box and circulate a glycol solution through the coil within the fermenter, ultimately this is the most "future-proof" method, as it's expandable in the future.

    I've read about other solutions, such as the "Cool Zone" jacket, but everything I can find suggests that cold crashing isn't possible with it.

    If anybody has any recommendations, please let me know.
     
  2. TheSumOfAllBeers

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    Posted 20/9/18
    I will post a pic of my setup later.

    Have the same problem, but don’t expect an external cooling solution to get you great cooling AND save space
     
  3. Aether

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    Posted 20/9/18
    I understand. It's a 3m length of wall, 500mm deep, I know glycol chillers exist to fit those dimensions, so the coil inside the fermenter seems like the ultimate way to achieve a high thermal transfer
     
  4. TheSumOfAllBeers

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    Posted 21/9/18
    It’s the 500mm coil that is stopping you from using a fridge?

    Struggling to upload a pic of my setup btw
     
  5. Aether

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    Posted 21/9/18
    No, sorry, it's a share house, I'm limited to using a single shelf which is about 50cm deep, 40cm high, and about 200cm long, with about 1 metre of space at the end, which also backs on to shelving.
    No space for a fridge.

    I'm going to attempt brewing under pressure also to hopefully alleviate the issues of temperature.
    I'll still have the issue of cold crashing.
     
  6. TheSumOfAllBeers

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    Posted 21/9/18
    IMG_7436.JPG

    This is an older picture, but in principle the exterior cooler runs coolant around the conical via a copper coil.

    In practice the insulation is critical- the setup above struggles to get below 6C with summertime ambient temps.

    A fridge otoh would have no issues getting beer temp down to 1C within 20-30 hours.

    Insulating your conical is going to take some thought. I would consider creating a cabinet around it, in addition to any contact insulation.
     
  7. phul

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    Posted 23/9/18
    I've been looking into the same thing myself and have previously found these two options...

    https://www.homebrewtalk.com/forum/threads/metzens-mini-fridge-glycol-chiller-conversion.631203/
    Seems like a few people have had various levels of success, but you'd need space for a bar fridge. There's one guy who's putting a mini fridge to the test, but I don't know how this would go with ccing?

    I decided to try my hand at this replicating this...

    https://backdeckbrewing.wordpress.com/2017/09/05/glycol-chiller-build/

    I've pulled apart a portable a/c that I found on gumtree (instead of using a wall mounted type) thinking it would be a "smaller unit" (spoilers, so far it's not). Can't remember the Kw output of the unit I picked up, but it was more than sufficient to cc when I was doing my research.

    TSOABs setup looks good and couldn't agree more re insulation, it's key to this project. Wouldn't mind finding out what his chiller is and where to find one?
     
  8. TheSumOfAllBeers

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    Posted 24/9/18
    It’s a maxi cooler 210. I am in the uk and they are usually fairly easy to find. They can be converted for glycol operation.

    In practice I would invest more in conical insulation, like perhaps an insulated enclosure.

    All the costs for this diy stuff add up though
     
  9. TheSumOfAllBeers

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    Posted 24/9/18
  10. Meddo

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    Posted 25/9/18
    I've got one of the 4" TC coils from Spike that I bought with a conical so I wouldn't have to pay extra shipping from the States if I ever decided I needed it. I've now decided that I'm unlikely to need it, I found a big enough fridge to fit the CF10 so don't need to run a cooling loop.

    I'm pretty certain, although never tried it, that a 4" TC cap will fit on the Fermentasaurus neck with the collar screwing over it. Not sure about the overall length of the coil but it might just fit into the 'saurus - if you're interested I can check? I'd want $100 + postage for this.

    https://spikebrewing.com/collections/conical-accessories/products/temp-control-coil

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Quokka42

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    Posted 25/9/18
    KISS. Just fine with gelatin if you think clarity will be a problem, or leave a couple of extra days and bottle.
     
  12. TheSumOfAllBeers

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    Posted 25/9/18
    On occasion this works for me, with a cooperative highly flocculant yeast (like fermentis S-04, nottingham, mauribrew-514 and a few like that). Nearly everything else needs stable, cold temperatures to clear, and gelatin works best on cold beer too.

    I have tried 'warm fining' to death. Sod that.
     
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