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Ice Box In Fermenter Lid

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mkj

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Has anyone seen something like this:



A metal box is attached to the lid, going deep enough to sit in the wort. You put ice bricks in it with some water to help conduction. On my rough calculations 2x 800g ice bricks could cool 20L by ~7 degrees, assuming no losses. Because the cooling is at the top the convection flow in the wort will distribute the coldness, and you don't have problems getting heat transfer through the plastic fermenter. The design seems simple, and doesn't take any more space than a basic fermenter by itself.

I'd be using it for keeping ales going a few degrees cooler than ambient, nothing too extreme.

The only thing I'm not really sure about is how to construct it, particularly sealing around box/lid joint. Perhaps even making it out of plastic would work OK, the "cold" isn't going to escape elsewhere other than the wort if there isn't much air movement.

Ideas?
 

Wolfy

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Putting the fermentor into a tub, bucket, sink or bath of water, and then adding ice-bricks to the water is a great way to help stabilize the temperature and would have the same results as what you want.
Not only would that not require the fabrication of a metal box, most importantly you do not have to open the fermentor to change the ice-bricks, or put things inside in contact with the wort which significantly increases the risk of infection and spoilage.
 

mkj

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The metal box is open at the top end to change ice, going through a (sealed) hole in the fermenter lid so it won't risk infection.

I reckon you'd need less ice than a bath since it's located at the best spot for cooling?
 

kymba

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maybe use a stock pot instead of a box
 

stux

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Alternative, put a stainless coil in your fermenter and run cooling liquid through it ;)

I believe PistolPatch used to do this when he fermented in top of a fridge which had the sump in it
 

Wolfy

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I reckon you'd need less ice than a bath since it's located at the best spot for cooling?
Actually I think physics/thermodynamics would indicate you need more. The water-bath would provide a larger thermal mass, so once it is at the set-temperature it is easier to keep stable at that temperature. The activity of the yeast, C02 release and convection should be fairly active to evenly distribute the wort.
 

QldKev

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Not meaning to sound negative, although it could work; If you do it, I bet your still not playing with swapping out ice bricks etc in a years time. It gets boring very fast, mmm 1/2 an ice brick, mmm 2 bricks, etc... I bet you can't maintain a nice steady temp over day and nights, and I know how Perth weather can fluculate one day to the next, your beer will suffer from it. How many fermenting chambers and 'son of a fermenter' do you see in action after a year or so, not many. At least the son of a fermenter has some automation for temp control.

A bar fridge to fit the fermenter is not that huge, and will allow you to control cooling and also heating with a stc-1000 all year around. It's set and forget, and you will love it.

Just my 2c

QldKev
 

XavierZ

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:super: LIKE
A bar fridge to fit the fermenter is not that huge, and will allow you to control cooling and also heating with a stc-1000 all year around. It's set and forget, and you will love it.
 

mikec

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8/10 for thinking outside the box (no pun intended).

But yeah, just get a cheap bar fridge from ebay/gumtree, an STC, and get the Rolls Royce solution for the second-hand Hyundai price.
 

mkj

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Thanks all for the advice ;)

I think I'll give it a try anyway, probably go with a Target glass vase



Seems about the right size, and it'll be a bit like a bathyscope for the wort!
 

yum beer

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The Ice Block in a Box in a fermenter, cant wait for the commercial model to come out,



let us know when you buy a 2nd hand fridge and stc.....probably long before you get any decent result with your IBIAB....
 

bignath

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Has anyone seen something like this:

No, and for good reason too. As wolfy said, if you dont have access to a fridge or other temp controlled environment, just use a bath (could actually be a bath, but could also just be a big plastic container full of water) and rotate the ice bricks in that. You'll get good temp control and produce good beer.

You're actually trying too hard, which is commendable, but making good beer isnt difficult. This is coming from a compulsive tinkerer who often finds that the simplest solutions have already been discovered, and that they usually work better than all the really complicated stuff.

In summer, when im building up stocks for the christmas onslaught, ill often ferment four batches at a time using some plastic crates full of water. Does a good job.
 

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