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I've got a fix I'd like to share!!

 
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rickysa



Joined: 13 Mar 2013
Posts: 136
Location: Southern Pines NC


PostLink    Posted: Tue Oct 08, 2019 1:12 pm    Post subject: I've got a fix I'd like to share!! Reply with quote


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I have been quite disappointed with my brewing results, not at all with the awesome brewing set up Kal has taught us to build, just with the beer that came out the end.

Turns out every different recipe had a banana off-flavor....esters. Too warm a ferment. I'm using a freezer with a gauge to set the fermentation temp (Blichman conical) which keeps it pretty constant.

However, I got to thinking that since fermentation is exothermic, the temp in the fermenter is probably warmer that the temp set on the freezer control.

In speaking with Blichman, I figured I'd drill a hole in the top of the fermenter, drop a SS tube with a rubber stopper to hold it in the lid, and drop the thermal probe down the tube into the fermenting wort.

Surprise!! It worked!!. No more banana-beer.

Hope everyone is well!

Rick
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kal
Forum Administrator


Joined: 12 Dec 2010
Posts: 10077
Location: Ottawa, Canada

Drinking: German Lager, Electric Hop Candy Jr, Scottish 70/-, Cali Common, Maibock, Helles, Russian Imperial Stout, Black Butte Porter

Working on: Weizen


PostLink    Posted: Tue Oct 08, 2019 2:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Rick,

Definitely important to look at the actual temperature of the wort being fermented as that's what matters.
As I'm re-writing all of my recipes for the new website I'm adding a note to make sure it's clear that the recommended fermentation temperature is the actual wort temperature, not the ambient temperature. The two can (sometimes) be wildly different. Depends on the setup. So mentioning ambient temp is meaningless. That said, on many setups the two (ambient vs wort temp) may be fairly close. Again, depends on the setup.

What did you have the temp controller set to to cool the freezer when you ran it that way? How were you measuring the temperature of the freezer exactly? I.e. where was the temp probe?. If it was in the air taped to the side of the freezer it would quickly drop in temp when the freezer kicks on and not give enough time to chill down the wort. Best to have it in something with some mass (or best of course is actually in the wort as you've done now). How warm was the actual wort in relation to the actual freezer? Just curious.

What size conical do you use too? The larger the fermenter the more thermal mass you have.

Another thing you can do if you don't measure the actual wort temp is to use a fan in there to keep air moving. It can make quite the difference in helping keep the delta between the two closer.

Good luck!

Kal

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rickysa



Joined: 13 Mar 2013
Posts: 136
Location: Southern Pines NC


PostLink    Posted: Tue Oct 08, 2019 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
What did you have the temp controller set to to cool the freezer when you ran it that way? How were you measuring the temperature of the freezer exactly? I.e. where was the temp probe?. If it was in the air taped to the side of the freezer it would quickly drop in temp when the freezer kicks on and not give enough time to chill down the wort. Best to have it in something with some mass (or best of course is actually in the wort as you've done now). How warm was the actual wort in relation to the actual freezer? Just curious.


68 deg initially, and had the probe just laying on the fermenter. To chill the wort, I've got a second chest freezer I fill with water to chill for running through the counter-current chiller (NC ground water can be kinda warm in the summer Smile ), so the chilled wort is usually in the low 50's-low 60's.

14 gal fermenter
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kal
Forum Administrator


Joined: 12 Dec 2010
Posts: 10077
Location: Ottawa, Canada

Drinking: German Lager, Electric Hop Candy Jr, Scottish 70/-, Cali Common, Maibock, Helles, Russian Imperial Stout, Black Butte Porter

Working on: Weizen


PostLink    Posted: Tue Oct 08, 2019 3:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

14 gallons is pretty big - lots of heat can be produced. I'm curious to know how warm your wort actually got too, but you may not know. Either way, your solution is a good one!

Another option that works well if you don't want to go into the conical is to simply tape the probe to the outside of the conical. Something to insulate on top works well to ensure the probe is at or very close to wort temp.

Cheers!

Kal

_________________
Our new shop with over 150 new products: shop.TheElectricBrewery.com
Purchasing through our affiliate links helps support our site at no extra cost to you. We thank you!
My basement/bar/brewery build 2.0
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