The new 'cool box' fermentation chamber

The new 'cool box' fermentation chamber

Meet the new rebuilt fermentation chamber! The old one worked and could maintain a temperature of 19 degrees, but it really stuggled. Too many of the joins were badly fitting, and the space inside too tight and irregular for decent airflow.

The new chamber is built with about 7 coolboxes of almost identical size. Three complete sealed boxes form the base, five lids form the sides (actually 4 lids and a bottom cut to lid size), and two bottoms make removeable lids:

...with easy access this time!

...with easy access this time!

Inside, the corners are reinforced with bits chopped from the old fermentation chamber; the joins in the side panels are taped inside and out and wrapped in cling film, and an extra layer has been added to the bottom, with foam added (black in the photo) to ensure the joins are tight. Fridges and freezers are coldest at the bottom – this extra layer not only gives extra insulation, but stops air leaking out in the join between the base and sides.

Reinforced corners, double bottom, and as much leak protection as I could possibly achieve

Reinforced corners, double bottom, and as much leak protection as I could possibly achieve

The design is completely fanless – I experimented with adding a fan to the old chamber and it made no difference so I’ve left it out this one.

The new chamber is able to maintain 19 degrees without the fridge running constantly – a distinct improvement. It’s also far easier to use – to open the old one I pretty much had to take it apart. This one I can just open the lid, and because cold air falls, there’s little temperature change if I open it quickly.

Currently it is only half full but by the end of the day there will be a second bucket inside with a porter!

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