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Bob McKinna

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I have two incubators that I made to keep juice at the right temperature during primary fermentation. Each one is a plywood box with room for one six-gallon carboy. A light bulb provides heat, a thermostat controls the temperature, a switch lets you test the bulb. I don’t need them anymore. If you, or somebody you know can use them, you can have them. I’m in Connecticut, near Danbury.BDA3717A-EB0B-449F-AC6C-CE10AFEE2213.jpeg
 

Bob McKinna

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Thanks, they work pretty good. I’m hoping I won’t have to take them apart
 

Bob McKinna

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I’m not sure what the max would be, I set the thermostat 68 and the bulb had no problem maintaining that
 

Jovimaple

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This is a little off topic but when we switched our outdoor Christmas lights to LED from incandescent, we found out we now have to dig out the bushes the lights are draped over because the LEDs don't melt the snow like the incandescent lights did!
 
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Thanks for the great idea Bob. While quite generous of you, As my production has been moved to the garage, I've been looking for a solution to the New England April temperatures. Bingo! Love this forum. It's quicker for me to just make a few than the drive, but thanks. Probably use foil faced rigid insulation and aluminum tape to make a box. Halogen bulb. Suggestions for an aquastat to tape to the bucket?
Has anyone tried roof de-icing heat tape?

Simple may be best. Maybe try the radiant floors and wrap the buckets in foil bubble wrap....
 

Jovimaple

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Thanks for the great idea Bob. While quite generous of you, As my production has been moved to the garage, I've been looking for a solution to the New England April temperatures. Bingo! Love this forum. It's quicker for me to just make a few than the drive, but thanks. Probably use foil faced rigid insulation and aluminum tape to make a box. Halogen bulb. Suggestions for an aquastat to tape to the bucket?
Has anyone tried roof de-icing heat tape?

Simple may be best. Maybe try the radiant floors and wrap the buckets in foil bubble wrap....
You probably know this already, but halogen bulbs get hot. Like "don't let the curtains drape over the lamp because they will start on fire" hot. I suppose with a thermostat, it'll just switch off really quickly . . .
 

JeffA

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Looks like a great cheap way to keep your fermenter warm. Unfortunately, it's a good way to lose color and taste from a red wine also. Light will rob your wine of its color and change its outcome taste. That's why they say cover your carboy with a brown paper sack or put it somewhere OUT of the light. When I'm having issues with warmth during fermentation. I use a small heating pad. Just check the temp regularly and your all good.
 

Bob McKinna

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I went with the incandescent lamp because they’re cheap. You can buy resistance heaters but they’re expensive. I added the test switch because when the light is off you can’t tell if it’s burned out or if the thermostat switched it off.

The light didn’t seem to bother the wine. Perhaps it has different qualities from sunlight, perhaps it was because of the short duration.
 

Rice_Guy

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Thanks for the great idea Bob. While quite generous of you, As my production has been moved to the garage, I've been looking for a solution to the New England April temperatures. Bingo! Love this forum. It's quicker for me to just make a few than the drive, but thanks. Probably use foil faced rigid insulation and aluminum tape to make a box. Halogen bulb. Suggestions for an aquastat to tape to the bucket?
Has anyone tried roof de-icing heat tape?

Simple may be best. Maybe try the radiant floors and wrap the buckets in foil bubble wrap....
My set up is an ink bird which is an accurate relay on a few feet of thermistor. Mine is rated 220 volt BUT THE INSTRUCTIONS ALSO LISTED 110 volt. Walls are foam board, heat is a $4.50 miniature electric heater from Goodwill. Heat load is minimal at a 20 or a 25 F delta T, therefore an incandescent should also work, ,,, if I was concerned about light I would put the bulb set up in a coffee can and use a porcelain fixture.
6808FEB6-99CB-4748-9671-1B1151375676.jpeg
 
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What do you mean by "more efficient" there?
Technical point and uselessly well into the weeds. As I understand it, a halogen will produce more infrared light (heat) than an incandescent bulb per watt. Its a hotter bulb, but hotter per watt. But they also don't like to be short cycled. Many other variables involved, but to raise 6 gallons of water 20* F should be about 999 BTU. That's a 100 watts of heat at 3 hours. Then it is in coast mode to maintain, much less wattage . A bulb should heat just fine, as Bob proved. Too much light for the must? What bandwidth? Sanitize with ultra violet maybe? I'm over my head and differ to the experience of the forum..

Planning a bucket of Fresco Chilean Carmenere and a a Cab Sav. BM4x4 What is the best target temperature for a robust ferment? 75?
 
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sour_grapes

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The spectrum of a hotter bulb will be shifted toward shorter wavelengths, not longer. I.e., more towards the visible, away from IR. So I think you have it just the other way around. (See figure below.) Halogen bulbs were touted as being more efficient in the sense that they produce more visible light than a regular incandescent bulb of the same wattage.

However, I am not sure if this matters much in this application. Both the visible light and the IR will be absorbed by something and, presumably, turn into heat. I am of the opinion that the Joule heating (I^2*R), i.e., the wattage of the bulb, is the only thing that really matters.



 
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Way off topic, but interesting (at least to me). Now I'm confused. IR is heat. How can for a set wattage, a halogen give more lumens as the output shifts toward the blue spectrum, and also be hotter as it's a fire hazard and can be used to cook? Is my missunderstanding in *K? Is the *k the temperature of the element within the bulb.
 

sour_grapes

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Way off topic, but interesting (at least to me). Now I'm confused. IR is heat. How can for a set wattage, a halogen give more lumens as the output shifts toward the blue spectrum, and also be hotter as it's a fire hazard and can be used to cook? Is my missunderstanding in *K? Is the *k the temperature of the element within the bulb.
(Yes, ºK is the surface temperature of the filament.)

The resolution is that a halogen filament (for a given wattage) is both smaller and hotter.

Let's think about the total power (integrated over all wavelengths). It turns out that the total amount of power per unit area is proportional to the temperature T raised to the fourth power. (I = sigma * T^4.) But note that important phrase "per unit area." If you look at the graph above, the y-axis has units that include 1/m^2 (i.e., per square meter). So, if you make a filament hotter, and you want to keep the same wattage, you must you make it smaller, too.

We should also note that, due to this higher temperature, halogen bulbs are readily available in higher wattages! You can easily get a 500W bulb in a small package (see picture below). This helps to explain the "fire hazard" and "cooking" examples you mention. I think the fire hazard aspect also comes from the high temperature of the glass (quartz) envelope, not the filament temperature. If your drapes touch the quartz envelope, they can ignite due to contact heating, nothing to do with IR vs visible.

(In passing, I think it is not correct to say "IR is heat." IR is no more "heat" than visible light is "heat." They both can heat things up and ignite them.)



 
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I think I get it. The increased temp is a by product of the increased wattage possible due to the smaller filament used in the halogen. It's more about size than spectrum. The 4000K to 6000K is just where the filament and gas are happiest.
 

sour_grapes

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I think I get it. The increased temp is a by product of the increased wattage possible due to the smaller filament used in the halogen. It's more about size than spectrum. The 4000K to 6000K is just where the filament and gas are happiest.
Yeah, that sounds about right. (Although I do NOT think it is more about size than spectrum.)

I would have said it slightly differently, although the difference is mostly a matter of nuance. I would have said:

The use of halogen allows you to run the filament at a hotter temperature (without evaporating the filament). At a hotter temperature, you gain efficiency for lighting applications (better visible-to-IR ratio. Also at a hotter temperature, you can either use a smaller bulb for a given wattage (which is impt. in, say, projectors) or you can design a higher wattage bulb to fit in a given space.
 

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