Author Topic: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer  (Read 3430 times)

Offline Cartierusm

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Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« on: January 03, 2009, 04:49:02 PM »
So I realized it was going to be way to difficult for so many reasons to store my Blue Type Cheeses in tupperware with humidity packs in my wine cellar. So I have splurged and bought a used Upright Freezer from Craigslist. Perfectly clean with key and manual about 10 years old for $90. I already modified the electroincs to use a regular A/C Thermostat. I added electrical outlets to the inside for an AC adapter for a relay and to plug in my humidifier. I'm going now to pick up a humidifier. I would buy a used one but there are so many bad reviews on amazon and I need one that can humidify to 90-95%. The ultrasonic ones sound like it would pour water into the air, which I want but seem to break easily. So if I buy at Target I can return it if it doesn't work more than a week, which a lot of reviews say.

I of course will decorate the outside. Tea, do you have any ideas on what to name it?

P.S. I'm not going to use the original shelving. I will use wood as it will hold in moisture and help regulate it, but I'm not sure what to use. I've been a wood worker all my life so maple would be perfect but on the Modern Marvels episode they said they used Pine for Limburger. I think that would leave a pictchy smell, but then again their pine probably doesn't smell anymore and is 100 years old. I can't use plywood as lots of plywood use chemicles and/or formaldahyde.

P.P.S I didn't use lysol this time to clean it out. I used Star San in a Spray Bottle. I don't know why I didn't think of that for the other one. It's food safe actually kills bacteria and doesn't smell. The freezer was already clean but that doesn't mean sterile.
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.


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Offline Tea

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2009, 05:55:57 PM »
Well I'm not sure what to name yours, but I know what I want on my eventual cave "Touch and DIE".  ;D

Offline Tea

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2009, 06:05:53 PM »
It has just dawned on me that the one who needs that message the most can't read.  Maybe I need something that is motion activated and screeches that message at who ever comes close enough.  sigh

Offline Cartierusm

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2009, 02:20:35 AM »
The cheese cave is working well. I'm still going to buy a humidifier just to be sure, but spraying the wall of the frig 2-3 times a day gives me perfect humidity. Now If I can automate that....hmmmm.
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.

Offline Captain Caprine

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #4 on: January 20, 2009, 10:41:47 PM »
Cart,
You may want to think about the lifespan and safety of that powerstrip that you have inside the cave with a constant 90-95% humidity.  Seems like a better idea to run the strip to the outside and pass the humidifier plug through.  At the very least go into a GFI plug.
CC
Just once...
I want to make cheese with no border collie hair in it!!!


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Offline Cartierusm

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2009, 01:00:32 AM »
Yeah I know, I just hate drilling into a perfectly good freezer. Good point about the GFCI. I could run some romex out, but I figure the freezer runs both hot and neutral in side to the thermostat, which is different than other frig/freezers I've converted. Most have the electrical on the outside and just run a thermocouple probe to the inside. So if it's safe for the manufacturer...plus if I was using it as a regular freezer condensed moisture can do the same thing. I think it has a drain for the condenser coils on the inside as no matter how much humidity I throw at it, it's never wet on the inside, aside from the moisture in the air. There is a drip pan in back, maybe I'll pull it out tomorrow and see how much water has collected. Thanks for the saftey tip.
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.

Offline Wayne Harris

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2009, 07:39:30 AM »
I have a chest freezer that i converted to a cheese  cave.  My problem is too much moisture.  I get condensation inside the freezer and my humidity if always just about pegged at 100%

I'm not sure what to do about that.
I have an external thermostat regulating the temp at about 50deg.


(well not now, as this freezer is in my unheated,-4 deg F, garage, but you get the point)

as usual, i am jealous of Cartierusm work. 

You know, it rall would be nice if the average driving distance to you all was less than what? 2500 miles?  I got the feeling i would be hangin out over at Cartierusm's place. (borrowing stuff)

;)

Wayne A. Harris - in vino veritas

Offline Cartierusm

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #7 on: January 21, 2009, 02:29:31 PM »
I'd love that Wayne, hanging out making cheese, getting drunk Tee Peeing the neighbors house....LOL

Wayne, that is really weird, usually in a cold environment it's super hard to create humidity in the air. Are you sure the hygrometer is working? Do a search for salt calibration for hygrometers, I mentioned this in another post to Chili, it'll come up on cigar websites and will give you a recipe to calibrate your hygrometer. Even if yours is not adjustable, and most aren't, I just tape a note to it saying how much it's off.
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.

Offline Wayne Harris

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #8 on: January 21, 2009, 02:40:37 PM »
Yeah,   I'm pretty sure it was in the right ballpark, about 90% humidity. 
I actually have 3 hygrometers,  (wine cellar, Cheese cellar, Cheesecave)
I put all three in the fridge and all were within a variance of about 5%
I think it is due to the type of freezer it is..  It has the coils INSIDE the freezer compartment.
(See picture)

I'm thinking of putting in an exaust fan.


Wayne A. Harris - in vino veritas

Offline John (CH)

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #9 on: January 21, 2009, 05:12:46 PM »
I have the same problem with my in wall cooling style sealed (no air vent) small chest freezer and external thermostat I bought to use as a Cheese Cave :'(.

Humidity went up to 100%, started getting water puddling, eventually gave up and am back to using very dry household fridge at 42F, no good :-[.


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Offline Wayne Harris

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #10 on: January 21, 2009, 05:26:58 PM »
ok,  if you all were charged with using a hole saw to drill a 2" hole for ventilation,  where would you drill it in my fridge?
Wayne A. Harris - in vino veritas

Offline Cartierusm

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #11 on: January 21, 2009, 05:29:55 PM »
You know what I don't know the humidity but I do get pooling in my kegerator. As far as the freezer the one I'm using has auto defrost and all the crap (what ever auto-defrost means anyway) so I think the unit is made to expel pooling water as said earlier it goes to a drain dish outside. If I plug it I wonder if my humidity would go up? I'm still waiting for my humidifier I got on eBay to put in there. But I'd rather have water coming through the drain because that means there is a slight amount of air exchange through the drain hose which means no extraneous mold.

Wayne, what type of cheese are you storing it, because for some cheeses 90% is perfect?
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.

Offline Wayne Harris

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #12 on: January 21, 2009, 05:32:58 PM »
LOL you think i have a genre-specific cheese cave!!!!


ok,  i vow to only store my cow-milk based cheese there....

:)
Wayne A. Harris - in vino veritas

Offline Cartierusm

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #13 on: January 21, 2009, 05:34:35 PM »
Good question, first off I have converted many a frig/freezer the only problem with that is the coils in the wall...Luckily for you your coils are on the shelves. Are you sure there are no coils in the walls of the freezer? All I do to check is turn it on until it gets cold 38 degrees or anywhere around there should be fine, then open the door and just watch water will condense in a pattern of where the coils are, measure and drill, but as I said if the coils are on the shelves I wouldn't think there would be any in the walls.

As far as location I would do the side near the top and close to the front so you can put a cover on it that slides, or something like that, so you can adjust how much air gets in or out.
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.

Offline Cartierusm

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Re: Carter's Cheese Cave #2 - Upright Radient Freezer
« Reply #14 on: January 21, 2009, 05:36:29 PM »
LOL, I guess I meant what I said but it wasn't meant to sound that way. But let me be more specific. If you store vacuum cheeses in there it doesn't matter what the humidity is, then you can use it to make blue cheeses as they want a high humidity.
Life is like a box of chocolates sometimes too much rennet makes you kill people.