Puff Cigar Discussion Forums
MEMBER CIGAR REVIEWS | STAFF CIGAR REVIEWS | CIGAR VIDEOS | ONE ON ONE INTERVIEWS | CIGAR NEWS | CIGAR FORUMS | PIPES | LIFESTYLE | CONTACT

User Tag List

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 27

One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

This is a discussion on One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread within the Cigar Accessory Discussion forums, part of the The Cigar Lounges at Puff category; Hey Puff! I figured I'd document my wineador experience here for all to see. My cigar smoking history is undoubtedly ...

  
  1. #1

    Puffer Fish with some spikes thegunslinger's Avatar


     

    One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    Hey Puff! I figured I'd document my wineador experience here for all to see.

    My cigar smoking history is undoubtedly like many before me. I started smoking years ago the odd cigar here and there. I eventually got to the point where I was smoking frequently enough that I needed to keep a bunch on hand so I bought a 50ct humidor. Then the bug really hit me and, within a few months, the humidor was full. I was also starting down the dark path and predicted picking up boxes soon and so a 50qt cooler was the next step. But that's gradually filled up and it's not all that greatest for storing anything aside from boxes you plan on aging (in my opinion anyway). It can be a pain digging through everything in there when you want something to smoke. Plus my apartment gets pretty hot in the summer months when the AC isn't running in the day when no one's home. I wanted something with a bit more control. The next step was plain - wineador.

    I'm a cheap bastard. A brand new wineador of the size I want would cost $250-300. That's a lot of money spent on something that I could rather spend on cigars. How can I possibly lessen that? Buy used! To Craigslist I went and began my search. Plenty of stuff was on there, but most weren't asking for a lot less than the price would be brand new or the appliance was too big/small. Then I discovered this guy.

    One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread-100_1091.jpg

    Well that's it in my house now. But it was listed on CL for $25 because the seller said it had just stopped working on them one day. They were in the process of moving and didn't want it anymore. I went and checked it out in person. There wasn't much in the listing's description so I was under the assumption it was a thermoelectric cooler and that the problem was a bad capacitor or Peltier unit. This turned out to be a bad assumption because I discovered upon arrival that it was basically a glorified mini-fridge that runs on a compressor.

    Even though this was a slight wrinkle, I still forked over the $25 and took it home. I figured it was only $25 if I couldn't get it to work and it would be a great learning experience.

    Stay tuned for more!
    What's in my humidor.

  2. #2

    Puffer Fish with some spikes thegunslinger's Avatar


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    The wine cooler it at home. Now to tackle why it doesn't work.

    The skepticism about purchasing the fridge comes from the fact that if the problem resides with the compressor then I'm screwed. A new compressor is going to cost upwards of $200 and require a licensed repairman to take care of. So I've got my fingers crossed.

    Plugged in, the compressor and condenser fan don't come on. Only the interior light works. This is a good thing. It means the problem is likely a very easy one to fix.

    One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread-100_1087.jpg

    Shown here is me testing the thermostat's circuit with my handy multimeter. This thermostat sits right behind the temperature setting knob at the bottom of the appliance. A capillary tube runs out the back and into the fridge to measure the temperature inside. The thermostat can fail in one of two ways - 1) Closed, meaning it will never allow power through and the compressors and fan will never turn on regardless of the temperature or 2) Open, meaning the compressor and fan will always be running regardless of the temperature. It's very simple to test whether a circuit has shorted. Set your multimeter to ohms (measure of electrical resistance) and place each probe on one of the thermostat's power nodes. In a functional circuit, you'll get some number (should be 0 since the distance of the circuit here is very short so there should be very little resistance to the current). But as you can see, my multimeter is giving me the error code meaning the circuit is broken. Awesome!

    Back when Vinotemp still supported this model, they apparently charged $35 + $10 S&H for a replacement thermostat. I call that highway robbery considering I was able to find a suitable replacement part via Amazon for $6 total.

    One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread-100_1088.jpg

    Two weeks later and the part arrives. Here I am testing the circuit and it gives us a reading. Hooray!

    It takes about 45 minutes to replace the part. The hardest part is getting the new part's capillary tube back into the fridge section, but I eventually do. Everything gets screwed back together and the moment of truth arrives.

    Plug in the cooler and twist the temp knob. I hear the buzz of the compressor firing up and the condenser fan whirring. Success! Within 10 minutes, the temp in the fridge is down to 65F (ambient temp 75ish). Not bad, eh? $25 off CL plus $6 for the part.

    So that's where I stand as of now. Next up: shelving.
    What's in my humidor.

  3. #3

    Leading Puffer Fish quincy627's Avatar


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    I got mine off CL under similar circumstances. It did not run. Really, I don't need it to run. It holds humidity and seals like a champ.

  4. #4

    Leading Puffer Fish Gdaddy's Avatar


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    Good job!!!

    Instead of throwing it in the garbage one small part and it's back in business.

  5. #5

    Full grown Puffer Fish


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    Sweet!!! Wish I could find one so cheap.

  6. #6

    Evolving Lead Puffer Fish ezlevor's Avatar


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    Nice! I found mine on CL as well, but it was a bit more expensive... just under $100 for a fully functioning vinotemp.

  7. #7

    Puffer Fish with some spikes thegunslinger's Avatar


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    Quote Originally Posted by quincy627 View Post
    I got mine off CL under similar circumstances. It did not run. Really, I don't need it to run. It holds humidity and seals like a champ.
    It would work well as just a cheaper humidor, but where's the fun and getting to play with technology in that? Also I have the problem, as I mentioned in the first post, of my apartment gets really hot in June-Aug (3rd floor) when I'm at work and the AC isn't running. So knowing my cigars are resting at a comfortable 65F or so while the rest of the house is 85+ is very nice.
    What's in my humidor.

  8. #8

    Leading Puffer Fish quincy627's Avatar


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    My stick are stored in my workshop in my basement so temperature is never an issue. 65-70 year round. Not bad for the mid-atlantic. Glad to hear of your successful set up.

  9. #9

    Newbie in the ocean cnc_joe's Avatar


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    This is awesome, I have been using one of these for a few weeks and it is great, and it helps maintain a stable temp. I am also a "cheap bastard" as Julian said. I do not cool my house during the summer, and there are wide temp and humidity shifts throughout the day. I love mine. Now some questions: I want to make some kiln dried spanish cedar drawers instead of multiple cigar boxes on the wire shelves. I would like to cut some designs into the wood drawer fronts using a CNC laser to give it a bit of "Joe Style." When I use the laser it will burn the wood. Will this impart a burnt cedar taste on my cigars? Also do I need a humidifier in each drawer, and if so should I have a hygrometer in each drawer?

  10. #10

    Puffer Fish with some spikes thegunslinger's Avatar


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    Quote Originally Posted by cnc_joe View Post
    This is awesome, I have been using one of these for a few weeks and it is great, and it helps maintain a stable temp. I am also a "cheap bastard" as Julian said. I do not cool my house during the summer, and there are wide temp and humidity shifts throughout the day. I love mine. Now some questions: I want to make some kiln dried spanish cedar drawers instead of multiple cigar boxes on the wire shelves. I would like to cut some designs into the wood drawer fronts using a CNC laser to give it a bit of "Joe Style." When I use the laser it will burn the wood. Will this impart a burnt cedar taste on my cigars? Also do I need a humidifier in each drawer, and if so should I have a hygrometer in each drawer?
    If you allow the burned wood to rest for awhile outside the humidor (maybe a week?) you should be fine. That should allow most of the burnt aroma to fade from the wood.
    What's in my humidor.

  11. #11

    Newbie in the ocean cnc_joe's Avatar


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    Quote Originally Posted by thegunslinger View Post
    If you allow the burned wood to rest for awhile outside the humidor (maybe a week?) you should be fine. That should allow most of the burnt aroma to fade from the wood.
    So would you wait til the wood did not have a burnt smell? or just wait until the burnt smell is less obvious than the cedar smell. Most of the wood I have cut maintains the burnt smell for a very long time. Maybe I should just not take the chance.

  12. #12

    Puffer Fish with some spikes thegunslinger's Avatar


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    If you know that the burnt aroma hangs around for a long time, then I'd not risk it. Unless you like your cigars to have a hint of burned wood flavor.
    What's in my humidor.

  13. #13

    Puffer Fish with some spikes thegunslinger's Avatar


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    Just ordered a Ranco External Temperature Control Unit. I need this for two reasons:

    1) Expanding the temperature range of the fridge. As of right now, on its warmest setting the fridge cools down to ~50F (when ambient is high 70s). That'd probably go up once the fridge is full, but not by much. That's obviously way cooler than I want for my cigars. This device will turn on and off the machine depending on the temperature it reads and it has a much wider range than the crude thermostat knob control. Once installed, I'll be able to dial in a very tight temperature range. When temp goes above, it kicks the power on and the fridge cools. When it gets below, it shuts it off. I'll likely go for a 66-68 range.

    2) Compressor fridges are very aggressive cooling units compared to their thermoelectric brethren. This is both a good thing and a bad thing. The good thing is that they are able to cool the interior despite very high external temps. Try cooling a thermoelectric fridge down to 65F when the external temps are 85+. It'll always be on and struggling to hold 70 as TECs really can only cool about 15 degrees, at most, below ambient temps. The bad thing however is that this aggressive cooling takes its toll on the humidity. As temps get colder the air is able to hold less water vapor. When you have rapidly cooling temps, as you do around the coolant coils in a compressor driven fridge, you're going to get a lot of that water vapor condensing out of the air and dropping the RH. Using this device to control the amount of time the compressor runs to very short periods of time will limit how cold those coils get and reduce the amount of water they extract from the air.

    Future plans also include:

    - Plugging up the drainage hole as to better hold temp and humidity
    - Getting some good quality thermometers/hygrometers
    - Fan for some air circulation
    - And of course, spanish cedar shelving and trays for the goods
    Last edited by thegunslinger; 07-17-2013 at 05:10 PM.
    What's in my humidor.

  14. #14

    Puffer Fish with some spikes thegunslinger's Avatar


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    Well, time to bump this one more time as the project is finally finished.

    I spent $55 getting some spanish cedar custom cut. I don't need anything super fancy like the shelving/drawer units from Forrest. I'm very much a function over form type. I also got a few of the $9 spanish cedar trays for my singles. Put everything in there and then loaded up two nylon bags with around 3lbs of KL. At the bottom, I fed a 12V adapter cord into the unit and spliced it to an old computer fan so it runs from normal power. And lastly, I got an Ambient Weather WS-0101 and remote sensor. This provides me a digital readout of the temp and RH in the humi without having to open the door (those cheap little round units are hard to read through the glass). It also has the added functionality of holding the min and max values.

    Fired up the unit and let it run for a few days after I seasoned it. Min/max temp was 63/68 while min/max RH was 60/67. The refrigeration kicks on about once an hour for 5 minutes and the RH recovers within another 5-10 mins after it shuts off. Then it was time to add the cigar stock! It's been about two weeks and I've smoked a few cigars out of it and they're just as good as ever.

    I figure based on my current stock that I can fit around 700 cigars in here total.

    So here's a pic of the final result.

    Last edited by thegunslinger; 09-24-2013 at 11:16 AM.
    What's in my humidor.

  15. #15

    Disinterested


     

    Re: One Man's Trash is Another's Treasure - A wineador thread

    Quote Originally Posted by thegunslinger View Post

    Using this device to control the amount of time the compressor runs to very short periods of time will limit how cold those coils get and reduce the amount of water they extract from the air.

    Dangit! You were batting 1000 right up to this. The coils are simple on/off. That means when engaged, they are running at max cold until the sensor reads the desired temp and then shuts off the compressor and therefore the coil. The only way to reduce the effect of coils sucking your moisture out is to raise the thermostat such that the compressor runs less often and have enough media and wood in there to minimize recovery time. I'd set the thermostat tighter, perhaps 67/69 and see what that gets you. I think a rh swing of 7* is a little much. If you can tighten that up to say, 3-4* that'd be closer to the mark.

    Great thread and nice work!

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •