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Wine fridges

Five more years :laughing:

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Actually, now I think of it, that might be okay as long as it’s only the reserves bottle that’s corked, because there are three of them in reserves but only one in the garage…!

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I look forward to the results of extensive research :grinning:

Thanks, that makes sense. I certainly agree that avoiding sharp and frequent fluctuations in temperature, and keeping wines in a dark place without too much movement, makes perfect sense, given the well-known effects of light and heat on liquid. Whether it has to be 13 degrees and 70% humidity - as opposed to, say, 18 degrees and 40% humidity, which would be much more easily and cheaply achieved in modern homes - is less clear.

I’ve read the article you shared, which I thought was an interesting overview of the chemistry of ageing, although I’m not qualified to comment on the science either (no doubt others here are). It doesn’t provide any evidence to back up its claim that 13 degrees and 70% humidity are ‘ideal’ for the necessary chemical reactions to take place though.

I’ll avoid further opening the cork vs screw cap can of worms but I can’t resist one observation - that the oft-repeated claim, that 70% humidity is essential to prevent corks drying out, is a load of old tosh. Cork is a highly non-absorbent material - that’s the point - so the idea that it will absorb enough water to avoid drying out at 70% humidity, but not at lower levels, and will manage this without at the same time becoming saturated by the wine it’s in constant contact with at the other end, is for the birds.

Indeed… Anybody would think it wasn’t in producers’ interests to dispel the magic and mystery of their centuries-long tradition!

Jim

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You tease, you… :wink:

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A limited experiment, but certainly one up from the @Brocklehurstj mother-in-law approach to the scientific method

Less-than-ideal cellaring

Jim

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I’ve always thought it rather ridiculous that there should be any requirement for humidity to prevent the cork from drying out when the wine is stored on its side. Defies logic for me!

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I ask as a question, rather than as innate knowledge (or indeed an opinion on the matter, I’m just passing this on) but I’m certain someone on CT once told me that the humidity thing was nothing to do with ‘drying out the cork’ (on this subject see also ‘corked’ when more precisely it should be ‘TCA affected’), but to do with gas exchange and the speed of ageing of wines.

Which is why, he said, the wines under the ocean age more slowly. This isn’t either my opinion, you understand, but I thought it might be interesting to see if any scientists on here could explain the gas exchange across cork in different humidities (or even if it makes a blind bit of difference!) andhow it might be possible that a colloquial, anecdotal understating of wine and how best to age it naturally became condensed to an easy to relate/define phrase ‘drying the cork’.

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Have you stacked two rows on one shelf?

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Yup. And my top shelf has a 3 high stack behind the display shelf! Its a very sturdy piece of kit and the shelves are very good. The guide that comes with it shows you some options for stacking and limits. per shelf. I have 11 shelves in total. 2 display shelves with a double stack behind and then the top shelf as described above.

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I’m in the market for a fridge but can’t bring myself to cough up the requisite cash.

I’ve been looking closely on eBay etc for used ones without much success, vast majority are being sold in London and the South East.

Anyway, my extensive searching of the second hand market has crossed over onto suppliers to the catering or retail trade.

Call me mad. But is this a value alternative to a Climadiff? It’s around half the price and has massive capacity:

Highest temperature for operation is 10 degrees, not the hallowed 12, but what’s two degrees between friends?

I guess no carbon filter and maybe slightly more vibration.

Am I nuts to even consider this :joy:

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I suspect there will be a lot of vibration. I’ve used things like that at work and when that compressor kicks in frequently, both you and your wine will really know it.

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I also have a hefty commercial fridge, for my home brewed all grain beers. That is too cheap a price for a fridge that size, meaning the quality will be pretty bad. The vibration therefore might give a poorly Spitfire a bit of competition. Also the glass won’t be UV protected, as well as no air filtration and requisite humidity in all likelihood.

Get yourself an overpriced wine cabinet but which does the job, or start digging! The father of an old flame many years ago did just that in his house on the outskirts of Paris. Total DIY and worked too.

Thanks both!

I like the idea of digging. Although given my track record in DIY it might result in me being buried alive in the back garden!

What a way to go!

Edit: https://www.andersonshelters.org.uk/library/anderson_shelter_construction_instructions.pdf :face_with_monocle:

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FWIW it took me almost 2 years to find the used Climadiff I went with; I was regularly scouring ebay, FB Marketplace & Gumtree [I didn’t even realise they were still going!] before I found the right combo of good condition / price / transport-viability. It was a pain but eventually worth it, and I’m glad I took my time. I even had to drink a few hallowed bottles while I waited :~} Torture I tell youz

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Yes, my Eurocave took more than a year and I had to go a little further than I wanted, but the price was definitely worth it.

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Last question on the second hand theme.

When you both got yours did you get a van or did you lie them down in your car?

I have an estate car so could, in theory, do the latter but I have heard that this can wreck them…

I understand the refrigerant can be caused to end up in the wrong place (I knew my Saturday job in Currys 15 years ago was worth it) but surely if you give it a good 48 hours in situ before switching on that ought to reset everything.

What did you both do?

The general advice is any refrigeration device should be transported upright. I had a bit of a chat shall we say with a manufacturer just last year re the way a glycol chiller turned up at my home. Copy and paste job:

“Compressor is filled with oil which is critical to its operation. In the normal upright position gravity keeps the oil in the compressor. When we lay the refrigerator flat, some of the oil can leave the compressor and go into the cooling lines. The oil is a thick viscous fluid and can clog the cooling lines thus hampering the refrigerator’s ability to cool. Lack of oil in the compressor can also damage the compressor.”

It might be ok but it’s a risk I would not take personally. I had my first wine cabinet delivered to my gaff when I lived in Paris. I hired a big, tall, van for all my belongings including my precious booty, kept upright on the loooooong journey to the NW.

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I laid my secondhand eurocave down in the back of a car to transport home (and also separately transported it upright when moving home).

It was already several years old but has been running without problems for 4 years or so. I put it “face down” which probably helped and not fully flat (over folded down seats). Due to the compressor location, I can’t see that any oil would realistically move into the cooling pipes this way. Also left it to settle for 24hrs before switching on.

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Eurocave specifically say you can tilt it one way, but only one way (to the right when facing the door), and no more than 45 degrees. Presumably for this reason.

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