Using a Fridge to Set Honey

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WoodenBeam 

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The usual problem at this time of year for me - ambient temperature of 20-25 degrees causing issues with trying to get soft set to ‘set’ and then when it eventually does, forms larger crystals than ideally wanted. I say this as I do seed my soft set and when producing at cooler times of the year get good results.
For this reason I’m considering the purchase of a fridge with temp range up to 15 degrees to control the process. Can anyone vouch for the results of using a fridge set at 12-14 degrees to assist in the production of set honey?
As an additional advantage to going down this route would I be correct in thinking this may also create less ‘bloom’ when the temperatures are somewhat lower when storing/jarring up set honey?
 

Erichalfbee 

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Well that’s the ideal temperature so it should work.
 

Newbeeneil 

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Sounds an ideal solution. I think if I did a lot of soft set during the summer I would be tempted to invest in a fridge like that.

After recently asking how people got their soft set to solidify in warm temperatures I tried 3 ways.

1 Control - Leaving at ambient temp
This didn't work - honey still runny after 2 weeks.

2 Putting in a fridge at about 5 Deg C for three days then returning to ambient (SWMBO wanted her fridge space back)
This worked but it took longer than 3 - I suppose the fridge started the reaction off.

3 Chilling my honey warmer to 14degC using ice packs.
This worked - honey firming up within about 4-5 days.
 

Jules59 

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I'm making my first ever batch of soft set honey (only 12kg).
Last year I made a honey warming cabinet from a fridge that had been dumped in a local hedge and added a temp controller, fan and heater.
I now find that it works well as a cooler using ice packs.
I can monitor the temp using the temp controller (adjusting the settings so not to turn on the heater). The honey has now been at 14C for 2 days and I'm stirring twice daily with my "cork screw"-like stirrer.
At what point do I stop doing this ?
How stiff does it need to get before I re-warm it up again prior to jarring?
 
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jenkinsbrynmair 

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I'm making my first ever batch of soft set honey (only 12kg).
Last year I made a honey warming cabinet from a fridge that had been dumped in a local hedge and added a temp controller, fan and heater.
I now find that it works well as a cooler using ice packs.
I can monitor the temp using the temp controller (adjusting the settings so not to turn on the heater). The honey has now been at 14C for 2 days and I'm stirring twice daily with my "cork screw"-like stirrer.
At what point do I stop doing this ?
How stiff does it need to get before I re-warm it up again prior to jarring?
No need to re-warm, just keep it at 14 degrees for a few days until it is getting gloopy but still mobile enough to pour into your jars, with me , it's usually two to three days as long as you keep it reasonable cool after, it will only be a few more days before setting. you could even put it back into the cabinet to finish off.
I use my warming cabinet the same way, first liquefy the honey then drop the temperature to around 32 degrees , putting your seed in the cabinet as well to warm up, take the bucket and seed out to mix thoroughly whilst dropping the setting on the controller right down to a few degrees, put the seeded honey back in with two or three ice blocks whick I change once or twice a day which keeps the temp. around 13 degrees, I usually only stir once a day so twice daily is ample, once it starts setting it will carry on doing it regardless (just the speed may reduce if it's in a warm room
 
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Newbeeneil 

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I am now on the lookout for a small table top fridge (no room for a standard size) from Freecycle or Facebook that I will adapt by replacing the existing temperature control with a digital one that I can set accurately to 14deg. Hopefully that will get over the problem of getting a decent set quickly.
 

Jules59 

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No need to re-warm, just keep it at 14 degrees for a few days until it is getting gloopy but still mobile enough to pour into your jars, with me , it's usually two to three days as long as you keep it reasonable cool after, it will only be a few more days before setting. you could even put it back into the cabinet to finish off.
I use my warming cabinet the same way, first liquefy the honey then drop the temperature to around 32 degrees , putting your seed in the cabinet as well to warm up, take the bucket and seed out to mix thoroughly whilst dropping the setting on the controller right down to a few degrees, put the seeded honey back in with two or three ice blocks whick I change once or twice a day which keeps the temp. around 13 degrees, I usually only stir once a day so twice daily is ample, once it starts setting it will carry on doing it regardless (just the speed may reduce if it's in a warm room
Thanks for that. So far I'm really pleased with it. The texture is smooth with no grittiness.
I was surprised at how easy it was to keep to the temp at around 14C with just ice packs. I guess a good insulating cabinet is the answer.
 

Wilco 

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Wine cooler might be what you're after?
 

WoodenBeam 

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Wine cooler might be what you're after?
Good shout - I spent a while looking at fridges and temps etc
A quick google and a vast array of suitable temp storage cabinets(y)
 
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