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Discussion Starter #1
First, yes, I have done searches. I've read about more chiller design concepts than I can count! lol Some basic themes seem to continue regardless of forum or who created the design....time in contact with the cooling medium should be maximized; ice works better than a pipe in ice; ice melts and tends to freeze back together thereby reducing flow. So, I began to think about ways to compensate for this.

Granted, not everyone has the room for what i am thinking about, and many don't want to use this much ice (it's not exactly cheap to buy and making this much yourself is a royal pain!), but I'm not going for a compromise here. I'm going for alleviating the problems inherent in most designs.

I figure one way to maximize time in contact with the ice is to make the route of travel longer. A way to minimize reduction of flow is to create channels within the ice for the fog to flow through. So I have a few 55 gallon plastic barrels laying around and thought these would be perfect. Yes, a bit large, but I already have em so what they heck. Anyway, I want to take the barrel and lay it on it's side. In one end is the input tube going into an expansion chamber approximately 1/3 the volume of the barrel. The other half will be split into two sections running lengthwise. The first section will have a mesh/chicken wire barrier to allow the fog to go into it from the expansion chamber. The other side is sealed off from the chamber. In both sides there will be layers of ice held in place by sturdy mesh/chicken wire with air gaps in between them. Think something along the line of a bee keeper's hive. It flows through the one side, up to the "top" and then over to the other side and past more ice before going out the exit.

I figure that not only will it still be flowing through ice and over ice, but with the large air gaps (thinking of trying 1-2" air gaps) you would still get flow even if the ice melted into a clump which would prevent flow through the ice itself. If I build it right I can just prop it up on end, open the lid, and fill all of the layers with ice, then secure the ends of the layers, pop the lid back on, lay on its side, and go to town.

Thoughts?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I'll have pics up soon. For now I guess you'll have to settle for MS Paint. lol

I got to thinking and realized I was kinda missing out on a lot of potential cooling area with the original design. A curve, in the same amount of linear space, gives more surface area than a straight line. So I figured I would do curved rows on each side. I got one row completed and decided to heck with that!! lol Actually, I got the outside of the barrel done on each side and then one row on the outlet side before changing my mind. Some of it was due to the difficulty and some of it was due to the large amount of blood loss I suffered fro all the little pokies on the chicken wire.

Anyway, You can see the difference in the picture I'm posting between the outlet side (has more curves) and the inlet side. I also decided against laying this on its side. I came to the realization that allowing the natural convection process to work would be in my best interest.

Pics and hopefully a video will be coming shortly. I have completed the internals and only need to put on the lid, fill with ice, and go to town.

Oh yeah, the blue parts are ice. The white parts are channels for fog to flow through uninhibited. I tried to make the size of the fog channels no larger than an inch or so, but in the interest of saving my flesh and not spending hundreds of hours on this, sometimes the fog channel is larger. lol
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I've seen your post before and I've seen a few copies of it as well. I love the concept but don't have the funds for the copper. If I were to try that route though, I would use a different medium than ice water. Probably a sealed unit with alcohol or acetone mixed with anti freeze (yes, this is not only possible, but very doable) and then use a buttload of dry ice....after leaving the whole thing in the freezer for a couple days. lol

matrixmom, I'm at work currently so I'll have to check out that video when I get home.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
So here are some pictures. Cutting the lid off was actually a lot of work, even with a jig saw. The plastic is THICK in some areas. You can kinda see how I went about securing things to the drum. As for securing the wire to itself, well I either used the cut off ends and just bent them around the other wire, or I used more wire to weave them together. To seal joints I used a type of putty I got at the hardware store...don't even know what it was called exactly. lol I do know now (after some initial testing) that I need some drainage holes for the water. Durrrrr lol
 

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