Author Topic: Meh  (Read 1054 times)

Offline DrewG

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Meh
« on: April 02, 2012, 07:40:19 AM »
So I bought this: http://www.williamsbrewing.com/SELF-CALIBRATING-DIGITAL-P1434C102.aspx thermometer last week so I could get a quicker read on mash temps etc, seemed decent for the price. It has a "self calibrating" feature. You immerse it in the standard crushed ice solution in a glass, wait a couple of seconds and press the calibrate button and you're good to go. This is what i did, and it was off by a good margin. 35.7 degrees. Great, I'll calibrate it and be on my way. Wrong. If the reading is outside the range of 30-34 degrees you get the code "Err" and it will not calibrate itself.

So I'm wondering if I should just return this thing, or try fooling it by getting a reading off a bag of frozen peas or something to "trick" it into it's calibration range.

Thoughts?
"Well, the Mexicans got a saying - what cannot be remedied must be endured."

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Offline punatic

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Re: Meh
« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2012, 07:50:19 AM »
Often times auto-calibrating instruments have a manual calibration mode for just that reason.  Perhaps yours does too.  Check tech support to see.
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Offline narvin

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Re: Meh
« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2012, 08:19:45 AM »
I haven't used that thermometer.  Just make sure you are making the ice bath properly:

http://www.thermoworks.com/blog/2010/10/making-a-proper-ice-bath/
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Offline bluesman

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Re: Meh
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2012, 09:52:55 AM »
I have the same thermometer that I used up until I purchased the Thermapen. I never had a problem calibrating it, although calibration relies on the use of a proper ice bath in an effort to get a good calibration. You should also check it at boiling temp as well.

If you can't get the proper calibration try contacting customer support.
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Offline DrewG

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Re: Meh
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2012, 10:26:50 AM »
My icebath was 1/2 crushed ice and 1/2 cubes all the way to the bottom of the glass, no layer of water that didn't have ice at the bottom, etc.
"Well, the Mexicans got a saying - what cannot be remedied must be endured."

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Offline dak0415

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Re: Meh
« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2012, 10:45:36 AM »
Did you let the tip rest on the bottom of the glass?  The thermocouple on that unit is right on the tip, if it touches anything other than water, your reading will be skewed.  When I calibrate mine, I stir the ice bath with the tip.  Works fine.
Dave Koenig
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Offline DrewG

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Re: Meh
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2012, 03:58:40 PM »
Proper ice bath, probe in 2inches per the instructions. let it sit a minute, stirred. Coldest reading I can get is 34.7. There doesn't appear to be much of an FAQ or support page so I guess I'll just write an email to the contact address.
"Well, the Mexicans got a saying - what cannot be remedied must be endured."

-Barbarosa

Offline dak0415

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Re: Meh
« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2012, 08:49:14 PM »
CDN Headquarters
Component Design Northwest, Inc.
PO Box 10947 Portland, OR 97296
Phone: (800) 338-5594 or (503) 225-0900
Fax: (800) 879-2364 or (503) 226-0924
www.cdn-timeandtemp.com

I had one of the 450s a few years ago with the red-plastic tip.  Design flaw, the plastic would chip and expose the thermocouple = failure.  Good news, the company acknowledged the flaw and replaced the unit.  (Think about it, a five year warranty on a $15.00 product!!!) No problems.

Either return the unit to Williams for exchange, or contact CDN.  They are VERY customer friendly, even though their stuff is made in China.
Dave Koenig
Anything worth doing - is worth overdoing!

Offline DrewG

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Re: Meh
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2012, 11:45:35 AM »
I'll give them a holler. Thanks all.
"Well, the Mexicans got a saying - what cannot be remedied must be endured."

-Barbarosa