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> VWR Traceable Digital Thermometer, Nice, Accurate, Reasonable
Overall Rating
Overall Rating
10 - Excellent [ 6 ] ** [37.50%]
9 [ 2 ] ** [12.50%]
8 [ 6 ] ** [37.50%]
7 [ 1 ] ** [6.25%]
6 [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
5 [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
4 [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
3 [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
2 [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
1 - Awful [ 1 ] ** [6.25%]
Total Votes: 33
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cj in j
post May 18 2005, 04:18 AM
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A couple months ago, I ordered a VWR Waterproof Digital Thermometer.
(IMG:http://images.vwrsp.com/catjpg/010/010837.jpg)
It took a while to arrive (actually it arrived several weeks after I returned to Japan, so my brother had to forward it to me), and when it arrived I wasn't all that impressed. Once I used it, though, my tune changed.

The display face of the thermometer is about 2 cm wide (0.8") and 1 cm high (0.4") -- big enough to read, but not large by any means. There are three buttons on the front -- a tiny On/Off button, a button for choosing F or C, and a Max/Min button.

Features: Waterproof (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/smile.gif) , long cord (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/smile.gif) , 12 cm (5") stainless probe (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/smile.gif) , temp range of -50C to 300C (-58F to 572F) (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/shock.gif) , certificate of calibration (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/dry.gif) , and simple manual (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/dry.gif) .

I used this during my last brew and it worked wonderfully. Boiling water registered 100.2C (212.5F), well within the 1C (2F) accuracy range. The readout changed quickly -- placing the probe in a pot of boiling water, it only took about 5 seconds to display the 100.2C temp. In the mash, I was able to get quick readings, allowing me to adjust my burner if the mash was heating too quickly. All in all, it was a nice experience.

I'm slightly worried about longevity, though -- the cable doesn't seem all that tough, although it can be immersed in boiling water so it can't be too wimpy. With the probe in my mash and the brewpot's lid on, the cable seemed to be susceptible to getting crushed or pinched, but with a little care, it shouldn't give any trouble.

At the same time I ordered this one, I ordered another thermometer from Hanna Instruments, and, despite its rugged appearance, I'm not impressed -- it consistently reads 1C-1.5C lower than the VWR, and has a probe that can read up to 100C (212F), but it isn't recommended to use it higher than 45C (120F) or the probe will lose it's accuracy (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/mad.gif) . No mention of that on any website that I noticed before I ordered it. (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/mad.gif) (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/mad.gif)

All in all, I'm very happy with the VWR Traceable Digital Thermometer -- it's small, lightweight, easy to use, convenient, and reasonably priced. I give it a solid 8 (with the long delay in shipping with little/no communication earning -1 and the lingering worries about the durability of the cord getting another -1).
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cj in j
post May 18 2005, 06:34 PM
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I forgot to mention in the review that I have this bi-metal thermometer from More Beer in my brewpot/mash tun.
(IMG:http://www.morebeer.com/product_images/1/3936.jpg)
According to More Beer's description, "This superior design provides a faster response to temperature changes and assures more accurate readings." Now, I have to say that I agree -- it's a great thermometer and does have good accuracy and fairly quick response time, compared with other bi-metal thermometers that I have. However, compared to the VWR digital, the bi-metal was always 30 seconds to a minute behind in registering an accurate temperature reading when I heated the mash or added hot water to up the temperature. When I reached my mash out temp of 77C (170F), for example, the bi-metal was still reading 75C (167F). That is why I started looking for a digital thermometer in the first place.
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Pizzaman
post Jul 5 2005, 11:51 PM
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I have about 4 of those thermometers. Watch out when putting the cable in boiling tempature liquids. I've ruined one of them and I think that was the cause. Other than that I love them. It's easy to drop the prope into a fermentation bucket or carboy to get an accurate reading of fermentation tempatures too.
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Verminaard
post Aug 10 2005, 10:26 AM
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First trial run today with the VWR thermometer and am very pleased. Calibrated all my thermometers and doughed in within .5* of my desired mash temp. Quick readings and very accurate. Made my day easier. Highly recommended!
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wofat
post Aug 11 2005, 01:34 PM
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I've had two of these thermometers. The great thing about them is that when they die (potentially from boiling, etc) you can call them and they'll ship you a replacement!! (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/smile.gif)
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BeerGod
post Sep 23 2005, 08:08 PM
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The 10' cable is a bit much, I had one and kept the excess bundled unfortunately the cable weighed more than the thermometer and it pulled the whole shooting match into the mash tun--it was kaput: the battery door came off and the battery was somewhere in the mash. I was pissed! I have had a couple thermometers since that one and they haven't worked nearly as well, but I did find a site that sold the VWR thermometers with a simple stainless probe.
Ironically, now that I have built/contrived a brew stand I think the wired versions would be more convenient to install on the stand for fixed temperature monitoring.

All-in-all i rate this thermometer a 9 (the somewhat flimsy plastic casing is the only reason it didn't receive a 10 because the thermometer is the best functioning one I have ever used, as long as it was functioning.
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pods8
post Sep 25 2005, 11:46 AM
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I just got one of these and used it during my brew session yesterday. I loved it, quick, easy, and accurate temperature readings. I definately recommend it.
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Browndog
post Oct 14 2005, 01:42 PM
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Thanks for this thread! I just ordered one of these bad boys. I've used other non waterproof digital thermometers and they quit when they got wet. I really like them for the mash even though I have a bimetal thermometer in a welded coupler, but don't necessarily trust it and like to take spot readings elsewhere in the mash.

Can onyone comment on whether the 5" probe can be submersed in the mash?

Cheers! Browndog
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pods8
post Oct 14 2005, 02:47 PM
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(IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/eh.gif)
QUOTE(Browndog @ Oct 14 2005, 01:43 PM)
Thanks for this thread!  I just ordered one of these bad boys.  I've used other non waterproof digital thermometers and they quit when they got wet.  I really like them for the mash even though I have a bimetal thermometer in a welded coupler, but don't necessarily trust it and like to take spot readings elsewhere in the mash. 

Can onyone comment on whether the 5" probe can be submersed in the mash?

Cheers!  Browndog
*


Ummm perhaps I am not understanding, but if you don't immerse the probe how are you going to get a temp of anything but the air?
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Browndog
post Oct 14 2005, 03:29 PM
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QUOTE(pods8 @ Oct 14 2005, 02:48 PM)
(IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/eh.gif)

Ummm perhaps I am not understanding, but if you don't immerse the probe how are you going to get a temp of anything but the air?
*


Let me clarify ... Is immersing the probe past the point where the cable attaches to the stainless probe OK on this model ... to get deeper in to the mash than the 5" stainless probe would allow. I thinking yes, but ... thought I'd ask the audience ...
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pods8
post Oct 14 2005, 03:35 PM
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QUOTE(Browndog @ Oct 14 2005, 03:30 PM)
Let me clarify ... Is immersing the probe past the point where the cable attaches to the stainless probe OK on this model ... to get deeper in to the mash than the 5" stainless probe would allow.  I thinking yes, but ... thought I'd ask the audience ...
*


Ic I'd call that part the cable/cord. Anyways yes the whole deal is waterproof. Although 5" is plenty depth to get a mash reading if you stir it up, which helps to avoid any temp pockets. See pizzamans post about the cable in boiling liquid though.
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cj in j
post Nov 21 2005, 04:32 AM
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I just wanted to post a quick update -- I've been using mine for over six months now, and it's still plugging along, no problem at all. I use the two suction cups to pin it to the side of the brewpot (that I mash in), and it stays in place and gives me constant readings throughout the mash. I don't use it in the boil -- no need, really -- so I haven't had a problem with the wire melting or anything like that. All in all, it's a great little thermometer.
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passlaku
post Nov 21 2005, 10:56 AM
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Has anyone tried the Polder probe thermometers? How do those do?

http://www.polderonline.com/product/362-90.html?id=google
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Browndog
post Nov 21 2005, 11:36 AM
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QUOTE(passlaku @ Nov 21 2005, 10:57 AM)
Has anyone tried the Polder probe thermometers?  How do those do?

http://www.polderonline.com/product/362-90.html?id=google
*

I don't see anything mentioned about it being WATERPROOF. That's a biggie in the brewing environment. I tried a BBQ thermometer and once the cable to the probe got damp - It quit working. I think it may have started working when it dried out (several days later), but leaves you high and dry on brew day.

One nice thing about the Polder - It has a timer built in ... but I'm thinking it's not waterproof.

I have used the VWR for two batches and give it a thumbs up. A little small dial, but adequate none the less.
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DrunkenPanther
post Sep 11 2006, 01:24 PM
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Had this thermo. It was great. Unfortunately, it died. Called them and unfortunately, it was past warrenty. Guy said the probe is ok for boiling/mash/etc, but the wire itself will degrade from high temps like that. I used to just have the whole probe and a bunch of the wire in my entire mash. That'll probably do it. I would not hesitate to get another one.
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