DIY Sous Vide Challenge

Evan and I are looking to build a DIY sous vide machine.  We are sourcing the parts and are just about to ready to rock and roll. If anyone is interested in playing with us, drop us a line…
Here’s what we’ve come up with so far:

-in principal any body of water can be used to cook sous vide.

-the primary concern of cooking sous vide is keeping the temperature as constant as possible

-a PID is a high tech tool used to monitor something or other, but ultimatly is a device we can purchase, program and use to keep the water temperature constant.

-modern immersion circulators are complicated looking but in reality are not. they consist of 3 parts: a PID, a thermometer and a blower/fan used to circulate water.

-technically, one could use a stock pot, large hotel insert or rice cooker for a water bath

-in practice a water bath should have enough thermal mass to limit temperature fluctuations when cold food is added.

-there are not many quality consumer/prosumer grade vacume sealers available on the market.  going full commercial grade is big $$$.

-PIDs can be bought for about $50 and will allow you to plug in a heating coil (such as one removed from an electric kettle) to be activated only when certain temperature critriea are met.

-it is important to insulate the water bath well to make the process effecient and to maintain a constant temperature.

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2 comments

  • I think your idea is good.
    You need PID controller plus a rated SSR. The main problem is your choice of sensors (Thermocouple, pt100 or thermistor).
    The main problem is finding a sensor that’s 100% waterproof.
    I thouhgt of the same thing but decided to buy a sous vide temperature controller called SousVideMagic. It has already solved all the sous vide problems. Only thing is I don’t get to enjoy the DIY experience!

  • Thanks for your feed back… By the sounds of it, you have been down this road before. Apart from the sensor issues, what made you go for the prefab option? I would love to hear any other thoughts, comments or stories related to your sous vide journey. Thanks for taking the time to comment and I look forward to hearing back from you.

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