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It's Kegging Time 2019

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2 hours ago, MitchellScott said:

Definitely sounds like it if they are all pouring from the same gas source and lines are same length etc.

Most likely areas for a Venturi would probably be either the pickup in the keg/o-ring for out post, disconnect could also be the cause.

Do you have a spare disconnect you could throw on and test out? After you pour a beer do you have any foam/bubbles in the line?

Mitch.

So I’ve eliminated the keg post. Possibly the disconnect on that or the tap. I’ll change the disconnect to stainless and see how that goes. 

Cheers

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Man... Never have I ever wanted to drink a beer at 7am more than this 😍😍

Went out to check if my lager had begun fermenting this morning and was greeted with this... Ahh so sexy. 

20190920_075014.jpg

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I will be tapping my first kegged brew this evening, a bit ahead of schedule.

This is my Molasses Bitter. I followed PB2's method for naturally carbonating in the keg with priming sugar. As per his instructions, I primed the 19L keg with 70gm of sugar. I wasn't sure how much sugar to put in with the remaining 4L which I put in my 6L keg, but guessed at 13gm. That was 12 days ago....It might not be finished carbonating yet but I am tapping the small keg tonight as we are having guests for dinner and I am almost out of beer. I put the small keg in the chest freezer, which is at 5C, last night with 8 PSI; I am aiming for around 2 volumes, as I like my bitters to have a bit of carbonation. I am very curious how it will pour. If it is not carbed enough, I can always roll it around on its side for a while....I know Bitters should be served at 13C, but for this first kegged batch, I decided colder would be better for learning purposes.

Wish me luck!

Cheers,

Christina.

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Question: immediately after transferring the beer into the keg, how do you purge the head space: do you use high pressure or low pressure?

I have seen several YouTube videos, some by very reputable brewers like Dave Carpenter, the editor of Zymurgy magazine, that recommend purging the headspace at high pressure, like 30 PSI, to help seat the lid and prevent leaks. But Craig, of CraigTube, says to use low pressure for purging, like 2 PSI, because you don't want to force the O2 in the headspace into the beer. I am inclined to think Craig's way is safer from an oxidation point of view....One can always check for leaks after the keg is purged by rolling it gently and briefly on its side.

Note: the above assumes that one is not transferring to the keg under CO2 pressure, which is something Kelsey said in another thread that he is planning to start....I am not sure transferring under pressure is an option for me because I am in the process of switching from carboys (where it would be an option) to fermenting in a plastic bucket with a bung and airlock. The headspace of a carboy can be vented, but AFAIK the headspace of a bucket cannot. I doubt the bung and/or airlock would stay in place under CO2 pressure and, even if it would, I don't want to be forcing the O2 in there into the beer. 🤔

Unless there is a solution, I will have to continue to rely on gravity for my transfers....

Cheers,

Christina.

Edited by ChristinaS1

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So after I transfer it in, I hit it with 40-45 psi, purge the keg two to three times and I then set it for 20-24hour at that same psi. I then come back set the regulator to serving pressure, purge the keg to serving pressure and then I usually try it a day later, but I had one tonight right after purging it to serving pressure, it was fine and almost perfect.

I do not like the rolling method for carbonation because if I plan properly the beer will be carbonated in less than 48 hours, generally sooner. I also think rolling it around while working to reduce oxenygation to preserve hop aroma and other things is kind of counter productive. Yes it will be ready in under 24 hours, usually if you do it right under an hour or something. When I bottled, I waited 2 weeks to drink, so I can wait a day and half or so.

Depending on the style, method and ingredients, not all brews are ready to drink after they are carbonated so quickly. Most of my ales are ready but improve after a week and hit there stride in week 2-4, if the keg lasts longer I find that the beer has almost changed completely from the first glass to the week 5 and the last glass, in a good way. I enjoy that part of kegging a lot, it is something I never noticed or tried with bottles because you cannot just grab a little glass your invested in 330ml or more.

I don't transfer under pressure.

Cheers

Norris

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I just use whatever pressure the regulator is set to at the time of purging, which is usually serving pressure unless I'm quick carbing soda water. The lid seats fine if it's been closed properly to begin with, you can usually hear a sort of click sound when the pressure builds up and locks the lid in. It doesn't make sense to me that it would need high pressure for that because it's not sitting on that pressure when it's on tap anyway. 

As for the closed transfer, the method I'm wanting to try isn't under pressure, it's just that rather than dangling a hose into the bottom of an open keg, the hose is connected to the beer out post with the lid in place and the keg purged of oxygen, but all pressure relieved. It still relies on gravity. Pressure would build up inside the keg as it fills but that's easily relieved by pulling the valve in the lid. 

Edited by Otto Von Blotto
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4 minutes ago, Otto Von Blotto said:

I just use whatever pressure the regulator is set to at the time of purging, which is usually serving pressure unless I'm quick carbing soda water. The lid seats fine if it's been closed properly to begin with, you can usually hear a sort of click sound when the pressure builds up and locks the lid in. It doesn't make sense to me that it would need high pressure for that because it's not sitting on that pressure when it's on tap anyway.

What it your method of carbonating a keg? As I set it at 40-45 psi for 24 hours, this doesn't affect the carbonation process it is the start and helps to ensure the lid is seated and it quickly shows any leaks anywhere, like leaving the purge cap thingy open, which I have done once. But that is just for my carbonation process.

Cheers

Norris

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I also purge, seat and sit at 45psi for 24 hours before dropping it to serving pressure. 

I figure it's just more fool proof to seat and purge at higher pressure although I'm sure it's not necessary. Purging at high pressure also only takes 3-4 purges to fill the heads pace with C02, I assume on lower pressure you would need to purge a few more times. 

Mitch. 

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1 hour ago, Norris! said:

What it your method of carbonating a keg? As I set it at 40-45 psi for 24 hours, this doesn't affect the carbonation process it is the start and helps to ensure the lid is seated and it quickly shows any leaks anywhere, like leaving the purge cap thingy open, which I have done once. But that is just for my carbonation process.

Cheers

Norris

Depends. Sometimes I use that method, sometimes I just leave them on serving pressure for a week. 

My point was that whenever you use the high pressure method, the pressure is burped before it's put back on serving pressure, or at least that's how I do it. I always let the keg sit for a few hours without the gas on after the initial 24 hours so it can absorb what's in the headspace, then burp it and turn it back on at serving pressure, which essentially undoes the seating at high pressure. None of them is ever flat, or goes flat. 

Having said that, I'm not sure this pressure seating is required at all. Whenever I clean kegs I half fill them, lid in place then roll them on the floor for a few minutes. Nothing comes out, suggesting a proper seal. 

Meanwhile, I'm really happy with the new kegerator. Been pouring beers all night and haven't had any excessive foaming even when it's been left a while. I have had the font fan on, but I think the beer being close to zero degrees has helped. It's nicely carbonated now too. With the old one being around 5-6 degrees, the CO2 would come out of solution more easily, causing the excessive foaming initially. 

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@Otto Von Blotto Glad to hear that you are happy with your new kegerator Kelsey! 😀

So it sounds like none of you are worried about forcing headspace O2 into the beer with the high pressure seating method? 

@MitchellScott I think you are right about it taking more purges at low pressure. Craig says 4-5 for low pressure and, if memory servers, 2-3 at high pressure. 

Since I am concerned about oxidation, I will be purging with low pressure after transfer. I can always increase the pressure to whatever once the O2 is out.

Update on my small keg. I tried to pull a pint at lunch, to see how things were coming, and discovered that the gas in connector was not properly seated and that my CO2 tank is now almost empty! I never heard the gas going into the keg last night but dismissed that because I sprayed it with Starsan and didn't see any bubbles. Maybe the leak was too big to cause bubbles? Anyway, there is still a little bit of gas in the tank; now the connetor is properly seated I can hear the gas flow. I have set the regulator to 30 PSI.

I did manage to get some beer out of the keg, from the natural carbonation. Good news: the Molasses Bitter is quite tasty.

Cheers,

Christina.

 

 

 

Edited by ChristinaS1
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I never hear the gas going into my kegs except for about 10 seconds right after it's turned on to an unpressurised keg. I would have thought hearing a hiss or whatever would indicate a leak rather than not. 

Having kegged since 2015 I can't say I've noticed one of them exhibit the tell tale signs of oxidation, whether I've purged the keg at low or high pressure. I usually do a couple of purges then hold the PRV open for about 10 seconds with the gas running, then another couple of purges, then either start the carbonation process or leave it on gas for an hour or two then store. I doubt the short amount of time it's under pressure during the normal purging process would be long enough to force enough oxygen into the beer to do any damage. 

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2 hours ago, Otto Von Blotto said:

I never hear the gas going into my kegs except for about 10 seconds right after it's turned on to an unpressurised keg.

Yes, that is what I mean.

Cheers,

Christina.

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7 hours ago, ChristinaS1 said:

But Craig, of CraigTube, says to use low pressure for purging, like 2 PSI, because you don't want to force the O2 in the headspace into the beer.

Is there any PROOF this occurs? Turn the gas right up and pull the purge valve a couple of times.
I don't see how, in 5 seconds, with that small surface are that any gas will be absorbed in the beer.
I kegged a NEIPA which is apparently more susceptible to oxidisation and did not have a problem.
Do you flush your keg with CO2 before filling? 
I do, because I run water through it prior to filling and empty it using gas.

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for mine if one is concerned about oxidisation do a secondary in the keg ... in theory that should clean up any O that is in the head space and brew from the transfer ...  

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9 minutes ago, MartyG1525230263 said:

for mine if one is concerned about oxidisation do a secondary in the keg ... in theory that should clean up any O that is in the head space and brew from the transfer ...  

Can always primary ferment in the keg too.

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9 minutes ago, Greeny1525229549 said:

Can always primary ferment in the keg too.

The only issue with that is the trub/yeast cake or what ever the term is for it ... 

Edited by MartyG1525230263

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You could rack it to a serving keg, but you'd probably lose some volume due to the trub. It's not something I'll be trying. I have no problems with the way I do it now. 

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39 minutes ago, Otto Von Blotto said:

You could rack it to a serving keg, but you'd probably lose some volume due to the trub. It's not something I'll be trying.

Me neither, the way I look at it is it I could better  utilise a keg buy having beer conditioning in it rather that using it as a dedicated FV ...  

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1 hour ago, MartyG1525230263 said:

The only issue with that is the trub/yeast cake or what ever the term is for it ... 

Yeah first pour is all yeast. After that clear as crystal. Just dont move the keg once its in place.

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4 hours ago, Greeny1525229549 said:

Can always primary ferment in the keg too.

The LODO folks would say that was a great idea. They are fond of adding a spunding valve to the fermenter keg. The spunding valve can be used as an airlock at the beginning of fermentation and later dialed down to capture CO2, so the beer will naturally carbonate itself....Once carbonated you still have to use CO2 from a tank to provide serving pressure.

http://www.lowoxygenbrewing.com/brewing-methods/kegging-care-guide-purging-transferring-stabilizing-finished-beer/

Before this evening I did not know what a spunding valve was. Here are some instructions on how to build one:

https://www.homebrewfinds.com/2011/02/build-spunding-valve.html#targetText=A Spunding Valve allows you,to connect to your keg.

It doesn't look that hard; parts are about $60 on Amazon.ca.

I think fermenting in a keg with a spunding valve, and never transferring, or transferring under pressure, would be something very cool to try as an experiment. It would be the ultimate in fresh, unoxidized beer.

Cheers,

Christina.

Edited by ChristinaS1
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25 minutes ago, ChristinaS1 said:

The LODO folks would say that was a great idea. They are fond of adding a spunding valve to the fermenter keg. The spunding valve can be used as an airlock at the beginning of fermentation and later dialed down to capture CO2, so the beer will naturally carbonate itself....Once carbonated you still have to use CO2 from a tank to provide serving pressure.

http://www.lowoxygenbrewing.com/brewing-methods/kegging-care-guide-purging-transferring-stabilizing-finished-beer/

Before this evening I did not know what a spunding valve was. Here are some instructions on how to build one:

https://www.homebrewfinds.com/2011/02/build-spunding-valve.html#targetText=A Spunding Valve allows you,to connect to your keg.

It doesn't look that hard; parts are about $60 on Amazon.ca.

I think fermenting in a keg with a spunding valve, and never transferring, or transferring under pressure, would be something very cool to try as an experiment. It would be the ultimate in fresh, unoxidized beer.

Cheers,

Christina.

Hey Christina. Have done two batches so far. Firstly a saison then a pale ale. The saison turned out the funkiest saison i have ever had. The yeast was my dupont and belle blend and it is mild but it turned out like dupont x2. Over the top funk. Beer was fine just didn't enjoy it. I did a tried and true pale ale the second time. Turned out no different to my normal bucket ferment and transfer to keg. What it did do was go from grain to glass in 9 days. The saison was faster even. I want to do a lager next as from all i have read thats where it works best. I don't see it being my normal fermentation vessel but jeez if you want to turn around a beer quick. Its an option.

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@GREENY Interesting, thanks.

What are you doing with the top of your keg during fermentation? Are there airlocks for kegs? Do you use a spunding valve?

Cheers,

Christina.

 

Edited by ChristinaS1

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16 minutes ago, ChristinaS1 said:

@GREENY Interesting, thanks.

What are you doing with the top of your keg during fermentation? Are there airlocks for kegs? Do you use a spunding valve?

Cheers,

Christina.

 

Spunding valve. Cost 30AUD.

1569036408813-1179623506.jpg

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Interesting effect noticed yesterday. The soda water ran out so I refilled it and put it back in, and it caused the test water keg to warm up about 3 degrees before gradually cooling down again. Probably why the pale ale started pouring foam more than it had been too, although that settled down again by the evening.

I've got the kegerator set on Fahrenheit so I can put it between 0 and 1, it's set to 33, so hopefully the water doesn't freeze. 

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