How to get into Kegging?

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Hi All,
I've heard a bit about people using kegging systems to get around washing all those bottles. Could anyone tell me roughly how much $ it takes to get set up?

As I understand you need (please correct / add):

Keg (multiple??)
Gas system - ??? (multiple???)
Fridge to store keg in

Is that all?

I assume that there is no secondary fermentation, and I've heard you don't need to age it as long. If this is so, does this decrease the quality/taste of the beer?

Are there any differences in the fermentation process?

I'm half interested in making the investment, but kinda want to know a bit more about it first.

Sorry for multiple questions.... and thanks for any info
Here's what you need;

Gas/Beer lines
Gas/Beer disconnects
CO2 bottle

A decent second hand fridge will set you back 100 - 200 dollars
You can hire a CO2 cylinder for around 7 - 8 dollars / month from your local gas supplier, with a refill costing around $35 depending on the size of the bottle.
The rest of the gear you can get from your HBS. The Country Brewer sells a system at the moment that gets you started with two kegs, a tap, a regulator and all your gas/beer lines and disconnects for $390. You can check it out at

There is no secondary fermentation with regards to kegging. Carbonation is controlled by the CO2 cylinder and regulator, making it much more handy than bottling. Beer ages faster in a keg than it does in the bottle, and I believe it ages better over the short term.

Kegging is quite a simple process. Once you have finished fermenting in your pail/carbouy, you simply rack the beer into a keg instead of 30 or so bottles, seal the keg, then purge the headspace with CO2. I have sold many keg systems since I started working in the industry and have never had a dissatisfied customer. Funnily enough, they all seem to walk out of the store with grins from ear to ear :D


Thanks for the info Pete. That's actually not as expensive as I thought it would be.
Now .... off to see that mate about his old fridge :D
That's sounds like a good deal Pete!

Pity I went out and bought my kegging system a few weeks back.

Boots as for hiring of Co2 bottles speak to Linde Gas at Cavan, very cheap compared to BOC and excellent after sales service.

Just say Hayden Keech (my old man) sent you from Regency TAFE and they'll look after you. TAFE buys all their gas needs through them.
I'll keep that in mind bL@De, If I end up going through with it, it'll be early next year (once I'm over the Chrissy financial bulge!) I was wondering about the gas situation, and BOC was the only Comp. I could think of.

Out of curiosity, where did you get your setup from? Was it around the same kind of deal as the CountryBrewer kit Pete mentioned?

I'd prefer getting it locally for the after sales support......

BTW - if you have 2 kegs, and want to run them both at the same time, do you need to have 2 gas cylinders, or can you run 2 regulators/lines etc from the 1 gas bottle?? I realise you'd have 2 taps etc, but am not sure how that equates to the gas cylinders...

You can run two kegs off the one gas line with the use of a t-piece. This simply breaks the single line into two seperate lines under the same pressure. Of course that can cause problems if you wanted to carbonate one keg and dispense from another, but it is ealily fixed. You can actually draw about four to five glasses from a keg without the disconnect attached, then it is simply a matter of removing the disconnect from the carbonating keg, bringing the pressure on the regulator down to whatever you dispense at and refilling the dispensing keg. You then attach the disconnect back to the carbonating keg and bring the pressure back up. The minute or so it takes to do this will in no way effect the carbonation process.

Of course if you were interested in a multiple-tap system running three or four kegs, it might be worth looking into a dual regulator, but they can be fairly expensive.


That info on setting up 2 kegs should be very useful as I am planning this way of an attack eventually.

I purchased mine from Vince (North East Home Brew) on Payneham Rd just around the road from the pub on the corner.

I paid about $230 which was minus a regulator, came with everything you need and 1 keg, additional kegs I think were about the $60 - $65 mark. Regulator's are generally $90 - $100 for brewing needs you don't need to go anything better.

There is another place for gases which Vince said were good but I can't recall the name of them for the life of me.
One query I do have with regards to kegging.

This is what I do now, place the beer in the keg after secondary fermentation, pop the lid on, pump it up to 200kpa and pull the safety release valve a few times to ensure only CO2 is in there then leave for 5 days before sampling. Is 5 days too much or too little?

Now for dispensing, I turn down the regulator and get the pressure down to about 5 psi and dispense from there. I have tried a higher pressure but all I got was head so 5 psi seems to do the trick for me.

There is no need to crank the pressure up again once it's finished, I can safely leave it down on 5 psi?

Well as usual I'm open to any critism and more than happy to find another way to do it as I found out a few things I should be doing other ways after talking to Tom from Jovial Monk so I want to do things the right way ASAP rather than change bad habits later on down the track.
After filling the keg, youneed only fill it to 100kPa, then burp the keg like you said thus removing all air (O2) and replacing it with CO2. You can then leave the keg for as long as you like prior to carbonating it. You can even carbonate it straight away and be drinking it in as little as two days, but the beer will still taste rather green at that stage.

Different people have different methods of cabonating their beer. Myself; I bring the pressure up to 280kPa and place the keg in the fridge. Beer does not absorb CO2 unless it is cold. After 40 hours, I then bring it down to about 70kPa and pull a glass to tests its carbonation level. If it is not fully carbonated I merely bring the pressure back up and leave it for another 6 - 8 hours before trying again. It is all trial and error until you get it to where YOU want it.

Once you are dispensing from the keg, there is no need to bring the pressure back up. In fact if you haven't drawn a beer for several hours, it may help to bleed a little pressure out of the keg via the pressure relief valve to reduce any sputtering of that first pour (ie. all head).


Cool thanks PMyers, I shall give your way a go and see what happens.

As you said it's trial and error so I shall try a few different things and see what works the best.
Ok this is the way I have my keg setup working.

I have a dual regulator (in my opinion a must have if you drink every day). This allows you to have one gas line at one pressure and the other line at another.

One gas line has a t-piece in it so it can drive two kegs. (I can fit three kegs in my keg fridge and I have two taps installed on the door).

The other gas line has a single disconnect and I use this for cabonating the beer (meanwhile I can still dispense from either of the other two kegs connected to the other line).

As for carbonating a beer once I've put the beer in a keg (usually late afternoon) I put it straight in the fridge and purge the head space to get the oxygen out.

Then the next morning when it is chilled I wind the pressure up to 300kpa and leave it there for 48 hours. After releasing the pressure it is ready for drinking. I dispense at nearly no pressure. I use 80kpa as a holding pressure to keep the beer carbonated.

Hope this helps,

Dual Regulator hmmm that's going a little too far, a single regulator costs around $90 whereas a dual regulator hmmm anywhere up to whatever your mind can imagine.

Using reducers solves the need for having a dual regulator but certainly a good idea as it saves a lot of stuffing about.

I have just set myself and my mate up into Kegging.
I have sourced parts from different sources and can do it well and CHEAP.
Will have to add some freight to the prices listed below.

Here is approx prices for my Keg Setup.

Dual Gauge Regulator - $85.00
2 x 18ltr Reconditioned Post Mix Kegs - $140.00
Lines, "T" Piece, Clamps - $20.00
2 x Reconditioned Annadale Pull Down Taps with Fridge Attachment - $55.00 ea
Have sourced these locally from a refrigeration guy in Canberra who installs and replaces commercial pub beer fittings etc. and can get more if people are interested from him at the same price.
Ball lock Disconects - 2 x gas & 2 x Liquid - $15.00 ea.

All up - $420.00 approx plus some freight where applicable for a two tap keg system. :D

Hope this helps
Has anyone had any experience with old 10 gallon kegs with brass hand pumps ?

I've seen one going cheap and I am considering buying it. Its aparently in working order, however if I did want to recondition it, aprox how much would it cost ?
Vindaloo said:
10 gallons?! oooo yeah! Now that's some brew.

Yer :)

If i decide to buy it, I'll have to buy a new fermenter aswell (60L probably).
What price is he asking for the 10 gallon hand pump keg ?

If it is in working should not need reconditioning ?

You should be able to test it with some water before you buy it.

Also, check for signs of rust on the inside of the keg ?
GMK said:
What price is he asking for the 10 gallon hand pump keg ?

If it is in working should not need reconditioning ?

You should be able to test it with some water before you buy it.

Also, check for signs of rust on the inside of the keg ?

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