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Keg Conditioning

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mchiu

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hi!

Just bought a keg system and was in a hurry to get it ready for a party.. didn't work out well... the beer was unclear( it was put into the keg a week and a half before that with some priming sugar) .. which was not very nice to see....

just wondering how any of you condition your kegs? do you add sugar and fill the keg up or do you just rack your beer after fermentation to another fermenter and wait for it to clear for a few days and then put into keg and gas it...

whcih is a better way? any help will be appreicated! thanks
 

Wort Pig

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Mchiu,

Also preferable to rack to a secondary, (I use a 23 L glass carboy), it's clear so you can see the yeast floc out to the bottom. Ideally you should cold condition at low temps to aid this process, if you can afford the fridge space.
Then rack off yeast/trub to keg, then force carbonate. Works for me!

C+B,

Pig
 

mchiu

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hi!

thanks for that.. how long should it stay in for cold conditioning?
 

sosman

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The key thing is to wait until the yeast has finished its job. I have only naturally carbonated one keg, a pale ale. It was in primary for 2 weeks then into the keg.

I would have thought that 1 1/2 weeks is a little short for conditioning bottles, nevermind kegs.

Did you dissolve the sugar (some people prefer to boil for sanitation)? If not you will have sugar slowly dissolving on the bottom, feeding the yeast.
 

Andrew

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mchiu,
If like me you get caught in a tight spot with not enough cubes to cold condition, you can try what I did, rack from primary to keg, cold condition the keg, then attach it to gas and force the trub off the bottom up the dip tube and out of the keg, THEN gas it up properly.

A bit dodgy, but will work if you run out of space or equipment!

Cheers!
 

blotto

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Hi, I gas my kegs by CO2 bottle, but as far as I understand when naturally carbonating your keg, racking is a good thing and gets rid of a lot of sediment it also conditions the beer further. Using the natural method will produce a lot more sediment in the bottom of your keg I don't recommend moving it to a party and drinking on the same day unless you dont mind cloudy beer.


[If you are going to store your beer hot then you can if you wish, add the same amount of priming sugar to the keg as you would in a bulk prime situation, and then after two weeks your beer will be gassed and you wont have used any CO2 except for serving.
If you do this it is better if you cut about 20mm off the dip tube in the keg so as not to get the sediment, and also burp and pressurise the keg at priming so the keg is sealed tha same as if it were in a bottle.]

That is a Quote from dicko, in the thread Kegging Gassing and Drinking.
Need to sort out how do do it right :unsure:
 

mchiu

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sorry i am not getting what it means to burp the keg? is that to just plunge the keg with some CO2?

thanks for all the reply...
am currently brewing a coopers draught to go into the other keg..( hopefully the brew is fine.. just posted a message regarding a white thing on top)

i will try racking the beer into the keg and gassing it up wiht CO2

thank you
 

The Big Burper

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sorry i am not getting what it means to burp the keg? is that to just plunge the keg with some CO2?
mchiu,

On top of the keg lid is a pressure release valve. To burp the keg, attach the gas line
and then lift the valve up to burp it. Do this 3 times in 3 short bursts. The air in the keg will then be displaced by CO2. Keep your ear open for leaks :)

cheers
Dave
 

MHB

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Hi, I gas my kegs by CO2 bottle, but as far as I understand when naturally carbonating your keg, racking is a good thing and gets rid of a lot of sediment it also conditions the beer further. Using the natural method will produce a lot more sediment in the bottom of your keg I don't recommend moving it to a party and drinking on the same day unless you dont mind cloudy beer.
I keep hearing this one but personally I think its a furphy.

The only way to get more yeast is if the yeast reproduces - that means you must be getting a lot of Oxygen mixed with the beer during transfer.

The yeast has already consumed all the oxygen in the wort and the green beer you are transferring is saturated with carbon dioxide.
If you are getting that much oxygen into your beer the extra yeast would be the least of your problems; the beer would be oxidised to hell and gone.

Even burping the kegs is I believe a waste of time; as the beer is saturated with CO2, the movement of the beer liberates enough CO2 to provide a protective layer over the beer that displaces air out of the keg as you fill it (burping does no harm and if it makes you feel better do it).

As an experiment get one of those huge BBQ matches, when the keg is about half full, strike the match, once the head has burned away, see how far into the keg you can put the match before the CO2 snuffs out the flame.

Clarity of keg beer is another interesting question, as in a keg we are drawing from the bottom if the sediment hasnt finished settling - we are drawing beer with more concentrated goop than if we cracked the keg earlier, or later.
Until the yeast has settled to the bottom starting in on keg too early will give worse looking beer

Personally I work on the motto that "beer doesn't mature faster in kegs, but it does mature better"

Whether you:-
Cask condition
Force carbonate
Slow gas

The outcome should be the same, but it takes time to make good beer.

MHB
 

whitegoose

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So I've just transferred my brew into a keg - first time ever, really excited!! I'm waiting for a part at the moment to connect my beer line to my tap and in the mean time I'm trying to work out what to do with the keg.

I "primed" it with 50g of dextrose (to give it a tiny abv boost and get a head start on the carbonation, and added gelatine when I transferred. I burped the keg a few times and gave it a little bit of pressure to seal it.

Now as I'm used to bottling I wouldn't normally touch the beer for a month and try to hold till about 2 months, to give it time to condition and mellow out etc. I've read that this is not really necessary in a keg. So my questions are:

1. How long should I leave the keg to condition before drinking?
2. After a week or so at fermenting temp to give the yeast a good chance to ferment the 50g sugar, what temperature should I store the keg at? Should I chill it?
3. When should I force carbonate? Sooner? Later? 48 hours before drinking?

Thanks :)
 

3G

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Hi Whitegoose, welcome to kegging, definately the best move ever.
You seem a little confused, generally you either prime with sugar or carbonate with co2. As you have added 50gm of sugar you will need to leave for two to four weeks to ferment. There are great guides to force carbonaye and to set up a balanced kegging system on AHB so i wont cover it all again.
Good luck.
 

whitegoose

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Hi Whitegoose, welcome to kegging, definately the best move ever.
You seem a little confused, generally you either prime with sugar or carbonate with co2. As you have added 50gm of sugar you will need to leave for two to four weeks to ferment. There are great guides to force carbonaye and to set up a balanced kegging system on AHB so i wont cover it all again.
Good luck.
Thanks for the welcome! I'm aware people usually do one or the other (usually force carb) but I wanted to bump up the alc just a tad, plus I had read that when priming a keg you should always under-prime and force carb the rest. Either way, that's done.

I don't need any help with balancing my system or with force carbonation - I just want to know about how long to leave my keg before drinking, what temperature to store/condition it at, and when to force carbonate it. I'm asking all this because as I said, when bottling, I always leave my beer in a cool dark place for up to 2-3 months for the flavours to mellow out etc. If I still need to do this with a keg, how long for, at what temp, with/without carbonation? If it makes it easier to answer my questions please just ignore the fact I put the 50g dextrose in the keg.
 

3G

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No Dramas, what beer did you make?
 

whitegoose

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No Dramas, what beer did you make?
An extract recipe I concoted myself for a an ale somewhere between an English Brown and American Amber. I tasted it out of my hydrometer tube and it tasted absolutely delicious.
 

3G

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Cool, id say 3 to four weeks at room temp then 1 week in keg fridge hooked up to dispensing pressure then drink away.
 

SpargeArse

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mchiu,
If like me you get caught in a tight spot with not enough cubes to cold condition, you can try what I did, rack from primary to keg, cold condition the keg, then attach it to gas and force the trub off the bottom up the dip tube and out of the keg, THEN gas it up properly.

A bit dodgy, but will work if you run out of space or equipment!

Cheers!
You can use one keg to condition and clear the beer, then transfer the clear beer to another keg. with this you only need a couple of extra fittings (and an extra keg)
 

Aus_Rider_22

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I too was tempted to drink the beer prematurely, while nice to drink wasn't as good as the same brew aged in a bottle.

So my practice from now on is keg the beer with 50-65g of dextrose, leave for at least a month and then refridgerate for a week at serving pressure.
 

H0U5ECAT

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to bump an old thread...

Conditioning in a keg, is it better to store the keg at room temp, or leave it in the keezer?
Also, carbonate after racking into the keg, or after i've conditioned it for say.... a month?
 

Phoney

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Cold conditioning is to be done cold, as yeast settles out quicker in cold beer than it does in warm beer, so if you've already racked it into a keg leave it in the keezer.

As per MHB's post above, whether the keg has gas in it or not makes no difference to clarity. Personally I carb em up as soon as I keg so that I can have samples every now & then, for science.
 

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