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Kegging Procedure

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Trough Lolly

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Hi all,
Look, I'm an absolute kegging novice, ok!

I have a freshly filled keg of German Pils and I want to force carbonate it before dispensing...

I've got a picnic faucet as a stopgap measure but I'm worried about the dangers of incorrectly using CO2 under pressure. So, can you experienced keggers have a look at the following procedure I've drafted up and let me know where I've got it all wrong, before I blow up the garage? Please assume nothing here - I have little knowledge of the order of things, and this procedure is based on what I've gleaned off the net...Sorry if it's a bit micro in detail, but I want to make sure that the steps are ok before doing them...

1. Fit the Gas Reg (with nylon seating ring) to the closed off CO2 bottle with a wrench. Check/confirm Gas Reg knob is all the way counter-clockwise before fitting to bottle. (So far it's like setting up the barbie!!)

2. Connect using line clamps, the gas line to the closed gas regulator and fit a Grey/Gas QD at the other end of the gas line.

3. Connect Gas QD to IN/gas post on cold/refrigerated keg.

4. Hold my breath, say bye to the missus and kids, stand side-on to the Gas Reg and open the CO2 bottle 1 to 2 turns. Listen for leaks and avoid all violent explosions and fireballs etc - shut off if there's any problems.

5. Open the Gas Reg by turning the control knob (Harris 601 reg) clockwise to about 30 psi on the low pressure guage.

6. Rock the cold keg (filled to about 2 inches below the gas tube) for a couple of minutes (approx 100 times) to infuse CO2 into the beer. (Tips here please and note, I don't have a one-way check valve so I'll probably disconnect gas after a while then reconnect and repeat or should I not worry as the keg is less pressurised compared to the gas line?? Should the gas tube be on the low side of the keg when I rock or am I inviting a flow of beer up the gas line?)

7. Leave the keg alone for a few hours in the fridge to settle down and repeat step 6 a couple of hours later.

8. Reduce regulator to serving pressure (approx. 10psi) - venting excess pressure out of the keg via the relief valve or the gas post if you don't have a PRV on the keg lid. (Tips please on restoring gas reg to serving pressure if you know of a better way that doesn't waste CO2)...

9. Connect el cheapo picnic faucet beer line to out post on keg. Make note to self to buy a better faucet!

10. Connect CO2 to keg with reg set to approx 10psi and pour a beer (with the plastic picnic faucet). Repeat until keg is empty or the missus eventually finds you and orders you back into the house!! ;)

Any comments/tips gratefully accepted before I do the job.

Cheers,
TL
 

warrenlw63

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Sounds like you've done your homework TL. I have nothing to add. :beerbang:

Now get out and sample that Pils. :chug:

Warren -
 

Mothballs

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Ross said:
[post="64781"][/post]​
Here'e IMHO the easiest/quickest way to get consistant carbonation:

After filling the keg (upto the weld mark just below the top) with cold beer turn pressure upto 300 kpa & rock keg back & forth on its side (inlet at bottom) for 50 seconds. Turn off gas (on main bottle) but continue to rock keg while monitoring the pressure dial. You will see the pressure full back quite quickly & then stabilise (100 - 200kpa). The goal is for the pressure to fall back to between 140 - 160 kpa depending on your preference (140 pommie ale - 160 Aussie beer). If the pressure falls well below 140 kpa, just turn gas back on & rock for another 10 - 15 secs, then recheck & repeat as necessary. I find that 60 secs is nearly always about the mark. Then all you have to do is release the top pressure valve on the keg (normally a couple of hours later to avoid foam flying out of the valve), connect to your gas (making sure you have set pressure back to 80 kpa or whatever you like to dispense at) & you will pour a perfect beer.

P.S. If you use this method to carbonate a keg that's not full, then reduce your rocking time accordingly, otherwise you'll over carbonate even at 50 secs...

Hope this is of help to some - I know everyone has their tried & trusted methods, but many are hit & miss without experience...
[post="64784"][/post]​
[/quote]

TL,
Give the "ROSS METHOD" a go works a treat every time.

:beer:
mothballs
 

Black Dog Brewery

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Hi Guys,

Im a newbie to kegging also however I have a temprite and I am unable to chill the beer prior to gassing the keg. What difference does this make in the process? What should I do to compensate for not being able to chill it?

I guess I could run the beer through the temprite un-gassed to chill it however that would take quiet awhile.

Cheers BDB
 

mikem108

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Black Dog Brewery said:
Hi Guys,

Im a newbie to kegging also however I have a temprite and I am unable to chill the beer prior to gassing the keg. What difference does this make in the process? What should I do to compensate for not being able to chill it?

I guess I could run the beer through the temprite un-gassed to chill it however that would take quiet awhile.

Cheers BDB
[post="76771"][/post]​

Beer must be cold before gassing!!!!!!
 

redbeard

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To check for leaks before gassing the keg, get a small spray bottle & fill with water & some dishwashing liquid. Turn the gas on a bit & spray all the joins. A leak will show as bubbles appearing.

cheers
 

Mothballs

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BDB,
I think a room temp keg could be force carbonated without refrigeration, it would just take longer to happen. Alternately you could prime your keg with sugar/dextrose. However if you have a temprite setup you could use this to chill the beer and then quickly force carbonate it. If you had 2 kegs you could run the beer from one keg through your temprite into your second keg with a liquid disconnect attached instead of a tap/gun. You will need to use a fair bit of pressure to push the beer through and keep releasing the pressure from the keg that you are filling and it should work fine. I have transferred beer between 2 kegs successfully many times using hose with 2 liquid disconnects. Use the "ROSS METHOD" to force carbonate your now cold keg and you will be drinking in no time.

:beer:
mothballs
 

Trough Lolly

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Mothballs said:
TL,
Give the "ROSS METHOD" a go works a treat every time.

:beer:
mothballs
[post="76768"][/post]​
Mothballs,
Good one! Thanks for that - I'll incorporate this technique into my procedure.

Cheers,
TL
 

PeterS

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Trough Lolly said:
Hi all,
Look, I'm an absolute kegging novice, ok!



10. Connect CO2 to keg with reg set to approx 10psi and pour a beer (with the plastic picnic faucet). Repeat until keg is empty or the missus eventually finds you and orders you back into the house!! ;)

Any comments/tips gratefully accepted before I do the job.

Cheers,
TL
[post="76758"][/post]​

I do not know about steps one to nine, but I can relate to step 10 without the CO2. I am forever in trouble for spending too much time around the brewery. All the same, thank you for well thought out procedure. I took note of it as I will shortly join the keggig fraturnity. After all, "You are not a true brewer, until" etc...

:chug:
PeterS....
 

Jazzafish

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This force carbonation method works well, I have used it often.

The only downside is that it will make the beer a bit cloudy, not that this is always an issue. I like a cloudy beer, and want to drink it asap! But some beers just shouldn't be cloudy i guess...

Normally I cold condition my brews in the keg. So when if it comes time to carbonate a clear beer, I just hit it with gass around 200 to 220kpa for a day at 5*C. Reduce the pressure to a pouring pressure and try it. A day gives me a medium carbonation. If i need more, hit it again!

Take a log of the time and temperature of the carbonation to use for future batches.

Great method if you want to turn it on, go to bed, work and come home for your beer.... just don't forget your carbonating. Read of someone forgetting this once, but I'm one of those people who hang to taste the new brew, so it is hard to forget it!

By the way, it isn't all that complicated if you don't want it to be, and beats cleaning endless bottles!
 

Jazzafish

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Also,

Your keg will retain pouring pressure, so it isn't really needed to have your gas on all the time. Can get alot of beers before pressure drops too low.

As a leak insurance, I always have my bottle turned off unless I'm carbonating. The regulator is normally set to pouring pressure. So when the pressure drops too low, turn on the bottle to re pressure, then turn it off again.

too many stories of gass leaks and loosing all the gas...
 

Trough Lolly

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Jazzafish said:
Also,

Your keg will retain pouring pressure, so it isn't really needed to have your gas on all the time. Can get alot of beers before pressure drops too low.

As a leak insurance, I always have my bottle turned off unless I'm carbonating. The regulator is normally set to pouring pressure. So when the pressure drops too low, turn on the bottle to re pressure, then turn it off again.

too many stories of gass leaks and loosing all the gas...
[post="77335"][/post]​
Thanks Jazzafish,
Yeah, I've heard of a few nasty stories of brewers losing a 10kg bottle of CO2 in a day when they hit the keg hard and forgot to turn off the leaking connection before going to bed....

Cheers,
TL
 

Ross

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Trough Lolly said:
Jazzafish said:
Also,

Your keg will retain pouring pressure, so it isn't really needed to have your gas on all the time. Can get alot of beers before pressure drops too low.

As a leak insurance, I always have my bottle turned off unless I'm carbonating. The regulator is normally set to pouring pressure. So when the pressure drops too low, turn on the bottle to re pressure, then turn it off again.

too many stories of gass leaks and loosing all the gas...
[post="77335"][/post]​
Thanks Jazzafish,
Yeah, I've heard of a few nasty stories of brewers losing a 10kg bottle of CO2 in a day when they hit the keg hard and forgot to turn off the leaking connection before going to bed....

Cheers,
TL
[post="77338"][/post]​
Hence not a good idea to let your beer carbonate over 24 hrs - I know of 3 different brewers losing a bottle of gas this way & one of them got the keg deposited over his carpet for good measure - You have been warned :D
 

Jazzafish

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To check for leaks before gassing the keg, get a small spray bottle & fill with water & some dishwashing liquid. Turn the gas on a bit & spray all the joins. A leak will show as bubbles appearing.
I didn't repeat what redbeard mentioned earlier(see quote), but check every connection if leaving the brew at high pressure... especially the gas lines.

I haven't had a problem as yet with the 2 mentioned methods.

Disasters like Ross mentioned can happen if you let them, so check everything before you leave a keg alone on high pressure.
 

doglet

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Does anyone use MFL threaded QD's and instead of connecting the CO2 bottle to the grey gas-in QD you connect it to the black liquid-out QD?

This way the gas would bubble up through the keg and there would be no need to turn a full keg upside down to carbonate.

The procedure is described here in a Northern Brewer forum FAQ

I'm wondering what the pro's and cons of this method would be? I guess it would only work well if you use threaded QD's.
 

Ross

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doglet said:
Does anyone use MFL threaded QD's and instead of connecting the CO2 bottle to the grey gas-in QD you connect it to the black liquid-out QD?

This way the gas would bubble up through the keg and there would be no need to turn a full keg upside down to carbonate.

The procedure is described here in a Northern Brewer forum FAQ

I'm wondering what the pro's and cons of this method would be? I guess it would only work well if you use threaded QD's.
[post="77467"][/post]​
If you want to do it this way you can easily force the grey pinlock disconnect onto the out post - can't see any real point though, much better/quicker methods listed already...
 

Jase

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Hi There,

I've been kegging for about a year now, and have always used the '300 kpa for about 24-26 hours' method, with good results.

A mate's starting to keg, and asked about the different gassing methods, so I thought I'd give the world-famous ROSS method a go, so I can give him opinions on both methods.

I just put the keg on the chest freezer, with the IN post at 6 o'
clock position. Seemed to work, however, some beer ran into the gas line, most of it drained when I disconnected from the keg, but is this something to worry about?????

I'll monitor the pressure and see what the results are.

Cheers,
Jase
 

Doc

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Jase said:
I just put the keg on the chest freezer, with the IN post at 6 o'
clock position. Seemed to work, however, some beer ran into the gas line, most of it drained when I disconnected from the keg, but is this something to worry about?????
[post="82855"][/post]​
Definitely try and get the beer out of the gas line. If it makes it back to the reg then you will be buggered.
I think it was JGriffin who had a number of infected brews that developed after kegging because of getting beer in his gas reg.

Beers,
Doc
 

Stickler

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I got beer in the reg first time but it was because I was using a soda stream cylinder and mucked it up a bit. I had to take the reg apart and clean it and all still works with no infections so far thank god. Have done it a few times since with no dramas. I would highly recommend the Ross method but to be safe get a back check valve - GMK sells them.
 

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