Kegging Shopping List? Or How To For A New Guy:)

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mobrien

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Hi Guys,

I've brewing beer for years. But today I have decided enough is enough. I hate washing bottles. The time has come!

So, I've looked into kegging - and read around on this group. I think I know what I want, but then I want to make sure I am doing the right thing!

As a result I have a heap of questions, that I didn't get clear answers to either here reading through the posts or at the local brew shop.

1. To begin with, I assume that if I get two kegs, I can hook them both up to a the same CO2 gas source with either a T piece on the gas line, or a two way at the regulator. That makes sense to me - and I assume If I want to tap both kegs at once, I obviously would need two taps. How am I going so far?

2. Gas line and beer line. Looking at the sites both here in the US it would seem there is either 1/4" or 3/16" for the lines. 1/4" for both seems the norm here in Au?

3. Keg types. 5Gal corny kegs all seem to come from the US - and the pepsi ones have the ball lock and seem the better choice. It would seem I can either buy them here in Au for 95-100 each, or ship them over from the US for around half that. While my local HBS is great, I'm a student at uni (back again!) so http://www.brewersdiscount.com/ looks the good option with 25.50 for reconditioned kegs. Am I still on track?

4. Once a keg is setup, does the gas stay on, or only when pouring? i.e. Does the keg hold its pressure? Can you make a brew, pressure the keg and leave it in the shed to swap over into the fridge when one runs out? Are there slow leaks that depressurise the system and/or kegs?

5. I don't drink beer every night, nor do I drink heaps of it. As such I worry about beer lines and how clean they are. So here is the solution I have come up with:

For day to day use (me only and the wife occasionally), have two brews in two kegs in a fridge for them. Both hooked up to the gas, and for pouring have a faucet attached to a liquid disconnect that plugs straight into the keg. This means no beer lines, no waste, and easy clean of the faucet with a quick unhook and wash.

For party use - same system, but have two lines on liquid disconnects that goto a font. Good for the party atmosphere, and at the end of the party the lines get cleaned and packed away for next time.

What would also be cool is to have the female liquid disconnects on the font, so two taps could go straight on - a real plug and play system.

Now is that all a) possible B) reasonable c) can you get female liquid disconnects (I can't fine them online!)

6. For take away beer (bottled) - I assume there would be some system to fill from the keg and then just cap it as normal with my capper? I assume it would need to pressurise the container somehow to dissolve lots of co2 in the beer so it was good at the other end?

7. From what I read US CO2 tanks and regulators are a no go here. That said, can you adapt a US regulator onto an Au bottle?

8. That all said, here is my shopping list so far for http://www.brewersdiscount.com/ - how does it look?

Gas connects for two kegs:
2 of
BL009- QD Gas 1/4" Barb
Our Price: $3.75
Quick Disconnect Gas 1/4" Barb

Liquid connects for two kegs
2 of
BL009-1-QD Liquid 1/4" Barb
Our Price: $3.75
Quick Disconnect Liquid 1/4" Barb

Kegs
2of
BL003-5 Gal Keg Rebuilt
Our Price: $25.50
Rebuilt Excellent 5 Gal. Ball Lock Kegs

Faucets - either quick connects or shanked
2of
Shank Assembly with 4 1/8" Shank
4 1/8"" shank assembly, chrome faucet with knob, beer nut with tail pice and neoprene gasket
Our Price: $29.50

OR

2of
H027-Chrome Faucet with Adapter and QD
Our Price: $29.50
Faucet with Adapter and Quick Disconnect

Beer and Gas hose
10 of
H005-Tubing, High Pressure Braided 1/4" I.D.
Our Price: $0.45/foot
Tubing, High Pressure Braided 1/4" I.D.

Gas line splitter to goto both kegs
1 of
Barb Tee piece 1/4"
Our Price: $3.35
Barb Tee Stainless Steel 1/4"

Hose clamps for line
6 of
H010-1-Clamp Adjustable
Our Price: $0.35
Clamp Adjustable 1/8" to 1/2"

Keg cleaner
1 of
CS003-BTF Iodophor Sanitizer 4 oz.
Our Price: $1.90
CS003-BTF 4 oz.

Line cleaner
1of
CS001-BLC Line Cleaner 4 oz.
Our Price: $2.00
CS001-BLC 4 oz.

Regulator if it fits Au stuff
MAYBE:
1 of
Cornelious Dual Gauge Beer Regulator with Shut Off
Our Price: $41.50
Cornelious Dual Gauge Beer Regulator with Shut Off


I'll pick up the gas bottle, fridge and font here in Au - I might build the font myself.

Wow. Now I need a beer! But instead I'll go bottle that Pale Ale I have there. I'm going to console myself that it just might be the last bottling I'll ever do :D

Thanks in advance for any responses!

Matt (In Brissy)
 

sluggerdog

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Had a quick skim though and everything seems in order.

-Your US regulators will not fit the australia gas bottles so you'll have to get that from here.

-ALSO have you decided on the gas situation and what you will do?

-Once you have gassed your keg, you only need to turn on the gas bottle when you are serving it, then turn it off until next time you use it.

-Yes the keg will kep it's pressure.

WELCOME TO THE BOARD... and KEGGING!
 

mobrien

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Thanks for the feedback Sluggerdog (cool alias BTW!

As far as gas goes - looks like I'll either hire a bottle from BOC or the like, or see if I can find a second hand one (unlikely) - $300 new is a bit much - but then it might pay off - we'll see!

From what I saw around I kinda thought the US regulators wouldn't fit - thanks for tha clarification on that. I don't suppose you get a regulator on a bottle if you hire it. Thought not :D

It still sounds like kegging is the way to go. I might have to order all that stuff from the US soon - gives me 12 weeks to sort out the rest :D

Now if I could just find female liquid disconnects for the font....

Matt

P.S. The Pale Ale is bottled; my hands look like prunes!
 

blotto

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I don't know about anyone else's keg set up but I use 3m of beer line from keg to tap so the resistance of the beer in the line allows me to keep my gas pressure at "Gassing pressure" and pour nice and slow, I'm not sure how the taps that are connected straight to a liquid disconnect would go. To my thinking you would have to decrease pressure by venting gas every day to have a beer and increase the pressure to store it over night, so the gas would not come out of solution to fill the head space, that would be a waste of gas and the beer will go flat. Plus your going to have to open the door every time you want a beer, I'm way to lazy for that. Any way that is my take some one plz correct me if I'm wrong.
 

Ross

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Wort, So does having 3m of line stop all the bubbles in the beer line? My lines are shorter & I get a small amount of gas forming at the tap after a while. I thought this was normal & was just part of kegging....
It's no trouble to pour off first drop, but would prefer not to have to...
 

sluggerdog

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I have 2 metres of line from keg to tap and it works nicely.
 

nonicman

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I'm new to kegging as well (just poured my first glass, whilst my brew boils :) ). I purchased a complete system from the LHBS (minus the gas), in the instructions that came with the setup it stresses not to shorten the beer line as this would have an adverse effect on the pouring.

Edit: my beer line is approx 180cm
 

mobrien

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OK - that all sounds fair - so 3m of line between keg and tap - done!

But still I want to avoid the beer line getting warm or the beer line/tap growing stuff - I won't be using it enough that it will be self cleaning! Or am I being overly cautious? I just can't imagine a tap out the front of a fridge being used 3 or 4 times a week would remain clean very long.

Please correct me if I am wrong!

So that said - I guess the next option would be a male liquid disconnect at the keg, 3m of hose, then a male dissconnect (if such a thing exists!). Then the tap with a female disconnect.

This would mean everything could be kept in the fridge, and the tap then removed to clean it easily, stopping any growths!

What do people think?

This all really depends on being able to get the female liquid disconnects!

Matt
 

sluggerdog

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What is a male and female disconnect?
 

Bricey

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Male to Female disconnect is a part that allows you to use the 2 types of connections.

The type the has a small part that screws into the connection, and the type that screws over the connection
 

mobrien

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Sorry if I wasn't clear. The liquid disconnects are the bits that attach to the keg for the beer to go through. The male disconnect is readily available, as it is what everyone uses to attach to the keg - it has the keg fitting and a 1/4 hose connector. The female connector is the opposit to the male - its the fitting thats on the keg - the male connector fits into the female connector.

What I'd like is a female connector that has the 1/4 hose connector - then I could have the male connector attaching to the keg, a hose coming from this to a female connector. Then another male connector attached to the tap.

It sounds like a lot of hassel, but the idea would be a tap that could easily be removed for cleaning.

Does it all make sense now?

Matt
 

sluggerdog

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No worries then. I have all males going by your pic, didn't know you could get females..

Good Luck finding them
 

mobrien

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LOL - yeah males are everywhere.... I don't know if you *can* get females... I'm hoping so!

M
 

kitkat

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just from reading, if you don't drink much, but like to brew, you'll need more than 2 kegs - what happens if you want to do a new beer and your 2 kegs are full? You either have to drink one in a hurry (can't be that hard, though ... ) or buy a new keg :)
I guess if you say "I'll brew one beer a month", then you have one month to empty a keg - though parties may alter the schedule and you may end up with 2 empty kegs and no beer ready to go ...

Best of luck :)

As an aside (I just started brewing, so kegging a a fair way off), how do you know which level your keg is at? Is there some kind of indicator that tells you if you have only 4 pints left? Do you count the pints? :)
 

mobrien

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hey kitkat,

Point taken - I should have mentioned that this is the starting point :) I have every expectation that I'll need 5 or 6 kegs down the track... but the budget doesn't allow for crazy kegging just yet!

And like you say, how hard is it to finish a brew - ivite a few mates and an hour later :D

Then again, 4 kegs fits in a box from the states...... :D I'd basically be saving money :D

M
 

GMK

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Hi Mobien

I sell keg system stuff.
Brand new CO2 Dual Gauge reg is 80..00 - fits aussie gas bottles - csn line u up no rent gas bottles if u live in ACT.
The male u r referring to is a turret - they are different for each eg a gas is diffent from a liquid 0- have a NPT thread but will not help u with what u want to do.
I sell disconects too. - 27.50 for 2.
I recomend 4mm beer line as it is much better - but u will need a 4mm-6mm splice (5.00) or buy the 3/16 barb disconect from brewers discount.
U can mount the taps in AUS on snap lock fittings (Brewers Discount) dont sell them) so that they r easy to remove without having to disconect lines etc.
Note:
Brewers discount taps and shanks are chrome plated brass - in AUS we sell SS - but price is dearer - eg 95.00 per grundy tap plus 55.00 per ss snaplock/fridge ext - or 145.00 for both together as a package.

to know level of keg - either weigh or pick it up - the lighter it is the less beer is left.

Hope this helps u out - let me know if u want any stuff...

GMKeneterprises
 

blotto

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Hi Ross I'm getting bubbles in my line now but i'm at the end of my keg, I don't get as many when it is full.
mobrien as for stuff growing in your beer line I don't think that is such a problem, if stuff is going to grow in your line then your going to get stuff growing in your keg as well. My only concern is residual flavours after a while so just a wash to clean every now and then. I think I know what you are on about with the female disconnects because I have pin lock kegs at the moment and have some ball lock kegs coming so I am looking for some inline connections to easy swap over the pin and ball disconnects, you might be able to find what you are looking for here http://www.colder.com/Downloads/OCSBrochure.pdf or at their web page http://www.colder.com/asp_Main/Catalogs.asp thanks to Boots for bringing them up in a thread.
 

Fammer

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mobrien, watch the postage from BrewersDiscount it cost me $90USD recently for 4 kegs.
 

Tony M

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Two ways kitkat.
Leave the fridge door open for ten minutes and you will get a condensation line at the liquid level, or use the bathroom scales. the empty keg is 4KG. the rest is beer.
 

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