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General Category => Kegging and Bottling => Topic started by: tygo on December 16, 2009, 03:16:26 am

Title: Force Carb in Mini-Keg?
Post by: tygo on December 16, 2009, 03:16:26 am
So due to unfortunate timing the ESB I just brewed will not be ready in time for NYE.  I could rush it into the bottle but the most I could hope for, assuming I don't secondary it and it clears in the primary in two weeks from the brew date, would be to have it in the bottle for a week.  That's doable I know, but is a little more rushed than I would have hoped for, and one week in the bottle in my experience isn't really going to result in reliable carbonation.

I was wondering if it would be possible to force carb in a mini-keg.  I have a couple of the five liter stainless steel mini-kegs with a hand held CO2 injector.  I do not have a regulator or any other kegging equipment as of yet so there's no way I could measure the pressure. 

Also, I do not have any way to simply pressurize the keg and have it sealed.  What I have is the dispenser that came with the mini-keg kit and that will have to be in the keg when I pressurize it.

Soooo.....the more I think through this the more I think this would not be all that successful.  But does anyone have experience with this?  Could I just put it in the fridge and pressurize it with as much as it will take with the handheld CO2 injector, maybe slosh it around a bit once it's pressurized, for a couple of days and get at least an acceptable, if low, amount of carbonation into the beer.

I'd only be filling one mini-keg from the 5 gallon batch so I'd have some to sample on NYE.  So if it doesn't work it wouldn't be a total loss.
Title: Re: Force Carb in Mini-Keg?
Post by: hophead515 on December 17, 2009, 06:56:47 am
Tygo -

Have you ever seen the movie "Field of Dreams?"  you know the part where Kevin Costner is hearing the phrase "Go the Distance" in his ear?

Buddy, it's time.

Get yourself a keg fridge, a 5 gallon corny keg, a 5 or 20 pound CO2 tank, and all the fittings, and get that beer kegged and carbonated. Your friends are relying on you. What's going to happen when NYE rolls around, and they say Ty! Ty! Where's the beer? And you say "Aww geez... sorry guys, can we celebrate New Years on the 12th? You see, my pansy ass wouldn't take the plunge and get a kegging system which would allow me to give my beer the repect it deserves by serving it on draught. Not to mention the luxury of force carbonation so that my bad-ass beer would be ready for you a week before NYE instead of a week after. 

Ty, this is an EMERGENCY. If you have a wife, just explain it to her that way! :) It's beer my brother! BEER! And it NEEDS to be ready for NYE!

In all seriousness, you can get a fridge on craigslist for 50 bucks. Any self respecting homebrew store would have a  used corny keg and replacement gaskets. Wherever you live I'm sure has a source of compressed CO2. I woudn 't dick around with the mini kegs any more. Go the distance, my friend. Make the investment. It's only the 17th. I will be happy to give you more detailed instruction if you decide to put this thign together. I have 10 cornys and just use picnic taps, so it doesn't need to be fancy. It's a one-time investment of only about 200 to 300 bucks. It stings when you shell it out, but boy, does it make life easier from then on.  Good luck with whatever you decide!
Title: Re: Force Carb in Mini-Keg?
Post by: tygo on December 17, 2009, 05:56:56 pm
Haha, great first post  ;D

Yeah, I'm definitely going to take the kegging plunge in the very near future but I think I've used up my brewing budget this month.  Plus I doubt I have the time to figure out the specifics to my satisfaction before then.  I want to make sure I'm allocating enough time to the decision to give those kegs the proper respect. :D

Thanks for the advice though.  I'll take you up on that offer of instruction when I get around to it.  I'm sure I'm going to need some help.
Title: Re: Force Carb in Mini-Keg?
Post by: hophead515 on December 17, 2009, 07:17:20 pm
I work PT in a local homebrew store, so if you have problems finding anything, I might be able to help there. They have used corny kegs and gaskets.