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Messages - jwaldner

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Ingredients / Re: Growing Hops Next to Siding - Any chance for damage?
« on: September 10, 2010, 02:34:46 AM »
We use a rough twine to our second floor and the do just fine.

Sometimes you'll get a rougue bine or two but I just redirect it to the twine and away it goes. We've been doing it this way for a few years and haven't seen any damage.

Whatever variety you grow, water them frequently or plant them near an automatic sprinkler head (spray type/irrigation type) because they need plenty of water to flourish.



Equipment and Software / Re: temperature control
« on: September 10, 2010, 02:31:01 AM »
If you're looking to do two-stage temp control I would recommend the Ranco digital control either through MoreBeer or Brewmasters Warehouse (cheaper). I just bought one myself.

There's also the digtal Johnson controller but it will only control one heating/cooling device. There is the analog version or the digital version. I prefer the digital version though since it seems to have a better accuracy for temp control for fermentation. I use the analog version on my keggerator.


Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keggerator Anchor!
« on: September 09, 2010, 02:35:33 AM »
With what and how are you powering the fans?

Thanks again

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keggerator Anchor!
« on: September 08, 2010, 11:52:56 PM »
I had this problem in my converted freezer also. I found that the tempeture varied greatly with the distance from the bottom of the freezer. Placing a small fan on the compressor hump equalized the temperature from top to bottom, so now my beer flows nicely as soon as the faucet cools down (about a third glass of foam, subsiquent pours don't have this problem).
One other thing it could be is a dirty faucet, bit of hops stuck in there.


I recently swapped out my dip tube and ball lock with poppet to rule those out. I'm going to try putting in a 20ft tube next. A bit drastic but we'll see if that does anything.

I thought it also may be the temp but I'm reading about 38F on top of my keg and you're right about the temp being colder at the bottom, about 32F from what I can tell. The fan sounds like the next step though. What type of fan are you using? Does it run all the time and how do you have it wired in?

Thanks again

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Drawbacks from kegging 2.5gal instead of 5gal?
« on: September 07, 2010, 12:39:22 AM »
The biggest drawback is running out of beer twice as fast.

yes, that is the bad part. and you will need to brew twice as often, that takes twice the time. the good part is that your beer should carbonaite faster with more co2 to beer ratio. why not just brew more beer less often?

Thanks all,

I was trying to keg on 2.5gal because I was going to spilt the batch and experiment with it a bit by trying a different type of yeast/fetmentation temps. I also may want to just bottle condition some of it instead of kegging it. I just didn't know if there would be any issues since I'm new to kegging.

Thanks again

Kegging and Bottling / Drawbacks from kegging 2.5gal instead of 5gal?
« on: September 05, 2010, 11:16:17 PM »
Does anyone know if there are any drawbacks or special techniques to consider if only force carbonating 2.5 gals of beer in a 5gal Corny?



Kegging and Bottling / Re: Serving suggestions for Keg
« on: September 05, 2010, 03:09:51 AM »
I'm having a similar problem as well. Check out my "Keggerator Anchor" thread for some ideas. I haven't reached a solution yet but I've tried just about everything and I'm down to opeing my keg up and checking out my dip tube and poppet next.

Good luck,


Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keggerator Anchor!
« on: September 05, 2010, 02:59:05 AM »

It was bubbles and I think you're right about the out gassing as well. Because if I increase the pressure I can see the bubbles move and it appears like the line is clearing.

The beer does taste good at 6psi. I just hate to have to always vent my keg before serving and turn down the pressure. I would like to meet whomever came up with the formula to balance a kegging system because it sure doesn't seem to work at this point.

I think I need to take Tom's suggestion next and just crack it open and see if there's something wrong with the poppet or dip tube. I really have nothing left to troubleshoot except the keg itself and believe it or not I'm getting tired of drinking pints of Hefeweizen every night :-)

Thanks again

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keggerator Anchor!
« on: September 04, 2010, 08:33:05 PM »

I get a pretty decent pour at about 6psi. However, I'm seeing bubbles in my line starting from my keg or poppet. Does this mean my beer is overcarbonated or perhaps there's something wrong with the keg?


Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keggerator Anchor!
« on: September 03, 2010, 07:48:59 PM »
I vented my keg last night and dialed down the pressure to 4psi and the beer seems to be serving pretty good today. I still get a little more head then what I would like (about more than half head of beer) but I'm not sure if there's anything else I can do.

The problem still remains though that I don't know what's causing this and I don't want to always have to serve my beers at this level because I would like to serve them to style and because I bought an expensive 3-way regulator to accomplish that.

I guess I'm thinking like someone suggested either there's something wrong with my dip tube or poppet but won't know until I crack the keg. I don't have anyone I know locally with a keg to test so that's not an option. I guess it could also just be overcarbonated but not sure how that would have happened.

When I carbonated the beer I just did the set it and forget it method and didn't exceed the 13.34psi for the style. Can you overcabornate your beer in this manner?

Thanks again to all

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keggerator Anchor!
« on: September 02, 2010, 10:45:27 PM »
Thanks I'll try that and let you know.

I just looked at one of my other taps that's not connected and noticed I'm using a 1/4" shank with a 1/4" tail piece with 3/16" I.D. tubing for all of my taps. Would going from 3/16" tubing to 1/4" bore on my shank have any effect on the beer?

Thanks again

Equipment and Software / Garage Brewing & Water
« on: September 02, 2010, 02:58:04 AM »
I'm switching over from brewing in my basement with an immersion heater to brewing out in the garage with LP gas. However, there's no water out in the garage except what I use from my hose outside. Unfortunately, I live in a climate where I won't be able to use my hose in the winter.

How do other brewers work around this problem of brewing and chilling their wort without easy access to a water source?



Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keggerator Anchor!
« on: September 02, 2010, 02:09:59 AM »
We get foam on the first pull and in succession. I'm using a chest freezer with a collar for my keggerator so the 10ft of lines leaves the keg and goes directly to the shank and then the tap.

Thanks again

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keggerator Anchor!
« on: September 02, 2010, 12:54:57 AM »
Don't worry about the insults, this is my first keg so I just want to figure it out before I waste my next two or three kegs as well.

Are you opening the faucets full with some authority and not partially pulling the tap handle open?

      Yes. We considered that as well being we were newbies and thought maybe we're just pouring it wrong. We downloaded the draught manual and read up on pouring techniques and hold the glass at a 45 degree angle untill about half full (with foam of course) then stand it up to finish the pour.

Are you sure the keg was absolutely clean with no debris in the pickup tube that could be causing the foam?

     I believe so. I cleaned the the keg by soaking it and it's parts in PBW for a day and then sanitized it. I didn't have anything to scrub the dip tube with but it appeared cleaned after the PBW soak.

Are you getting an aggressive stream of foam even with 10 ft. of line? If so, your regulator pressure gauge may be deceiving you.

     Not as much now that I have 10 feet of tubing but still 3/4 glass of foam. I also thought maybe my regulator wasn't working properly but it's a brand new one. Is there anyway to cheaply measure the pressure it's putting out to see if it's even close to what it should be?

Thanks for the help

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Keggerator Anchor!
« on: September 01, 2010, 11:23:08 PM »
Ok, I'm officially going crazy on this one.

I've changed the temp several times, waited days and tested and still get foam. I've lengthened the hose from 5 to 10 feet and still get foam!

I'm at a lost here on this one and would appreciate anymore suggestions on how to get the right pour from a hefeweizen or clues as to what I've done wrong.



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