Author Topic: pressure filler from keg? vs old fashioned bottling from secondary  (Read 2005 times)

Offline boapiu

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Okay, pardon me for not doing a search but I am lazy and it is Friday afternoon and my weekend ends tomorrow at 1100 hours so I have already assumed that the sun is over the yardarm and I am on my ? brew.
That being said, and having excused myself and taken for granted the kindness and patience of my fellow AHA members, I ask the question which follows.
what is the advantage of a pressure bottle filler arrangement? and where to get educated about how to use one? oops, two questions.
Background. They, bottle fillers,  seem to be expensive and I do not know how to use them. But, I like kegging a heck of a lot more than bottling and do not often care about giving my brews away (off premises). Currently I keg some and bottle some. And, for what it is worth, my bottled brew always seems to taste a bit off, at least compared to my kegged brew from the same batch. And that, pride being a big elephant in the closet for a relatively new homebrewer, is one of the big issues here. Why is my beer from a bottle, aged according to specs, tasting so differerent than that from the keg, although granted the keg is consumed in merely a few weeks, (days!?...hmm, after carbonation, of course). I consistently use corn sugar and about the same amount recommended by recognised books and am careful of sanitation, though no one is perfect and I have had to toss a batch or two and no one is perfect but really, can there be that big a difference? Guess so.
Back to the question, how about those pressure bottle fillers where I keg all my brew and only fill bottles as needed or wanted?
Thanks for your indulgence and I hope there are those amoung you who have current experience and can lend some free advice. I really enjoy this hobby.
Beer is an ancient beverage that has been consumed as part of a balanced diet for centuries - it contains the goodness of sprouted grain extracted into rich liquid and fermented to produce a nutritional 'liquid cereal' beverage.

Online morticaixavier

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Re: pressure filler from keg? vs old fashioned bottling from secondary
« Reply #1 on: May 31, 2013, 01:31:58 PM »
I mostly do that now. I still bottle condition thing I want to age long term because I don't have the keg space to age in a keg and I like the added safety against oxidation that a small secondary fermentation in the bottle provides.

I don't own an expensive counter pressure bottle filler. I have a piece of plastic tubing (racking cane or bottling want) which is pushed through the hole in a #2 stopper (I THINK it's #2, it's the one that fits the mouth of a beer bottle).

The other end of the cane is stuck into a cobra tap. I actually just came up with an (cheap and easy)improvement to this design. A second #2 stopper (or whatever size you have really, the OD is not important) is slipped over the join between the cane and the tap to prevent it slipping out which makes a mess.
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Offline boapiu

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Re: pressure filler from keg? vs old fashioned bottling from secondary
« Reply #2 on: June 01, 2013, 04:37:22 AM »
Thanks for the reply. I will give this a try. If I understand you correctly you are bottling beer after it has carbonated in your keg. And I assume it does not taste different after a reasonable amount of time.
Thanks again.
Beer is an ancient beverage that has been consumed as part of a balanced diet for centuries - it contains the goodness of sprouted grain extracted into rich liquid and fermented to produce a nutritional 'liquid cereal' beverage.

Online morticaixavier

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Re: pressure filler from keg? vs old fashioned bottling from secondary
« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2013, 04:14:49 PM »
Thanks for the reply. I will give this a try. If I understand you correctly you are bottling beer after it has carbonated in your keg. And I assume it does not taste different after a reasonable amount of time.
Thanks again.

yes, after it is fully carbed in the keg. I have opened bottles after several weeks and not noticed any oxidation issues or similar. I don't know what would happen after several months. Keep them cold and that should help alot with shelf life.
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Offline beersk

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Re: pressure filler from keg? vs old fashioned bottling from secondary
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2013, 09:06:35 AM »
Thanks for the reply. I will give this a try. If I understand you correctly you are bottling beer after it has carbonated in your keg. And I assume it does not taste different after a reasonable amount of time.
Thanks again.

yes, after it is fully carbed in the keg. I have opened bottles after several weeks and not noticed any oxidation issues or similar. I don't know what would happen after several months. Keep them cold and that should help alot with shelf life.
I've even done it that way with bottle conditioning, like bottling from the keg, but with priming solution mixed in. I feel it's better than using a bucket, it's closed, pressurized, easier to sanitize a keg, etc. I don't often bottle condition, but when I do I use a keg for the bottling bucket and push the beer with co2. I feel better doing it that way.
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Offline gmac

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Re: pressure filler from keg? vs old fashioned bottling from secondary
« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2013, 10:38:25 AM »
I'm sure I'm doing it wrong but all I do is use the racking cane or bottling wand (cut the "ball valve" or what ever you want to call it on the bottom off if using a bottle filling wand at an angle.  I found this cut down on foam dramatically.  Yes it drips a bit but I'd rather deal with that than the foam).
Then, assuming a fully carbonated keg, I remove the gas in, vent the keg and then using only about 2 psi, fill the bottles.  I tried the rubber stopper and got frustrated so now I just fill this way.  At such low PSI, my foam over is minimal and I always place the bottles in a clean bowl so that when I'm done I just drink the run over (maybe 1/2 a glass or so). 

By the way, if you watch the video that Northern Brewer did using the Blichmann beer gun, they failed to mention that the liquid that they use is NOT carbonated which is why it looks so smooth and easy.  They told me this when I was at the new Minneapolis store.

Offline Pi

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Re: pressure filler from keg? vs old fashioned bottling from secondary
« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2013, 10:24:44 AM »
I used to use a CPBF but was a pain. I now use the Blichmann Beer Gun and is much easier. I like being able to purge the bottle with CO2. Regardless whether you use a simple racking cane or beer gun or CPBF, it is best to "cap on foam" to ensure no O2 gets in the bottle.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: pressure filler from keg? vs old fashioned bottling from secondary
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2013, 11:10:30 AM »
It helps to have the beer and bottles very cold to minimize foaming.
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Offline Pi

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Re: pressure filler from keg? vs old fashioned bottling from secondary
« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2013, 01:23:37 PM »
I also read somewhere (here?) someone keeping the bottles in ice water just before bottling helps, though I have never tried myself.
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Offline Jo Diesel

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Re: pressure filler from keg? vs old fashioned bottling from secondary
« Reply #9 on: June 07, 2013, 06:14:23 AM »
I like these aluminum cans for most recreation usage. Fill to the top and cap with no head space. Have had no issues filling from keg carbonated. Just pour the first pint in a glass then fill away. Large opening makes it easy to tip far enough to keep the foam down