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Bluepants
12-21-2010, 02:19 PM
So I probably should've posted this on here before opening the doors of my nano, but I had gotten the idea from somone else so I thought it would be more commonplace. I can't seem to find any discussion here so I thought Id put it on the table.

I currently run my nano without any cold storage. Ive got a "fermentation room" with a temp controlled AC and Heater to maintain the temp of the tanks. I primary anywhere from 10 days to 2 weeks and then transfer directly into a keg with sugar for Keg conditioning for another 2 weeks. I pitch only dry yeast and at most use it for only two generations. I've been using the Danstar Nottingham because it is highly flocculant.

The beer leaves the brewery at 60 where it is loaded on a refridgerated truck for the trek to the warehouse where it is stored cold. I have an agreement with the distributor to "cold crash it" for 3 days prior to sale in their cold storage and all the retailers know that its keg conditioning, not to move it, and to take a pull and dump whatevers in the bottom before serving.

This has been my setup for about 3 months and it will continue to be for a little while. Apart from telling me that this is insane, anyone got any recommendations or things that I should look out for? I've thought about attempting to "cold crash" the room, but I always have beer in kegs conditioning in there in addition to the beer Im trying to crash.

CopperKettle
12-22-2010, 12:27 AM
Get a TRUE or similar kegerator/beverage cooler and stick it wherever you are conditioning. Depending on what your though-put needs are (sounds REALLY low) you could "crash" 4-5 1/2 BBLs at a time without disturbing the other kegs.

something like this

http://denver.craigslist.org/bfs/2088060032.html

Alternatively you could setup a force carbonating system, but you're still going to have to get the kegs as cold as possible to pick up enough CO2. At least then you wouldn't have as high a yeast load in your kegs.

Sounds like you got things going on the shortest shoe-string budget in history. I thought just ordering one bright tank for my 3BBL system was slumming it :)

callmetim
12-22-2010, 08:06 AM
Get a 25 cubic foot freezer and a ranco or similar temp controller and store them in there at your desired temp.

Ted Briggs
12-22-2010, 08:16 AM
Sounds alot like old British distribution of cask ale, delivered to the pub where they finnished the beer. Id think about finning the beer in the keg for clarity. But most important you are going to have to pick your retailers carefully and TRAIN them. And why not go all the way and have them serve on hand pump?

Moonlight
12-22-2010, 09:55 AM
You are lucky to have such rare retailers who are so forgiving.

Bluepants
12-22-2010, 12:06 PM
I think they actually like the novelty of it. Kind of a neat aspect of my product, but yes, I have had to talk to them all about the beer and how delicately to handle it and there have been some educational moments

I thought about picking up a fridge and putting them at lower temps but if I'm going to do that I might as well get a walk in, its not about money at this point its about space. Plus I don't think it would help me. I really need to cold crash to get less yeast in my kegs at the fermenter not in the kegs. You can keg condition at any temp, just a matter of adding the right amount of sugar.

I think I've heard lower values for budgets, but not many. Not hearing anyone point out problems I will face with it, so I guess its just not traditional.

Bluepants
12-22-2010, 03:07 PM
On the notion of fining. I had considered it, but was worried too much yeast would fall out such that my conditioning wouldn't work well. Is there a way to add fining to the keg such that the yeast would settle out better after the secondary ferment? I guess I could just boil it with my priming solution. May have to do a test keg to try this.

dick murton
12-25-2010, 09:26 AM
You could try fining it in FV to settle the bulk of the yeast, remove the gross sediment, then repitch with fresh yeast on transfer to keg. This way you will have very little sediment in the keg. I've done this (well actually filtered the beer, then primed and repitched) with bottled beer

otsegobrewer
03-07-2011, 07:00 AM
I like your "no cooling" system. I am setting up a nano now and plan to use a/c and heaters for a fermentation room, but to build a cold room using a/c instead of commercial units. This type of set up is becoming popular with agricultural entrepeneurs.They are using Cool Bot controllers from http://www.storeitcold.com. I will know how well it works in a few months-lagering on a shoestring.

Renzo
03-08-2011, 12:13 AM
Has anyone seen these coolbot "thermostats" in operation? Any reviews would be great.

otsegobrewer
03-15-2011, 06:53 PM
Check out Restaurant/Bar operations Walkin cooler alternative