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Thread: DIY in-line carbonation

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    197

    DIY in-line carbonation

    I have been looking around the carbonation posts and can't seem to find an answer there, so here goes. Is anyone acheiving full carbonation with a DIY carbonation set up in a single pass, if so how do you acomplish it? To give some background we are using a 5" stone in 50' of a 1" i.d. transfer hose. We pump transfer from fermenter to brite with the stone on the fermenter (pump discharge ) end of the hose. Pressurize brite to desired equilibrium pressure and transfer cold beer (35F) with enough gas pressure on the stone (`25psig) so the CO2 bubbles are not visible at the bright side end of the hose. We only manage to get ~2.0 vol of co2 this way. I am considering adding another stone to increase the surface area to volume ratio. In your collective opinions/ experience will adding another stone give me 2.5 volumes in one pass or will I just end up with a brite full of foam?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Palau
    Posts
    1,511
    I have used Wittemann pinpoint carbonators before. They focus the beer to flow quickly along a fairly broad stone. These worked well for me, but no matter what, it's difficult to get a perfect run with exactly the carbonation you target. Any adjustments made during the transfer could lead to tank CO2 stratification. That's why I always preferred to finish carbonation in the BBT--roll the beer around slowly & gently to homogenize carbonation. Two easy things you could do: increase the BBT back pressure (if that's possible) and increase the stone pressure, or to chill the beer a few degrees more. Otherwise, your carbonation consistency could benefit from finishing the last few tenths in the BBT with a fixed stone. I've been to breweries that loop circulate the beer past a stone, but personally I like to be more gentle and don't like pumping beer any more than I absolutely have to. Besides, the operation risks beer contamination. Good luck.
    Phillip Kelm
    Palau Brewing Company

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    672
    We have a pinpoint carbonator at the moment. That being said a couple things you might look at. Does your regulator have a high enough flow rate? We had to buy a large regulator to get the proper CFM for inline carbonating. I would not worry about seeing a few bubbles in the sight glass, as long as you have your bbt under pressure it will not scrub out. Also why not sanitize a hose and hook it up from CIP to CIP as a count pressure line? BOth tanks would be at the same pressure and the pump would do the work. We never have a bright tank full of foam.
    Joel Halbleib
    CBO "Chief Brewing Officer" / Zymurgist
    Bluegrass Brewing Co
    636 East Main St
    Louisville, KY
    www.bluegrassbrewing.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    197

    large regulator?

    The regulator might be something to consider. I need a larger one for the bottling line....what would you recomend?

    Cheers,
    Joe

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    672

    Regulator

    This is the model that came with our pinpoint...

    http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-Norgren-Regu...2em118Q2el1247

    Good luck.
    Joel Halbleib
    CBO "Chief Brewing Officer" / Zymurgist
    Bluegrass Brewing Co
    636 East Main St
    Louisville, KY
    www.bluegrassbrewing.com

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