View Full Version : Keg Question

06-12-2007, 09:39 AM
Does anyone out there have any experience using European Sankey S valve kegs? I am starting a new production brewery and I have the opportunity to get 8 pallets of them (approx. 64 kegs, coated and in great condition) from a good friend overseas for only the shipping cost. This initially sounds good due to the "over abundance" (note: sarcasm) of affordable kegs out there. I was wondering what the pros & cons of an American craft brewery using them are. I know these kegs are the most common type of import kegs, so the couplers are commonly used in our market, but I am wondering if any other challenges are presented. Has anyone ever tried to run one of these on a normal kegging line? My brewery is coming with a simple keg washer/filler and I am assuming that it will need connections for both S and D Sankeys (that is if I were to use both). Is the interchange even feasible? Is it a headache? Would this be a bad move for a start-up production brewery? I would appreciate any feedback.

06-12-2007, 09:55 AM
I would vote for "headache" and "regrettable" That said, I am not going to write the check.

06-12-2007, 11:22 AM
Is it possible to switch out the spear to the "D" type after you buy them?

06-12-2007, 05:54 PM
I can tell you that I know of people who have had problems with poly-coated kegs not being compatible with their keg washer/filler.

As far as I know you can get new american sankey valves welded in.

I don't know how much it costs to ship overseas but if its cheap enough, if they don't work for you, you could always try to recoup the cost by selling or scraping.

06-12-2007, 09:33 PM
Great idea to swap valves. Check with Micromatic-not the draft supply people, but their other company that makes valves. Depending on how the valves are attached, i.e. split ring, thread, or whatever, I think US valves would swap easily.

06-13-2007, 06:37 AM
I was going to suggest Micromatic...

But note, these spears are ~$100 each, and you will need the special instruments to remove/replace them... you may have to send the kegs to Micromatic to have it done by them!

I don't know if this would necessarily be more economical.

06-13-2007, 10:02 AM
From what I understand, the bulk of the cost of a keg is the spear and valve. So if you have to buy new spear and valve parts per keg, are you really saving anything? Also factor in the cost of the time and labor to switch over. Seems like when you add it up, you could get new kegs for less...and they are new!

06-14-2007, 04:48 AM
Have you talked to Rick Henzler (sp?) at SABCO in Toledo Ohio? I think their number is 419-531-kegs. They might have an easy fix.

The BREW Kettle
Strongsville, Ohio 44136

06-14-2007, 11:57 AM
Thanks to everyone who responded to the question! I spoke with Dan at SABCO and he quoted me $18.50 for valve replacements from the "S" type to the "D" type, but said there could be an issue with how the valves go in. Meaning if they are a sort of screw in system it needs to be a fine thread instead of a wide thread or esle it won't work. So I am going to get one keg sent over here and decide if it will work before moving on. Thanks again to those who put their 2 cents in.