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No brite tanks yet- carbing in kegs best practices?

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  • No brite tanks yet- carbing in kegs best practices?

    i overestimated how easy it would be to get a hold of a small brite (2-3bbl size) so we are stuck carbing in kegs until we can get one ordered or find one used. ugh.

    we have some plastic poly tanks, with glycol lines inside, so we can do a decent crash in the fermenter. racking arm should let us pull clear beer off fairly easily, but since we cant pressurize the tanks to push, its just gravity feed down into the kegs.

    my preferred method would be to purge kegs, chill them to reduce foaming (no head pressure), and fill by weight until we get the 50L in the keg with a bit of headspace. then toss them in the cooler to carb for a few days. no co2 meter, so just relying on our gauges (calibrated as much as possible) and physics.

    any tips on the carbonating in the keg? things we might have missed?

    leave lots of headspace? as little headspace as possible? 3 days enough? 5 days? fill by weight or until foam shoots out?

  • #2
    Force Carbing

    I'll tell you what works for me. I fill by weight so I have consistent head space. I use these formulas to determine my fill weight.

    HB= 15 gal*8.34*FG <--- leaves .5 gal of head space
    SB= 4.75 gal*8.34*FG <--- leaves .41 gal of head spaces

    Our cooler consistently stays at about 34F. After I have my kegs filled I hook them up to my force carb manifold (I made a 5 head, but you can do as many as you want) and pound them at 30psi and they're done in 24ish hours for most beer styles. You can experiment with filling them fuller but it will probably make carbing take longer. If you're not in a rush, try it, but this worked well for me and my schedule. Also, I put the gas in down through the stem for two reasons 1) it's easier to bleed off the excess pressure to take a small sample via party tap if you want to double check carb (which I always do.) NO PUMPING THOUGH cause well, oxygen. If needed repressurize with Co2. 2) It goes faster. I can't tell you why or the science behind it but it just does. I did put a gas check valve inline on my sankey liquid side that I put the gas through just incase you lose pressure to keep beer from going up the co2 line. Being a gas check, it's not 100% foolproof on liquid but it works pretty well.