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Thread: Make your own draft cleaning system?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    192

    Make your own draft cleaning system?

    I was looking at the options out there for draft cleaning systems. It seems that the gold standard is the expensive micromatic unit. Has anyone found a more affordable pre-made options out there that they are happy with or are these things simple aquarium pumps hidden behind a nice package(slight exaggeration I hope). Do they pulse on/off to help cleaning or are they literally just a pump sized to operate at a pressure that is OK for draft equipment and handle the acid/caustic conditions?


    Thanks in advance. Wish I didnt have to rub pennies together all the time, but always up for making something myself.


    Brian

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Chestertown, Maryland
    Posts
    459
    Hey Brian,

    Right now I am just using a sixtel filled with BLC solution followed by a sixtel of water rinse, all pushed with CO2. My plan is to ultimately get one of the multi-head cans, but right now I need my $$$ for ingredients and employee salaries (we're in that dead zone, money-wise, as we don't open to the general public until 3/19.)


    Quote Originally Posted by briangaylor View Post
    I was looking at the options out there for draft cleaning systems. It seems that the gold standard is the expensive micromatic unit. Has anyone found a more affordable pre-made options out there that they are happy with or are these things simple aquarium pumps hidden behind a nice package(slight exaggeration I hope). Do they pulse on/off to help cleaning or are they literally just a pump sized to operate at a pressure that is OK for draft equipment and handle the acid/caustic conditions?


    Thanks in advance. Wish I didnt have to rub pennies together all the time, but always up for making something myself.
    Kevin Shertz
    Chester River Brewing Company
    Chestertown, MD

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,906
    Very easy to do, and not too expensive-->$300.

    You need:

    Pump--SHURflo model 1805-213-236--~$125 depending on where you buy it. This is a diaphragm-type PD pump, with pressure cut-off built in so you don't blow lines.

    4 Faucet Adapters--from your beverage system supplier. ~$5/ea.

    2 Double Flushers--same place you got the FAs. Be sure these have ball-lifters built in. ~$15/ea.

    Optional--if you have any serial kegs, you need a Serial Cup for each.

    Some tubing--braid-reinforced vinyl is the best here.

    This set-up will clean four tap systems at a time--line restriction makes this a practical limit.

    Two of the FAs go on one hose, long enough to connect the two most distant faucets together--your jumper. One goes on the end of the hose from the pump outlet, the last goes on the return line.

    The basic set-up is cleaner bucket--pump inlet hose--pump--faucet adapter--shank--double-flusher connecting two keg couplers--jumper to the next faucet shank--double-flusher--return line from last shank to bucket.

    Prices are best I can recall.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    192
    Quote Originally Posted by TGTimm View Post
    Very easy to do, and not too expensive-->$300.

    You need:

    Pump--SHURflo model 1805-213-236--~$125 depending on where you buy it. This is a diaphragm-type PD pump, with pressure cut-off built in so you don't blow lines.

    4 Faucet Adapters--from your beverage system supplier. ~$5/ea.

    2 Double Flushers--same place you got the FAs. Be sure these have ball-lifters built in. ~$15/ea.

    Optional--if you have any serial kegs, you need a Serial Cup for each.

    Some tubing--braid-reinforced vinyl is the best here.

    This set-up will clean four tap systems at a time--line restriction makes this a practical limit.

    Two of the FAs go on one hose, long enough to connect the two most distant faucets together--your jumper. One goes on the end of the hose from the pump outlet, the last goes on the return line.

    The basic set-up is cleaner bucket--pump inlet hose--pump--faucet adapter--shank--double-flusher connecting two keg couplers--jumper to the next faucet shank--double-flusher--return line from last shank to bucket.

    Prices are best I can recall.

    Thanks - if your price estimates are even remotely close this looks to be half the cost of the micromatic solution. I'll have to check this option out.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    94
    Quote Originally Posted by briangaylor View Post
    Thanks - if your price estimates are even remotely close this looks to be half the cost of the micromatic solution. I'll have to check this option out.
    I think the pump Timm means is actually SHURflo 8025-213-236, this one:

    https://www.freshwatersystems.com/p-...35PRoCHzPw_wcB

    apologies if I'm wrong, but this was the closest thing I found to the product ID he gave, and it looks like it would work.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    192
    Quote Originally Posted by TGTimm View Post
    Very easy to do, and not too expensive-->$300.

    You need:

    Pump--SHURflo model 1805-213-236--~$125 depending on where you buy it. This is a diaphragm-type PD pump, with pressure cut-off built in so you don't blow lines.

    4 Faucet Adapters--from your beverage system supplier. ~$5/ea.

    2 Double Flushers--same place you got the FAs. Be sure these have ball-lifters built in. ~$15/ea.

    Optional--if you have any serial kegs, you need a Serial Cup for each.

    Some tubing--braid-reinforced vinyl is the best here.

    This set-up will clean four tap systems at a time--line restriction makes this a practical limit.

    Two of the FAs go on one hose, long enough to connect the two most distant faucets together--your jumper. One goes on the end of the hose from the pump outlet, the last goes on the return line.

    The basic set-up is cleaner bucket--pump inlet hose--pump--faucet adapter--shank--double-flusher connecting two keg couplers--jumper to the next faucet shank--double-flusher--return line from last shank to bucket.

    Prices are best I can recall.
    Do you have a good source for double flushers online? The ones I am seeing are $65/each. The rest of the items I have been able to find cheap/local.

    Thanks!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,906
    Quote Originally Posted by uptown brothers View Post
    I think the pump Timm means is actually SHURflo 8025-213-236, this one:

    https://www.freshwatersystems.com/p-...35PRoCHzPw_wcB

    apologies if I'm wrong, but this was the closest thing I found to the product ID he gave, and it looks like it would work.
    My apologies--you are absolutely correct. My fingers seem to be getting dyselxic.

    For the double-flushers, I was just guessing there, but I seem to recall seeing them in that price range somewhere... ours were from a bunch of used stuff we bought years ago. We source most of our beverage serving supplies and equipment from FH Steinbart Co. in Portland, OR https://www.fhsteinbart.com/ . Ask for Mike--these guys are great and their prices are usually as good as I can find anywhere. Don't be fooled by the website--they are a professional pub supplier, not just homebrew supplies--'though many of us started in this biz with help from Steinbart's!

    Mike set me up with the pump, faucet adapters, and serial cups for a pretty good price, and helped me get the system up and running.

    Even if they do cost $65, they last forever. I have had to modify one to work with some of our couplers--the ball-lifters were too short--but it wasn't hard and Mike at FHS explained the process to me.


    The Micromatic system, I believe, uses a pulsating and reversing pump. While much more expensive, Micromatic claims it does a better job of cleaning. I'm not sure how much better it could be than my home-made set up, which works very well.
    Last edited by TGTimm; 03-10-2016 at 01:02 PM.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    192
    Based on this thread I was able to build my own for about $300 including shipping - not bad!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Sydney, Australia
    Posts
    2
    An empty keg does the job just fine

    Sent from my GT-I9505 using Tapatalk

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Chestertown, Maryland
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    459
    Quote Originally Posted by briangaylor View Post
    Based on this thread I was able to build my own for about $300 including shipping - not bad!
    Can you post an itemized list of what you ordered and who you ordered it from for posterity's sake on this thread? Thanks!
    Kevin Shertz
    Chester River Brewing Company
    Chestertown, MD

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    US
    Posts
    14
    If any one finds an inexpensive source off double flusher with ball lifters please post a link. We are coupling the beer out lines a and hand cleaning the coupler.
    We eventually are going to build up another pump to clean 20 lines simultaneously. the time saved in using double flushers could add substantial time to cleaning the lines and faucets.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    192
    Quote Originally Posted by ChesterBrew View Post
    Can you post an itemized list of what you ordered and who you ordered it from for posterity's sake on this thread? Thanks!
    pump
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00E5UWIBU

    cleaning attachment
    https://www.kegworks.com/beer-line-cleaning-attachment

    double flusher
    https://www.kegworks.com/beer-line-c...le-flusher-kit



    It will need a few fittings and tubing but nothing that couldnt be found at a home depot or plumbing supply store or your own pile of leftovers

  13. #13
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    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
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    1,906
    Quote Originally Posted by Lars Kleegman View Post
    An empty keg does the job just fine

    Sent from my GT-I9505 using Tapatalk
    No, it doesn't. We used static cleaning with a four-head Corny keg for years. The continuous-flow system is much faster and just does a better job. We clean 8 lines with 16 faucets in less than an hour.

    The two biggest time savers are that the cleaning cycles are about half what's recommended for static cleaning (12-15 minutes vs. 30), and you can be tearing down and cleaning the faucets while the cleaning cycle runs.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Sydney, Australia
    Posts
    2
    Must be a different set up to mine. I clean 16 taps concurrently and the taps are free fir cleaning too. Horses for courses eh

    Sent from my GT-I9505 using Tapatalk

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    BEMIDJI, MN
    Posts
    130
    Check out Foxx Equipment for all the above-mentioned line cleaning supplies. The dual flusher alone through them will save you some cash if buying multiples.

    I also concur with the comments regarding static vs. recirc cleaning - the moving liquid is far superior and overall the process is faster when you can just let it rip and come back to change over to the next set of lines.

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