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Old 12-02-2008, 07:23 AM   #1
Terry08
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Default 5 litre keg

Some of you will have read about my trial of using a 4 litre wine bladder to prime a brew in. As I said it worked but too much trouble. Plus the concern over the simple valve and possibility of bursting.
Any way I have now obtained a 5 litre plasic water container which is very solid.

My proposal which I shall do tommorrow is to treat it like a bottle and prime it and fill and leave for 3 weeks. Based on my wine bladder trial I know it will gain sufficient carbonisation.

Now after 3 weeks minimum I will put it in the fridge for two days to condition.

Now I realise that as beer is served the pressure will drop and gradually the Co2 will leech out of solution. But at a party 5 Litres (<7 x 750ml Bottles) will not last long.
This works as the wine bladder proved. Now the next step for me is to fit a Schroder valve (Bicycle) and virtually add the required pressure.

Now I have taken on board comments about oxidisation but I believe carbon Dioxide and Oxygen do not mix and any Co2 will blanket the beer and prevent the pumped in air coming in contact. Air which is actually nearly all nitrogen sitting on top. For bacteria the gas present should be quite lethal.

So for the storage and conditioning period the beer is preserved as it would be in a bottle.

So we will see. I will make one consession once opened the life of the 5 litre plastic keg will be limited but just think of the benifits.

You take a plastic keg to a party in an esky and after dispensing say 3 litres you increase the pressure with a mini bike pump. For the sole purpose of helping delivery.

I have the beer ready to bottle tomorrow and will prime and fill the sanitised container.

As an aside this water container I am about to use is one of two we use when we caravan around so the second stage will be when I can get a spare cap. I do intend to support the sides with cable ties to prevent some of the side distortion.

As I said the Wine bladder idea was succsessfull and the beer was Delivered through the valve rather primatively but with a good head and lively beads.

I will comment on the result some 3 weeks from now, Hmmm! just in time for Christmas Me Mad never

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Last edited by Terry08; 12-02-2008 at 07:52 AM. Reason: spelling I think faster than I type - plus beer sticky keys
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Old 12-02-2008, 12:28 PM   #2
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I've been sitting here for fifteen minutes trying to concoct a tactful way to put this, but I'm damned if I can find one. I'm just gonna say it. I don't want to be a jerk; I want to help. Please bear that in mind.

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Now I have taken on board comments about oxidisation but I believe carbon Dioxide and Oxygen do not mix and any Co2 will blanket the beer and prevent the pumped in air coming in contact. Air which is actually nearly all nitrogen sitting on top. For bacteria the gas present should be quite lethal.
You may believe whatever you like. Belief in a concept doesn't make it true. I'm afraid you're just plain wrong, laddie. Your beliefs are simply out of tune with incontrovertible scientific fact.

As the beer is consumed, you are correct that carbon dioxide gas will devolve into the headspace of the container. However, you are utterly incorrect in presuming that pumping air into the container to maintain positive head pressure won't displace the 'blanket' of carbon dioxide gas. The unfiltered air will come into contact with the beer, bringing in all manner of airborne contaminants. This is so widely known and widely experienced, my mind boggles that you'd even make the attempt to deny it.

In the course of an afternoon or evening party, this air uptake will make no difference, as the time scale is too short for the contaminants to spoil the beer. However, if you carry the leftover beer home and draw off a pint in a week, you'll notice the negative impact on the flavor.

I'm very interested in your simple draught-beer container and congratulate you on your ingenuity. I have and use the steel 5L mini-kegs for that purpose, but a plastic vessel has a great deal of appeal. Please forgive me for coming off so harsh. I fear n00bs reading your post and using it as justification for faulty techniques that will bite them in the arse, possibly putting them off brewing forever.

Respectfully,

Bob
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Old 12-02-2008, 01:13 PM   #3
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I am curious as to why you are choosing to reinvent this particular wheel. It has already been done, and much better, with an actual CO2 dispenser so that the beer you draw will come out freshly charged with CO2.

There are in fact several different variations on this. As Bob mentioned you have the steel mini keg system. I use this one also and am happy with it. It uses 16g CO2 cartridges that charge an entire keg.

Then there is the Tap a Draft that uses 1 gallon plastic bottles. It is also sold with a CO2 tap that uses 12g cartridges.

Then there is the Party Pig dispenser that is akin to your beer bladder only it works well. It is a bladder inside a rigid outer shell. The beer inside is naturally carbed and then dispensed using an incorporated air charger that inflates between the bladder and the shell.

All three of these options eliminate any contact with outside air. They also provide methods to maintain CO2 carbing.

Sorry, but you are just revisiting an already thoroughly traveled path.

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Old 12-02-2008, 09:30 PM   #4
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BobNQ3X
Gee 15 minutes? I expect detrimental comments much sooner. I am very thick skinned and do not get affended.

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In the course of an afternoon or evening party, this air uptake will make no difference, as the time scale is too short for the contaminants to spoil the beer.
This was the basic idea where the total amount would be consumed.

My thinking on this:- Air is approx 78% Nitrogen, 20% Oxygen, 0.9% Argon, 0.03% Co2 plus a heap of other elements. Anyway as Air can only accept 0.03 % and would be totally saturated any more Co2 would be free as I see it. and as it is heavier than air would sit below the air introduced. Now my chemistry knowledge is not great so I stand corrected. I know that Co2 is soluble in water and readily absorbed, not so air to a greater degree. Again I stand to be corrected.

My test will show the result over time. Also as the beer will be stored at say 2deg bacterial attack will be slow.

dontman

Kegs are readily available in Oz but I have not come across a mini keg, Party pig etc. Even those small Co2 bulbs have been taken off Supermarket shelves as they are potentially terrorist weopons. Yes I could get a large Co2 tank but the hire charge is high.

The plastic 5 litre container is very tough has a tap, is easy to clean and fill. Plus they are less than $10aud. each.

Anyway the total cost of the experiment will be $2aud ie 5 litres's of beer.

As a final comment, when I started brewing I used a plasic garbage bin(I did remove the garbage first ) anyway the top just had a towel over it. and after to bottle a soup ladle was used to spoon the beer into the bottles. Remember hammering on the seals.

I have never had a beer go bad and at last count I have made a tad over 520brews.

So other than ensureing that my equipment is treated as you would baby utencils I have never been plagued with contaminants and I do not use airlock never have. The grommet has a lead going to a fish tank heater and excess Co2 escapes that way and sits on the top of the brew. It does not dissapate and stays at atmosphere pressure. If Oxidisation really attacks beer then transfering the beer to a secondary would be disastrous. I do this now at least for the last 10 or so batches and it does improve the taste and clarity.

So there it is. I do appreciate your comments and hope I have prompted more from you both and any truely chemical effect of a mix of fresh air(albeit with bacteria) introdused into a mainly Co2 environment.

Don't wait 15 mins next time, wade straight in and give me both barrels.
Oh yes G'Day and happy brewing to both of you
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Old 12-03-2008, 05:28 AM   #5
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If you drink it in one night, no problem - but if you try to keep a partially emptied one I think you'll be disappointed. The theory that the air will stay above the CO2 blanket, I've tested several times in the form of hand-pumped kegs that I've taken home after parties. You gotta finish them quick once they've been tapped or they get that yucky oxidized taste within a couple of days. The only way around it is to use CO2 to serve.

Good luck with your system, I do applaud your resourcefulness.

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Old 12-03-2008, 05:49 AM   #6
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I guess I don't understand. If you are going to put on the Shroeder valves, why take a chance?

Put on the schroeder valves and charge with CO2.

Seems obvious to me.

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Old 12-03-2008, 06:19 AM   #7
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Default Simple - drink faster

The premise of all these arguments is the perceived need for this beer to be stored safely in its 5 litre container for a number of days.

Boys, this is 5 litres. People have been using these things for years to ferment beers and to serve from them. The point you are missing is 5 litres isn't a lot of beer. A few good drinkers will knock this off in a short time, way before oxidisation will take effect. The bike valve idea is okay to get the beer out quicker, but really not necessary if you have the right beer in the barrel.

My suggestion - go find some good english ale recipes. These are lower carbonation brews, they don't need to be fizzy like an APA. Naturally carb the ale, chill down to 12C and have a CAMRA style real ale festival. Get a few mates with a few mugs, throw a few darts, play some snooker, do whatever the Brits do (lose at sport mainly) and enjoy a real ale day. These are meant for one night stands. If you want to preserve the drink, use the real kegs with proper gas .

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Old 12-03-2008, 12:28 PM   #8
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Guys, I actually mentioned that an evening's use isn't going to be a problem. Neither loss of condition nor spoilage will be perceptible in that time frame. Any fool knows you can use a party pump to push beer out of a keg, even over the course of a weekend, without ill effect. It's common knowledge. Loss of condition is relatively quick; spoilage can take three or four days to develop.

If you're going to drink the entire volume in the course of an evening, quoting the ratios of elemental gases and microbiological load in the unfiltered air, then arriving at erroneous conclusions about further CO2 pickup and atmospheric turbulence within the container is time-wasting mental masturbation of the worst description. You're trying to make yourself look like a brain while at the same time trying to prove wrong thousands of years of experience and millions of brewers. Someone who tries to do that is an idiot who thinks he's clever.

Terry, about this "test". Your test isn't. Where's the broad representative sample? Where's the control? If you're going to call what you've described a test, then hundreds of colleges and universities in the United States conduct the same test on Friday and Saturday evenings. Not in a lab, though; in fraternity houses.



Bob

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Old 12-03-2008, 07:31 PM   #9
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I don't understand why there is any discussion at all for an evening's consumption. Why do anything at all to the container. A screw top lid will suffice. Just unscrew and pour a cup and recap. Repeat until gone. Any mod beyond the screw top is polishing a turd.

The only reason at all to think about pressurizing the vessal is for longer term storage. In that case then, it is only sensible to use CO2 to charge.

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Old 12-03-2008, 09:23 PM   #10
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Points taken. I have slightly overprimed by 10% so there will be a slight excess of Co2 available. The beer will be ok as long as it can be delivered without venting.

Anyway the die is cast I filled and primed it yesterday. It is intended for Christmas so longevity will not probably be an issue.

One point, How is it that when beer is transfered from the fermenter to the secondary the beer does not become oxidised then?. Could it be that the Co2 released forms a protective blanket?. I believe that is the case and as Co2 is heavier than air it just sits there stopping possible oxidation.

I will ponder on this and your comments which by the way are not taken lightly. I do respect your accumulated knowledge.

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