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Old 08-20-2010, 01:25 PM   #1
GLWIII
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Default Can changing the size of my beer line actually affect the taste of beer?

Maybe I am answering my own question here, but am I going nuts or can changing the size of my beer line actually affect the taste of beer?

A little background. I made a Pliny the Elder clone two months ago. Brew process and fermentation went fine, dry hopped, kegged, waited 10 days and finally tried it. The beer had a strange odor that I attributed to something funky going on either with the dry hopping process or something else with the yeast. I pulled it out of the fridge and let it sit for another two weeks. Re-tapped it with new clean lines. Same thing – no improvement. At the time I had been using ¼” ID vinyl line because my LHBS didn’t carry anything else at the time. The pours were slightly heavy on the foam, but not horrible, and a little lighter on carbonation than I like, but still passable. I knew things were out of balance, but was making due because other brews I made were turning out pretty good with this system.

Anyway, I invested too much in this Pliny to let it go to waste and dump it and on a whim I finally changed over to 3/16” line and, I kid you not, literally overnight the beer now pours and tastes perfect. Exactly what I was hoping for. Can the line adjustment have possibly been the magic bullet that made all well with this brew?

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Old 08-20-2010, 01:28 PM   #2
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May have been the brand/type of beer line. Some brands you have to pull several ounces and dump because of the plastic taste. I had the exact same problem.......and it was the taste from the beer sitting in the lines.

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Old 08-20-2010, 01:29 PM   #3
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If you had excess foam, you were dropping CO2 out of solution with the 1/4" line. Going to the 3/16" line will preserve more of your carbonation, so perhaps it's just the extra bit of carbonation that's making the beer taste that extra bit better.

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Old 08-20-2010, 03:31 PM   #4
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Well, you changed the line and the problem went away. Not 100% proof, but the smaller diameter line also reduces the amount of contact time.

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