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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > Kegerators and Keezers > glycol runs-flexible copper lines, or vinyl lines?
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Old 06-18-2009, 06:39 PM   #1
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Default glycol runs-flexible copper lines, or vinyl lines?

in my bar set up, i'll have about 5ft or so between the kegs and the faucets. i don't want to have to tear apart my whole rig because the beer lines are getting warm, so i want to do it right the first time.

i'm thinking i'll do the whole d.i.y. pond pump in a corny keg or bucket inside the keezer, and run a line up in between my beer lines then returning back into the corny, and wrapping it all up in aluminum foil, then pipe insulation, and then maybe all of that inside of pvc pipe.

i've seen trunk lines, where the glycol goes through what looks like vinyl hose that looks just like regular beer line, and i've also heard of people using some flexible copper line like what imerssion chillers are made of.

just wondering what the pros and cons are of each line.

thanks

brian

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Old 06-18-2009, 06:49 PM   #2
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Since it's only a 5' run, I'd go copper on the chill line and then maybe vinyl/polyethylene on the return. Copper will do a much better job on the heat transfer. I don't think they use it in commercial situations due to cost and the difficulty of installing it without kinking or bending it.

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Old 06-18-2009, 07:20 PM   #3
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Since it's only a 5' run, I'd go copper on the chill line and then maybe vinyl/polyethylene on the return. Copper will do a much better job on the heat transfer. I don't think they use it in commercial situations due to cost and the difficulty of installing it without kinking or bending it.
thanks man. so, i've never actually seen this kind of a set up "in action", but here's how i'm imagining it in my head.

i would imagine if i just ran a copper line up, maybe wrapped it half hazardly around the beer lines, and then up by the shanks/faucets, bent the copper line to a 90* angle, and then hose clamped a vinyl line to that (for the return) and then rand the return line back down away from the shanks/faucets, back into the keezer emptying into the corny with the glycol and pump in it?


also, do you think the return side of the line should also be inside of the same insulated piping that the glycol feed line and beer lines are in, or should it be outside of that in it's own seperate insulated line?
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Old 06-18-2009, 07:29 PM   #4
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My plan for a 10' run is two 2" PVC pipes. I will just use a fan to circulate the refrigerator air. I don't want to give up space for a cornie to keep lines cool.

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Old 06-18-2009, 08:00 PM   #5
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My plan for a 10' run is two 2" PVC pipes. I will just use a fan to circulate the refrigerator air. I don't want to give up space for a cornie to keep lines cool.

true enough, i guess it depends on each individual application. if i were to run pvc like that, which i had originally planned also, to make it what in my mind would be efficient enough, i would have to 90* elbow the pvc inside of the keezer, and piont it down and install a decent sized blower, which would take up a cornys space anyways. i'd rather have 5 ice cold, every pull, everytime taps of beer, and the 6th corny space taken up with a glycol set up instead of 6 cornys, where every first pull is warm and foamy.

also i'm thinking that the cost of the blower, the pvc piping, fabrication, etc. would be more money than a more "simpler", and i believe most likely more efficient/cooler glycol/aquarium pump set up.

but hey, i've never done this before, so hopefully some others will chime in with direct experience/advice.
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Old 06-18-2009, 10:03 PM   #6
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My system is air cooled. I've got about 4 ft of beer line outside the fridge. I used 2 in. flexible tubing to carry the beer lines and air I used two small sections of PVC pipe to go through the wall of the fridge and to give me a hard surface to clamp the duct onto. All of the external tubing is surrounded in at least 2 in. of styrofoam. I just use a tiny fan that takes up minimal space. As long as the duct is well insulated and the distance is not too long, you don't need a huge fan. There are more photos of my build in my gallery

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Old 06-19-2009, 04:37 AM   #7
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Ran across this a while ago. Had to search around to find it. I think it's a member on HBT, but not sure who. A little down the page is the tap setup with chilled copper lines.

My latest non-HT project! (Beer on tap in the bar!)

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Old 06-19-2009, 07:44 PM   #8
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That's my setup... it sounds exactly like what the OP wants to do.
I couldn't keep my lines/shanks cold enough with only cooling the glycol (RV anti-freeze actually) in the keezer so I pump it through a coil in a bar fridge freezer. That worked. The pond pump's been pumping away for almost 2 years now with zero issues.






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Old 06-23-2009, 10:52 PM   #9
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Kal - Awesome setup by the way. When I get to the point of building something similar, I will definitely reference your setup. I also really like the research into the off-taste beer lines. Great info.

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Old 06-23-2009, 11:40 PM   #10
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I have vinyl hoses with CPC connectors on my glycol unit

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