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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > Fermenters > Converting a Sanke Keg to Fermenter Questions
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Old 02-04-2009, 03:12 PM   #1
hayabusa
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Default Converting a Sanke Keg to Fermenter Questions

This weekend I am converting a sanke into a fermenter. I am going to cut the top fairly wide, use a flat gasket of some sort and a plexiglass lid w/ an o-ring and a brace across the top (of the keg) w/ a eye bolt to apply the pressure to the lid to create my seal. (or a steel lid.... undecided yet)

The bottom will have a SS coupler welded in so I can put a 1/2" SS valve on the outside and a bent racking arm on the inside. I may also have a weldless thermometer in the middle somewhere

My quesitons are

1) What do some of you recommended the height of the coupler to be from the bottom to ensure that I can get the most beer w/ the least amount of trub/yeast/hops? My arm will extend to the middle of the ked and have a 90 degree bend up to stay above the crud and whatever is left I can manually siphon off or use for gravity readings. I am not overly concerned with harvesting yeast at this point.

2) What is recommended for the racking arm? I was thinking stainless brake line from AutoZone but I am not sure they have stainless compression fittings and my goal is to use parts available locally. Everyone keep's saying Brass will leech lead into the brew/

3) I also think it can double for a boil kettle assuming i get about 4 of these completed and put them in "rotation" - any harm in doing that (none I can think of)

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Old 02-04-2009, 03:55 PM   #2
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I'm planing on doing the same thing. but instead of welding a coupling in I'm going to use a weldless fitting so I can remove it for thorough cleaning.No where for nasties to hide. you can hook up a compression fitting on the inside and a rotating racking arm. All stainless steel for me.

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Old 02-04-2009, 04:37 PM   #3
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The biggest challenge with using the BK as an "in place" fermenter that I can tell is temp control. If you're in an area where your brewspace is a constant 65F, you're golden. I know that's how I would do it.

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Old 02-04-2009, 08:52 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobby_M View Post
The biggest challenge with using the BK as an "in place" fermenter that I can tell is temp control. If you're in an area where your brewspace is a constant 65F, you're golden. I know that's how I would do it.
I'm not going to use the same one for a BK and a fermenter; I am making several of these and they are all dual-purpose; just makes more sense to me to have 1 vessle that can act as either... Porbably wasn't clear on that. I would boil in one, transfer to the other.... if the vessles can be identical it just makes life all that much easier.
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Old 02-04-2009, 09:20 PM   #5
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very interested in this. i was thinking about doing this too. do you have any pictures yet?

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Old 02-04-2009, 09:24 PM   #6
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very interested in this. i was thinking about doing this too. do you have any pictures yet?
nope - I am going to get started on it in the next few days and I will be sure to post some pictures.

My goal is 4 or 5 simple identical vessles that can be used for either purpose; I will make a few steel lids, and a few plexiglass lids which are interchangable and the plexi lids will likely also have a gas IN fitting so I can pressure transfer from kettle to fermenter and from fermenter to keg...
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Old 02-04-2009, 09:28 PM   #7
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nice, good idea. i'll be looking foreward to the pictures so i can steal your ideas

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Old 02-04-2009, 09:37 PM   #8
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Related Threads

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f13/clos...chnique-44344/
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f11/ferm...menters-79326/

and one that has a great pic that might help you

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/49-9...rmenter-18630/

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Old 02-05-2009, 04:36 AM   #9
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I am trying to find something to use as the racking arm for this project, connecting to my SS 1/2" ball valve (NPT) and I have 2 problems. a) no local stores carry SS parts, i only got the valve at my LHBS and they do not have compression fittings that will fit the NPT on the valve. b) no idea what to use for the racking arm yet.

I was thinking that I could use some stainless steel brake line from the local autozone; has anyone used this before? It is just simple SS tubing so I think that its a good idea however I am not sure the inner diameters go large enough to make it a reasonable DIY part.

What are you making them out of?

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