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Old 05-05-2010, 01:45 AM   #1
daveooph131
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Default Beer Line Length

Did a search but didn't find exactly what I was lookign for and I couldn't open the calculator file.

I'm going to be running a two tap tour off the Frigidaire mini fridge. Would 7 foot beer line be good to use or should I stick with the 5ft that comes standard with the tower?

I brew a lot of pale ales, IPA's, Hefe's, Kolsch, and American Browns....Usually I carb between 15 and 20 psi depending on style.

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Old 05-05-2010, 02:02 AM   #2
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I have tower mini fridge and use bout 5.5-6' 3/16 id line and get a perfect pour. On advice from my lhbs (the guy went to uc davis and is very knowledgable) I run just over 1 psi per foot of line for serving and get it carbed at bout 12 -14 psi. If you're getting foam, try lowering psi, while still getting good carb and then maybe adding length to line. Temp does play a big part, I serve at about 40 F. Hope that helps.

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Old 05-05-2010, 02:07 AM   #3
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You can try googling for beer line calculator as well and should get some hits.

First off your 15-20 psi seems a bit high of a pressure for some of those styles unless you are serving them a bit on the warm side. I normally run my temps about 39-40 deg F and about 10-12 psi does it for most of my beers.

Ideal Beer line is affected by verticle rise from keg to tap point, distance to the tap, diameter of line, and temperature. If you are running at 15 psi plus then 5 ft of line is not going to work for you. I find the ideal line length for my system is a few feet shorter than the psi number I am running. I have played around and with my average pressure of 10-12 psi it seems about 8.5 to 9.5 ft of line give me a good balance of low foam and reasonable flow rate.

If you are running your kegs at 15 psi plus I would be tempted to start with a 12 ft lenght of line and see where you are at. If your flow rate is too slow you can always cut it down 6 inches at a shot till you get a good flow rate. There is a recommended flow rate that I don't remeber off the top of my head, but a reasonable fill time for a pint is probably in the 8-10 second range.

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Old 05-05-2010, 02:51 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zen_Brew View Post
You can try googling for beer line calculator as well and should get some hits.

First off your 15-20 psi seems a bit high of a pressure for some of those styles unless you are serving them a bit on the warm side. I normally run my temps about 39-40 deg F and about 10-12 psi does it for most of my beers.

Ideal Beer line is affected by verticle rise from keg to tap point, distance to the tap, diameter of line, and temperature. If you are running at 15 psi plus then 5 ft of line is not going to work for you. I find the ideal line length for my system is a few feet shorter than the psi number I am running. I have played around and with my average pressure of 10-12 psi it seems about 8.5 to 9.5 ft of line give me a good balance of low foam and reasonable flow rate.

If you are running your kegs at 15 psi plus I would be tempted to start with a 12 ft lenght of line and see where you are at. If your flow rate is too slow you can always cut it down 6 inches at a shot till you get a good flow rate. There is a recommended flow rate that I don't remeber off the top of my head, but a reasonable fill time for a pint is probably in the 8-10 second range.
I'm on picnic taps right now running it out of my fridge. I'm not sure what the temp is though if I recall right I think it's 45, and ya I mean I usually carb at 15 psi for most of my styles. That seems about right to me, but I serve at my carb levels to avoid it going flat over time...is this the correct thing to do?

Maybe I should start with 10 ft line and see where I'm at from there
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Old 05-05-2010, 04:26 AM   #5
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OK, if you are serving at 45 then your psi would be running pretty much in the 13-15 psi range for most styles. Beverages hold less co2 the warmer they get so a little extra gas is needed at those temps.

I think serving at your carb levels makes the most sense. This way you are not always bumping the regulator up or down to maintain your carb level. You can certainly try 10 ft of line but I think you may get a bit of foaming at that length. (I've certainly been known to be wrong) At .50/ft why not start at 12 and if it's too slow lop off the extra length. It costs you $1 extra to try the length at 12. $2 for 2 lines. You can always shorten the line if it is too long, but if it is too short you have to replace the whole thing.

I ran my first kegerator set-up I got with the 5ft lines supplied with my kit at 10-11psi and I would get a good 1/3 glass of foam or more with most of my pours unless I turned the gas down to tap it. I dealt with it for a month or two than increased the line lengths to 7.5 ft and I am much happier, although I think I could still use another foot maybe. Those are the lines in my kegerator with picnic taps. I also have a keezer with perlicks running another 4 kegs and I think I set those lines up in the 8.5-9.0ft area. They give a nice smooth pour.

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Old 05-05-2010, 01:30 PM   #6
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Interesting thread. I wasn't aware that line length was an issue. I just installed a dual tapper on a mast and was just going to go with the line length provided with the setup. I have 2 batches almost ready to tap, so I guess I'll just wait and see before I run new line.

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Old 05-05-2010, 06:05 PM   #7
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its not just the line length. its also inner diameter. many of the tower kits comes with 1/4 hose, many people replace them with 3/16.

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