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Old 02-22-2011, 11:26 PM   #1
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Default beer line length - is it possible to be too long? Oh, and a temperature question.

I'm in the process of setting up a kegging system and ordered a kit from kegconnection.com and will hopefully be building this weekend. I've been reading this forum and am liking the idea of set-it-and-forget-it for carbing - carbing at the same pressure as serving pressure. The message that I'm getting is that 10' of line is the way to go to get a good pour.

* Is there any reason not to just hook up 12' of line? 15' of line?

** Bonus question: What temperature range do most of you set your kegerators/keezers at?

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Old 02-23-2011, 12:09 AM   #2
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I have 10' lines on mine and it works great. If your serving a wheat beer 15' might be perfect, but for your run of the mill pale ale, the beer will still flow, just really slow. My keezer is around 40F +/-. Some like it warmer, some colder. It's where I like it. I'm a sipper usually so the beer has plenty of time to warm up in the glass. To simulate the long beer lines needed to get a wheat beer to pour without having one dedicated long line....try these.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f35/cure...oubles-100151/

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Old 02-23-2011, 12:18 AM   #3
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Agreed, 10' of 3/16" works great on my Keezer with Perlick faucets. Pours are good up to 15psi.

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Old 02-23-2011, 12:39 AM   #4
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My 10 footers barely trickle at 12 psi. Pour is nice at 15-18 psi.

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Old 02-23-2011, 02:01 PM   #5
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The "ideal" setup is one that will balance the amount of applied pressure (psi) on the beer keg with the amount of static and dynamic resistance in pounds in the draft lines.

Static resistance is gravity. The distance from the keg itself to the point of dispense. A higher tap means more resistance in other words... approx .5 lb of pressure per foot. This also means the higher your tap is from the keg, the shorter the line need be.

Dynamic resistance is the combined resistance of all the tubing etc. 3/16" vinyl line provides 3 lbs. of resistance per foot of tubing.

You might have around 14 psi on your keg to maintain carbonation, in that case you would need only 4-5 feet of 3/16" line to get an ideal pour.
If you used 10', you'd be giving 30 lbs. of resistance. It would work, but just slower than ideal as said above.

These formulas are the industry standards written by the Brewers Association. I had to do all kinds of balancing to set up our pub's 35 foot long-draw system.

Hehe, just had to throw out the super-nerdy explanation, just move on to the next post... :P

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Old 02-23-2011, 02:43 PM   #6
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I don't have a single line over 6 ft, and always have good foam free pours @ 42F, because I do mostly ales, my psi is in the 10-12 range. If you go with 15 ft of line, be patient, you'll be standing in front of the keezer for a while.


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Old 02-23-2011, 02:52 PM   #7
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It seems like there is no right answer for this. Just get 12 feet and cut it until you have the length that works for you. I have been researching this for a while and came to the conclusion that a feet per PSI is what the average is. So for your normal ale/lager, 10 to 12psi with around 10 to 12 feet of line works well.

Some people use 5 feet of line with no probably and some use 15+ with no problem. It all depends on your liking.

I have used multiple calculators to balance the system I'm building and some said 3 feet and with the same numbers on another calc, it said 6 feet. I did another calculation and the calculator said 2 feet but the distance from my keg to the shank was 4 feet so that was impossible.

Like I said, get 12 feet of line and try that. If you don't like it, cut 6 inches off and try again. Repeat until you have the pour you like.

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Old 02-23-2011, 03:52 PM   #8
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So do I understand this correctly: shorter lines mean faster pour and more foam, longer lines mean slower pour and less foam?

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Old 02-23-2011, 04:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cincybrewer View Post
So do I understand this correctly: shorter lines mean faster pour and more foam, longer lines mean slower pour and less foam?
Only half right. Shorter does mean faster, not foamier. If you don't shake, rattle and roll your kegs at high psi's, they won't get overcarbed and foam.


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Old 02-23-2011, 04:36 PM   #10
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...but if its too fast, it will foam.

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