Kegconnection Complete Starter Kit and More Giveaway!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Bottling/Kegging > Bringing a cold keg to room temp and using a jockey box

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 07-06-2012, 06:22 PM   #1
wi_brewer
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Greenville, WI
Posts: 78
Liked 9 Times on 7 Posts
Likes Given: 6

Default Bringing a cold keg to room temp and using a jockey box

Hey everybody.

I was looking for a solution to bring my kegs to the lake and decided to build a jockey box. Used 50' of 3/8" SS coil. Finished it up last night and tested it today.

I have two kegs, a wheat and a saison, which were in my converted kegerator at 40 degrees and 13PSI for awhile. Both were carbonated perfectly. I took the kegs out of the kegerator last night to bring them to room temp, as they will be sitting outside while at the lake. They were in the basement overnight which holds steady in the mid-60's.

When I tested today I noticed a few things. 1) The kegs seemed to have very low carb. I tested the Saison first. Before testing the wheat I had put the regulator on it and found that it had crept up to about 19 PSI. I am assuming that the rising temp caused the co2 to escape. 2) Dispensing from the jockey box caused a bit of foam, about half the glass was foam (serving at about 10PSI).

So, how do we keep kegs properly carbed after removing them from the kegerator? Also, am I doing something wrong with my jockey box?

Any suggestions are appreciated! Prost!

__________________
wi_brewer is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-06-2012, 10:55 PM   #2
carlisle_bob
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Carlisle, PA
Posts: 1,205
Liked 27 Times on 26 Posts

Default

Hi

Simple answers:

1) keep the kegs cold.

2) set up for high pressure on the kegs (like 30 psi). That's going to take a lot of beer line on the faucet.

Bob

__________________
carlisle_bob is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-07-2012, 01:12 AM   #3
wi_brewer
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Greenville, WI
Posts: 78
Liked 9 Times on 7 Posts
Likes Given: 6

Default

Thanks Bob.

Kegs are going to be tough to keep cold for a few days, would need a lot of ice.....no fridge space for kegs at the lake. That's the reason for the jockey box.

We plan on killing the kegs in one day/night up there. Was hoping that a (warm) carbed keg, a jockey box, and a keg charger (don't want to lug the co2/reg) would be the answer.

__________________
wi_brewer is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-07-2012, 01:21 AM   #4
CyberMonk
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
CyberMonk's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Berkeley, CA
Posts: 54
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

I've always wondered: as the jockey box is designed to cool the beer before it gets to the glass, do the kegs actually need to be cold? If you can already cool the kegs, I just wonder why you'd need a jockey box at all over a picnic tap.

__________________
CyberMonk is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-07-2012, 02:13 AM   #5
wi_brewer
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Greenville, WI
Posts: 78
Liked 9 Times on 7 Posts
Likes Given: 6

Default

That is the benefit of the jockey box. You do not need to keep the kegs cold and you can serve cold beer.

I'm thinking that next time I take a keg out of the fridge I will need to crank the co2 to 30-35 PSI. This should keep the co2 from releasing out of the beer. Then when ready to serve I'll bleed off the pressure and connect the co2 charger. Give it a couple shots until proper serving pressure reached.

Thoughts?

__________________
wi_brewer is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-07-2012, 03:54 PM   #6
cwi
Registered User
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Austin
Posts: 845
Liked 30 Times on 27 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by wi_brewer View Post
That is the benefit of the jockey box. You do not need to keep the kegs cold and you can serve cold beer.

I'm thinking that next time I take a keg out of the fridge I will need to crank the co2 to 30-35 PSI. This should keep the co2 from releasing out of the beer. Then when ready to serve I'll bleed off the pressure and connect the co2 charger. Give it a couple shots until proper serving pressure reached.

Thoughts?
The basic math used for balancing a serving system doesn't change with a jockey box. Use a CO2 chart for the vols/temp to get the pressure, then the pressure to determine the line length needed- that is what your reg will be set at and your line length will be (as a starting point).

Too little pressure will cause the CO2 to come out of suspension in the warm (first) parts of the coils when serving (English translation- foam in the lines). Under normal party serving conditions, the CO2 will not recombine into the beer, and the foam will not turn back into liquid as it travels through the colder sections of coil.

Most coil jockey box directions do not recommend letting the kegs go above 70F, as pressures and general physics become problematic. Plate boxes recommend <50F.

You will use a considerable amount of ice in bringing the beer to drinking temps, roughly the same amount that it would take the chill the keg down to the same temp- think about it. The only thing a jockey box would save in your scenario is not having to maintain the temp until it kicks, but unless fresh ice is available at the remote location, you will have to maintain the ice needed for the jockey box which is even harder than maintaining serving temps.

One issue is finding something large enough to use as a cold box for storing the kegs, but there are more than a few solutions.

In summary, jockey boxes are a PITA and usually not a viable solution to most serving scenarios. Find a way to keep the keg cold.
__________________
cwi is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-08-2012, 11:36 AM   #7
carlisle_bob
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Carlisle, PA
Posts: 1,205
Liked 27 Times on 26 Posts

Default

Hi

100 quart coolers aren't all that expensive. They hold a corny keg, or 1/6 bbl commercial keg and a bunch of ice. Ran a keg about 4 hours down the road with one last week. Got there nice and cold.

Even if you buy the cooler new, it'll cost less than a 1/6 of commercial beer.

Bob

__________________
carlisle_bob is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-01-2012, 06:27 PM   #8
ajandrs
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Normal, IL
Posts: 13
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by carlisle_bob View Post
Hi

100 quart coolers aren't all that expensive. They hold a corny keg, or 1/6 bbl commercial keg and a bunch of ice. Ran a keg about 4 hours down the road with one last week. Got there nice and cold.

Even if you buy the cooler new, it'll cost less than a 1/6 of commercial beer.

Bob
Thank you, after hours of googling I finally found someone with the same thought as me.

My question / thought is this: instead of worrying about coils or plates and hauling around a cooler + kegs + Co2 + ect ... why not just get a cooler big enough to put the keg INSIDE of it, covered in ice water? This seems like such a simple solution that when I started looking around at portable coolers I was shocked to find out that this wasn't how it was done, and that instead, coils and plates were used.

Is there an issue I'm not thinking about regarding putting a keg inside the cooler and covering it with ice water? Granted the weight of the cooler will be much heavier, but if you leave it on the tailgate you don't really have to worry about weight ... and besides if an event warrants a portable cooler then you should have plenty of friends around to help you carry. Better yet, put it on wheels!!
__________________
ajandrs is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-01-2012, 09:19 PM   #9
cwi
Registered User
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Austin
Posts: 845
Liked 30 Times on 27 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ajandrs View Post
Thank you, after hours of googling I finally found someone with the same thought as me.

My question / thought is this: instead of worrying about coils or plates and hauling around a cooler + kegs + Co2 + ect ... why not just get a cooler big enough to put the keg INSIDE of it, covered in ice water? This seems like such a simple solution that when I started looking around at portable coolers I was shocked to find out that this wasn't how it was done, and that instead, coils and plates were used.

Is there an issue I'm not thinking about regarding putting a keg inside the cooler and covering it with ice water? Granted the weight of the cooler will be much heavier, but if you leave it on the tailgate you don't really have to worry about weight ... and besides if an event warrants a portable cooler then you should have plenty of friends around to help you carry. Better yet, put it on wheels!!
You can't serve a keg on its side, at least not the whole thing (unless you custom bend the dip tube).
The keg can warm fairly quickly depending on ambient, and will require rebalancing at some point.
There aren't any cheap coolers that I know of that will cover an upright corny, slim 1/6th, or slim 1/4.
Some use a DIY corny sized cooler made by spray foaming between two nested tall trash cans, or any similar containers that are appropriately sized

For the commercial guys, they use the coil jockey boxes for inside venues where they can guarantee ~72f or less for the kegs. They only need one small cooler with an ice bath for the coils (the jockey box), and the rest of the kegs can be in the open at room temp. They can still be a PITA to deal with, and the useable temp range tops out not far above ~70F.
__________________
cwi is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-02-2012, 12:34 PM   #10
ajandrs
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Normal, IL
Posts: 13
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

Thanks for the reply CWI! The dip tube was the only consideration I could think of as well. I thought about fabbing up some kind of shallow ramp inside the cooler to keep the beer at the bottom of the tank...with the dip tube at the bottom obviously. Doing this may not allow you to completely kill a keg, but should get you pretty close I would think? Something to keep me thinking at least until next spring when I actually build it!

__________________
ajandrs is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Carbonate cold or room temp???? JayWeezie Bottling/Kegging 7 04-18-2011 09:51 PM
Force carbing then bringing to room temp NamasteIPA Bottling/Kegging 9 04-07-2011 06:28 PM
Kegs from cold to room temp. quickly Bottling/Kegging 6 03-19-2010 04:32 PM
keg conditioning, room temp or cold. sunblock Bottling/Kegging 7 11-22-2009 03:36 PM
Bottle aging cold vs. room temp... DyerNeedOfBeer Bottling/Kegging 2 04-06-2005 06:26 AM