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Old 05-14-2007, 05:51 PM   #1
blefferd
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Default Force Carbonation

Im new to kegging and in a week or so will be Kegging Ed's hard cider, and eventually an IPA when its done. my first question is when i put them in the keg can i just rack it from the fermenter to the keg using gravity or is there a diffrent way you have to do it? second how long does it take to "force carbonate" the beer in the keg? once i keg can i drink right away or do i need to wait a few weeks? Does the actual CO2 you pump in the keg carbonate the beer? from what ive read the CO2 is basically just used to move the beer from point A (keg) to point B (glass) i am i understanding this right? if that is the case then how does it carbonate your beer?

Also what about conditioning? right now my beers taste totally diffrent after a few weeks in the bottle. should i just leave them in the fermenter longer or let them condition in the keg before drinking?

ive searched wiki but there is very limited info on kegging, and from the books ive read they are very vague about the subject also!

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Last edited by blefferd; 05-14-2007 at 05:54 PM.
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Old 05-14-2007, 06:04 PM   #2
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- You can just rack it like normal.
- A few days unless you shake the crap out of it or use some other tricks to make it carb faster.
- You can drink it right away, but a beer you just put in a bottle it will be flat and green.
- Yes, the CO2 you are decanting in will carb the beer given time.
- The CO2 is responsible for moving the beer as well as carbonating (if you are force carbing it)
- It carbonates the beer by applying a pressure differential between the dissolved CO2 in the liquid (beer) and the ambient CO2 pressure (the CO2 you are decanting from the tank into the keg). Basically the C02 will dissolve into solution with the beer until it is balanced with the pressure you are putting on it from the regulator on your C02 tank.
- You can condition in the keg just like you do in a bottle, but you will get some sediment in the bottom. I would use a secondary clarifying carboy for most of my conditioning and then put it in the keg.

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Old 05-14-2007, 06:08 PM   #3
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sweet, thanks i had most of it down but those where the grey areas lol

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Old 05-14-2007, 06:08 PM   #4
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It only takes about 2 days to carbonate beer in a keg, but the beer still needs to condition. your options are to leave your beer in secondary longer or keg it and wait for it to condition before drinking it. If conditioning in the kegs its not neccesary to hook up to the CO2 until a couple days before it will be ready to drink, but if you do hook it up to the gas and put it in the keggorator it won't hurt anything either. I base whether I condition in secondary or a keg on which one I need more. If I don't need the carboy I'm using for secondary for another batch anytime soon I just leave it in there. If I need the carboy, but have an empty keg I condition in the keg. Works the same either way.

(Edit) Didn't notice someone else already answered your questions as I was typing. and basically said the same thing I typed.

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Old 05-14-2007, 06:23 PM   #5
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I used to just siphon into the keg through the lid opening but I decided I like the idea of putting the hose on the beer out post with a spare disconnect because then the dip tube acts as a racking cane to minimize aerating. It also means you don't have to worry about sanitizing the outside of your tubing becuase it's never touching the inside of the keg. Just put a spare gas disconnect on the other post to vent or you'll have to leave the lid loose or pull the vent valve.

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Old 05-16-2007, 04:49 PM   #6
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when force carbonating what psi do you use for how long?
My keg is going to be about 60 degrees while carbonating and
until I am ready to serve.

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Old 05-16-2007, 04:50 PM   #7
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I used to crank up the PSI and shake the hell out of it. I was never really happy with the end results of that.

Now I hit it with serving pressure (6-8psi) and let it sit for 10-12 days. It ages and carbs a bit slower, but the end result is much more to my liking.

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Old 05-16-2007, 05:35 PM   #8
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how would 12-16 psi work for 5-7 days work?

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Old 05-16-2007, 05:50 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by killian
how would 12-16 psi work for 5-7 days work?
This is what I do and so far it has worked very well.
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Old 05-16-2007, 08:39 PM   #10
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i've had mine at like 18 for about a week and we're tapping it on saturday. guess i should turn it down eh?

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