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Old 12-14-2011, 12:27 AM   #1
sosloe
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Default In-fridge shelftop kegging / force carb?

Hi,

I’m fairly new to homebrewing as well as this forum. I have found a wealth of information on just about every topic I can imagine (and then some) and look forward to getting more and more into this hobby/lifestyle and hopefully eventually a familiar face on these forums. Here are a couple questions I have not been able to find ‘good’ answers to:

1) I’m interested in the most cost effective kegging system which preferably could be integrated into my regular fridge in my house. I guess I’m looking for something similar to a ‘Tap-A-Draft’ system (DIY Maybe?) but since I already have a CO2 tank I would like to avoid cartridges as it will become costly over an extended amount of time and I’ve heard mixed reviews about that system in particular. Has anyone achieved a small in-fridge shelftop system of this sort with good results?

2) One of the main benefits I would like to achieve by a ‘kegging’ system would be to be able to force carbonate batches instead of waiting the 2 weeks for bottles to prime. Ideally I would like the system mentioned above to withstand the pressure required to achieve this. I guess my second question tied into this would be if you force carbonate after the initial fermentation period, would the beer not really be ‘green’ anymore? I’ve only bottled one batch but the difference between day 0 – day 14 in bottle was pretty significant which I attributed to ‘bottle conditioning’ of the flavor and to a lesser extent the carbonation. I know everyone has different opinions (I’ve read a ton of conflicting ideas), but I wonder how it applies to force carb?

Thanks in advance!

-sosloe

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Old 12-14-2011, 05:03 AM   #2
gointomexico
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I cant answer 1 for sure, but I once looked at 3 gallon cornies. They would fit in my fridge if I removed the vegetable bin.

As far as no. 2, the beer will still be green even if you force carb. I force carb all my kegged stuff, and I still need some conditioning to get rid of the green flavor. My ales are ready within 3 weeks for the 5% abv stuff, four or five weeks for the 6%abv or higher. Lagers take longer, 10 weeks perhaps. Wheat and wit beers are shorter, but I usually keg them after they drop from high krausen.

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Old 12-14-2011, 05:32 AM   #3
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1. I have a kegerator, so I'm no help...

2. I'm an impatient dude, especially when it comes to brewing beer. After doing a ton of research on force carbing fast, as it sounds like you have, I settled on this: primary for a week or so, force carb using "shake" method, then let it sit for a couple days. I'd be pouring beers 2 weeks after brew day... and they were good... however...

For my last few batches, I've practiced a tad more patience: primary for about 2 weeks, carb without shaking by leaving about 16 to 20 psi on the beer for a week or 2, lower to about 12 psi for serving and keeping good carb. The beers are BETTER! The main thing I've noticed is how much quicker the beer brightens up, which means more "stuff" has fallen out. I'm sticking with this route, which I consider a nice alternative to 8 weeks bottling or green beer.

The only way to get a really tasty beer in a short amount of time is to run it through a filter, which isn't cheap or all that simple... but it can be done.

Cheers!!

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Old 12-14-2011, 05:55 PM   #4
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Sorry, duplicate post

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Old 12-14-2011, 07:17 PM   #5
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Thanks for the suggested process Bright. When you mention a filtering system, I’ve seen some $50ish in line systems that aren’t too expensive or difficult to use from what I’ve read:

Beer and Wine Filtering Kit | MoreBeer
Beer and Wine Plate Filter Kit | MoreBeer

Are these not the same type of filtering systems you are recommending? So will filtering the beer and removing as much of the yeast & sediment remove most of the green flavor, or do you really just need to wait a minimum of about 4 weeks for good beer regardless of filtering & force carb?

Thanks,

sosloe

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Old 12-14-2011, 09:45 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sosloe View Post
1) I’m interested in the most cost effective kegging system which preferably could be integrated into my regular fridge in my house. I guess I’m looking for something similar to a ‘Tap-A-Draft’ system (DIY Maybe?) but since I already have a CO2 tank I would like to avoid cartridges as it will become costly over an extended amount of time and I’ve heard mixed reviews about that system in particular. Has anyone achieved a small in-fridge shelftop system of this sort with good results?
That's a simple solution. Just PM this guy over at ebay. This is for one of his recent closed auctions but I feel sure he can make and sell you another adaptor like this in a jiffy. Click here for the link.

Quote:
2) One of the main benefits I would like to achieve by a ‘kegging’ system would be to be able to force carbonate batches instead of waiting the 2 weeks for bottles to prime. Ideally I would like the system mentioned above to withstand the pressure required to achieve this.
You can easily force carb a tap-a-draft bottle. Do a search on force carbonating tap a draft on homebrewtalk and you'll soon find several methods. It might be a little trickier with a standard CO2 rig but i'm sure you can experiment and figure it out.

Quote:
I guess my second question tied into this would be if you force carbonate after the initial fermentation period, would the beer not really be ‘green’ anymore? I’ve only bottled one batch but the difference between day 0 – day 14 in bottle was pretty significant which I attributed to ‘bottle conditioning’ of the flavor and to a lesser extent the carbonation. I know everyone has different opinions (I’ve read a ton of conflicting ideas), but I wonder how it applies to force carb?

Thanks in advance!

-sosloe
It doesn't have much to do with the "green" flavors of your beer. These have to do with the beer's conversion of fuesel alcohols and other undesireable off flavors by letting the beers condition first in the primary fermenter for 3-4 weeks, then by conditioning in their final bottle or keg. The carbonation itself has little to do with this IMHO, and is a by-product of fermentation.
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