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-   -   Keg conditioning vs force carbonation. (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f35/keg-conditioning-vs-force-carbonation-378996/)

sawbossFogg 01-06-2013 04:48 AM

Keg conditioning vs force carbonation.
 
Anyone have a good reason for naturally conditioning kegs when force carbonating is so much faster and more reliable?

twalte 01-06-2013 04:51 AM

Subscribed...if there is a reason, would love to know.

mikescooling 01-06-2013 05:11 AM

Some people (myself) think it gives a smoother beer. The monks do it that make Duvel, and a few others do it as well. What do I do? I keg everything of course.

Neerdowell 01-06-2013 05:40 AM

Might be academic from a homebrewer's standpoint, but if pride is an issue and you want to brew your German styles according to the reinheitsgebot, forced carbonation is out unless your using the C02 that is a by-product from fermentation, or so I've heard. Saving C02 is way beyond any current goals for me.

Perhaps a more useful reason was mentioned in the Nov/Dec 2012 zymurgy - krausening by adding an active fermenting yeast can help eat up remaining diacetyl. I have yet to try this, though. I usually just save about a liter of unfermented wort in sanitized bottles as gyle for conditioning my kegs.

The main reason I naturally carbonate, though, is to save my keezer space for my carbonated kegs. I can naturally carbonate while the keezer is full and the C02 expenditure to force carbonate is greater at higher temperatures.

sawbossFogg 01-06-2013 11:15 PM

It's been on my mind as I like to prime my kegs w beergas, which I of course cannot do naturally. I don't force carbonate in my keg fridge because I believe colder liquids will require more time to get gases into solution. I think i should be using wort as well, however I've really had challenges getting the right proportions (whatever sugars used) even using BeerSmith tools etc. I suppose it is unnecessary and arguably wasteful to use the canned co2, but that hasn't concerned me. I do like bottling as well and priming bottles has been pretty easy. I don't have the means to lager and German zeitgeist doesn't concern me other. I'll keep trying natural carbonation, hell I can always put gas into it.

JuanMoore 01-07-2013 01:28 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sawbossFogg (Post 4754591)
It's been on my mind as I like to prime my kegs w beergas, which I of course cannot do naturally. I don't force carbonate in my keg fridge because I believe colder liquids will require more time to get gases into solution.

Using beergas to carbonate takes a lot longer, uses up a more expensive product, and doesn't have any benefit. Carb with CO2 (forced or naturally) and then serve with beergas through a nitro faucet. What the beergas does is allow a higher serving pressure without severely overcarbonating the beer.

And FWIW gasses are actually significantly more soluble in liquids at lower temps.

sawbossFogg 01-08-2013 03:48 AM

Jaun, I really like serving nitro beer and I'm glad you're interested, but I have a couple strong disagreements, based on experience. First, when breweries condition beer in Brite tanks, if the beer is going to be served on Beergas it MUST be conditioned that way. That is because CO2 is much more soluble than nitrogen and what you have in a bottle to push beer with is simply used for that, to push, whats in solution is a different matter. Heres an example, if you buy a keg of carbonated beer and attempt to serve it with beer gas, even at low pressure you'll be putting carbonated beer through a nitro faucet and you'll get foam! I tried this many times and until I asked several different breweries how I should go about it, I didn't get it right. The only functional method is to flatten carbonated beer and start over with beergas to get nitrogen into solution. This method takes about 4 days for a qtr barrel (at room temp). I find that my 40 cu ft bottle of beergas lasts a very long time and it only costs $30 to fill so...
As far as gas being more or less soluble at differing temps in liquids, I think thats a simple matter of physical chemistry whereby colder liquid molecules are slower and more dense. Breweries probably keep their brite tanks at fridge temps for freshness, but if you want to speed up physical processes, warm things up. Hey, I'm always up for learning something new, maybe there's call for another thread.

JuanMoore 01-08-2013 04:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sawbossFogg (Post 4759773)
Jaun, I really like serving nitro beer and I'm glad you're interested, but I have a couple strong disagreements, based on experience. First, when breweries condition beer in Brite tanks, if the beer is going to be served on Beergas it MUST be conditioned that way. That is because CO2 is much more soluble than nitrogen and what you have in a bottle to push beer with is simply used for that, to push, whats in solution is a different matter. Heres an example, if you buy a keg of carbonated beer and attempt to serve it with beer gas, even at low pressure you'll be putting carbonated beer through a nitro faucet and you'll get foam! I tried this many times and until I asked several different breweries how I should go about it, I didn't get it right. The only functional method is to flatten carbonated beer and start over with beergas to get nitrogen into solution. This method takes about 4 days for a qtr barrel (at room temp). I find that my 40 cu ft bottle of beergas lasts a very long time and it only costs $30 to fill so...
As far as gas being more or less soluble at differing temps in liquids, I think thats a simple matter of physical chemistry whereby colder liquid molecules are slower and more dense. Breweries probably keep their brite tanks at fridge temps for freshness, but if you want to speed up physical processes, warm things up. Hey, I'm always up for learning something new, maybe there's call for another thread.

The majority of the small bubbles and cascading head effect from a nitro faucet is from the beer being forced through the small holes in the restrictor plate at high pressure, breaking the bubbles up, not from the tiny amount of nitrogen in solution. Plenty of breweries carbonate their nitro beers with pure CO2 and then use beergas to serve, so I'm not sure where you're getting the info that it MUST be conditioned with beergas. You can get the same cascading head effect without any nitrogen. You can push with high pressure through the nitro faucet using pure CO2 and get the same effect, you just can't leave it at that pressure for any length of time or it will severely overcarbonate the beer. I believe it was Yuri who experimented with using pure argon to push a carbonated beer through a nitro faucet, and he reported that it worked just as well as beergas.

As for buying a keg of carbonated beer and serving it through a nitro faucet, the reason that it typically produces a ton of foam is that it's usually overcarbed for a nitro faucet. Most commercial beer is carbed to ~2.7 vol, and anything over ~2.0 vol is asking for trouble with a nitro faucet. Degas the keg to ~1.8 vol and it should pour fine, even without any "conditioning" time on the beergas.

Gasses being more soluble in liquids at colder temperatures is a well known fact, and an example of Henry's law. Even if you're not familiar with chemistry or Henry's law, it should be obvious just by looking at any carbonation chart. By warming things up, you're both slowing down the carbonation process, and reducing the total carbonation possible at a given pressure. I keep most of my beers at 40F and 11 psi for a carbonation level of 2.4 vol. To get that same level of carbonation at 65F I'd have to increase the pressure to 27 psi.

Here's a graph showing CO2 solubility in water at 1 atm-
http://docs.engineeringtoolbox.com/d...-co2-water.png

Here's one for nitrogen, also at 1 atm-
http://docs.engineeringtoolbox.com/d...y-n2-water.png

bottlebomber 01-08-2013 05:14 AM

I have strong disagreements too Juan, and would also like to add that you are an asshole :D

JuanMoore 01-08-2013 05:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bottlebomber (Post 4759941)
I have strong disagreements too Juan, and would also like to add that you are an asshole :D

Hah! Well, I figure that last part is a given. :cross:


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