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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Bottling/Kegging > Keg ruined my beer?
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Old 09-29-2011, 08:45 AM   #1
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Default Keg ruined my beer?

Hey all,

This is my first official my beer is ruined thread. I've been brewing for just short of a year and have brewed about 12 AG and three extract batches. I purchased two kegs off of craigslist a few months back from a disgruntled ex-wife that kept them outside. They were dirty and had some corrosion, but for $15 I had to take a chance. Long story short, I brewed an amber that I've made a few times and is one of my favorite beers. I let it sit in the primary for six weeks (yes I know, mistake #1) due to lack of time for restoring the keg. Ten days ago I tore the keg apart, removed all interior corrosion with steel wool and gave it a good scrubbing with hot water and "organic" unscented dish soap. After an inspection with a mirror (for the top part of the keg) and a mag lite, I deemed it beer worthy, gave it a good soak with starsan, and racked the amber.

Tonight I decided to try a pull to see how it was coming along.... As soon as I smelled it I new something was wrong, apple juice that has gone bad. The taste was even worse, it had a very acidic, solventy, with a hint of metal taste. The only two things I can think of are obviously the keg itself or letting it sit on the cake for six weeks. I have let beers go in the primary for a while before, but have never encountered a taste like this so I'm obviously leaning towards the keg. If it is the keg I can live with it and toss them, but I'd really like to figure this out before I rack a DFH 60 minute clone into the other keg that I "restored." Any help is appreciated.

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Old 09-29-2011, 11:28 AM   #2
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corrosion on the inside of a ss tank can't be a good sign.

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Old 09-29-2011, 11:53 AM   #3
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Have you got any phtots of the kegs and the damage? I am assuming you meant stainless steel wool?

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Old 09-29-2011, 01:06 PM   #4
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My guess without any more details would be the steel wool you used is the culprit.
The steel wool likely embedded carbon steel in the stainless and has since rusted.

Ed

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Old 09-29-2011, 02:27 PM   #5
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I regularly leave my beer in the primary for 4 to 6 weeks and have had zero negative effects. Gone are the days of the secondary too.

I do keep my beer between 60 to 70 degrees inside a refrigerator. For the most part, I start around 60 for a few weeks and bring it up to 70 for the last weeks.

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Old 09-29-2011, 04:40 PM   #6
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You are going to need to do some work on those and then in the end can you be sure you got all the rust? BarKeepers Friend scrub and leave a paste of it sitting on all internal surfaces. Then after proper rinsing I'd fill it with water, carb it somewhat and taste the water after a few days. If it fails then you wasted some time and water and BKF.

However if it was me I'd take it as a lesson learned and turn them into planters or something else and go for better kegs.

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Old 09-29-2011, 07:25 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattd2 View Post
Have you got any phtots of the kegs and the damage? I am assuming you meant stainless steel wool?
Unfortunately I do not, I removed all of the rust with steel wool and made sure that there was no "damage" prior to filling the keg.

Think I might have to try the BKF and water test, hopefully that pans out.
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Old 09-29-2011, 08:24 PM   #8
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I like the idea of the water taste test.
I would suggest you boil the water and purge the keg with co2 just to make sure the water doesn't get musty/moldy before you get a chance to do the taste test.

If you used plain old steel wool, BKF may not do the trick without some further elbow grease. If you used plain steel wool, you likely embedded small pieces into the SS (the rule of thumb is NOT to use carbon steel tools on SS for this reason, and only us Carbide or SS tools that have been used on SS and never carbon steel). I'm not sure you can "un-embed" the small (microscopic) steel wool particles. You might try a green scotchbrite pad or a SS pot scrubber, but in the end they may just move the particles around. After you get the inside to the point you think you are rid of the carbon steel, THEN I'd try the BKF paste, followed by the water test.

Good luck.
Ed

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