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Old 03-20-2009, 06:32 PM   #1
jpc
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Default My cheap & easy keg washer

I already had a 1/6 HP sump pump, the bin, and the bucket, then wandered around Lowe's for an hour to come up with this design. Quick, simple, and it works.

Parts list:

PVC female hose thread to female pipe thread adapter
24" PVC sprinkler riser
PVC full-circle shrub sprinker head
5 gallon bucket, with hole cut out in center of bottom
Rubbermaid tote bin (not sure the size, but large enough to fit upside-down bucket)

I left the tote bin out of the pics... Here's the sprinkler setup:



Add the bucket (I still need to notch the rim for the cord):



With the keg in place:



I used warm water with a bit of PBW, recirculated it for about 20 minutes, and the kegs, "fresh" from Pepsi service (that is, in dire need of a cleaning) come out squeaky-clean.

-John

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Old 03-21-2009, 01:29 AM   #2
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Neat. A low cost CIP set-up. Can you take some more pics of the pump and the connections? That would probably work well for carboys and better bottles, depending on the height of the riser.

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Old 03-21-2009, 07:50 AM   #3
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Seems like a cool idea. For us rookies, would you be willing to post a few closeups and the like? How do you recirculate... seems like the water would be lost and draining out of the keg/carboy onto the top of the 5 gallon bucket. I think I must be missing something. Seems like something I would definitely be interested in if I can figure out how you worked it. Good job!

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Old 03-21-2009, 01:12 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RBChallenger View Post
Seems like a cool idea. For us rookies, would you be willing to post a few closeups and the like? How do you recirculate... seems like the water would be lost and draining out of the keg/carboy onto the top of the 5 gallon bucket. I think I must be missing something. Seems like something I would definitely be interested in if I can figure out how you worked it. Good job!
As OP stated:

Rubbermaid tote bin (not sure the size, but large enough to fit upside-down bucket)

I'm guessing you put everything in the tote.
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Old 03-21-2009, 05:41 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kirscp View Post
As OP stated:

Rubbermaid tote bin (not sure the size, but large enough to fit upside-down bucket)

I'm guessing you put everything in the tote.
Yep, that's what I do. Cleaned six new (to me) kegs last night.

As for the others... not sure I can get close-ups, since the only camera I have now is my iPhone, and it doesn't do well in low-light conditions. The connections are simple, though... the pump has a garden hose connection, onto which I put the female hose thread to female pipe thread converter. Then I screwed in the PVC riser, and the sprinkler head screws right into that. I added a little PTFE (Teflon) tape to the threads for good measure, but a little leaking there wouldn't kill you.

-John
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Old 04-05-2009, 02:11 PM   #6
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jpc, Very nice idea. I recently expanded on your idea with a few more features of my own. I decided to post in the Equipment/Sanitation area, since it has to do with cleaning. Works great.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f11/my-new-keg-washer-112504/

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Old 04-06-2009, 04:12 AM   #7
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On another section of this forum and app 3-5 days ago I mentioned a commercial spay ball that I borrowed from friends big rig tank wash business. It was too big to fit into a kegs neck with a 2" ID plus the ball's holes were too many and large for any high pressure spray as my pump has too low of output volume to keep up. I ran across a company that had stainless steel 1 1/2" to 6 or 12" diameter SS balls with one 1/4" hole in them. I drilled and tapped it to a fitting to my pumps quick disconnect. It can fit inside a kegs neck plus I added a bunch of small holes all around the ball. Used a cheap Home Depot tub to set the corny's in to reuse the cleaner while upside down to wash and recirculate the cleaner. A fast cheap and simple inverted corny, pony and half keg cleaner without wasting cleaning solution. The ball is on the end of a 36" tall SS pipe with three legs welded as a tripod. I run everything thru two solutions for this cleaning process. The pump is a old bronze 1/2 hp gear pump direct drive with a LoveJoy coupling, when the pump output output valve is shut off it will reach over 180 psi and stall the motor. With the ratio of number and size of holes drilled into this spray ball it will now run at app 38 psi with that 1750 rpm motor. There is no pressure relief or bypass on the pump.

Procon pumps that are used as carbonator pumps as well on Miller wet Tig torches come in many different displacements,volumes, pressures, bronze and stainless besides fixed with a adjustable pressure relief bypass, with and without a nylon finger screen filter. One of these pumps with the motor as a single unit of the proper size pump that's matched to the amount of holes and size of holes you should be able to build a pressure washer with the pressure required for your project. Granted these Procon pumps are not a high volume pump besides not cheap. During my commercial store remodel days ir they served Coke or drinks I was always looking for the carbonator pumps, motors and equipment to take home if left behind. Mostly 20# Co2 bottles with regulators also
as a special find.

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Last edited by BrewBeemer; 04-06-2009 at 04:33 AM.
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