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Old 09-13-2009, 02:34 PM   #1
PaloAltoMark
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Default Refrigerator Conversion Questions

Hi Folks:

I was able to get a good deal on a dented standard sized refrigerator at Best Buy. I'd like to convert this into a 4 tap kegging system for 5 gallon kegs. I am totally new to this and want to ask a few questions before I buy the conversion kits.

-Do all 5 gallon "cornelius" kegs use a ball lock system?
-If the conversion kit supplies a different type of lock than ball locks, can I just buy the ball locks and substitute them?
-Do you have specific recommendations on manufacturers or set ups given that I will be looking to keg up to 4 styles of beer at any given time.

Many thanks for answering my questions.

-Mark

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Old 09-13-2009, 03:36 PM   #2
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kegs come in ball lock (pepsi), and pin lock (coke).
ball lock are more common, and the parts are usually easier to find and slightly cheaper. Either will work, but I went with ball lock for the reasons I mentioned. However if I had stumbled upon a great score on pin lock, I would have considered them as well.

Most places will swap out the disconnects for which ever type of setup you need. Some places may not offer it on their site that way, and you may have to call them.

I went with this system and love it. It has treated me quite well, and I was hard pressed to find a better deal at the time. It is also the same price I paid a little over a year ago. I upgraded the system via seperate orders to 4 perlick faucets, and highly recommend perlicks over standard faucets.

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Old 09-13-2009, 03:46 PM   #3
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Thanks Steve. The price looks great. Does the system allow you to control the pressure to the kegs individually? -Mark

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Old 09-13-2009, 04:12 PM   #4
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No, that system is the same pressure for all kegs.

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Old 09-13-2009, 04:15 PM   #5
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Can most mini fridges be turned into these or do they have to be special? Ive looked around a bit, but I only see size as a usually way of determining if it is ok to use. What if they have a built in freezer?

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Old 09-13-2009, 04:15 PM   #6
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Mark, you'd need to add a Secondary Regulator Panel like this one from MicroMatic. This one is on the expensive side but I only selected it to give you an example. Hope this helps.

Trace

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Old 09-14-2009, 12:37 AM   #7
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Gents:

Thanks very much for the help. I'll do a little more research to determine how important it is for me to have pressure control over each of the kegs versus "one size fits all." Trace, thanks for pointing me to the regulator panels at mirco matic.

-Mark

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Old 09-14-2009, 12:44 AM   #8
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Hi Firenight Fly:

Mini Fridges can be converted to kegerators. I think they will hold two five gallon cornelius kegs. The advantage of using the mini fridge is that you can mount a one or two spigot tower on top and this will be at counter height. If you want to put your kegerator in the house, this is probably a pretty good option. You can buy a mini fridge kegerator for $500-$800 dollars. You can probably build one for a little less. If you decide to build it, you should look at the fridge before buying. You need to make sure that the shelves on the door don't interfere with the equipment you want to put inside. Brands and models are all different so it pays to look before you buy.

In my case, I'm putting the unit into the garage. I bought a full sized refrigerator for $350 at Best Buy because it was dented. The full size fridge gives me plenty of space.
I'll end up building a four spigot kegerator for a little more than what I might have paid for a 2 spigot mini fridge kegerator.

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Old 09-14-2009, 12:57 AM   #9
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Not to mention there is a subtle difference in ball lock kegs vs pin locks. I would check to see how much space the fridge has in it because ball locks are smaller in diameter but taller where pin locks are wider in diameter but shorter.

I would assume if its a full size fridge that height is no issue so I would go with ball locks to give more room in the fridge (plus they are way easier to get parts for and cheaper), probably wont allow you to store more in there but will give you more room to work with, sometimes moving kegs around can be a pain, esp for those of us who use mini fridges as kegerators. Just thought you should know.

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Old 09-14-2009, 01:40 AM   #10
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Default Beer Styles And Carbonation Levels - Chart

Hi Folks:
I did some hunting on the internet and found the carbonation levels for various styles of beer posted on another forum. For those interested, the below is a pretty extensive chart.

Thanks again to all who have been kind enough to answer my questions.

-PaloAltoMark


ALES: -- CO2 VOLUMES
Barley Wine:
" Barley Wine -- 1.3 to 2.3

Belgian Specialty:
" Flanders Brown -- 1.9 to 2.5
" Dubbel -- 1.9 to 2.4
" Trippel -- 1.9 to 2.4
" Belgian Ale -- 1.9 to 2.5
" Belgian Strong Ale -- 1.9 to 2.4
" White -- 2.1 to 2.6
" Lambic Gueuze -- 3.0 to 4.5
" Lambic Faro -- ?
" Lambic Fruit -- 2.6 to 4.5

English Bitter:
" English Ordinary -- 0.75 to 1.3
" English Special -- 0.75 to 1.3
" English Extra Special -- 0.75 to 1.3

Scottish Ale:
" Scottish Light -- 0.75 to 1.3
" Scottish Heavy -- 0.75 to 1.3
" Scottish Export -- 0.75 to 1.3

Pale Ale:
" Classic English Pale Ale -- 1.5 to 2.3
" India Pale Ale -- 1.5 to 2.3
" American Style Pale Ale -- 2.26 to 2.78

English & Scottish Strong Ale:
" English Old Ale / Strong Ale -- 1.5 to 2.3
" Strong Scotch Ale -- 1.5 to 2.3

Brown Ale:
" English Brown Ale -- 1.5 to 2.3
" English Mild Ale -- 1.3 to 2.0
" American Brown Ale -- 1.5 to 2.5

Porter:
" Robust Porter -- 1.8 to 2.5
" Brown Porter -- 1.7 to 2.5

Stout:
" Classic Dry Irish -- 1.6 to 2.0
" Foreign Style -- 2.3 to 2.6
" Sweet Stout -- 2.0 to 2.4
" Imperial Stout -- 1.5 tp 2.3

LAGERS:
Bock:
" Traditional German Dark -- 2.2 to 2.7
" Helles Bock -- 2.16 to 2.73
" Doppelbock -- 2.26 to 2.62
" Eisbock -- 2.37

Bavarian Dark:
" Munich Dunkel -- 2.21 to 2.66
" Schwarzbier -- 2.2 to 2.6

American Dark:
" American Dark -- 2.5 to 2.7

Dortmund/Export:
" Dortmund/Export -- 2.57

Munich Helles:
" Munich Helles -- 2.26 to 2.68

Classic Pilsener:
" German Pilsener -- 2.52
" Bohemian Pilsener -- 2.3 to 2.5

American Light Lager:
" Diet/"Lite" -- 2.57
" American Standard -- 2.57
" American Premium -- 2.57 to 2.73
" Dry -- 2.6 to 2.7

Vienna/Oktoberfest/Marzen:
" Vienna -- 2.4 to 2.6
" Oktoberfest/Marzen -- 2.57 to 2.73

MIXED STYLE:
German Ale:
" Dusseldorf-style Altbier -- 2.16 to 3.09
" Kolsch -- 2.42 to 2.73

Cream Ale:
" Cream Ale -- 2.6 to 2.7

Fruit Beer:
" Fruit Ale or Lager -- varies

Herb Beer:
" Herb Ale or Lager -- varies

American Wheat:
" American Wheat Beer -- 2.3 to 2.6

Specialty Beers:
" Ales or Lagers -- varies

Smoked Beer:
" Bamberg-style Rauchbier -- 2.16 to 2.57
" Other styles -- ?

California Common;
" California Common Beer -- 2.4 to 2.8

German Wheat Beer:
" Berliner Weisse -- 3.45
" German-style Weizen (Weissbier) -- 3.6 to 4.48
" German-style Dunkelweizen -- 3.6 to 4.48
" German-style Weizenbock -- 3.71 to 4.74

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