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Old 10-29-2012, 07:21 PM   #1
TreeBridge
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Default US sanke keg questions.

I purchased a 20 gallon brewing system from BrewSteel. I am using this system for recipe design and intend to give away the finished beer. It seems most people have commercial keg setups so i would like to use us sanke kegs. The only thing is i have never used one besides pumping out beer at parties.

I do not want to modify the kegs.
-Will i be able to force carbonate in the kegs?
-What issues should i be aware of concerning cleaning/sanitizing the kegs?
-Any additional equipment i'll need?

The kegs i'm looking at are sold by stout tanks. I was also going to look into the plastic kegs.

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Old 10-29-2012, 07:43 PM   #2
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You can totally force carb in sanke kegs.

By removing the valve/spear combo you can easily clean and sanitize the kegs on your own. There are tutorials out there for it. I rarely do it because I just find it such a pain

In my set up I find it useful to have a spare coupling head for cleaning and filling so I don't have to disassemble my dispense system. That's really all.

I wrote a tutorial about filling sanke kegs on my blog:

http://itswhatsontap.wordpress.com/2012/05/21/filling-a-sanke-keg-tutorial/

That might be of help for some of your issues.

Cheers

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Old 10-30-2012, 01:57 AM   #3
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Thanks for the info. That tutorial really helped.

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Old 11-05-2012, 02:37 PM   #4
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Ok, so i understand i need a coupler for every keg i wish to tap...right? Will I need a spear removal tool or ring removal knife?

I hope selling my corny kegs was wasn't a terrible idea...

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Old 11-05-2012, 03:13 PM   #5
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You'll need a coupling head for every tap, not necessarily every keg.

I've removed the spear using pliers, screwdriver, light touch with a hammer and chan-l lock pliers. No special tools required.

Only time will tell whether selling the cornies was a bad idea.

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Old 11-05-2012, 07:01 PM   #6
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I think it is going to be harder to sanitize and more expensive. The kegs from stout tanks are $85; which is a fair price i think. Most couplings are $26 that i've found. I will need at least 4 so i can carbonate the whole batch at one time.

I'm thinking a simple keg washer would be worthwhile to build also. I take it you just fill it up with pbw through the coupling without removing the spear?

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Old 11-05-2012, 07:58 PM   #7
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Yup. More expensive and harder to sanitize and clean. That's why most homebrewers go with cornies. At the time I was getting my dispense system set up I was working at a commercial craft brewery so cleaning and sanitizing was not going to be an issue. Take a keg to work and bring it home cleaned, sanitized and full of beer!

Right around the time I got that all set up I got laid off! LOL I stayed with the system because the parts that I got were cheap and I got a few cast-offs from the brewery. In hindsight if I were setting it all up again from scratch I would definitely go with cornies and have been contemplating a switch in that direction anyway.

I do just fill up with cleaner through the coupling head and shake and soak.

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Old 11-05-2012, 08:17 PM   #8
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Sorry to hear you got laid off. I would love the opportunity to work in a brewery.

Since my main goal with the new brewery is promotion and research and development, i'm stuck with the sanke kegs. Well that and i sold all of my equipment!

We are starting to gather everything we need for the cold side of the brewery. I want it to be as commercial as possible. Once my brew station is finished being fabricated i should be ready to go.

Thanks again for all the info. I'm sure i'll have more questions

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Old 11-05-2012, 08:20 PM   #9
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Pfffttt... It was years ago but thank you for the kind words.

I may have missed something in your earlier post but, yes, if you're looking for more commercial setup then sankeys are the way to go. For sure.

Check on HBT for some simple keg washer builds, they're out there but I have no idea how easy or hard they are to build.

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Old 11-06-2012, 12:29 AM   #10
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They're the best. And not just for kegging, you can ferment in them as well.

Cleaning isn't too bad, you can still use a carboy brush, and oxyclean, you just can't see what you're doing while you clean.

A long-necked light like this helps. WIth an automotive inspection mirror, you can be pretty sure that your kegs are clean.

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