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Old 06-19-2013, 08:37 PM   #1011
JasontheBeaver
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Originally Posted by Aunt_Ester View Post
But I don't find it particularly sanitary, what with the grimy picnic tap and all. Do you guys ever use this technique for long-term storage? I'd like to do this for competitions so the beers are nice and bright, but I don't trust the tap and lines to keep the beer fresh for the interim between entry deadlines and the competition. Tips? Tricks?
Why are you using a "grimy picnic tap"???
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Old 07-02-2013, 05:26 PM   #1012
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Default Troubleshoot my flat beer...

I was hoping to bring some bottles with me when I travel for the 4th so I put together BM's beergun exactly as described. I have 10 feet of 3/16ID beer line feeding into a picnic tap. I filled 24 bottles on Sunday night but when I opened a test bottle last night there was a very faint whisp of CO2 and the bottle had lost a lot of carbonation. While it wasn't flat or oxidized, it had lost enough carbonation for me not to want to share it. I'm hoping someone can help me troubleshoot what happened before I try this again.

I can think of 2 potential issues:
1) My #2 drilled stopper, which fit perfectly into the bottle neck, had a small gap between the drilled hole and the racking cane, so I had trouble getting a good seal. I could get intermittent pressure but not enough consistently to slow and control the flow. I had turned down my gas though, so it wasn't a particularly vigorous pour even without the counterpressure. Could this be enough to mess up the process? Has anyone else had this problem?
2) I may have shaken the bottle too vigorously before capping. I held a bottle cap on with my thumb and turned each bottle upside down. They foamed as desired, but potentially more than is desirable: most foamed up and overflowed, and I capped while they did so.


Anyone have any thoughts or suggestions?

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Old 07-02-2013, 07:43 PM   #1013
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I was hoping to bring some bottles with me when I travel for the 4th so I put together BM's beergun exactly as described. I have 10 feet of 3/16ID beer line feeding into a picnic tap. I filled 24 bottles on Sunday night but when I opened a test bottle last night there was a very faint whisp of CO2 and the bottle had lost a lot of carbonation. While it wasn't flat or oxidized, it had lost enough carbonation for me not to want to share it. I'm hoping someone can help me troubleshoot what happened before I try this again.

I can think of 2 potential issues:
1) My #2 drilled stopper, which fit perfectly into the bottle neck, had a small gap between the drilled hole and the racking cane, so I had trouble getting a good seal. I could get intermittent pressure but not enough consistently to slow and control the flow. I had turned down my gas though, so it wasn't a particularly vigorous pour even without the counterpressure. Could this be enough to mess up the process? Has anyone else had this problem?
2) I may have shaken the bottle too vigorously before capping. I held a bottle cap on with my thumb and turned each bottle upside down. They foamed as desired, but potentially more than is desirable: most foamed up and overflowed, and I capped while they did so.
Anyone have any thoughts or suggestions?
1)I always make sure my beer is a tad overcarbed because you will always lose a little in the bottling process.
2) Your reason #2 added to your problem for sure.
3) Cap each one as you go, don't fill a bunch then go back and cap.
4) Chilling the bottles will help keep down the foam, but don't freeze them to the point of getting frost on the inside surface, this creates nucleation sites.
5) I don't think your loose fitting stopper contributed to your problem. I use no stopper at all.

Good luck!
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Old 07-07-2013, 11:53 PM   #1014
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Originally Posted by wlssox524
I was hoping to bring some bottles with me when I travel for the 4th so I put together BM's beergun exactly as described.
Quote:
Originally Posted by wlssox524 View Post
I can think of 2 potential issues:
1) My #2 drilled stopper, which fit perfectly into the bottle neck, had a small gap between the drilled hole and the racking cane, so I had trouble getting a good seal. I could get intermittent pressure but not enough consistently to slow and control the flow. I had turned down my gas though, so it wasn't a particularly vigorous pour even without the counterpressure. Could this be enough to mess up the process? Has anyone else had this problem?
2) I may have shaken the bottle too vigorously before capping. I held a bottle cap on with my thumb and turned each bottle upside down. They foamed as desired, but potentially more than is desirable: most foamed up and overflowed, and I capped while they did so.


Anyone have any thoughts or suggestions?
I read every page up to ~90 before I tried it the first time (next 10pages came durring my adventure) and still had issues the first 3 times I bottled. I had bad foaming issues during bottling and low carb issues after. Finally the 3rd time was acceptable and the 4th and 5th worked well ***(close to well, ill explain later) with low foaming and good carb. it is somewhat of an art form. I will do my best to describe some of the small things I have noticed.

I have ~10feet of line 3/16ID into a picnic tap with an angle cut racking cane inserted with a stopper on it. I believe that the keg pressure, picnic tap, and starsan in the bottle is the largest contributors to foam and have a few techniques to limit this


#1 Temp--I have found that I dont need cold bottles just not hot. ~30deg difference is fine so far. keg is ~35deg and bottles ~70deg


#2 Keg PSI--I have found that if I am between 5-10 psi on the keg it will go ok. My very best experience so far was not fast force carbing the keg. So instead of doing the 25psi keg shake and then fighting to get it to be carbed correct. I just let the keg get to fridge temp overnight, plugged in at ~12psi for one week then dropped the regulator to just under 10psi aprox 8. I then Very gently vented of the keg to the regulator set point of ~8. Let it set for 10min. then began filling bottles.

#3 Fill—counter pressure is key for me. I put the stopper in the bottle, thumb on top of stopper to prevent it from popping out, push the stem to the bottom of the bottle and flip the tap wide open. It will fill ~1/4 with liquid and some foam on top of that. Then it will stop filling due to having equal pressure in the bottle and keg. If the foam is very low I will then start burping the bottle to allow flow to resume. If the foam is high I will let it sit with the tap open and thumb on stopper to allow the counter pressure to dissipate the foam. If it is excessive I will kill that bottle (drink it) and evaluate the system. Once you have the foam under control and are burping the bottle I start slowing down the burping as I get closer and closer to the top until I am slowly releasing the small amount of foam that was on top of the beer and I shut the tap off as the beer get near the stopper. At this point the foam is near gone, and the liquid is at the bottom of the stopper and I have the tap off. Now as I remove the stem from the bottle I partially press the tap lever to fill the space in the neck of the bottle that was full due to the stem being in the bottle. I do this as I remove the stem. It will create a bit of foam that will fill the last inch to half inch of space. I then cap immediately. Then move on to the next bottle quickly and repeat.

*** from the first paragraph--- My brew partner and I bottle together. It’s a small assembly line with the two of us. This is important to note because he has low carb issues even with our most recent bottling, I don’t. the only difference that I am aware of is I place mine directly into the fridge and maintain temp ~34deg from keg to bottle and after. He does not. His sit at room temp after bottling until he wants to drink it and then places a few bottles in the fridge. I hope someone here can disprove this issue with fine carb from bottles that have sat at room temp prior to drinking.


I hope this LONG reply helps
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Old 07-16-2013, 03:16 PM   #1015
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Thanks for the replies! I tried this again over the weekend and the bottles are better than previously, but not perfect. I was able to get some counterpressure this time, which I suspect made the difference, but I still had trouble towards the end of bottles. As the liquid filled up the neck, headspace reduced, and pressure built, I would get a mini foam up as soon as I burped the pressure. Should I stop with the stopper when I get to the top of the bottle and just fill it gently without pressure? Any ideas?

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Old 07-16-2013, 09:21 PM   #1016
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Thanks for the replies! I tried this again over the weekend and the bottles are better than previously, but not perfect. I was able to get some counterpressure this time, which I suspect made the difference, but I still had trouble towards the end of bottles. As the liquid filled up the neck, headspace reduced, and pressure built, I would get a mini foam up as soon as I burped the pressure. Should I stop with the stopper when I get to the top of the bottle and just fill it gently without pressure? Any ideas?

Soooo disregard teh first 12min! he is just going over a tap insert.
at 12min he fills a bottle basicly the same way we are. its a great video for seeing the fill, topoff, and cap process.



In this video a different homebrewer showes a good view of a fill. unfortunately he stopps prior to filling the neck.
at 4:30 he filles a clear bottle so you can see it working.
His has to much foam, but at 4:35 to 4:50 its a great view of counter pressure reducing the foam. If it were me I would wait longer for it to reduce further prior to continuing with the fill on that bottle.

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Old 07-17-2013, 01:59 AM   #1017
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Default You guys are my last chance!

Hey everyone,

I've been following this thread for awhile now, and I see some people with fantastic success in bottling from the keg with this method.

Unfortunately, I'm not having that same success. It's really frustrating and I ask for your help before I purchase a beer gun. You guys are my last hope!

I've followed all these instructions and recommendations exactly. I have 10 feet of tubing that connects my beer out to the racking cane, made per the instructions. I have my beer carbed to the correct psi, then bled off and bottled at around 3 psi. I sanitize and freeze all bottles tubing, and other bottling parts.

I'm still getting up to half the bottle full of foam!

My beer lines are super foamy when they out of the bottling line...and yet the kegerator itself works fantastically with no issues.

I even made a video of my troubles

http://youtu.be/SIkVwElE0PE
Please everyone, you're my last hope! Unless I can solve this problem, I'll be purchasing a beer gun. I need to have good consistent bottles for competition, and this method seems to be anything but consistent.

Thanks in advance!

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Old 07-21-2013, 03:22 AM   #1018
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I can only describe what is different in my set up vs. yours. I dont know if it will solve your issues.
You may try this at a higher psi also. I usually am ~8-10 psi. I feel that if the beer is carbed to 12-15 when it hits the beer line it expands foaming

1. I am using ~10feet 3/16 ID tubing. It was suggested by the local beer shop when I was having issues with foam. this is the small ID you have to get it soft in boiling water just to get it on the fittings.

2. I cut my racing cane down to a straight piece long enough to do 22oz bottles. I get solid foam from the picnic tap to the tip of the cane as soon as I shut off the picnic tap between each bottle. so I cut out as much as possible.

3. This probably isnt your issue since you have foam out the keg.
but just so you know.
just yesterday I was having intermittent foam issues on bottles. randomly one would be perfect and the next would be extra foam. I think it could be the angle of the cut on the bottom of the racking cane. if the angle lines up with the angle of the bottom of the bottle it might cause issues.

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Old 07-21-2013, 07:37 PM   #1019
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So, this method rocks. Here's my question, though. Once you're done and you disconnect it from keg, how in the heck to you get liquid in this hose to clean it?? The little nub that pushes down the poppet must be depressed in order to allow air and liquid to flow, but how can you do that when its not on the keg?

This one confusion aside, though, this is an awesome solution, BM!

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Old 07-21-2013, 09:06 PM   #1020
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So, this method rocks. Here's my question, though. Once you're done and you disconnect it from keg, how in the heck to you get liquid in this hose to clean it?? The little nub that pushes down the poppet must be depressed in order to allow air and liquid to flow, but how can you do that when its not on the keg?

This one confusion aside, though, this is an awesome solution, BM!
I have a keg of starsan that I use to clean it out. I also use MFL coupled gas and liquid on all my lines. I will ether blow it out with starsan then remove the coupler and open the picnic tap and dry it out or open the picnic tap and hold the decoupled end to the faucet and run water thru it.

http://www.amazon.com/Ball-Lock-Becker-Home-Coupler/dp/B005SLT0G6/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1374440449&sr=8-5&keywords=cornelius+keg+gas

Oh and before I swapped to the detachable couplers I would take the spring and poppet out and run water from the faucet thru the line.
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