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Old 08-15-2013, 01:19 PM   #1
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Default Weird gas issue... little white dots

So my last batch of beer didn't turn out right but no one could put their finger on what happened to it. The weird thing was it was my house beer, I'd made it many times and it always turned out great. So fast forward to last night. I'm moving my Pliney clone from the secondary to the keg and I get to thinking... The only thing that changed before that last batch of beer was I refilled my Co2 canister.

Mainly working off a hunch I grab one of the gas lines, hold it close to my nose, and pres in the release valve. It smelled like Co2 but little white bits of something where hitting my face!! I was wearing a Left Hand Brewery all black t-shirt so I pointed the gas disconnect at it and pushed in the release valve and sure enough, little white dots on my t-shirt.

I didn't have time to tear my gas system apart so I just dumped some priming sugar in each keg until I can get this figured out.

Anyone heard of or experienced this before?

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Old 08-15-2013, 01:22 PM   #2
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It may be grease off the compressor used to tank the CO2, or off some other part of the gas-delivery system. I don't know if there is anything you can do about it.

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Old 08-15-2013, 01:28 PM   #3
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Did the white pieces evaporate? If so it could be frozen water, co2 etc caused by the cold gas. Could be frozen water in the tank itself.

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Old 08-15-2013, 01:30 PM   #4
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Quote:
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Did the white pieces evaporate? If so it could be frozen water, co2 etc caused by the cold gas. Could be frozen water in the tank itself.
this is what i think too. frozen bits of water.
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Old 08-15-2013, 01:31 PM   #5
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also, i don't believe you can smell CO2

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Old 08-15-2013, 02:00 PM   #6
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I'll check if they evaporate or not. I remember at the time they come out they are quite solid, but I didn't really pay much attention to them after they came out. Gonna feel kinda dumb if it's just ice but seems the most likely answer at this time.

I did use plumbers tape to attach my regulator to the tank.. but I'm not sure how that could get from the threads to the main lines.

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Old 08-15-2013, 02:11 PM   #7
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I don't think plumbers tape is an issue. It is not uncommon for non food grade/medical grade gas to have small amounts of contaminants - grease in the suppliers gas-delivery system being a common contaminant. It was (and still is, in some places) a big issue for scuba divers, and I've heard of other brewers having similar issues when buying CO2 from welding and fire suppression system providers.

That said, I get my CO2 from a fire supply company, without any issues to date.

Bryan

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Old 08-15-2013, 06:04 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Warthaug View Post
I don't think plumbers tape is an issue. It is not uncommon for non food grade/medical grade gas to have small amounts of contaminants - grease in the suppliers gas-delivery system being a common contaminant. It was (and still is, in some places) a big issue for scuba divers, and I've heard of other brewers having similar issues when buying CO2 from welding and fire suppression system providers.

That said, I get my CO2 from a fire supply company, without any issues to date.

Bryan
This is exactly why I use food grade CO2.
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Old 08-15-2013, 06:13 PM   #9
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Is your CO2 bottle stored upright? If you have it on it's side you could be getting liquid CO2 coming out. Most tanks can only be stored upright without problems. You say nothing changed except the refill so I doubt that's it, but just a thought. Liquid CO2 certainly wouldn't hurt your beer either, but it might explain the white stuff if you have little snow flakes forming. The unfortunate thing is that if this was bad gas then you would have to disassemble your entire air system and clean it to be sure you got rid of it all. I get my tank filled at a dive shop. It goes through the same filters that the dive air goes through so it's guaranteed clean and dry.

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Old 08-15-2013, 10:31 PM   #10
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Blasting pure CO2 up your nose is a good way to knock yourself out, and PTFE tape should definitely not be used on a CGA fitting. It will interfere with the flare sealing in the fitting, and if you used too much tape (or improperly applied it) it can certainly make it's way into the gas stream.

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