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Old 07-31-2013, 01:32 AM   #21
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On a somewhat related topic, is there a benefit to having a stout faucet over a standard faucet if you're just running co2 and no beergas or nitro?



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Old 07-31-2013, 02:05 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yesfan
On a somewhat related topic, is there a benefit to having a stout faucet over a standard faucet if you're just running co2 and no beergas or nitro?
Not that I'm aware of.


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Old 07-31-2013, 04:33 AM   #23
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a stout faucet has a restrictor plate to reduce the high pressure of nitrogen.
there is no need for it unless you are using nitro.
the mo-fuggle smash is nice on the nitro as is the cider.

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Old 08-01-2013, 09:17 AM   #24
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CO2 you get at the store and put into beer. It is colorless and oderless. Beer gas is the gas you get after you drink the beer. It does have a slight odor.

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Old 08-01-2013, 04:46 PM   #25
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From draft-beer-made-easy dot com (google for more sources)

CO2. This is a naturally occurring gas that is highly soluble (dissolves easily) in beer. In fact, CO2 is a natural component of beer as a major byproduct of the fermentation process, another being alcohol. CO2 gives beer its characteristic head and provides a slight bittering in taste (a desirable quality in beer). CO2 also provides effervescence that helps “lift” the beer’s aromas into the drinker’s nose and palate.

N2. Another naturally occurring gas that is insoluble (hard to dissolve) in beer. Nitrogen has two similar purposes for use with draft beer: (1) to allow high pressure dispensing through heavily restrictive apparatus (causing notable frothing) as in Guinness and similar products; (2) to allow high enough gas pressures to overcome the resistance inherent in long beer lines. In both of these cases the goal is to push the beer at high pressure but not alter the carbonation of the beer as it sits in a keg. This is accomplished by using insoluble Nitrogen mixed with the soluble CO2. More on gas mixing in a moment.

BeerGas – This pre-blended gas is a blend of Carbon Dioxide (25%) and Nitrogen (75%) made specifically for use with Guinness Stout and other similar beers. This mix is used to allow the high pressures needed to force the beer through a restrictor plate in a specialty faucet. This is to create the frothy pours characteristic of this style. In this type of application, the use of CO2 alone would quickly over carbonate the beer and pouring would be impossible. This mix is also very commonly, but incorrectly, used to pressurize the long line draft systems common in many restaurants and bars. This is not the proper ratio of mixed gases to serve standard ales and lagers. Beer Gas is however, the only pre-blended gas commonly available – creating confusion over its proper usage.

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Old 08-15-2013, 03:25 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TrickyDick View Post
the gas is 5/16, the beer is 3/8 line.

TD
if the line is short (5 feet or so) the beer line should be 3/16"inside diameter, not 3/8"

2.4 v/v or 2.5 v/v CO2 (typical carbonation for microbrew/craft/homebrew ales) at 38deg F would require about 14PSI of 100% CO2 to maintain the correct carbonation level.

To balance your pour speed with this pressure you need 14lbs. of restriction

1 lb for cooler hardware (on a direct draw it is less)
0.5 lb for each foot of vertical rise from the centre of your keg to the faucet
(assuming a beer tower on top of your counter that would be about 2')

that gives us 1 to 2 lbs so far leaving 12 to 13 lbs to make up with choke line.

3/16" ID vinyl tubing provides approximately 2.5 lbs of choke per linear foot

12.5/2.5=5 feet of 3/16" vinyl tubing.

unless you are serving a beer with a wildly higher or lower carbonation level (like Guinness at 1.2 v/v, or some Belgians up to 2.9 or 3.0 v/v) then ALL direct draw/kegerator/Keezer setups should have 5 feet of 3/16" ID vinyl tubing between the keg and the faucet.

with long line systems the rules change and that is where beer gas comes in.

Many bars use beer gas (25% CO2, 75% nitrogen: AKA stout gas) because they require pressures exceeding 18 PSI to push the product from cooler to bar. This allows them to prevent overcarbonation as previously posted, but does not provide sufficient CO2 to maintain carbonation so the beer will get progressively flatter.

Overcarbonation is a major issue in a bar because it produces 'wild' beer and excessive foam which affects the bottom line very dramatically.

Premixed/bottled beer gas in this circumstance is an imperfect solution.

Undercarbonation also affects the bottom line because because it affects presentation and product quality, but must dramatically because if you only have 1/4" of head instead of 5/8" of head then you have given away 3/8" of free beer when you fill the glass.

'SMART' bar owners use blended gas with blends tailored to their dispense pressure (like the McDantim blenders, like the Micromatic blenders (which BTW are McDantim blenders)) So at for example at 28 psi dispense pressure, you can maintain carbonation in a 2.4 v/v beer with a 50% CO2 50% N2 blend. If you have a different dispense pressure then change the blend. Perfect presentation to the end of the keg, consistent product, consistent pour, maximized yield.

BTW. I work in draught system installations and my employer is one of North America's largest Micromatic distributors.
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Old 08-15-2013, 03:41 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yesfan View Post
On a somewhat related topic, is there a benefit to having a stout faucet over a standard faucet if you're just running co2 and no beergas or nitro?
The purpose of a creamer or stout faucet is to provide enough agitation to the beer to break almost all of the CO2 out of solution and produce a thick creamy head.

It was intended to mimic the type of product dispensed from a hand-pump or 'beer engine" used for dispensing cask ales.

Cask ales have notably low carbonation levels due to the permeability of the wooden casks. Think of the beer in your secondary fermentation... it looks still and the airlock activity is minimal, but if you agitate or shake it you get a head of foam and the airlock roils vigorously. That is the carbonation level of a cask ale.

If this product is pulled from a cask with suction (beer engine) that CO2 will be pulled out of solution and a thick creamy head results.
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Old 08-15-2013, 03:46 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brewerforlife View Post
Micro-matic's blenders have pre-set balance percentages, but with McDantim blenders, you can adjust the blend% to whatever you want.
Micromatic's blenders are made by McDantim.

remove the small screw in the centre of the round brass piece and insert a 1/16" allen key. each full turn clockwise increases the CO2 % by approximately 3%. To reduce the CO2 % by 3% turn 2 turn counterclockwise followed by 1 turn clockwise.

test with a gas analyzer to verify.
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Old 08-15-2013, 04:11 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schroeder
unless you are serving a beer with a wildly higher or lower carbonation level (like Guinness at 1.2 v/v, or some Belgians up to 2.9 or 3.0 v/v) then ALL direct draw/kegerator/Keezer setups should have 5 feet of 3/16" ID vinyl tubing between the keg and the faucet.
I strongly disagree. I've taken the micromatic class, and they unfortunately ignore some basic principles of fluid mechanics. All of those equations and line resistance tables are designed to pour beer that's being stored and served between 36° and 38°, and has moderate carbonation levels (<2.7 vol). They're also designed to result in a flow rate of about 128 oz/min, which is the fastest that beer carbed to ~2.7 vol and stored at 38° can be poured without excessive foaming. For warmer serving temps the flow rate needs to be slower and gentler to prevent foaming. Just a couple degrees makes a huge difference. And since line resistance is a function of flow rate, all of those resistance tables and equations are useless for slower flow rates. Because line resistance decreases as flow rate decreases, the lines need to be much much longer to slow the flow down just a little bit.

For bars and restaurants those equations and tables usually work fine, because they're keeping the beer very cold, and they want to be able to pour beer as fast as possible without excessive foaming. For the home brewer who may want to serve beer slightly warmer, and likely doesn't care if it takes a couple extra seconds to pour a pint, longer lines are probably a much better option. Other than a very slightly slower pour, there aren't any disadvantages to using extra long lines. The advantage is that they allow greater flexibility and the option to serve beers with higher carb levels or warmer serving temps.

Then again, if you listen to micromatic you'll be afraid to store/serve your beer even one degree higher than 38°, so their tables and equations will work fine. I've seen the poor sanitation practices at bars and restaurants when switching kegs, pouring beer, and cleaning lines/faucets, so I understand why breweries and distributors would want to keep the beer cold. Homebrew with proper sanitation practices doesn't have the same risks, and as evidenced by this forum, many if not most homebrewers prefer to store and serve their beer warmer than 38°.

FWIW there does exist a line balancing calculator that follows the principles of fluid mechanics rather than assuming that we all want to use one specific temperature and flow rate. You have to choose the flow rate you want though (in terms of a pint fill time), which can take some trial and error depending on the serving temp. The spreadsheet can be found here-
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0ApGb-vIKLq7FdGtzN3BrY2xZSldORzQ2bHVVX0hzaEE#gid=0
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Old 08-15-2013, 03:22 PM   #30
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Schroeder,


Glad to have you here bringing real world experience to the thread.

In my home system, I dispense to the outdoors where the lines are kept reasonably cold using a forced air tower and blower in the cooler.
I am getting acceptable performance from my setup.
What I have adopted for dispensing stout is as follows. Recall my gas line in has a Y, with one limb connected to a beer gas cylinder, and the other to a co2 cylinder, and the output feeding the "manifold" for the secondary regulators inside the beer cooler. I leave the beer gas primary reg turned off, and the co2 cylinder on. Both set at 50 psi.
When dispensing stout, the keg is pressurized to 32-33 psi with beer gas blend 75:25.
Pour a pint, or two, or three or more. Wen dispense pressure begins to drop too low that I'm nor getting a good pour I do the following:
Turn of co2 primary reg valve. Turn ON beer gas primary reg valve. Turn on stout keg secondary reg valve. Wait several seconds. Turn off secondary reg valve to stout, and then beer gas primary off, and then co2 back on.

Been working pretty good, and way better than before, when I was trying to dispense all products with beer mix. I should've realized what would happen.

I do want to add a small brass manifold so I can connect more kegs (as cooler will hold 9, but tower only can serve 6) to CO2 pressure for carbonation of fresh homebrew, or even while lagering if I want to carbonate at the same time. I think I would need to add a fitting to the last regulator body in the daisy chain, to which I would connect a barbed or flat nut fitting. From that I would need to connect to another regulator that I'd have to scrounge up, and then connect that to a new 3-4 port brass manifold so as to avoid buying multiple regulators for carbonation. I

I'm also thinking about removing the Y on the gas in side and running a separate beer gas only line into the cooler with a flare nut so I can dispense commercial Guinness or corny keg stout home brews setting pressure just with the primary tank regulator and no secondary regulator. I think I need to drill a hole to do this though, and have been reluctant to do so, since its working good like it is.

TD



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