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Old 11-25-2010, 04:51 PM   #1
deadcactus
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Default Questions about kegging

I want to jump into kegging to avoid bottling. I can't invest the space/money into a refrigerator for a keg at this time. My plan was to buy some kegs and then dispense into bottles with a beer gun or MacGuyvered variation thereof.

This way I can bottle just what I need in the fridge for the week and alleviate the need for finding storage room for 25 gallons worth of bottles.

So some silly questions:

Is there any reason this idea is flawed?

Once the keg is filled and carbonated, can I take it off of the CO2 system and just let it sit as an isolated tank? I'm assuming yes.

Assuming that the above is true, does that mean I could buy just the basic 1 keg kit and as many isolated kegs as I want? Or does each keg need it's own set of disconnects or some other hardware? I'm assuming the former.

Anything I'm not considering?

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Old 11-25-2010, 05:43 PM   #2
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Trying to bottle kegged beer that is warm will be hard. There will be excess foam. If you don't have a dedicated fridge I would just bottle the beer and let it bottle condition. Bottling takes a little work...but kegging and bottling the way you want will be a lot more work. By bottling your brew you can put however many you want in your fridge, when you want. And at no extra space/money.

Once a keg is carbonated you can remove it from the gas and let it sit. However, if/when you try to get beer out of it you will need to replace the lost CO2.

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Old 11-25-2010, 08:30 PM   #3
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If you're buying a keg fridge and you're buying kegs; why don't you just drink straight from the keg? Why even bother with bottling?

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Old 11-26-2010, 02:02 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjwhite41 View Post
If you're buying a keg fridge and you're buying kegs; why don't you just drink straight from the keg? Why even bother with bottling?
Because I'm not buying a keg fridge...
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Old 11-26-2010, 02:12 AM   #5
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I'm sorry, I thought it said I can buy a keg fridge, not I can't. I apologize. You could look into getting a used fridge though, you can usually get them pretty cheap. I got mine for free.

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Old 11-26-2010, 02:20 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deadcactus View Post
Because I'm not buying a keg fridge...
Trust in my failed experience. Kegging without a fridge will just frustrate you, since carbonation levels vary so much with temperature. Either get a fridge/freezer with temp control, or just bottle and save yourself the heartache.
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Old 11-26-2010, 05:45 AM   #7
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Search for a fridge on craigslist. You can find them super cheap.

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Old 11-26-2010, 06:06 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjwhite41 View Post
You could look into getting a used fridge though, you can usually get them pretty cheap. I got mine for free.
If you have the room, it is this relatively beginner brewer's advice to do it. You won't regret it. My brother and I picked up a fridge on craigslist for $25 and while its not something I'd like to have in my kitchen, in the basement next to the bar, it seems like it belongs there. The best part - we can fit 4 kegs easily, and 6 if we try That, or have room for normal bottles, and whatever else one typically puts in a fridge.
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Old 11-26-2010, 06:27 AM   #9
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The beer has to be cold in order for the carbonation to take hold. In my experience lowering and raising the temperature of beer several times can lead off flavors. I love my kegerator, but if it's not an option and you just want to speed up your bottling process I'd recommend a bottling tree and a beer gun + corny keg, but boil your priming sugar in water and add it in the corny, siphon from your secondary to the corny and use the bottle gun to speed up your process. Filling a couple of bottles at a time isn't very feasible with a bottle gun as you fill two cases of beer faster than you can clean the beer gun.

I've bottle conditioned several batches with my blichman beer gun. In fact I almost prefer it because I'm not spilling foam everywhere trying to get proper fill levels and I know I'll have adequate carbonation.

Buy the bottle tree first, it's cheaper than any kegging equipment and it helps to speed up the process the most.

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