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-   -   In-line compressed air regulator as secondary co2 regulator? (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/line-compressed-air-regulator-secondary-co2-regulator-340187/)

TimpanogosSlim 07-08-2012 06:47 AM

In-line compressed air regulator as secondary co2 regulator?
 
So while i was at the Home Depot today getting my bottle of oxygen, I turned around and noticed that in-line regulators with 1/4 NPT fittings can be had for about $20.

My general guess is that these are in no way intended to withstand the kind of pressure that direct connection to a co2 tank delivers, but the idea that sparked in my mind was whether i could insert one after the 1st barb on my expandable co2 manifold.

I could then set the tank regulator to 25psi or so for force carbonation, and the in-line regulator to 10psi or so for serving, and have both pressures inside the kegerator.

The only problem I've thought of so far is that the in-line regulators have gauges that make it very hard to find 10psi. I would have to install a lower range gauge somewhere - either replacing the original gauge (potentially impossible) or inserting one into the manifold with some additional plumbing.

helibrewer 07-08-2012 06:56 AM

Just "T" a 0-20 or 0-30psi gauge downstream of the in-line to monitor the pressure. You could do it with a barbed T and hose clamps...even a plastic T will be fine...could build it for about $15 including the gauge.

TimpanogosSlim 07-08-2012 07:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by helibrewer (Post 4233856)
Just "T" a 0-20 or 0-30psi gauge downstream of the in-line to monitor the pressure. You could do it with a barbed T and hose clamps...even a plastic T will be fine...could build it for about $15 including the gauge.

The manifold i have is really a series of T fittings and nipples equipped with shutoff valves, check valves, and barbs.

I could take the plug off the end and thread in an 0-30psi gauge.

TimpanogosSlim 07-08-2012 04:43 PM

fwiw it appears that *some of these inline regulators are little more than a ball valve, and would not work for beer service for obvious reasons. Likely don't work well for air tools either.

i am investigating further.

TimpanogosSlim 07-10-2012 04:06 AM

Well, I decided to Find Out, and ordered this:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/280655881053

and this:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/190591135760

If i read the description right, the regulator has no high-pressure pass-through. Maybe i read it wrong and it has two high and two low ports like a normal regulator.

For our fans viewing at home, this air compressor regulator has a max pressure of 130psi and would be destroyed by a direct tank connection. If this works at all for serving beer, it's as a secondary regulator.

BetterSense 07-10-2012 04:24 AM

Interesting. I will be surprised if it can go down to 10psi without creeping, but if it does, I can see having a conventional beer regulator set to 50PSI and an array of these for each keg.

TimpanogosSlim 07-10-2012 04:49 AM

Yeah i do have a little concern about stability. we'll see. if i can't waste my money on a hobby what can i waste it on?

TimpanogosSlim 07-10-2012 05:13 AM

The other idea is a fixed LP type regulator. Little known - LP regulators are often also rated for use with inert gasses and compressed air. If one had no interest in serving pressures different from 10psi, a non-adjustable 10psi LP regulator with 1/4" NPT fittings would work a treat to give you a two stage manifold. The trouble is that LP regulators are marked according to BTU or BTU/hr when they are for sale to the public, generally, and in my experience outfitting my propane rig for back yard boils i don't think different vendors use the same psi vs. btu math. So identifying the regulator body you want and then finding someone to sell it to you could get very frustrating.

TimpanogosSlim 07-12-2012 01:49 AM

Well the regulator got here. It has two high and two low ports, but unlike a co2 regulator the low side ports are top and left, while the high side ports are right and bottom - this means that it'll go inline in my manifold just fine, but I'll need to buy a 1/8 valve or 1/8 to 1/4 union for a high side output port. Not hard to find, just not, I think, carried at the big box hardware stores.

If one assumes that the inlet and outlet ports are the 1/4" ports, the regulator and high-side through port are 1/8" ports. Inconvenient but not terrible.

Sticker on the back says "SET PRESS. 7~140 PSI" so 10psi will be way on the low side for this. still might work just fine.

All-metal body. Feels solid and heavy.

I hope to have the gauge by saturday. May hold off on buying the high side outlet valve/barb until i am sure this will work properly.

buzzkill 07-12-2012 01:03 PM

I have used one of these and it worked very well. different model than what you posted. and I only ran it for a short time.


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