Electric Brewing Supply 30A BCS Giveaway!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > PVC Tower Cooling Solution
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 06-08-2013, 02:45 AM   #151
VoodooV
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 7
Default

What I'm not understanding is what holds the copper pipe in place? Is it just the foam insulation and friction?

__________________
VoodooV is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-08-2013, 04:29 PM   #152
stenbough
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 2
Default

You got it, friction. The beverage tubing has a small clearance through the copper pipe and the foam insulation also keeps it anchored.

__________________
stenbough is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-09-2013, 06:55 PM   #153
HOPJONES79
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 17
Default

I built my kegerator yesterday and used the copper pipe. The space between my mini fridge and the top of the counter top is about 4 inches which I used a piece of galvanized pipe. So far it is a success. No foamy beer pretty consistant temp. Thanks for the post. I used a small piece of electrical tape to hold the pipe in place.

__________________
HOPJONES79 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-26-2013, 12:03 AM   #154
Briz34
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 32
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default Copper Pipe Beer Line Cooling to Tower

Guys,

Figured I'd post my pics of this project I just did. I built this kegerator a couple years ago and figured I'd add this modification instead of the fan route. (I also removed my temp sensor which was connected directly to the back coolant plate and left it hanging on the bottom, much better control of temps which will get your beer cooler without a wide range like hey its 40 then a small nudge of the knob and now its 25! haha)


Here's what I picked up: 4' of 1/2" copper pipe (type L cause it was cheaper), 2 - 1/2" pipe T's, 2 - 1/2" elbows, and spray foam.

Luckily I was able to have the guy at the shop cut the pipe for me so I just bought a reamer to remove the burrs. My pipe lengths were 2 - 14" pieces, and 4 - 5.5" pieces.

I had to remove the top connections due to the keg connectors to tube connection having some kind of crimped clamp instead of a pipe clamp (not a big deal just more work). Added plastic wrap on the ends of the beers lines and just slid them up the copper pipe (remember to add the 1/2" T connection on the bottom!) and installed the beer line back onto the metal tube fitting then back onto the tap shank. Notice there's rubber bands in-between the pipe and the tubes, this is to hold them in place while I sprayed the foam and it set. I also manipulated the beer lines so that the pipes stayed away from the edges and didn't move during the set-up time. Then I started from the bottom and sprayed foam until the bottom was filled and then filled the top. Here's where you should be cautious; DO NOT COMPLETELY FILL THE TOWER WITH FOAM! What I mean by this is leave a good 1-2" of the copper exposed to allow for the foam to expand and NOT GO PAST the copper pipe. You want the tops exposed to keep that small pocket of air cooled as well. Yes you can trim back the foam however it's just an extra pain especially when it gets around your tube clamp (want to make sure you have access to those if you ever have to remove the line in the future).

I currently have my too kegs (dark cherry lager and canadian blonde XXX X= increased alcohol content) chillin there then will start carbonating soon. I should have some results in 2 weeks.

kegerator.jpg   installing-copper-pipe.jpg   top-tower.jpg   finished-inside.jpg  
__________________
Briz34 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-22-2014, 07:02 PM   #155
H2B
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Cardiff By The Sea, CA
Posts: 19
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by bradsul View Post
Yes that is true. Space considerations and clearance don't allow that in my case. But there is also less than 1C differential between the temperature of the copper in my fridge and at the top of the tower so I'm not worried about it in my case.
Can someone see if they can tell where I went wrong? I'm on my third attempt at a copper pipe setup on my new kegerator... and am running out of money and patients on getting a perfect pour every time.

I have two pieces of 1/2" copper pipe running up as close as possible to the shank, and as far into the kegerator as possible. I have wrapped each pipe in PVC pipe insulation tape, wrapped that in the best foam insulation I could find, then wrapped that again in the PVC pipe insulation tape. I left a lot of extra foam at the top, to fill the entire void between my shanks and the cap on the tower, and have the insulation going down to right where the pipes enter the kegerator. The pipes extend down 5-6" then I have a T connection where a ridiculous amount of copper extends back to the cooling plate and then across it to the fan. I couldn't fit more copper, or more insulation. There is no exposed copper anywhere outside of the fridge.

Brad, how are you only seeing 1C (I assume that's one degree?) difference from the inside of the kegerator and the top of the tower. I'm reading 34 degrees inside, and 58 degrees at the top... I saw it drop to about 48 up top, when I turned on "Deep Chill" (just the fan staying on and trying to cool to 32) and ran it all night, but my salesman said it can freeze my keg.

I JUST learned as much as I was able to comprehend on "balancing my system" and I have 40" of 3/16" ID vinyl beer line, at 8psi, with and Stone IPA (2.3 CO2 volume?)... STILL getting a gnarly first pour. I cannot figure out what I'm doing wrong.

Anyone seeing a flaw in my system? If so, please dumb down your answer as much as possible I'm just an alcoholic, and not a pro, on this most nobel quest.

Thanks

[IMG][/IMG]

[IMG][/IMG]
__________________
H2B is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-22-2014, 09:05 PM   #156
purplehaze
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 2 reviews
 
purplehaze's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: , Massachusetts
Posts: 319
Liked 13 Times on 13 Posts
Likes Given: 4

Default lines

Looks like more than enough copper to me.

When I had one of these fridges, I filled my entire tower (except the top few inches) with expanding foam, this provided the insulation needed and glued the copper in place. I used some flexible foam sheets to fill the void at the top so I could access and change the lines if needed.

Also 40" lines are not long enough, I use 10 feet of 3/16" lines.

purplehaze is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-22-2014, 09:19 PM   #157
bajaedition
just brewing
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
bajaedition's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Desert Center, CA
Posts: 723
Liked 129 Times on 103 Posts
Likes Given: 49

Default

I only insulate a thin sheet around the inside of the tower and use a small fan to blow cool air up into the tower
I have no issues at all

__________________

AH, Does that look right?
let Dave try it.

bajaedition is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-22-2014, 09:35 PM   #158
bajaedition
just brewing
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
bajaedition's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Desert Center, CA
Posts: 723
Liked 129 Times on 103 Posts
Likes Given: 49

Default


problem I see is that you have insulated the entire top from getting cooling from the bottom

look at it like this, the void in the top is being affected by the mass of the metal around it, all of that metal is being heated by the outside ambient temperature and the only thing cooling down is the copper line and the beer coming up from the bottom. you are using only convection as there is no air flow in there. so as the amount of mass in contact of the warm air is significantly higher than the amount of mass in contact with the cool air below the warm air wins out. take this with the fact that warm air rises and cold air lowers you can see why the top is not cooling, Now if you were to remove the insulation from around the pipes coming from below, and insulate around the inside of the tower leaving enough room for air to flow, then find a way to recirculate the air in the tower you will be introducing more cool air around the beer lines and cooling them off, once you hit the faucets there is not much you can do as the mass of metal is going to over come efforts from below, unless you have a near constant flow rate of cool beer those faucets will remain warm
Towers with a top box are designed to have the max amount of air flow around the beer lines to keep the beer cool, simple tube towers do not have that luxury so you need to move the air faster to keep more cooling air around the lines.
__________________

AH, Does that look right?
let Dave try it.

bajaedition is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-22-2014, 10:24 PM   #159
HomeBrewFoSho
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Western MA
Posts: 102
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts

Default

Yeah. Can't speak on the cooling since I have a remote glycol setup but even when I had my keezer I never ran less than 10' of line and always had a perfect pour


Sent from my iPhone using Home Brew

__________________
HomeBrewFoSho is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-23-2014, 12:43 AM   #160
lukebeulah
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado
Posts: 67
Liked 5 Times on 4 Posts

Default

The issue is the line length. You should be running at about 12psi on your CO2 to keep your beer carbed properly. To do this you need to be running lines at around 10 feet. Once you do it, you will know why people always have this response to "foamy beer that is not overcarbed"


Sent from my iPad using Home Brew

__________________
lukebeulah is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply



Tags
no fan, tower cooling

Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Cooling the tower Southwood Bottling/Kegging 12 01-13-2011 12:02 AM
Keggles - Confusion over best hop/grain separation and cooling solution atkinsr Equipment/Sanitation 4 03-03-2009 10:06 PM
Tower Cooling Fan Help thdewitt Bottling/Kegging 4 02-01-2009 04:32 AM
Ceramic Tower Cooling kenche Equipment/Sanitation 10 11-29-2007 04:51 AM
cooling beer tower dougbo Bottling/Kegging 2 12-06-2006 02:15 AM