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Old 03-20-2013, 05:42 PM   #1
rgauthier20420
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Default Wall tap keg line cooling system

I will start of by saying I know there are a number of threads about this subject already open, and I've been reading them for the last hour. But, I can't seem to find something that address my specific need.

So I'm planning on converting a chest freezer to a keezer with a colar and putting it in my basement. I then would like to have a wall mounted tap system on my main floor (just above the basement). The distance to travel will be something close to 20 ft.

I've read about the following options:
Using a fan that blows in flexible conduit along with the keg lines inside of an insulated PVC pipe.
Using a fan that blows in the keezer and the rest is the same as above.
Using copper that has been inserted into your keezer and running the beer straight through it to the taps. The copper is supposed to carry the cold through the piping that is outside of the keezer on its own.
Recirculating cold water from straight from a keg in your keezer through piping that your beer lines are enclosed in (similar to a counter flow chiller if I'm understanding that correctly).

So....those are what I have read about already. I'm trying to figure out what the best plan of action would be to make sure I avoid skunking the beer that is in the lines and making sure they stay chilly and delicious on the first pour.

Thanks in advance for any help you guys are able to provide. I have found these forums to be the most helpful place online since I started home brewing.

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Old 03-21-2013, 12:53 AM   #2
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Of the listed options, the only one that has a prayer of working would be recirculating cold water from a keg in the same keezer with the beer. You would have to buy or construct a trunk line like this
and plumb it to kegs, pump and the keg acting as the reservoir.

I'm skeptical that a keg in a keezer can keep up with heat loss in the system, but once you have the trunk installed if the keg thing doesn't work out you could re-direct the coolant pair to an externally located glycol power pack...

Cheers!

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Old 03-21-2013, 03:48 AM   #3
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Ok so I get what your saying. Question though. By trunk line you mean the tubing that will house all the tap lines correct? Also, how would you recirculate the water through the tube? I'm guessing co2 is no good because you can't recirculate that way. Would i need to use a good immersed pump too move the water from inside the keg that is inside the keezer through the piping that houses the hoses?

I thought a basement your sump pump might do this but i wonder about the drain on the electrical with that. What are your thoughts?

If your could also comment on that i saw someone post doing this same thing but using two pvc pipes. Here's the thread if you can review and give your thoughts. Thanks for your help!

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f14/behi...24/index2.html

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Old 03-21-2013, 04:13 AM   #4
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The picture shows a classic "trunk line" cross section. In the center are the blue (cold) and red (return) lines that carry the coolant (at the faucet end the blue line is connected to the red line, forming a loop). They are surrounded by beer lines (color coded so you can figure out which tap goes to which keg) and the whole works is surrounded by a neoprene insulating jacket.

You do need a pump. And a source of cold fluid. Other than a commercially obtained power pack (a 20' system would probably run around $1200 I think) some folks have had success combining a small chest freezer with salt water and a stainless steel submersible pump as a home made power pack.

The reason why the first three option on your list won't work is distance: 20 feet is far too long. The copper pipe thing is pretty much just for tower mounted faucets - really short applications, and the air-cooled PVC thing is for "through-the-wall" applications. 20 feet is trunk line time, no way around it.

If by sump pump you mean the type of thing installed in wet-region basements, that would be serious overkill on the power side. Low power (and low noise) are key, along with compatibility with the working fluid (things that work with glycol may not be happy with salt water, for instance).

You need a very small circulating pump - volume is not a concern here (there's remarkably little fluid in 20 feet of trunk line). There are small submersible pumps that can work well for a home-brewed system.

I know I've read of a few systems that were cobbled together, somewhere on the site. "trunk line" might be a good search term to find them...

Cheers!

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Old 03-21-2013, 01:26 PM   #5
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Day trippr,

Thank you very much for the advice on setting up the system. Once I begin this project, this is the route I will be taking per your advice and my own research. I'm glad you commented on the pump issue because I was indeed worried about the noise and electrical consumption.

I had hoped I would be able to use a much smaller submersible pump (a good fish tank pump maybe) for circulating the water and it seems that should not an issue.

My final concern is keeping the lines cold enough. The keezer would be attached to a temp module and likely set to shut of at 34F. I would need to make sure the trunk line temp and temp inside of the keezer are as close as possible (if not the same) because I would like to also attach the pump to the same module. So all of the system shuts of when we are at temp and turns on when it needs to be cooled. Will the neoprene insulated tubing that you've shown in the picture be sufficient so "match" the temps in the keezer to rid me of this concern? If not, what sort of additional insulation could be used to ensure this effect?

Thanks again for your help with this!

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