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Old 10-15-2009, 07:01 PM   #1
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Searching, but unable to find the answer to this. Are there any problems that I can expect if I fill my 5 gallon kegs with, say, 2.5 or 3 gallons of beer? Are the processes for carbonating the same as if I used 5 gallons of beer?

 
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Old 10-15-2009, 07:03 PM   #2

Same process, no problem.
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Old 10-15-2009, 07:04 PM   #3
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+1 no problem. Have done this many times.
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Old 10-15-2009, 07:05 PM   #4
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A wee bit more oxidation potential...otherwise, not a problem...

 
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Old 10-15-2009, 07:08 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuggs View Post
A wee bit more oxidation potential...otherwise, not a problem...
Couldn't you just purge the space with CO2 to fix that?

 
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Old 10-15-2009, 07:14 PM   #6
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You'll use extra CO2 doing 3 gal in a 5 gal corny, but other than that there should be no ill effects.

 
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Old 10-15-2009, 07:16 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RDWHAHB View Post
You'll use extra CO2 doing 3 gal in a 5 gal corny, but other than that there should be no ill effects.
not really .. Well maybe at first but once a full 5 gallon corny gets down to 3 then it will have the same amount of CO2 in it as one that starts with 3. The way I see it will even out at the end since you are always topping the CO2 off.
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Old 10-15-2009, 07:34 PM   #8
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The key is, "maybe at first". That first bit will never be made up. Once the 5 gallon keg gets down to 3 gallon they should take about the same CO2. But, you served 2 gallons of delicious beverage. On the 3 gallon all you've done is fill up the headspace.

It will take more CO2 (per gallon) than the 5 gallon. Not that much though.

 
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Old 10-15-2009, 08:16 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by humann_brewing View Post
Couldn't you just purge the space with CO2 to fix that?

Yes...I don't know that it would actually wind up being a problem. It's just easier to get a good purge from a small headspace vs a large headspace.

If purging were perfect...refrigeration people could just purge the air out of the line with refrigerant. Unfortunately, it's not effective enough...so they wind up putting a vaccum on the system to get all the air out before they fill it with refrigerant.

I think the potential for oxidation is going to be just a wee bit higher --- than if you filled the keg w/ 5 gals of liquid.

 
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Old 10-16-2009, 04:12 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RDWHAHB View Post
The key is, "maybe at first". That first bit will never be made up. Once the 5 gallon keg gets down to 3 gallon they should take about the same CO2. But, you served 2 gallons of delicious beverage. On the 3 gallon all you've done is fill up the headspace.

It will take more CO2 (per gallon) than the 5 gallon. Not that much though.
More per gallon, less overall.

Presuming the keg is exactly 5 gallons, 5 gallons of beer will hold, let's say, 2.5 volumes of CO2. IOW, 12.5 gallons of CO2 at atmospheric pressure and 32F (the reference state for volumes). If the keg has 3 gallons of beer, the beer will contain 7.5 gallons of CO2. The remaining two gallons of headspace will contain pressurized CO2 at equilibrium. If the keg is being carbed at 40F, the pressure is 1.85 atm. This will account for (1.85v x 2gal=) 3.7 gallons of CO2 at 1atm and 40F, or 3.64 gallons at 1 atm and 32F. Giving you a total of 11.14 gallons total to carbonate 3 gallons to 2.5 vol in a 5 gallon at 40F.

 
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