Anyone ever try to use a 15 gallon keg as a fermenter? - Home Brew Forums
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Old 04-23-2012, 10:52 PM   #1
sticks22
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Apr 2012
ottawa, ks
Posts: 21


How did it go? Were you able to clean it after fermentation was done? I want to use a 15 gallon keg as a fermenter any issues you might think of? I want to order another keg from ADVENTURES IN HOMEBREWING so I can make a 15 gallon batch and not rack 3 carboys. I can get a unmodified keg for $139.00. Any thoughts?


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Old 04-23-2012, 10:58 PM   #2
kvess
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Apr 2012
York, sc
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http://www.brewershardware.com/Ameri...hermowell.html

I am working on this right now.


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Old 04-23-2012, 10:59 PM   #3
RiverCityBrewer
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Dec 2009
Cincinnati, OH
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Yeah I used to ferment in an unmodified sanke with no problems. I bought a carboy cleaner that attaches to a drill to clean it and it worked great... others have have good success with just filling it with PBW or oxy and letting it sit for a day or so. The thing I liked best was steam sanitizing... just put about a gallon of water in it, put a foil cap on and boil for about 20 minutes. Let it cool and drain the water and you are ready for wort. I used an orange carboy cap, just boil it for a few and stretch it to fit the neck of the sanke.

 
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Old 04-23-2012, 11:05 PM   #4
John_FL
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Jan 2011
Boulder, CO
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They make great fermentors. But I wouldn't plan on putting 15 gallons in them. I only do ten so there is plenty of headspace.

 
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Old 04-24-2012, 12:49 AM   #5
eastoak
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Jan 2011
oakland, california
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sticks22 View Post
How did it go? Were you able to clean it after fermentation was done? I want to use a 15 gallon keg as a fermenter any issues you might think of? I want to order another keg from ADVENTURES IN HOMEBREWING so I can make a 15 gallon batch and not rack 3 carboys. I can get a unmodified keg for $139.00. Any thoughts?
like someone else also pointed out you might lose some of your beer out of the blow off unless you use something like fermcap. i ferment 15 gallons in a 20 gallon fermentor.

 
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Old 04-24-2012, 01:26 AM   #6
Redcat
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Jan 2012
Seattle, WA
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I'm fermenting right now in a 15.5 Sanke, with just a #11 rubber stopper. It seems to seal just fine, as I had bubbling through the airlock.

 
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Old 04-24-2012, 02:37 PM   #7
Nohup
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Mar 2011
Lake Saint Louis, MO
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It works great. I've done 13 gallons in a sanke with no problems. (use a blowoff just in case)

Only problem I've had is the temp-control. 13 gallons of wort has a huge thermal mass, and cooling is a bit uneven in my temp-controlled freezer. I let mine sit for a few hours before pitching, and shake/swirl it a bit during that time to even out the temp.

The thermowell fermenter cap is a great investment, buy one (or two) and don't look back.

I think it's easier to clean 1 sanke than 2 carboys, I use a sump-pump cleaning machine, and a homemade spinning carboy cleaner.

 
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Old 04-25-2012, 10:37 AM   #8
sticks22
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Apr 2012
ottawa, ks
Posts: 21

Im glad that some like the ss beer kegs as fermenters! Im going to be ordering one for such purpose.

One question though before I buy another one. Where is the cheapest place to get another one? Ive been qouted a price of $139.00. Any place cheaper or is that a fair price?
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Old 06-27-2016, 03:34 PM   #9
walbre89
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Jun 2016
Melbourne, VIC
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Hi everyone,

Sorry about reviving an old thread, I have a 15.5 gal sanke and am going to try this, but I'm unsure about the recipe.. Do I just double all ingredients like you would a cake mix etc?

Thanks in advance!

 
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Old 06-27-2016, 06:14 PM   #10
robertlhawley
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Nov 2015
Posts: 3

That's exactly what I've been doing for about a year now in my sanke keg. Note you'll want to double your yeast pitch as well...

And if anyone is looking and has a brewery nearby, check to see if they have damaged kegs that have been taken out of service. I got mine free that way...

Good luck!

-- bob



 
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