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Old 06-26-2007, 03:21 PM   #1
talleymonster's Avatar
Dec 2005
Posts: 2,142
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So I'm not ready to keg just yet, but I'm trying to put it all together in my head for when I do make the leap. I've been kinda browsing the kegging posts to get some ideas.

What I'd like to do is have a chest freezer with three or four cornies on tap, with a litle room to condition one or two more.
  1. What is an adequate size CO2 tank? and does it need to be kept in the freezer, or can it be on the outside with the hoses all ran through a small hole?
  2. Do you need a different regulator for each and every brew?
  3. What would be a ballpark cost for all the hardware i.e. hoses, couplers, regulators, taps, etc? Not including the cornies, the tank, and the freezer. Just a rough estimate.
  4. How often does one need to clean their setup? The drink lines, etc?
  5. By putting a fridge thermostat on the freezer, I imagine it would strain the motor/pump, etc. Does converting from a freezer to a fridge shorten the life of the freezer at all?
Thanks for all the help everybody!

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Old 06-26-2007, 03:32 PM   #2
FlyingHorse's Avatar
Mar 2007
Evanston IL
Posts: 1,856
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1. 5 lb is "adequate", but get the biggest one that fits. 10 and 20 don't cost much more than 5, and they're cheaper (per lb) to fill. Maybe have a 5 as well, for backup. Tank can be in or out of the freezer as you describe, doesn't really matter.

2. No, you can run them all with one reg and a manifold. Of course, you're then compromising a little by having all your beers at the same carbonation level.

3. A new tank will run $70-100, a new 2-gauge reg probably $40-50. You can do simple picnic taps for ~$10 per, which is basically your cost for tubing, clamps, etc.. At the high end are the perlick/ventmatic faucets, which will run you $30-40 each just for the faucet. A tower (if you use one) can run anyhwere from $100 to basically whatever you want to spend.

4. I clean my lines with BLC and StarSan every time I kick a keg. Well, almost . I've yet to disassemble my faucets and clean them.

5. The thermo should have a wide enough range on it (3-5 degrees) so that the compressor doesn't kick on that often. 5 degrees change in the ambient air won't budge the temp of your beer. (or you can put the probe into a glass of liquid, and set the tolerance tighter).

Hope that helps. Others will kick in with lots more, I'm sure.
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Old 06-26-2007, 04:16 PM   #3
HarvInSTL's Avatar
Apr 2007
Saint Louis, MO
Posts: 709
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1.) That depends on the size of freezer you get, as well as if you want to keep the tank in the freezer.
Honestly I wouldn't buy one new, keep checking craigslist til you find one at a decent price. I bought my 20# tank for $15 even though I didn't start kegging til a month later. Just be aware that if it is out of date you may have to pay to get it hydro tested, which could add another $15-30 to the cost.

2.) You do not need a different regulator for every brew but it would be a luxury. I would be nice to force carb a couple cornys while you are serving others at 3-5psi or what ever psi you need. I'm in the process of building a 6 regulator setup for less than $140 including check valves. I'll post some more info once I'm done.

3.) Your hoses will run between 30cents to 60cents a foot depending on where you get it. Gas/beverage disconnects around $5 each. Add another $2-3 each if you go with FFL instead of barbs for the FFL connectors. Cheap taps are around $25 including the shanks, nice ones are $35 plus the shank. Add a Ranco for another $60. A cheap dual regulator goes for about $35 plus shipping on eBay.

I'd say total for a 4tap setup, with cheap taps, and the dual regulator including hoses I'd say just under $300. Add another $100 if you want to go with nice taps.

4.) Everytime you empty a keg. It is simple and quick, so just do it!

5.) I dunno.
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Old 06-26-2007, 04:19 PM   #4
olllllo's Avatar
Apr 2006
Phoenix, Arizona
Posts: 13,330
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Do not buy cheap taps.
Perlick or Shirron: bar none.
If you must cheap out, a cobra tap is better than a cheap-o SS one.


Cheap taps stick. To the point that you may rip it off its mounting.

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