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Old 11-16-2012, 02:37 AM   #1
suzanneb
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i need to force carb 5 gallons of cider. Since it is my only keg, when carbed i will be bottling all 5 gallons. have never done it before so i have some questions.
1- can i do it at room temperature? all the threads i have read involve cooling the beer first but i have no way of doing this other than leaving keg outside. (it is around 40 now. so if that will help i can try that)
2- what pressure do i use. i have seen 30 lbs for 2-3 weeks. but i am guessing maybe it is different pressure or time if you are bottling.
3- i used 5 tabs of campden to kill the yeast off about 3 days ago. how do i know if it worked or not? do i need to worry about this possibility? i am backsweetening with juice so i dont want any surprise bombs?
4- i have read a few posts about speeding up the carbing process by shaking the keg etc. any suggestions. i really don't want my only keg being full for 2-3 weeks as i have other stuff i wanna carb too.

any links or suggestions are appreciated.

 
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Old 11-16-2012, 06:35 PM   #2
suzanneb
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anybody???

 
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Old 11-16-2012, 07:23 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suzanneb View Post
i need to force carb 5 gallons of cider. Since it is my only keg, when carbed i will be bottling all 5 gallons. have never done it before so i have some questions.
1- can i do it at room temperature? all the threads i have read involve cooling the beer first but i have no way of doing this other than leaving keg outside. (it is around 40 now. so if that will help i can try that)
You can do it at room temperature but you must use much higher pressure to force carb. see chart below.

http://www.kegerators.com/carbonation-table.php

Quote:
2- what pressure do i use. i have seen 30 lbs for 2-3 weeks. but i am guessing maybe it is different pressure or time if you are bottling.
Again refer to above chart, if you are doing set and forget it will likely take a couple of weeks at the higher pressure.


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3- i used 5 tabs of campden to kill the yeast off about 3 days ago. how do i know if it worked or not? do i need to worry about this possibility? i am backsweetening with juice so i dont want any surprise bombs?
A few details missing to give an accurate answer. Was fermentation completed? Did you wait for the cider to clear then rack the cider to a new vessel? If the cider was not completed, clear and racked off the yeast, you will most definately have renewed fermentation/bottle bombs.

Additionally campden alone is not enough to kill yeast to backsweeten. You also need to add potassium sulfite. Or again you will have bottle bombs.

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4- i have read a few posts about speeding up the carbing process by shaking the keg etc. any suggestions. i really don't want my only keg being full for 2-3 weeks as i have other stuff i wanna carb too.
Yes you can speed up the carbonation process by applying higher pressure and shaking the keg. When doing this for chilled beer you would ramp the pressure up to about 30psi or so and shake it like it owed you money. Since you are wanting to do with room temp, you would need to up the pressure even more.

And finally bottling if you try to bottle this at room temp after it is carbonated, it is going to foam like crazy.
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Old 11-17-2012, 04:49 PM   #4
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Campden is potassium metabisulfite, I think the previous poster was hinting at adding Sorbate which is a yeast inhibitor, used a lot in home winemaking when back sweetening white wines.

 
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Old 11-17-2012, 05:08 PM   #5
suzanneb
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thanks for the replies.
the cider isn't very clear really. i was gonna add some sparkalloid or whatever but couldnt find any locally.
how clear does it have to be?

how much sorbate for 5 gallons. and for how long does it need to take effect?

once that is done i will rack off into a keg and try the long and slow method.

i guess i wil try to do it outside so it will work a little?
thanks
j

 
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Old 11-18-2012, 03:08 PM   #6
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Your going to want it clear. If you have a bunch of suspended yeast when you transfer it will likely overwhelm the sorbate and start up fermentation again when you back sweeten. You would also add this after racking to a new vessel.

You can also use plain gelatin to spead up the clearing process lots of threads on here about that.
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Old 11-18-2012, 08:14 PM   #7
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I carbed some cider about a week ago. I'm going to do a test pour later today, I'll let you know how it goes.

I put the keg in my basement, which stays around 60F. I set my regulator at 28psi I was aiming for 2.85 vols) and rocked the keg back and forth for about 10 minutes total (in short bursts while i was waiting for the microwave or during tv commercials), which is when the bubbling slowed considerably. Then I set the keg upright, pressurized it, and turned the tank off. Then I could tell if the cider was absorbing more CO2 because the regulator would drop. After a day or two of the pressure dropping it stabilized. I put it in my fridge a few days ago, now all I have to do is pour a glass and see what happens.

 
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Old 11-18-2012, 08:48 PM   #8
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Keep in mind that while you can force carb at room temperature with no problem, you can't really bottle from the keg at room temperature without a ton of foaming and so the cider will lose carbonation when trying to bottle it. Warm carbonated beverages foam like crazy when dispensed.

Also, like mentioned, campden (potassium metabisulfite) doesn't "kill off the yeast" in the least. Winemakers use it all the time because brewer's yeast is amazingly tolerant of sulfites.

So the yeast will still be working, and it will probably be fine in the keg, because kegs can hold a lot of pressure, but it'll blow up bottles for sure if kept at room temperature.
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