Early ghetto kegerator workaround? - Home Brew Forums
Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Bottling/Kegging > Early ghetto kegerator workaround?
Cool Brewing Corny 5G & Mini Giveaway

Thread Tools
Old 12-20-2012, 04:33 PM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 14

Howdy... I'd like to switch to a keg system after Christmas, but I'm not in a super hurry to set up a kegerator, per se (though the wife is surprisingly on board with it if we can find a compact fridge used and make it look like a built in dining room cabinet).

Long story short, I was wondering if I could use my bottling bucket swamp-cooler style to house a corny keg (while swapping out small plastic picnic cooler ice packs) to keep the temperature somewhat low (I'm into nut browns, stouts, and porters, and don't really care if they're super cold) in my basement. Any reason why that wouldn't work?

Oh... and one other thing... While I'm not a super huge fan of bottling, I can certainly appreciate the conditioning process and the patience required to achieve good beer (I only just cracked my first ginger holiday beer that I bottled in early October). Will my kegged beer condition? Will it always be green? Can I buy an extra keg, fill it with something like a spiced ale that requires aging and just set it aside in the basement (after purging the oxygen) until I think it's ready for consumption?

Thanks for your advice.

Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2012, 09:46 PM   #2
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: , MA
Posts: 2,738
Liked 294 Times on 247 Posts
Likes Given: 165

The answer to both the questions is yes.

The "swamp cooler" will work fine as long as the temperature is somewhat consistent. I recommend using a carbonation chart/calculator to calculate the right pressure based on your temp and desired volumes of CO2, and leaving the pressure there till the keg's kicked. It'll take a couple weeks to carbonate, then you should be good to go.

Keep in mind that if the keg is warmer, the pressure will need to be higher. So make sure you get plenty of beverage line to balance the pressure (maybe try 15 feet?)

A keg is just a big bottle. You can certainly condition in there, if you're aren't in a hurry you can naturally carb in the keg as well.

Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2012, 09:52 PM   #3
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Lincoln, NE
Posts: 4,371
Liked 241 Times on 197 Posts
Likes Given: 35

Beers age in keg just like they do in bottles. The only difference is mainly just the method of carbonation. Things fall out of suspension and mellow over time no matter what vessel they're in. I will say that my bottled lagers have a slightly different taste than my kegged ones, though.

You can also get a cheap fridge from craigslist if you have the space. That will hold plenty of kegs with shelves removed and for about $40.
Den Faaborg Bryggeri

Originally Posted by davekippen View Post
Open log Fermenting and gas-can secondary?? I am planning my next brew right now!!

Reply With Quote

Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
How early is too early for a yeast starter? elHelgo General Beer Discussion 5 04-12-2014 02:10 AM
Kolsch yeast early activity - too early? Sasquatchbreath Fermentation & Yeast 3 08-24-2011 02:13 AM
help finding a workaround!!!! the_alaskan Equipment/Sanitation 18 08-16-2011 05:51 PM
My kegerator project early beginnings *question* PASSION8MAN Bottling/Kegging 4 06-22-2011 09:02 AM
super ghetto cheap kegerator springer Kegerators and Keezers 11 05-31-2010 10:20 PM

Forum Jump