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gds

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Okay, this is about as 'newbie' as it gets, but...
I've brewed a couple of kit beers successfully, using random equipment borrowed (fermenter bin; demi-johns with airlocks). Secondary fermentation was in bottles (priming?) and all was successful. Yay!

But the laborious, hazardous task of bottling is a bore (and I have learnt that cappers, hammers and bottles lead to lost beer!), so I am looking for alternatives.

I know nothing about using pressure barrels/ kegs, but am trying to work out an alternative to bottling.

Please help a confused newbie! How do pressure barrels work? Is this the solution I am looking for? Oh dear god, where do I start?

Any advice very gratefully received!
Cheers
 

Scimmia

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Well, kegging is usually the alternative of choice, but I've got to ask, what's with the hammer for bottling? A simple wing-style capper is simple and effective, but it is boring.
 

McKBrew

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If you've got the money to invest in the kegs and a can get a cheap/free refrigerator or freezer to convert into a kegerator, then kegging is definately for you.
 

kenche

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You can read this for a general idea of building your own kegerator.

You need some kegs, most use old corneliuos (cornie) soda kegs, a C02 regulator, a C02 tank, beer and gas lines, and dispensing taps. All are readily available online.
 

Poindexter

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As above, a wing capper (US$8 in the lower 48) will let you put down the hammer. Hammer crowners are soooo old school many in the US haven't even seen pictures.

But if you have the cash, yes, kegging is the way to go. We use mostly 5 gallon soda (carbonated soft drink) kegs in the States. We have a member in England who uses the same equipment.

When going to a party we can walk you through drawing growlers (1/2 gallon glass jugs - or whatever- ) out fo the keg to take with you.

Good luck, where are you posting form?
 
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gds

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Thanks to all. The kegerator looks awesome: I will keep eyes peeled for a free/ cheap fridge to attack soon!

Although mostly what I will be brewing is good ol fashioned English real ale, served at room temperature.

I realise the hammer capper seems a bit old and brutal - they're sold in the only two major stores that stock any brewing stuff in the middle of Norfolk, Uk where I live. They don't stock wing cappers, but I think I need to get one off the web (if I ever go back to bottling).

Anyone any advice about using a modified pressure barrel for primary fermentation (with airlock), and then for secondary/ storage after that (with cap)? I remember that being used by the older generation when I was a kid...
 
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