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DIY counter pressure filler

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clayof2day

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Hey All,

There was thread about this earlier and a cartoon of the filler was put up. I made a real life verstion and it works pretty sweet, so I figured I'd post some pics of it. The nice part about this one is that you guys probably almost everything you need to make it around the house already!

DIY Counter pressure bottle fillter (all parts):
From left to right: 1.) Air chuck attached to hose barb connected to 1 ft. of vinyl tubing. On the other end is a hose barb with a 1/4" flare fitting. My CO2 is split off the keg, and I did this so, I can take off my gas QD and screw this directly into the CO2 line which I am not using for dispensing. 2.) Drilled #2 stopper with a bottle filler run through the hole. A basketball needle valve is run through the stopper with a tire valve stem attached (this is really the business end and the only part I had trouble with, so there is a close up later) 3.) Cobra tap on 5 ft. of line with flare nut attached for easy changing.


The business end of the filler: I hacked a lot of rubber off the valve stem and found it fit inside the needle valve almost perfectly. I ran a bead of crazy glue around the outside and stuck it in the needle to make sure I got an airtight seal.
 
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clayof2day

clayof2day

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To Use:
Step 1.) shut off CO2 to non-dispensing keg (here I am filling from the line running to the right, and the line on the left is going to run to the air chuck)


and attach air chuck via flare nut (you can see where the QD was removed):


2.) Place bottle filling tube into end of cobra tap (fits nice and snug, no mods needed):


3.) Place stopper in bottle and use air chuck to fill bottle and purge with CO2 by depressing the valve stem

4.) Pressurize bottle, open cobra tap. Flow will begin and slow as pressure equalizes. Slowly release pressure by depressing valve stem and bottle will fill foam free.


When bottle is full, remove stopper, cap and you are good to go. I did 2 bottles like this about 2 weeks ago and they seemed to hold carb just fine. Works just like a traditional counter pressure filler and you can probably make it with stuff you have around the house.

P.S.
Sorry for the monster write-up, let me know if anything is unclear.
 

Bobby_M

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I made the exact same thing, but I didn't add a way to pressurize the bottle first. I really don't think it's necessary because as soon as beer flows into the bottle, with the stopper nice and tight, you build pressure quickly. It really doesn't foam. Give it a try.

Now, I still use an air chuck because I put schraders in the caps of a few soda bottles to take to homebrew club meetings and it allows me to add pressure and purge oxygen so it stays fresh and carbed.
 
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clayof2day

clayof2day

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I think the big advadtage of having the valve stem on there is so you can purge your bottle before filling.
 

Bobby_M

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I won't argue against that. I'm sure there's a tiny bit of o2 in the bottle when I first start filling. Maybe it affects long term taste, maybe not.
 
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clayof2day

clayof2day

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Agreed on my end too. O2 would only be an issue of you are bottling to send of to a future comp. or doing some long term conditioning or something. If you are bottling to take to the weekend party, no biggie. I had the stuff around, so I figured why not!
 

Grimsawyer

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If you weren't worried about purging the bottle with co2 could you just run a tube through a #2 stopper and jam that tube into the cobra (picnic?) tap? I take beer over to my buddies' houses from time to time in filp top bottles.
About 2 oz of beer is wasted each time I fill one. :( That makes me a sad panda...
 

Dycokac

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I might have missed a few things while trying my rig, which didn't include the counterpresure bits.

Does it take awhile to fill the bottles?

Should the pressure be set to between 5 and 10 psi?

I left mine at the 13 or so i dispense at and the bottles seemed to get about half full and then not fill any more unless i broke the seal. I also ended up taking a bath and am glad i did this in my basement on the cement floor :(
 

chiefbrewer

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I have been trying to find an inexpensive DIY counterpressure bottle filler, so I dug up this thread. I have a question for anyone who has ever built something similar to this. Do you need to put a y connector in your co2 line, so you have pressure to the dispensing keg, as well as the filler? I assume you do, but no mention is made of it in the description.
 

jas0420

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I left mine at the 13 or so i dispense at and the bottles seemed to get about half full and then not fill any more unless i broke the seal.
I haven't yet tried filling bottles from a keg, but I believe that's the idea Dycokac... You get the bottle up to pressure so the CO2 stays in suspension, then you control the flow into the bottle by releasing some of that pressure. Less pressure in the bottle allows more beer to flow in. The original poster controls his by depressing the valve stem like in picture #4. Others like BierMuncher "burp" the bottle by breaking the seal a little between the stopper and the bottle.

Thanks for the writeup and pictures... Very helpful!!
 

bbbrew

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I know this is an old thread, but you guys are the best for posting these DIY projects. I bottled 5 gallons this weekend and the configuration posted in this DIY project worked great. I'll have to comment more in a couple weeks when the last bottle has been opened to see if there were any ill effects but filling when off without a hitch. Burping the bottle with the stopper worked just fine and very little was lost in the shallow bucket as discussed earlier. I posted my configuration for anyone else that might have not made one of these.




Thanks again,
BB
 

Bacon488

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Agreed on my end too. O2 would only be an issue of you are bottling to send of to a future comp. or doing some long term conditioning or something. If you are bottling to take to the weekend party, no biggie. I had the stuff around, so I figured why not!
I know this is a VERY old thread... But in case someone else comes across it: I bottle using a similar setup, minus the CO2. To address the O2 issue, I bottled a Best of Show winner using that method. A 3.3% Mild that still tastes great in the bottle almost 7 months later. I'm totally sold on a simple cobra+racking cane+stopper setup and not at all worried about the lack of purging.
 
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