Hefe Weizen/kegging/foam

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Mbarabe1978

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Hi all,
I'm new to kegging and my first beer I have tune the system are an Hefeweizen and a saison. 2 highly carbonated beer. That being said I'm struggling to get a decent pour without too much foam. For my Hefe, I had to go overboard with beer line length... Very slow pour but no foam. I guess I have room to shorten my beer line.
On my Saison I have a 20' 3mm ID Eva Barrier tube...which seems crazy. The pour is quite slow and still foamy!
I first used picnic tap which I thought could cause more turbulence... But I've got an identical problem with my new Nukatap.

I'm bit lost on what I should do... Just settle for a very slow pour?
From what I read, a typical pour rate would be a 10sec/pint... That seems quite fast! At least for heavily carbonated beer...
Slightly off topic. I'm using Eva Barrier line. It seems that the resistance is fairly low /foot vs other. I feel a 4mm 15' line is on the very short side even for a 12psi served beer.

Any suggestions will be welcome and helpful.

Thx
 

jdauria

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Having 2 different size lines, 3 mm and 4 mm probably does not help as it would make it easier if both lines were same diameter. What were both beers carbonated at? What PSI are you set at?

Doing some searching online, the 4mm lines have 2.9 lbs of resistance per ft, 5 mm only 1 lb per ft and what More Beer recommends when long lines are needed), could not find 3 mm...but I would assume maybe 4.8 lb per ft based on the 1.9 lb increase decrease between 4 and 5mm. So part of your problem is the long smaller diameter lines at large lengths seems to be putting a lot of resistance on your lines. The formula for balancing lines is Pressure = (Length of Beer Line in Feet x Line Resistance) + (Gravity x .5). So let's take your Saison., if you put 4 mm lines in instead of 3 then 20 ft 4 mm lines...so Pressure = (20x2.9) + (Gravity x .5), where gravity is the distance between center of your keg and your faucet. So using my 1.5 foot estimate , we then have Pressure = (58) + (1.5x.5) or 58 + 0.75, so you would need PSI of 58.75 to pour that Saison properly. If you cut to 10 feet 4 mm line, PSI would be 29.75, 5 foot 4 mm lines, PSI would need to be 15.25 PSI and so on. Just remember, if you carbonated your Saison or Hefe at say 18 PSI, you want that line calculation to come out to 18 psi, if it's lower than that, over time the keg will drop pressure down to the set PSI and your keg will no longer be carbonated at the volume you wanted.

Sometimes it helps to have different sets of lines depending on what you are serving and what the carbonation level of the beers are, for example, short lines for low carbed English beers, normal lines for most beers, then longer lines for highly carbed beers. However, unless you have more than one regulator to control the PSI of different kegs, you will be serving everything on tap at the same pressure, so would need to plan according. I brew mostly lagers, so for myself, I use 4 feet of 4 mm line and carbonate and serve at 12.5 PSI. Which one more time using the formula Pressure = (4 feet x 2.9 resistance ) + (2 foot height x .5) or P = 11.6+1, so pressure = 12.6. Which is close enough to 12.5 for me. When I do have a higher carbonated beer, I will change lines and only serve that beer until it's gone, since no way I can serve a Hefe and say a Pilsner at the same PSI.
 
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Mbarabe1978

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Doing some searching online, the 4mm lines have 2.9 lbs of resistance per ft, 5 mm only 1 lb per ft and what More Beer recommends when long lines are needed), could not find 3 mm...but I would assume maybe 4.8 lb per ft based on the 1.9 lb increase decrease between 4 and 5mm. So part of your problem is the long smaller diameter lines at large lengths seems to be putting a lot of resistance on your lines. The formula for balancing lines is Pressure = (Length of Beer Line in Feet x Line Resistance) + (Gravity x .5). So let's take your Saison., if you put 4 mm lines in instead of 3 then 20 ft 4 mm lines...so Pressure = (20x2.9) + (Gravity x .5), where gravity is the distance between center of your keg and your faucet. So using my 1.5 foot estimate , we then have Pressure = (58) + (1.5x.5) or 58 + 0.75, so you would need PSI of 58.75 to pour that Saison properly. If you cut to 10 feet 4 mm line, PSI would be 29.75, 5 foot 4 mm lines, PSI would need to be 15.25 PSI and so on. Just remember, if you carbonated your Saison or Hefe at say 18 PSI, you want that line calculation to come out to 18 psi, if it's lower than that, over time the keg will drop pressure down to the set PSI and your keg will no longer be carbonated at the volume you wanted.

jdauria - Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts.

Worth noting… I carbonated with the set and forget for 2 weeks procedure. I have to assume the carbonation is right. 20 psi @ 36F for 3.5 volume CO2.
FYI. I actually didn't have the 3mm and 4mm line used simultaneously.
For beer line length calculation, what's the pour rate expected from it? I'll have to assume 10 sec/pint (seems the most common value found online).
I've seen the values for resistance online as you mentioned. I can see can differ for a same ID depending of the material. E.g vinyl vs polyethylene. I would like to suggest the Eva Barrier has an even lower resistance than that according to my observations...
Since my original post I ran another test. From this web site Beer Line Length Calculator I used a 7.5' 4mm as calculated (used 20 psi). I clearly got a faster flow rate (>10s/pint) as assumed in the calculation (And a lot of foam!). So, I have to conclude the resistance of that Eva Barrier is less. Then I used a 15' where it seems to have a pour rate closer to the 10 s/pint. But still super foamy pour… So, I'm scratching my head a lot…
These calculation are pretty simple stuff and I thought it would've been pretty easy to apply… Doesn't work for me so far.
I did assumed that beer line balancing calculations were giving a good compromise between pour rate and foam and that higher resistance was only gonna affect pour rate without creating more foam. I'll have to conclude I was wrong. Somehow I have a hard time to believe the right resistance/line length for proper foam is that narrow.
 
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