New vs Used Corny?

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

Gizzygone

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 29, 2017
Messages
91
Reaction score
7
My local home brew store doesn’t have any corny kegs to purchase, so I’m turning to the internet stores...

Not that I’d know what to look for in person: but are there any reasons not to buy a used Corny keg online? Which retailers we can trust?

I’m not opposed to buying new either.... but which brand of new Corny keg is best?
 

balrog

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Nov 26, 2013
Messages
4,103
Reaction score
4,126
All mine are used, some from AIH, some from kegworks, some from Williams. Just depends on the deal and shipping. I've not had any issues, and I've gotten Pin lock, ball lock, converted ball lock, and converted some myself pin to ball. The only thing I will say is that one one or two I needed the fatter lid o-ring and keg lube to gain a seal easily. Other than that, they've been great.
 

Braufessor

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Dec 27, 2011
Messages
4,195
Reaction score
1,838
Location
NE Iowa
I have bought new and used of various styles. In general, used ones are fine - but I have had some that were better or worse. All of the more recent kegs I have purchased, I have purchased new as it is nice not to have to mess with them in terms of cleaning, or replacing parts, etc.
I have several of these new ones from AIH and have been very pleased with them. (Sometimes the are on sale for even a bit cheaper)
https://www.homebrewing.org/AIH-New-5-Gallon-Corny-Keg-Ball-Lock_p_5100.html
 

TANSTAAFB

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 10, 2010
Messages
2,678
Reaction score
531
Location
Western Slope
Definitely make sure that all o-rings have been replaced or factor that into the purchase price if they haven't. I replace poppets as well and have had to replace leaky relief valves. I bought most of mine from a local brew pub for really cheap so it was worth the parts.
 

jekeane

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2014
Messages
2,172
Reaction score
547
Location
Jacksonville
After buying a few new kegs from Adventures in homebrewing for $65 each on sale I decided I prefer new kegs.

That being said used ball locks for $35 are worth it.

Be sure to check Craigslist for used kegs before buying them online.
 

JohnSand

Moderator
Staff member
Mod
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
May 13, 2013
Messages
5,011
Reaction score
2,343
Location
Long Island NY
I have six used kegs from different sources. The only problem I had was that two bought online had had the top rubber re-glued. The glue had also attached the posts. A torch melted the glue. I replaced the posts, the rubber is scorched, I use them all the time. Those were listed as kegs that had some damage or dents.
 

PADave

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 13, 2015
Messages
1,780
Reaction score
770
Location
Saxonburg
I started buying new kegs on sale from AIH. Then there was a "deal" on used kegs, so I picked up a couple of them. Never again. I'll spend the extra couple of bucks for the new. IMO, the time spent cleaning, then replacing, o-rings, poppets, prv isn't worth the "savings."
 

grampamark

Icons clast. Inquire within.
HBT Supporter
Joined
Sep 1, 2017
Messages
9,282
Reaction score
17,461
Location
The Frozen Tundra/The Magic City
I started buying new kegs on sale from AIH. Then there was a "deal" on used kegs, so I picked up a couple of them. Never again. I'll spend the extra couple of bucks for the new. IMO, the time spent cleaning, then replacing, o-rings, poppets, prv isn't worth the "savings."
So, what do you do when your new kegs need to be cleaned and have the o-rings, poppets and prv replaced? It takes the same amount of time to maintain your own kegs as it does to prepare a used keg to be put into service. That kind of maintenance should be done on a regular basis.

There are about a dozen "Please help, my beer tastes funny!" posts a day on this board. Clean your damn kegs, people.

Mark
 

Gadjobrinus

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Aug 24, 2017
Messages
6,046
Reaction score
6,195
Location
Madison
I used 10 gallon cornys previously. For the time being, plan to cask and bottle condition, but there will be beers where I'd like to force carb and a corny is in order. I've seen them, but quite expensive. Anyone happen to have a suggestion for 15 gallon cornys?
 

schematix

Banned
Joined
Aug 14, 2011
Messages
6,785
Reaction score
4,831
If I had to do it all over again I’d buy a pallet of sanke kegs. In volume they are cheaper than new corny kegs.

One thing I wish I had never done was buy used kegs. More beer has the real Italian AEB kegs for like $119 with free shipping.

Too many random issues with old kegs. They are also unsightly, even after expensive cleaning.
 
Last edited:

Gadjobrinus

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Aug 24, 2017
Messages
6,046
Reaction score
6,195
Location
Madison
If I had to do it all over again I’d buy a pallet of sanke kegs. In volume they are cheaper than new corny kegs.

One thing I wish I had never done was but used kegs. More beer has the real Italian AEB kegs for like $119 with free shipping.

Too many random issues with old kegs. They are also unsightly, even after expensive cleaning.
Do you condition and serve from sankes, schematix?
 

schematix

Banned
Joined
Aug 14, 2011
Messages
6,785
Reaction score
4,831
Do you condition and serve from sankes, schematix?
Nope I have 13 corny kegs.

Just saying if I knew then what I know now, I’d go all sanke. Their overall design is much simpler and it’s sanitary too.

Corny kegs are a cleaning nightmare IMHO.
 

PADave

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 13, 2015
Messages
1,780
Reaction score
770
Location
Saxonburg
So, what do you do when your new kegs need to be cleaned and have the o-rings, poppets and prv replaced? It takes the same amount of time to maintain your own kegs as it does to prepare a used keg to be put into service. That kind of maintenance should be done on a regular basis.

There are about a dozen "Please help, my beer tastes funny!" posts a day on this board. Clean your damn kegs, people.

Mark
I clean them. But at least I know what's been in them. Getting used kegs with syrup residue still in them, that's been in there for who knows how long for $35-40, then spending $10-15+ on the replacement parts isn't that far away from the $70 for a brandy new keg. Not to mention you never know what condition you are going to get. To each their own, but like I said above, IMO $20 extra is well worth it to get new.
 

Gadjobrinus

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Aug 24, 2017
Messages
6,046
Reaction score
6,195
Location
Madison
Nope I have 13 corny kegs.

Just saying if I knew then what I know now, I’d go all sanke. Their overall design is much simpler and it’s sanitary too.

Corny kegs are a cleaning nightmare IMHO.
Gotcha. You know I've never used sankes for anything other than racking vessels for dry hopping. But I'll look into converting them for pressure. Thanks for the idea.
 

SanPancho

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Dec 17, 2014
Messages
2,530
Reaction score
724
Location
SF
Its all personal opinion. Ive had both. Doesnt matter.

AIH has always sent me good used kegs. They are reputable. They even have various grades of “used” so you have an idea of what might be an issue. Now I get new ones at wholesale so for me its easy choice for the same price. But with a reputable seller online or an in person sale you will be just fine. No rust, no sharp edges. Holds pressure. That’s basically it. Exterior appearance is irrelevant. If you want to be thorough then take an 11/16 wrench and you can open the posts and check. the rubbers. Orings are cheap.

“Needs to be cleaned before use” is a kind of dumb reason to avoid used. Even new kegs need a wash and sanitize. Not to mention you will likely wash it dozens of times during its lifetime anyways so whats one more wash?

Money is the only real issue. You can likely get four used for the price of two new. Thats not nothin. And a new corny is like a new car. Instantly depreciating asset. But if you have the cash and want the bling, then get new.

Plenty of award winning beer gets made in used cornies id bet. Ditto for new ones.

Its all personal preference.
 

SanPancho

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Dec 17, 2014
Messages
2,530
Reaction score
724
Location
SF
Their overall design is much simpler and it’s sanitary too.
Have to disagree. Sanke spear isnt nearly as easy to service as corny dip tubes and posts. Same for sanke connectors.

And as for sanitary, its only sanitary with a specific cleaning regimen that’s fairly rare for homebrewer to posses (id imagine).

So unless you happen to possess your own keg washer you are gonna open it up and clean it out, same as a corny.

At that point its a wash in my opinion. But you do have a point that sanke has fewer parts.
 

day_trippr

Moderna Or Bust! :D
Joined
May 31, 2011
Messages
36,698
Reaction score
19,352
Location
Stow, MA
Granted, fewer parts to service/maintain favors sankes. But inspection, cleaning, and ease of keg-hopping all favor corny kegs.
I have 16 corny kegs, all used, most bought over a decade ago (when one could buy "Grade A" ball locks for $35), and after the "new to me" de-labeling, thorough scrubbing inside and out, and replacement of all O-rings, they've been trouble free...

Cheers!
 
Top