Please help! New to kegging!

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btrhomebrew

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Thanks in advance for help.

I am really struggling getting my draught system to balance correctly.

My setup. Standard kegerator hooked to a corny keg with about 4ft of 3/16 inside diameter line.

I brewed a northern brewer Dead Ringer Kit. After secondary I put in keg and put on 10 psi of carbonation for about 2 weeks at 38 degrees.... After first pour about 3/4 beer 1/4 foam. Once settle it tasted good but still tasted like to distinct liquids in mouth. Thin at first then heavier.... Someone told me it is probably under carbonated so serve at 14 psi. Set it at that for few days and put temp at 42... Foam came out like crazy when went to poor. So next person told me to bleed it out and serve at like 3 or 4..... Frustrated

I don't know who to believe or what to do. Please help. I keep trying different things and lots of foam, and beer not tasting good anymore.

What should be my course of action for this batch? I am afraid i ruined it. Right now if I set psi low or high I am getting all foam. then when settles doesn't' taste balanced.

Any help would be greatly appreciated! I really want to save this batch.

Brandon
 
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btrhomebrew

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Another thing to note... I do have my tubing above the keg, none of it is below the beer line.
 

Cider123

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2 weeks at 10 psi and 38F sounds like a good combination. Perhaps your beer just needed to condition and settle in at that setting. 3/4 beer and 1/4 foam actually don't sound that bad. I bet if you left it and didn't fuss, it would have settled in after a week or two.

Now by messing around with it, the carb levels are wacked out. I am interested in how some of the more experienced folks here recommend getting back to square one again. It is not ruined, but might take some time to get it reset again to a good serving pressure.

When we are new at something, we tend to panic quickly and start spinning dials and moving stuff around. Many times, all that is needed is time.
 

Stauffbier

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A good rule of thumb for me is to serve at 1 lb of CO2 per foot of liquid line. With that said a 4 foot liquid line is probably too short. Longer lines will minimize foam. I run 12 foot lines and serve at 10-12 lbs CO2, and I get great pours.
 

MarsingRedneck

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After reading this thread and thinking about a kegerator also, I'm wondering if buying a couple 3gal kegs might be the answer. I mean you could have two different beers in it or the same kind and there should be plenty of room for the rest of the equipment needed, wouldn't there? Plus bottle some to take over to the neighbors/friends. Just asking.
 

Stauffbier

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After reading this thread and thinking about a kegerator also, I'm wondering if buying a couple 3gal kegs might be the answer. I mean you could have two different beers in it or the same kind and there should be plenty of room for the rest of the equipment needed, wouldn't there? Plus bottle some to take over to the neighbors/friends. Just asking.
There's really no right or wrong way. If you want to use 3 gallon kegs, 5 gallon kegs, 10 gallon kegs.... etc, etc... It's personal preference and depends on what type of unit/system you have.
 

daveooph131

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I agree with the other poster 4ft line is probably your biggest problem. I had 8ft and got foam if it was warmer outside, moved to 10ft and get great poors. But as noted temps play a factor as well.
 

Mycues1982

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I'm also new to kegging and here are a couple things I learned that help decrease and eliminate foaming. I moved from 5ft to 10ft lines for my ipas and similarly carbed brews. The increase in line length creates the pressure drop needed that way your carbonation doesn't come out in foam form. You can also chill your glasses to the same temp as the beer or rinse them out before pouring but I haven't needed to do that. I think you'll always get some foam at first till the pouring line is purged. I've also followed online c02 calculators per style and always have to go a couple psi higher than suggested to get the carbonation I desire.
 

martykegger

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Hi I have had the same problem the way to fix this is to de carbonate the keg by a fair bit by giving it a gentle shake side to side and releasing the valve if foam comes out just give it ten minutes and repeat 2 - 3 times then have your keg chilled to 4 degrees and start dispersion from 5 psi and work up from there u need a slow poor for high carbonated kegs. Your beer will have heaps of carbonation in it now as it's not separating the lines now with the correct carbonation. Highly over carbonated kegs disperses flat beer as it's all separated into foam and the flat beer settles on the bottom if this makes sense, this I promises will fix your beer and don't throw it out it always works out at the end
 

Drewski8986

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I agree with the 1' per psi I also carb at 12 psi and have 10-12' lines and have great pours and great carbonation off of 3/16" lines
 

TimelessCynic

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I have 5 foot 3/16 lines and a draft tower on top of my kegerator. My beer is around 40 F and set at 12 PSI. My beers pour quickly with the perfect amount of foam. Like the top fifth of the glass. Just tonight i tried 10 foot of line and a picnic tap to test my mobile setup. I found the beer came out too slowly and not foamy enough.

Everyone's setup is different and with my readings i have realized my experience is not the norm.

Go for 10 foot of line. Serve at 10 or 12. And cut down line by a foot until the perfect pint is poured. Make sure your beer is cold though because temp affects foaming.
 

DrunkleJon

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The consensus tends to be starting out with 10-12 foot lines will keep the super foamy pours down. If you notice that with your system it pours too slow and does not give enough head, you can always chop a foot off at a time until you get it dialed in. The purpoose of long lines is to provide resistance, not pressure drop. The resistance slows the pour so that when the beer flows from the tap into the cup the CO2 that is dissolved in solution will not all get knocked out and foam all over the place and leave you with a flat beer.

Also, I find that picnic/cobra style taps tend to foam more than permanant taps like Perliks or the like. And kudos on what sounds like you did the set and forget method. That is the best way to prevent overcarbonation which contribute to foamy pours. If the carbonation level is matched to the serving pressure, with lines that will provide enough resistance to slow the pour you will have happy beer.
 
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btrhomebrew

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Thanks all for the great advise. I am definitelly going to go get about 10-12 ft of line. Ok now for fixing this batch after all my playing around..

@martykegger You mentioned turning down the keg to 4 degrees or did you mean turn it down 4 degrees from where it is at.... It would freeze at 4 degrees.... but maybe that is what you were referring too?

Just curious! I want to fix this batch for sure!

Thanks all!
 

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Thanks all for the great advise. I am definitelly going to go get about 10-12 ft of line. Ok now for fixing this batch after all my playing around..

@martykegger You mentioned turning down the keg to 4 degrees or did you mean turn it down 4 degrees from where it is at.... It would freeze at 4 degrees.... but maybe that is what you were referring too?

Just curious! I want to fix this batch for sure!

Thanks all!
The technique would "work" in the sense the beer might pour- but it will go flat if you take more than a day or two to drink the keg. In order to keep the beer properly carbonated, you need to keep it at 10 psi at about 38 degrees. Lowering it means that the beer will lose carbonation.

You have a good setup with the pressure and temperature, and carbonation is temperature dependent. Check out this chart to see where you are (I like 2.4 volumes for most of my beers): http://www.kegerators.com/carbonation-table.php

Your serving lines to be as long as they need to be. For me, I started with 5', went to 8', then finally to 10'. I wish I had about 11', though, for higher carbed beers. The only disadvantage to too-long lines is it takes 2 seconds longer to pour a beer. If you feel they are a bit too long, you can cut a bit off but you can't make them longer- so go longer to begin with!
 

DrunkleJon

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To salvage this keg, you have two options. One, extend the beer lines and crank the pressure up to match the current carbonation level. You may have slightly fast pours. The better method, which requires some patience and the same longer lines is to turn off the gas, purge the headspace every so often for a couple days, and then put back on servig pressure for a few days to a week (at serving temperature) which should fix any overcarbonation you may have.

Just my opinion though.
 
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btrhomebrew

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Ok wow I really had things wrong!

I went and got 11 ft of new line... When I got home to replace it I released initially when I bought the setup the supplied me with 1/4 line.... So now I have 11 ft of the 3/16 inside diameter....

Is this too much? I hate to go smaller at this point.... I have it sitting at about 39 and 11 PSI right now. Should I try it with the long 11 ft line?

Thanks
 

Stauffbier

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Ok wow I really had things wrong!

I went and got 11 ft of new line... When I got home to replace it I released initially when I bought the setup the supplied me with 1/4 line.... So now I have 11 ft of the 3/16 inside diameter....

Is this too much? I hate to go smaller at this point.... I have it sitting at about 39 and 11 PSI right now. Should I try it with the long 11 ft line?

Thanks
That's exactly what you want. 3/16 lines are better, and 11 ft. is a good length to start with.
 

day_trippr

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Ok wow I really had things wrong!

I went and got 11 ft of new line... When I got home to replace it I released initially when I bought the setup the supplied me with 1/4 line.... So now I have 11 ft of the 3/16 inside diameter....

Is this too much? I hate to go smaller at this point.... I have it sitting at about 39 and 11 PSI right now. Should I try it with the long 11 ft line?

Thanks
What you had was the beer dispensing equivalent of a fire hose - and a totally ridiculous configuration. 10-12' of 3/16" ID beer line (and not Big Box Store vinyl, please) is where you want to start...

Cheers!
 
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btrhomebrew

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Thanks all.

It is pouring at a great rate now. i am still getting a lot of foam. Almost the whole glass. Still only set at 10 psi. I have poured about 2 glasses. Maybe i need to just keep going for it to work itself out. Once it settles it tastes pretty good!

Thanks
 

Stauffbier

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Thanks all.

It is pouring at a great rate now. i am still getting a lot of foam. Almost the whole glass. Still only set at 10 psi. I have poured about 2 glasses. Maybe i need to just keep going for it to work itself out. Once it settles it tastes pretty good!

Thanks
It's possible that your keg is over carbed. Take it off the gas, and keep serving it like that. When it no longer has enough pressure to pour put it back on the gas. It might take a couple days to run out of pressure, meanwhile the co2 in the beer might equalize better.
 

DrunkleJon

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It will take plenty of time. You will pour it will appear to be out of gas yet it will still be overcarbed. Purge all the pressure from it repeatedly over the course of a few days. Only then do the set and forget method of putting it at serving pressure and leaving it that way for a week or so. You should eventually have a pour that is flawless.
 
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