Want to start kegging but...

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

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

jonbrout

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 3, 2009
Messages
140
Reaction score
4
I am kind of shocked at the prices of a basic keg set up. Like this:

Brew Logic Dual Tap Draft System- with Reconditioned CO2 Tank :: Midwest Supplies Homebrewing and Winemaking Supplies

am I just **** out of luck and have to cough up 200 bucks for 2 reconditioned kegs, reconditioned 5 #co2 tank and picnic taps?

with a setup such as this can you replace the black end piece of the picnic tap with a nicer tap handle?

also, with the dual regulator can you use one line to force carb and split the other line into two for two dispensing kegs instead of just one? If so, what extra parts would i need?

Thanks for the input :mug:
 

HoosierDaddy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2008
Messages
45
Reaction score
0
Location
Westfield, IN
Well price is a relative thing I suppose but most start up keg kits I've priced have been around $150 and thats just with one keg. If they're throwing in two I don't think that's out of line.

Keep in mind that a big chunk of the cost is a one time shot other than refilling your C02 tank. When you factor in the time spent filling and cleaning bottles, $200 isn't all that out of line. If it is, you probably need to rethink the hobby. :mug:
 

beerthirty

big beers turn my gears
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
2,584
Reaction score
42
Location
Podunk, VA. Not far from the NC line.
Dual reg or dual gauge? Most setups sold are dual gauge so you can read tank pressure(what a laugh). If it is a dual reg than yes you could run two different pressures off of it. Definitely watch craigs list. I get spare cornies in town for $25 ea. Buying the kit to start would reduce the headache of learning so you could drink beer while you learned. One missing part with two full kegs would drive me nuts.
 
OP
J

jonbrout

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 3, 2009
Messages
140
Reaction score
4
I've been looking on craigs for at least 2 weeks with not a single hit. I live in TN and well... yea...****ville. lol

The descriptions says

"You are able to control the pressure in each keg individually. What this means it that you can be drinking out of one keg, while the other is carbonating."

and

"a double dual gauge regulator that tells you how much pressure you have on each keg as well as how much CO2 you have left"

So what am I suppose to take from that? If i can control pressure in each it would be a regulator right? ...but it says double dual gauge as well... Could someone check the picture / inform me for certain before I order? thanks again. Forgive my kegging ignorance.

Edit: also what about connecting a tower or spicket to the picnic tap's tube?
 

JuanKenobi

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 23, 2009
Messages
380
Reaction score
5
Location
Martha's Vineyard
I just took a look at the set up you linked to. You will be able to have 2 lines with different pressure. That's a pretty good deal for what you get. Also I agree with Beerthirty that, if you get the kit, you won't have to worry about forgetting anything by piecing it together yourself. If you're worried about $200 then I wouldn't be thinking too much about towers and tap handles as you'd be adding quite a bit to your costs. I wish my initial set-up had that regulator.

If you're serious about getting into kegging I'd go for this kit. You won't regret it. Then once you've gotten into it a bit you'll be better equipped to upgrade later.
 

beerthirty

big beers turn my gears
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
2,584
Reaction score
42
Location
Podunk, VA. Not far from the NC line.
That is a dual reg, dual gauge system. Yes, you would be able to serve and carb at the same time. For the faucet question. There are available faucet/ cornie out connectors available. You would remove your serving line and connector from the keg and plug the faucet/connector assembly onto the keg. the faucet would sit on top of the keg. Beyond that you would need a shank and faucet and a place to mount the shank(through a fridge door or through a keezer collar. I have a fauct/connector combo that I use when a keg is taken to a party.
 

dontman

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 11, 2008
Messages
2,401
Reaction score
33
Location
Philly, PA
It is a dual regulator system with a third gauge to monitor tank pressure. The other poster was referring to the fact that the tank gauge is largely useless because the tank stays at the same pressure until the tank is virtually empty and then just drops to zero all at once.

Personally I found $200 to be a bargain once I started to price out the pieces individually. With a fridge I spent $380 and had two kegs of cold beer on tap in my kitchen. For another $100 even I had four more kegs to keep the pipeline very full.

As far as splitting for two kegs and a force carb line, I'm not sure the expense justifies it. It is easy to just unsnap one of the gas quick disconnects from a keg and pop it on the keg you want to carb to pressurize it. But then again I only have a two keg fridge so I would not be able to have three kegs connected at once regardless.

Finally, if you are going to go with a tower then get that kit instead, don't waste the money on the picnic taps and associated lines. (My wife drew the line at having a tower in our kitchen. Without the tower I have made a nice hardwood countertop on top of the fridge. Nice compromise for us both.)

Edit: PS: I was shocked too at those prices! I couldn't believe I could get a full two keg kegging system for only $200! I wasn't even thinking about kegging until I saw how cheaply I could get started. Isn't it great!
 

dontman

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 11, 2008
Messages
2,401
Reaction score
33
Location
Philly, PA
plug the faucet/connector assembly onto the keg. the faucet would sit on top of the keg.
How does this work with balancing the system? As it was I had to upgrade to 10' lines over the 5' ones. Wouldn't the faucet connector assembly just shoot out pure foam?

I've seen these things and they appeal to me because I have so much hose and so little space I just don't have faith that they would balance out as well.
 
OP
J

jonbrout

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 3, 2009
Messages
140
Reaction score
4
Thank you everyone for the replies. I foresee me purchasing this in a day or so.

One last question:
When beer in the keg is fully carbed is there a way you can disconnect it from the co2 and take it to a party per sey without needing a pump? I only ask because if i can't simply put extra psi in the keg before i disconnect I'll be ordering a hand pump too.

Perhaps extra psi before disconnect would only dispense half the keg before it went dead? (that's just my skewed logic talking)

Gracias :mug:
 

tndave

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 25, 2009
Messages
85
Reaction score
0
Location
Cleveland, TN
I bought the 4 keg system from Midwest. It's not much more $ than what you're looking at. There is only one regulator though. There is a manifold with off/on valves for all four kegs. Some of the crimp on hose clamps leaked on mine. So, I replaced all of them with worm clamps, no big deal. There is an old saying...once you get it home, it's not what you paid, it's what you've got. IMO it's a good starter kit, at least for me. I plan to build a new manifold for 6 or 8 kegs with a regulator for each sometime in the future, but for now this is working very nicely...BURRRP!!
 

dontman

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 11, 2008
Messages
2,401
Reaction score
33
Location
Philly, PA
Thank you everyone for the replies. I foresee me purchasing this in a day or so.

One last question:
When beer in the keg is fully carbed is there a way you can disconnect it from the co2 and take it to a party per sey without needing a pump? I only ask because if i can't simply put extra psi in the keg before i disconnect I'll be ordering a hand pump too.

Perhaps extra psi before disconnect would only dispense half the keg before it went dead? (that's just my skewed logic talking)

Gracias :mug:

Nah, not even half. You'd just get foam for the first couple pours then a couple good pours, then nothing.

Also, once you have properly carbed keg beer flowing you would never want to drop back to college style pumping, mixing really bad, horrible, nasty air in with your painstakingly hand-crafted homebrew.
 

beerthirty

big beers turn my gears
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
May 22, 2008
Messages
2,584
Reaction score
42
Location
Podunk, VA. Not far from the NC line.
How does this work with balancing the system? As it was I had to upgrade to 10' lines over the 5' ones. Wouldn't the faucet connector assembly just shoot out pure foam?

I've seen these things and they appeal to me because I have so much hose and so little space I just don't have faith that they would balance out as well.
The balance sucks but when they get drawn fast enough at a party, that helps. There is a thread about installing a epoxy mixing stick(or 2) into the keg diptube that slows down the flow and helps balance the system. I will try to find it and post a link.
Here it is. https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f35/cure-your-short-hose-troubles-100151/

For parties since I haven't had the $ to build the system that uses 20 oz paint ball tanks I just use the 16 gram cartridge injector. When someone bitches the keg is empty I hook it up and add a bit more gas, then remove it. Leaving it hooked up for the non homebrewer to mess with will get you a broken injector and foaming beer. The cartidge price is ridiculous. I cant wait for money to permit a 20 oz system.
 

tndave

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 25, 2009
Messages
85
Reaction score
0
Location
Cleveland, TN
Sorry, I didn't read every post before I jumped in. If you're going to a party take the CO2 tank with you, no big deal. You will get the hang of it. Check THIS out...Dude! I didn't notice you were in Nashville you need to check out RebelBrewer Tom is a good man and very knowledgeable!! Tell him Dave from Cleveland, TN sent ya...
 

dontman

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 11, 2008
Messages
2,401
Reaction score
33
Location
Philly, PA
The balance sucks but when they get drawn fast enough at a party, that helps. There is a thread about installing a epoxy mixing stick(or 2) into the keg diptube that slows down the flow and helps balance the system. I will try to find it and post a link.
Here it is. https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f35/cure-your-short-hose-troubles-100151/

For parties since I haven't had the $ to build the system that uses 20 oz paint ball tanks I just use the 16 gram cartridge injector. When someone bitches the keg is empty I hook it up and add a bit more gas, then remove it. Leaving it hooked up for the non homebrewer to mess with will get you a broken injector and foaming beer. The cartidge price is ridiculous. I cant wait for money to permit a 20 oz system.
Thanks B30 I actually had read that thread and wondered if they would be the solution to my concern. It is appealing to me the idea of a nice clean fridge with no hoses everywhere. Plus you can go with a more solid tap for it. The question is whether a couple mixing sticks would provide enough resistance. Heck I'd be willing to throw $10 bucks just testing the thesis.

For portability I would do the rolling trashcan ice chest keg cooler. It is transportable, hold everything you need to serve two kegs and it doesn;t get too heavy until you put it all together in the can - 2 kegs , co2, hoses taps and 50 pounds of ice. If you to get all fancy schmancy you get shanked perlicks and attach them to the lid or the front of the can
 

Unabrewer

New Member
Joined
May 1, 2009
Messages
1
Reaction score
0
Location
Nashville, TN
Just a really quick note (I am at work). If you are using 1/4" Beer line, you need to switch to 3/16". There is about 2lb per foot MORE of resistance and 10ft of 1/4" is about equal in resistance to 3ft of 3/16" (1/4" beer line is better for long runs). With 3ft of 3/16" beer line, you should be able to keep your keg at 12psi and have 1 to 2 psi left over at the tap. This will maintain your carbonation, save you CO2 and give you a perfect pour at the tap.

(This is a simplified "Thumb rule" based on a line balancing equation that I don't have time to post)

Hope this helps,
Tom in Nashville (the same one that was mentioned above - Thanks Dave)
 

jdspaceman

Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2010
Messages
7
Reaction score
0
Location
columbus, oh
any reason to go with 1 type vs the other? found a guy with pin locks, but can switch you over to coke ball locks for a bit extra. apparently these ball locks are different from pepsi locks.
 
Joined
Jun 2, 2008
Messages
2,310
Reaction score
364
Location
Home, where the beer is
I believe ball locks are more popular, but they are basically the same. The only differences are the disconnects, and the kegs are a little shorter and wider than Pepsi kegs. If you have a mix of ball/pin locks, you'll need to switch the disconnects to go from one to the other.
 

jdspaceman

Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2010
Messages
7
Reaction score
0
Location
columbus, oh
So there is no reason why not to use the pin locks? the style of connection doesn't do anything different to the beer? to your knowledge, is one harder to clean or service?
 

Yooper

Ale's What Cures You!
Staff member
Admin
Mod
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jun 4, 2006
Messages
74,940
Reaction score
12,874
Location
UP/Snowbird in Florida
So there is no reason why not to use the pin locks? the style of connection doesn't do anything different to the beer? to your knowledge, is one harder to clean or service?
No, you could use either one. Just make sure when you buy the kegging gear that you buy the set up for the pin locks! Pick one kind or the other- as the other poster said, they aren't interchangable.
 

BuonAnno

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 8, 2010
Messages
143
Reaction score
0
Location
Downingtown, PA
To address the original question…..

$200 is quite reasonable if you are not willing to wait out Craig’s List and don’t want to piece everything together yourself. I just finished my set-up last weekend and here is my price breakdown.

Mini Fridge- Free from Craig’s List
w/ collar- $25 in material from Home Depot
Ball Lock Cornies (4)- $70 Shipped
5# CO2 Tank w/ Dual Regulator Manifold (Lines & Gas Disconnects) and a spare Dual Gauge Regulator- $120 Shipped
Picnic Tap w/ Liquid Disconnects (2) - $14

So for basically $229 I am able to have two cornies in the fridge while two others condition. In total it took me three months of checking Craig’s List, the classifieds on this site and random internet retailers to find the best price.

Hope that helps and good luck!
 
Top