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Why no higher end picnic taps?

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TechFanMD

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Or maybe they exist?

I've long wondered why the cheap plastic picnic taps are all that there is available in that type (not talking about getting regular taps or those ones that mount right to the ball lock). Yeah, they work and don't cause much trouble, but they also aren't ideal. For all of the weird gizmos and gadgets you can get for brewing and serving, many that seem useless or have a cheaper alternative.....why no high end picnic tap?
 

jseyfert3

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For all of the weird gizmos and gadgets you can get for brewing and serving, many that seem useless or have a cheaper alternative.....why no high end picnic tap?
Probably because they are inconvenient when used in the home setting. Who wants something expensive that's inconvenient to boot? You want cool gadgets to spend your money on, not inconvenient ones. If used at home, people only use because they are cheap, or as a stepping stone until they are ready for real faucets, cause it's a pain to open your kegerator/kreezer just to dispense. So nobody in the home setting is going to buy an expensive picnic tap, if they have money for more it'll be a real faucet.

There are other options for dispensing in the "picnic" type setting that aren't called that specifically. The ball lock faucet comes to mind.

That said, I think the Stainless Pluto Gun linked above kind of negates part of my argument. Again though, that would probably only really see use for on-the-go dispensing, as a higher end alternative to picnic taps. I highly doubt someone would buy it for the sole purpose of dispensing at home, even though people do get picnic taps for that.
 

bracconiere

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If used at home, people only use because they are cheap, or as a stepping stone until they are ready for real faucets, cause it's a pain to open your kegerator/kreezer just to dispense.

🖕 lol, i like my picnic taps, and i drilled a couple holes through my fridge door, i like the fact i can move them around and rotate to give a smooth pour across the side of the glass! if i could buy a couple stainless steel ones i would!
 
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TechFanMD

TechFanMD

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Probably because they are inconvenient when used in the home setting. Who wants something expensive that's inconvenient to boot? You want cool gadgets to spend your money on, not inconvenient ones. If used at home, people only use because they are cheap, or as a stepping stone until they are ready for real faucets, cause it's a pain to open your kegerator/kreezer just to dispense. So nobody in the home setting is going to buy an expensive picnic tap, if they have money for more it'll be a real faucet.

There are other options for dispensing in the "picnic" type setting that aren't called that specifically. The ball lock faucet comes to mind.

That said, I think the Stainless Pluto Gun linked above kind of negates part of my argument. Again though, that would probably only really see use for on-the-go dispensing, as a higher end alternative to picnic taps. I highly doubt someone would buy it for the sole purpose of dispensing at home, even though people do get picnic taps for that.
I greatly disagree. First, why would a better picnic tap be inconvenient compared to a plastic one? Second, I think you underestimate the number of people that just have a fridge or keezer and open the door to use a picnic tap for every pour. Yeah, lots of people do real faucets....but I'll bet it's less than 20% of people who keg. I am perfectly happy opening the door, it works for me, easy to clean, and I have the space to do it.

The ball-lock faucet lacks a length of hose (for a nice pour) and also adds height...which many of us don't have room for.
 

jseyfert3

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I greatly disagree. First, why would a better picnic tap be inconvenient compared to a plastic one?
I never said that. I said a picnic tap used in a home setting is inconvenient. Certainly if you're on the go something better than a cheap picnic tap would be nicer and more convenient.

Second, I think you underestimate the number of people that just have a fridge or keezer and open the door to use a picnic tap for every pour. Yeah, lots of people do real faucets....but I'll bet it's less than 20% of people who keg. I am perfectly happy opening the door, it works for me, easy to clean, and I have the space to do it.
Hmm. You really think less that 20% of people that keg use real faucets? To be fair, I forgot about the use case of someone who does one or two small kegs and sticks them in a regular fridge alongside food. But I would highly doubt that only 20% or less of the people with a dedicated fridge of some sort for beer (fridge/kegerator/kreezer) have real taps.

And just so you're aware, I did use picnic taps at home, so I have experience with both that and real faucets. Though to be fair I only ever intended to use them as a "stepping stone" while getting into it. Opening the lid of my kreezer every time certainly worked, but it's nowhere near as convenient as a real faucet, and warms up the kreezer plus adds lots of condensation if you have a couple people over all drinking.

Also, faucets are no harder to clean than picnic taps. I clean them the same way I cleaned picnic taps, flowing cleaner then sanitizer through the hose and faucet from my keg.

🖕 lol, i like my picnic taps, and i drilled a couple holes through my fridge door, i like the fact i can move them around and rotate to give a smooth pour across the side of the glass! if i could buy a couple stainless steel ones i would!
Oh come on. You are the #1 cheap person on this forum! ;) You malted your own barley for years to save money!

Also I'm curious, what does moving the picnic tap do that moving a glass could not do? If you're drilling for a hose, why not just mount a real faucet? Or you can do the mounted picnic tap I saw here a couple months ago, that was pretty darn cool for a budget keg setup.
 
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TechFanMD

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I never said that. I said a picnic tap used in a home setting is inconvenient. Certainly if you're on the go something better than a cheap picnic tap would be nicer and more convenient.


Hmm. You really think less that 20% of people that keg use real faucets? To be fair, I forgot about the use case of someone who does one or two small kegs and sticks them in a regular fridge alongside food. But I would highly doubt that only 20% or less of the people with a dedicated fridge of some sort for beer (fridge/kegerator/kreezer) have real taps.

And just so you're aware, I did use picnic taps at home, so I have experience with both that and real faucets. Though to be fair I only ever intended to use them as a "stepping stone" while getting into it. Opening the lid of my kreezer every time certainly worked, but it's nowhere near as convenient as a real faucet, and warms up the kreezer plus adds lots of condensation if you have a couple people over all drinking.

Also, faucets are no harder to clean than picnic taps. I clean them the same way I cleaned picnic taps, flowing cleaner then sanitizer through the hose and faucet from my keg.


Oh come on. You are the #1 cheap person on this forum! ;) You malted your own barley for years to save money!

Also I'm curious, what does moving the picnic tap do that moving a glass could not do? If you're drilling for a hose, why not just mount a real faucet? Or you can do the mounted picnic tap I saw here a couple months ago, that was pretty darn cool for a budget keg setup.
Indeed I do think that overall, less than 20% of keggers....I'll even go as far as to say 5 gallon keggers, have mounted faucets. In my experience, I know a lot of homebrewers who keg and who have dedicated refrigerators/keezers but do not have anything other than picnic taps. I've never heard anyone mention 'inconvenience' in having to open the door to pour. Maybe if you had a party or something, constantly opening the door to pout would suck....but thats rare. When I have this occurrence, I pour all at once or use a pitcher
 

day_trippr

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I'm not sure I'd want to grab a hunk of metal that's been sitting in a kegerator or keezer all night.
It'd be a bitch to get stuck to the damn thing...

Cheers! :D
 

jseyfert3

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Indeed I do think that overall, less than 20% of keggers....I'll even go as far as to say 5 gallon keggers, have mounted faucets. In my experience, I know a lot of homebrewers who keg and who have dedicated refrigerators/keezers but do not have anything other than picnic taps.
Well, I don't actually know anybody that kegs, but I only know three other people in person that brew or ferment at all, so I base my observation off my own experience plus what I see here. And while I see some picnic tap use, it's the minority. It could be that those people just don't post pictures very much. But follow the money...you were asking why there aren't better picnic taps. If there's no demand, nobody will make it.

Also, keep in mind there's a section of the population that buys pre-made kegerators, with faucets, to dispense commercial beer from kegs. There's also a section of homebrewers that buy pre-made kegerators, with faucets, to dispense homebrew beer from kegs.

Anyway, that's just my two cents. /shrugs

I've never heard anyone mention 'inconvenience' in having to open the door to pour. Maybe if you had a party or something, constantly opening the door to pout would suck....but thats rare. When I have this occurrence, I pour all at once or use a pitcher
If you never considered getting or using faucets, perhaps there's no point of reference to consider it an inconvenience. And parties? Well I guess that depends on the person, but while our kreezer was functional we averaged about one a month. Not like a house packed with people, but it's always amazing what 6 or 8 people drinking till two in the morning can go through.

I will say there's one downside to faucets, and that is you've got a hunk of metal that's not very cold, and the first pour can tend to foam. This can be countered with pouring just a bit, then stopping to let the faucet cool before proceeding. I'm hoping putting a computer fan blowing directly on the shanks helps this a bit, but if you regularly pour only one glass in a night then this is probably one time a picnic tap wins over a faucet.

In any case...you should try a faucet and get back to me with your thoughts afterwards. 😉
 

bracconiere

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Also I'm curious, what does moving the picnic tap do that moving a glass could not do? If you're drilling for a hose, why not just mount a real faucet?

i can like, turn it to the side, and just use my thumb to pour? but yeah i've often dreamed of having an extra $100 laying around for some nicer taps.
 

jseyfert3

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i can like, turn it to the side, and just use my thumb to pour? but yeah i've often dreamed of having an extra $100 laying around for some nicer taps.
This is getting off topic, but you did see that guy that mounted like 8 picnic taps and then used a piece of gutter as a drip tray, right? The whole thing actually looked quite decent.
 

bracconiere

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This is getting off topic, but you did see that guy that mounted like 8 picnic taps and then used a piece of gutter as a drip tray, right? The whole thing actually looked quite decent.
no i didn't, but i did instal a pro drip tray a year or so ago to upgrade from my folded sheet metal and bad attempt at welding it tight....and duck taped to the fridge. now i a nice SS one that is held on with three screws and pulls off for quick cleaning! think it was $30.


(maybe i should post in "Want to Buy" see if i can get some used taps? but i still think the idea of a SS picnic tap is awesome!!!)
 

dawn_kiebawls

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I've wondered the same thing. While the pluto gun is interesting, it's not what we're after. I say 'we' because @bracconiere myself and obviously @TechFanMD would buy one of more. That's 3 of 7 people to respond to this thread, or roughly 50% of the population ;)

Seriously though, why aren't there SS party taps? There are SS QD's for $20 EACH! You can buy perfectly functional plastic QDs for 25%

Nobody sees my QDs. Now, imagine rollin up to the tailgate of the campsite with a SS party tap :cool:
 

dawn_kiebawls

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unfortantly, someone is going to tell you that a jockey box with serious taps would be cooler!
That's true but I don't invite those people to my parties lol

Faucets are expensive enough as it is, now I'm supposed to buy a few extras that only get used once or twice a year? Pound sand, money bags!
 

dawn_kiebawls

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why no high end picnic tap?
I wonder if possibly the reason for no SS picnic taps would be that they warm up faster than the plastic models and would cause more foamy beers..? I'm trying to come up with a reason and thats the best I've got...I want one though. Cheers!
 

bleme

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Probably because they are inconvenient when used in the home setting. Who wants something expensive that's inconvenient to boot? You want cool gadgets to spend your money on, not inconvenient ones.
I like my picnic taps. My kegerator is on the back porch so if my taps weren't in the fridge, I'd always be fighting flies and other bugs, and probably mold. Also, the taps stay at fridge temp so there is no excess foaming at the beginning of the pour while the tap cools down.
 

jddevinn

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I will say there's one downside to faucets, and that is you've got a hunk of metal that's not very cold, and the first pour can tend to foam. This can be countered with pouring just a bit, then stopping to let the faucet cool before proceeding.
That just means that you need a coolant loop. :goat:😂

I had the threads of a pick nick tap that was connected in the conditioning fridge fail and lost the remaining of the keg and CO2 tank several years ago, haven't used one at all since.
 

FromZwolle

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That just means that you need a coolant loop. :goat:😂

I had the threads of a pick nick tap that was connected in the conditioning fridge fail and lost the remaining of the keg and CO2 tank several years ago, haven't used one at all since.
a cold hearted cat or child can easily do the same to a traditional tap, plus the mess on the floor.
 

wsmith1625

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i can like, turn it to the side, and just use my thumb to pour? but yeah i've often dreamed of having an extra $100 laying around for some nicer taps.
These are very nice faucets for $13.99. Sale ends today.
 

madscientist451

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I've been kegging for a few years now and don't plan on switching from picnic taps to faucets any time soon. Yeah, they are somewhat low-rent, and I've had some issues, but I only pour a glass or two a night, so opening the freezer isn't a big deal. And then I have small kegs I take to the river cottage and keep in a standard 'fridge and for me , the picnic taps are the best solution. Perhaps an upgraded "nicer" picnic tap would interest me, but not the ones above that are $40.
I might try the Pluto Beer Gun the next time I order something from More Beer.
 

tld6008

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I also have used picnic taps for the entire time I have kegged. My only complaint is the cheap construction, the size is perfect for my need and I really hope a stainless one hits the market sometime. I use a chest freezer and the taps reside in a large container of starsan when not being used. I never have to worry about gunk growing on them and changing the starsan out when it gets cloudy , every 1 or 2 months is low maintenance. When a keg kicks I do disassemble and thoroughly clean.
 

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I like that the picnic tap setups are kept in the chest refrigerator which is great for sanitation reasons. I'll use a tap setup for multiple kegs then just clean the ball lock disconnect and attach new tubing and new picnic tap for just $3! The effort and cost to clean and reassemble the line and picnic tap is not worth it. Besides my chest freezer is also tall enough that the top did not need to be elevated hence my setup does not have a convenient place for a standard beer facet. After 4 years of kegging and the above comments, picnic taps are obviously the best approach for me. BTW, I sure don't miss the 5 years of bottling!
 

jseyfert3

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Interesting. At this point I'm curious in seeing if the machine shop guy at work would want to fire up the CNC mill over the weekend and crank out a bunch of stainless picnic taps so I could sell them here. :D

The problem is machining stainless is a pain, the real way to do this is probably start with castings and machine or otherwise clean up the castings. Which obviously can't be done easily on a small scale. So it's almost certainly not worth our time to try and make a small batch of these.
 

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I've been kegging for several years now and have no desire to switch from a picnic type setup. I just got some of the regular Pluto guns and love them. They hang on the kegs easier. They also attach to eva barrier tubing easier.
I have shutoff valves a bit below the tap so I can turn it off when I'm done drinking and worry less about getting a fridge full of loose beer.
 

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I have shutoff valves a bit below the tap so I can turn it off when I'm done drinking and worry less about getting a fridge full of loose beer.
One of the greatest fears and nightmare clean up, not to mention the waste! But in the vein of easy brewing, picnic taps have there place.
 

Mtrhdltd

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I think the answer is pretty easy. Plastic is cheap and easy to mold into any shape. Stainless steel would be a lot more expensive, negating the primary appeal of a picnic tap, cost. Would any of you be purchasing stainless picnic taps if they cost as much as a stainless traditional faucet? On a side note I believe you are overestimating the percent of kegged beer drinkers that only use picnic taps. If I'm wrong one of you should start a business making and selling them.
 

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I started with picnic taps in my fridge. I had at least two instances where it fell and spilled in the fridge, so i was happy to get to upgrade to Intertaps.
 

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I prefer picnic taps on the kegs in my fridge. They hang over the keg with their nozzles pointing down. That helps them to drain and help keep mold from establishing on the silicone plug in the tap. I especially like that if the silicone plug does get funky, it costs little to replace it.
 

FromZwolle

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i use both. picnic for ciders and soda, normal taps for all my beers.

the taps aren't all that pricey, but shanks are how they get you. it's a racket, i swear.
 

bruce_the_loon

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Stainless steel beer tap with self-closing handle and a shape that should allow for a one-handed operation on the end of a hose like the plastic picnic taps. Just add a short handle and a suitable hose-barb fitting to the end. Also available in chrome and brass.

 

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I have the stainless pluto gun mentioned in post #2. It works great and is significant upgrade from plastic picknick tap.
 

tmendick

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Since no one has apparently used the Pluto guns... if you want a fancy seeming picnic tap, these will fit the bill. The only gripe I have is that you do have to adjust them to get the proper tension to open and close them. It’s easy to do and once it’s setup shouldn’t need to be messed with again

Dland beat me to it. :)
 
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