Author Topic: Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?  (Read 9420 times)

Offline Wildrover

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Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?
« on: November 25, 2008, 10:01:57 PM »
I have usually jacked up the Psi to around 30, and shaken the corny for about 10 minutes then let it sit for a day or two giving intermittent shots of CO2 here and there.  It works to add pressure but I'm wondering if this is the best way to add carbonation.

I did a side by side test with a commercial beer out of the bottle and my beer tasted near flat compared to the bottled version.  I'm wondering if I should shoot the psi up a bit when I force carbonate of if there is another method that works better? 


Offline UselessBrewing

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Re: Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2008, 08:21:42 AM »
I have usually jacked up the Psi to around 30, and shaken the corny for about 10 minutes then let it sit for a day or two giving intermittent shots of CO2 here and there. 
After that, I leave the pressure on @10-15lb for a couple weeks after and it is fine.
Quote
I did a side by side test with a commercial beer out of the bottle and my beer tasted near flat compared to the bottled version.
Were they the same style beers? If so use the Carbonation calculator in BS to get the correct pressure's.

Cheers
Preston
The woodpecker pecks, Not to annoy, But to survive!

Offline Wildrover

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Re: Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?
« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2008, 12:35:07 PM »
Thanks,

I guess that was my next question, is it possible to get draft beer carbonated as much as bottled beer.  From your response I'm thinking I'm not leaving the gas on long enough.  I don't normally leave the gas on after I shake the beer. 

Do you do any drinking of the beer while its sitting for a couple weeks? 

Thanks again

Offline UselessBrewing

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Re: Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2008, 07:17:30 AM »
Do you do any drinking of the beer while its sitting for a couple weeks? 
If I said No, I would be lying. I do wait for about a week. After about a week the beer has absorbed enough Co2 to be drinkable. It usually takes two weeks for mine to be right.

Cheers
Preston
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Offline Maine Homebrewer

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Re: Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?
« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2008, 07:12:35 AM »
Quote
I guess that was my next question, is it possible to get draft beer carbonated as much as bottled beer

You can get draft as carbonated as bottled beer, but at that point it is under too much pressure to dispense without getting nothing but foam in the glass.
What I've done is close the valve to the CO2, reduce some of the pressure in the keg before dispensing, then kick the pressure back up when done to maintain the higher carbonation level.
"To alcohol! The cause of - and solution to - all of life's problems!" -Homer Simpson

Offline Wildrover

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Re: Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2008, 09:02:41 AM »
Quote
I guess that was my next question, is it possible to get draft beer carbonated as much as bottled beer

You can get draft as carbonated as bottled beer, but at that point it is under too much pressure to dispense without getting nothing but foam in the glass.
What I've done is close the valve to the CO2, reduce some of the pressure in the keg before dispensing, then kick the pressure back up when done to maintain the higher carbonation level.

I think this may have actually been my problem.  I've been complaining about my beer tasting flat and couldn't figure out why.  I kept jacking up the pressure and sure enough all I got was foam that would eventually calm down into beer but still tasted flat and warmer than it should.  I actually took the top off of both kegs to see what was going on inside the kegs.  I tried some beer from both kegs as well and to my surprise both beers are actually over carbonated  :-\

I put the kegs back on the system after I bled off of the CO2.  I put just enough to push the beer through the lines and that seems to have helped though there is still a lot of foam there isn't as much as there used to be and the beer seems colder and more carbonated now. 

Who knew that carbonating too much might actually produce flat beer?  Lesson learned I guess

Offline UselessBrewing

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Re: Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?
« Reply #6 on: December 08, 2008, 07:36:16 AM »
The foam may be coming from a few different things. Length of line, Over carbonated, (and believe it or not) not opening the tap all the way.
Lenght of Line is dependant on the temps and types of beer being served, A good average is about 6 feet.
When my kegs get overcarbed, I bleed the pressure to almost nil and then pour a beer. Leave it off the bottle for as long as it takes to undo the issue. Then put it back on the bottle. I have been thinking about getting a multiple head unit for my kegerator in order to vary the pressure on the different styles of beer that are in there. Stouts need different pressures than lagers and other ales.
I use Cobra tap's (Picnic tap's) and I find that when someone new steps up to pour a beer, they don't open the tap all the way. Then they wonder why they got a glass full of Foam. Don't be afraid of the tap, It wont explode unless you are doing something seriously wrong.

Cheers
Preston
The woodpecker pecks, Not to annoy, But to survive!

Offline Maine Homebrewer

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Re: Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?
« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2008, 06:45:33 PM »
I've found that when I keep only enough pressure to dispense without foaming that the brew is what I would consider to be undercarbonated.  Similar to bottled Newcastle. 
So I keep the regulator at a couple psi higher than an ideal dispensing pressure, close it off and bleed off a bit before pulling the tap. 
I'm pretty sure I'm not using enough tubing, though I haven't yet figure out if I haven't purchased more because I'm lazy or because I like to minimize that small amount lost on the first pour.
My guess would be laziness.
"To alcohol! The cause of - and solution to - all of life's problems!" -Homer Simpson

Offline Wildrover

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Re: Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?
« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2008, 08:07:37 PM »
I've never really had too much problems until now.  I really think it is due to my overzealous carbonation producing something that wanted out and as soon as the tap was pulled it had its chance and ran for the door.  Leaving me with a cup full of foam.  It seems to have settled out since I bled just about all of it off. 

Offline MaltLicker

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Re: Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2008, 09:01:44 PM »
Many thanks to each of you...for reminding me that being a Luddite Bottler has its merits.   ;D

Offline UselessBrewing

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Re: Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?
« Reply #10 on: December 09, 2008, 06:55:23 AM »
Many thanks to each of you...for reminding me that being a Luddite Bottler has its merits.   ;D

HEY
What Do you mean by that! I think we just got Slapped across the chopps! But I could not tell because of the big words, and he was smiling while doing it!
LOL  :D

Cheers
Preston
The woodpecker pecks, Not to annoy, But to survive!

Offline Wildrover

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Re: Those with kegarators how do you carbonate your beer?
« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2008, 08:23:52 AM »
I'll admit it, I actually looked up Luddite, this forum is so educational!!