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Old 11-04-2012, 05:55 PM   #811
urbancowboy
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i've got a batch of mother's milk (clone) fermenting right now.

http://www.keeganales.com/

keegan ales in kingston recently opened a homebrew shop. they sell all the standard stuff, but the cool thing is they also sell extract kits to make clones of the beers that their brewery makes at the same location. so the kits use same grains and yeast as the real deal.

trouble is now i'm thinking i should stop washing bottles and go the keg route. started to research it, and i'm checking stuff out on kegconnection.com

i live in a small apartment, and i don't have room for a second fridge. it seems like a five gallon keg is going to take over my slightly smaller than standard fridge.

your thoughts???
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Old 11-04-2012, 07:00 PM   #812
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbancowboy View Post
i've got a batch of mother's milk (clone) fermenting right now.

http://www.keeganales.com/

keegan ales in kingston recently opened a homebrew shop. they sell all the standard stuff, but the cool thing is they also sell extract kits to make clones of the beers that their brewery makes at the same location. so the kits use same grains and yeast as the real deal.

trouble is now i'm thinking i should stop washing bottles and go the keg route. started to research it, and i'm checking stuff out on kegconnection.com

i live in a small apartment, and i don't have room for a second fridge. it seems like a five gallon keg is going to take over my slightly smaller than standard fridge.

your thoughts???
I've got a 4 tap kegerator made out of a slightly smaller than standard fridge, so you could fit it. I wouldn't try to share though, you'll likely have to do away with the shelving so a lot of space will be wasted. Have you looked into a Keezer at all? I helped a friend build a 3 tap one, took a couple hours and works great for him. That'll fit 4 kegs as well with a short CO2 tank on the hump. I use the same freezer for my fermentation chamber. Happy to answer any other questions on kegging, I've learned a lot recently.

Just noticed that Brewhemoth stopped making the Penrose kettle, cranky about it because I was planning my 3 vessel electric system around them.
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Old 11-05-2012, 10:52 AM   #813
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Find the smallest chest freezer you can. Probably going to be a 5cu.ft. unit. They can be had on craigslist for $50 and under. Get a two or three tap refrigerator kit from kegconnection.com (best overall prices and great customer service). Look for a 5 or 10 pound co2 bottle on craigslist too. Stick the whole thing in a corner or big closet.

I adjusted the freezer thermostat with the "coarse adjustment" screw, and it stays at 38deg. No need for a separate controller if it is an older, not digital one. A tad cold, but I like cold beer... It warms up in the glass and you get to taste the difference in flavor as it does. Plus it saved me $60.

I'm rambling now....sorry.... Kegs rock. No regrets here! You can still bottle some off the tap too



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Old 11-05-2012, 12:34 PM   #814
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Although they are certainly a popular option, I'm not crazy about using chest freezers. They seem to leave too much condensation on the floor, and they're difficult to clean. Maybe, its because I keep them warmer? I have two fridges, one at 45 and one at 55. Maybe, that's why...
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Old 11-05-2012, 05:08 PM   #815
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Although they are certainly a popular option, I'm not crazy about using chest freezers. They seem to leave too much condensation on the floor, and they're difficult to clean. Maybe, its because I keep them warmer? I have two fridges, one at 45 and one at 55. Maybe, that's why...

I think the big thing with chest freezers is that they are much more $$$ effective in terms of electricals. The freezer doesn't have to run the often to stay beer temps, they are more insulated.

Also deep enough to stand a keg in.

I am researching this currently, as I now have 5 kegs, co2, regulator and lines accumulated. I'm probably going to use the kegs to force carb, and get set up to bottle out of the kegs as needed, then shop for a chest freezer.
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Old 11-05-2012, 06:17 PM   #816
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They make 2.5 and 3 gallon kegs too that will fit in a fridge. My brewing partner takes his beer in the small kegs and I take the 5 gallons since I have the bigger cooler. The small kegs are more expensive per gallon than the bigger ones but they sure are handy. We have a small roll around cooler than handles two of the small kegs with two tap handles on the outside. A mini kegerator! Works like a charm and is very popular at parties!
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Old 11-05-2012, 06:38 PM   #817
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FWIW, I built a dual stage temp controller from the cheap ebay aquarium temp controllers, the instructions to do so are plentiful on homebrewtalk. I also built the light-bulb-in-a-can heater. With a brand new 7 cu ft freezer from Sam's club I'm in the whole thing about $250 and it can function as a fermentation chamber or, with a quick collar job, a keezer. We're considering a move in the near term and I anticipate I will be brewing a lot more in the new place, so having the option to jump to 8 taps is nice.
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:21 PM   #818
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thanks for the ideas. i should have been more clear: my slightly undersized fridge is my ONLY fridge. not a ton of room to spare in my nyc apartment.

the only way i can see it working is using the 2.5 gallon kegs.

any reason i couldn't leave one keg at room temp while the other takes over the bottom of my fridge?

as mentioned, the small kegs seem like an expensive way to do it.
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Old 11-05-2012, 09:27 PM   #819
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Can you go without a freezer? I've seen some folks do the freezer half of a side by side as a kegerator, you can fit like 2 or 3 cornies in there and put the taps where the ice/water dispenser would go, and you keep the fridge side intact.
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Old 11-06-2012, 07:22 AM   #820
Jason F.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by levain View Post
Although they are certainly a popular option, I'm not crazy about using chest freezers. They seem to leave too much condensation on the floor, and they're difficult to clean. Maybe, its because I keep them warmer? I have two fridges, one at 45 and one at 55. Maybe, that's why...

EvaDry unit. Not a bit of condensation in either of my freezers. one at 42 and one at 62. both in an unheated and uncooled garage.
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Old 11-06-2012, 10:14 AM   #821
fifthcircle
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Originally Posted by urbancowboy View Post

any reason i couldn't leave one keg at room temp while the other takes over the bottom of my fridge?

as mentioned, the small kegs seem like an expensive way to do it.

You can force carb one 2.5g keg in the fridge, and naturally carb the other at room temp. I don't know about just storing a keg at room temp after filling/purging with co2??? I wouldn't think that would be a problem, but it won't be carbonated unless you keep it at a very high pressure. It will carb after cooling in the fridge though.

How about a dorm fridge? Replace an end table next to the couch with a dressed up dorm fridge with a two tap tower on it..... Just cover it up with decorative wood to match your other furniture.
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fifthcircle screwed with this post 11-06-2012 at 10:22 AM
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Old 11-07-2012, 11:01 AM   #822
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anyone know if is there a difference between "food grade" co2 and the stuff the local welding supply carries? just curious, is the taste different?
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Old 11-07-2012, 11:41 AM   #823
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anyone know if is there a difference between "food grade" co2 and the stuff the local welding supply carries? just curious, is the taste different?
Whenever I buy CO2 at the local airgas dist. it says food grade CO2 on my invoice.

I think most welding gas is atleast some % of argon in with the CO2. My MIG tanks are 100% argon and 80-20 argon/co2.

So when I buy straight CO2 it does say food grade - now I do not know if you go to a paintball store and have your tank filled there if it is food grade or not.
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Old 11-07-2012, 12:35 PM   #824
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anyone know if is there a difference between "food grade" co2 and the stuff the local welding supply carries? just curious, is the taste different?
The local Airgas guy told me that all cylinders are filled at the same time, in the same place, from the same source. However, the medical or food grade cylinders have a bunch of paperwork, so their source can be traced if needed.
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Old 11-07-2012, 01:59 PM   #825
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The local Airgas guy told me that all cylinders are filled at the same time, in the same place, from the same source. However, the medical or food grade cylinders have a bunch of paperwork, so their source can be traced if needed.
that's odd because they have different types listed on their website.

anyway, that's where I bought this last bottle and it does say food grade. we'll see how it goes.
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