Monday, October 19, 2009

My Kegging Procedure (Part Deux)

If you read part one and you aren't yet bored to tears, here is the part two. I'll make is succinct, I promise. So last we heard, the keg parts are boiling and the keg and liquid pickup is soaking in a hot oxyclean solution. From there:

Scrub keg with carboy brush, slightly straightened to accomodate keg contours.
Run small brush (a rifle brush works well) through liquid pickup tube and keg post holes.
Dump oxyclean solution, quick rinse with hot water.
Fill keg to the "tippy-top" with water.
Reattach all keg parts, double checking that gaskets are put back on the pickup tubes.
Hook up CO2 tank and cobra tap to the keg.
Turn on CO2 and open tap to push all the water out--leaving only CO2 (and no O2) in the keg.
Disconect the CO2 tank and cobra tap and bleed the excess CO2 out by opening the keg pressure relief valve.
Pour a quart of star-san solution into the keg through the beer out post using this contraption:

Make sure not to introduce any oxygen to the keg--connect the quick disconnect to the line loosely and don't tighten it until you let gravity force the air out.
(This sanitizes the tube and beer out quick disconnect at the same time).
Close the pressure relief valve and shake the keg thoroughly to let the sanitizer coat the inside of the keg well.
Wait two minutes and then hook up the CO2 to force the sanitizer out.

You now have a sanitized keg that is purged of oxygen and ready to fill. But again that was really boring. So have a homebrew, and I'll explain how I fill the keg in part 3.

Friday, October 9, 2009

My Kegging Procedure (part 1)

I just filled a keg full of Your Sister's Mustache tonight, so I thought I would post my kegging procedure.

The first thing I do is to cool the beer down to 35F and let it sit for a minimum of 24 hours. This helps to settle out any yeast or suspended solids.

Then I clean the keg. Since I have a surplus of beer lately, the decision of when to keg is usually when an existing keg runs dry. Yes, I know it's a good problem to have.

I take the dirty keg and remove the lid and both the gas and beer fittings (along with their poppets). I also remove the dip tubes and take the gaskets off of them. I then boil the lid (with the pressure release valve open), the gas dip tube, the fittings, the gaskets, and the poppets. I add a pinch of baking soda to the boiling pot. I let it boil for 20 minutes to sterilize all these parts.

While the keg parts are boiling, I spray the inside of the keg with about a quart of hot water, swirl it around to free up whatever yeast is sitting at the bottom (usually not much since I settled most of it out as per step 1), and dump. Then I fill the whole keg with hot water, add a half a scoop of oxyclean, and let it sit for about a half an hour. (This is a good time to have a homebrew).

I just read over the last couple paragraphs, and realized (except for the having a homebrew part) that this is a really boring post. So I'm going to quit while I'm behind and post a cool picture of a bike that has two kegs and tappers built into it. Click on the photo for a link to the story from Wired magazine explaining the whole dealio. I'll post the rest of my kegging procedure later.