5 Gallon Soda Kegs
Sick of sanitizing, filling and capping dozens of bottles for every batch of your beer? Well, kegging your beer can save you LOTS of time! Once you've kegged your first batch of beer you'll never want to go back to bottling. Trust me on this one!
Shown left is a used 5 gallon soda keg. Prices for these range from $25
- $40. Of course you'll also need to buy a CO2 tank, CO2 gauge, spigot and hoses which
will total your bill to the $200 range. But once you have the basic setup, you'll only
need to buy additional kegs to expand your capacity.
The top of a 5 gallon soda keg is shown right. The "IN" and
"OUT" ports are clearly marked to aid in hose connection. The center of the
keg's lid has a pressure relieve valve. (NOTE: always bleed off the keg with the pressure
relief valve before opening. The lid is removed by simply lifting the metal handle and
maneuvering the lid out from the opening.
Soda kegs come in two
varieties, ball-lock or pin-lock. (depending on whether they were originally from Coke or
Pepsi.) It really doesn't matter which variety you buy. For convenience sake, all of your
kegs should be of the same type. The photo on the left shows a ball lock
connector while the photo on the right shows a pin lock connector.
The photo on the left shows a view inside the keg with its lid removed. You can see the tube extending to the bottom of the keg where beer is drawn from the vessel. You must thoroughly wash and sanitize the inside of the keg between each use.
You'll need to purchase a CO2 tank to pressurize your kegs. Shown on the
right is a used ten pound CO2 tank used at Lee's Brewery. Many home brew shops sell 5
gallon CO2 tanks with their kegging systems. I would recommend getting a 10 or 15 pound
tank instead. You'll have to refill it less than a 5 gallon tank with little additional
One of the more expensive parts of your kegging setup will be the CO2 gauge. A dual gauge setup is really unnecessary as the second gauge provides you little useful information. The best way to keep track of how much CO2 is left in your tank is to weigh it once full and then weigh it again as you use it. As its weight approaches 10 pounds less (for a ten pound tank) of its original full weight, you know it's time to get it filled! Simple as that!
Revised: Sunday, July 12, 1998 18:07:27
Copyright © 1996 by [Lee's Brewery].
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