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New design pgs 9&11 for DIY 5L mini keg taps (Lots of Pics)

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SiouxerBrewer

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 7:59 am

New design pgs 9&11 for DIY 5L mini keg taps (Lots of Pics)

The 1/4" version of this tap is found on page eleven of this thread
The 1/2" version of this tap is found on page nine of this thread

Preview of the new designs:
1/4" low profile version
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1/2" version
Image

So here is my old design for a 5L mini keg tap:
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I found that adding a valve to the beer out line enables me to clean my cobra taps much easier than before. I now use these mini kegs for my 3 gallon (2 min keg) size experimental batches, which helps keep a good variety of beer on tap (in addition to three 5 gallon cornies). This design has a much higher profile than my last design, but works better with my system (and is also quite a bit easier to clean). Here is the old design:
Image
Instructions to come.
Last edited by SiouxerBrewer on Sat Apr 09, 2011 8:05 pm, edited 5 times in total.
"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion... Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other." John Adams
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SiouxerBrewer

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 8:55 am

Instructions:
Image
Parts (from top to bottom, then left to right):
-10.5" length of 3/16" I.D. (5/16" O.D.) vinyl tubing with a taperd cut on one end
-1 nylon barbed fitting 1/4" male NPT to 1/2" barbed from US Plastics
-5" length of 1/4" O.D. copper tubing
-1/4" brass female tee coupler
-1/4" brass tube adapter: 1/4" O.D. tube to 1/4" male NPT
-1/4" brass flare to pipe adapter: 1/4" male Flare to 1/4" male NPT
-1/4" brass 90" elbow: 1/4" male NPT to 1/4" female NPT
I was able to find all of these parts (except for the nylon barbed fitting) at Lowes.
First drill the compression fitting through with a 9/32" drill bit in the direction shown in the direction shown in the picture:
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Next slide the copper tubing through the compression fitting and install the compression bushing and nut:
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Before you tighten the compression nut make sure to leave just under 1" of copper exposed on the nut side of the compression fitting:
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Try to tighten the compression nut evenly to ensure proper seating of the compression bushing, and to create a good seal:
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Then wrap (4-5 wraps) of Teflon tape around the threads to seal the fittings:
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Attach/tighten the compression fitting with tubing to the 1/4" female tee coupler:
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Next attach/tighten (DO NOT OVER-TIGHTEN THIS PIECE) the nylon barbed fitting:
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Attach/tighten the 90 degree elbow (make sure the opening is facing the appropriate direction):
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Attach/tighten the 1/4" flare-pipe adapter:
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Attach the tubing (make sure the tapered cut is away from the tap):
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"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion... Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other." John Adams
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SiouxerBrewer

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 9:54 am

Next we need to attach the beer and gas lines. This is the hardware needed to do this:
-1/4" barbed swivel nut from Northern Brewer part number K123
-Flared nylon washer from Northern Brewer part number K127
-1/4" barbed fitting to 1/4" female NPT adapter from US Plastics
-1/4" pipe to 1/4" push connect adapter (see picture below) from Lowes. I have recently decided to add a push connect valve (as pictured at the beginning of this thread) instead of the straight fitting because it makes cleaning the cobra tap much easier while there is still beer in the mini keg.
Image
Make sure to wrap the threads with 6-8 wraps of Teflon tape prior to attaching it to the female barbed fitting.
Image
-3/6" I.D. Bevflex beer line from Northern Brewer part number K052 I use a 12 foot length of tubing for a foam free pour. (Kobra taps tend to need much more tubing than regular faucets)
-3/16" I.D. vinyl tubing from Lowes. This will be the gas line. Make it as long as you need it to connect from your co2 tank/manifold, to your mini keg.
-3/16 barbed liquid/gas check valves from US Plastics This prevents beer from backing up into your gas line.
Attach the 1/4" barbed swivel nut and washer to the tap:
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Attach the push connect fitting/barbed fitting to the tap:
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-Attach the gas line to the barbed swivel nut, then to the check valve (make sure you install the valve to allow the gas to flow to the keg), then to your Co2 source.
-Attach your beer line to the barbed liquid out from the tap, then to your tap/faucet. This quick disconnect allows you to detach your beverage line (without tools) for cleaning. This is the end product:
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You can also add a schrader fitting instead of a flared fitting to make this portable:
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Or you can make an adapter to attach to your flare fitting:
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"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion... Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other." John Adams
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Wormfishin

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 11:26 am

Nice, have you added up the total cost?
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SiouxerBrewer

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 11:39 am

I haven't added the total cost. Actually, most of this stuff I had lying around in surplus from other projects so it's hard to tell, esp. with the way brass has gone up in price. If I had to guestimate I would say probably about 25-30 bucks depending on what configuration you want.
"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion... Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other." John Adams
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kenc_zymurgy

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 1:39 pm

Very nice. Nice documentation, too (I always get lazy about that).

I remember following this first version on your web site. I may have mentioned to you a while back about the idea of running the 'Tee' vertically, so that you don't need to bend the copper tube - but it does add to the height.

I wonder if some of these parts could cut the cost a bit. The nylon barb 'Tee' is less than a buck.

Nylon Tee 11/16" UNC x 1/2" Barb Attach Nut

http://tinyurl.com/56rp6d

And this could get you back to the brass compression fitting, with a short piece of plastic tubing between. You could also make that a little longer and make a gentle 90 degree bend in the copper to run the rest to the side to keep the height down if needed. Maybe there is a slicker way to do that?

Female Adapter Nylon Fitting - http://tinyurl.com/5szeuj

So, does the 1/2" barb stay tight in the mini-keg bung w/o any other restraint?

And, you might try this to reduce the length of your line to the cobra tap -

http://www.maltosefalcons.com/tech/resistivegate.php

-kenc
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SenorPantalones

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 2:24 pm

That's really nice looking souixer. can you get schrader fittings at normal hardware stores? That would be nice if I could one of those a shot with the co2 charger.

And it looks like you have some used mini kegs there. Are they re-usable? I thought they weren't for some reason. Sure would be a nice excuse to pick up a keg of 2 hearted.
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tbone937

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 6:28 pm

Is this the smaller kegs found in the grocery stores that have heinken or whatever in them? I heard those weren't suitable for reuse due to some issues with the lining or some such?
"Yeah, what's wrong wit de beer we got? I mean, the beer we got drink pretty good, dont it? Now, I aint never heard nobody complain about the beer we have. It drink pretty good. Budweiser Whats the name of some of them other beers?"
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Weazletoe

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 7:24 pm

It's geniuses like you that built this country, sir. I move for a momnet of silence for our man SiouxerBrewer.
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SiouxerBrewer

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 8:50 pm

kenc_zymurgy wrote: I may have mentioned to you a while back about the idea of running the 'Tee' vertically, so that you don't need to bend the copper tube
Yes you did, that is exactly where I got the idea from. Good synergy (sp?).
kenc_zymurgy wrote: I wonder if some of these parts could cut the cost a bit. The nylon barb 'Tee' is less than a buck.
I think I see where you are going with this, however I am a VERY visual person. Would it be possible for you to draw a diagram of how you plan on connecting those fittings? Maybe we can come up with something even better? As far as making it easier to bend the tubing, I have an idea. Instead of using a 1/4" female tee fitting, use a 3/8" or even a 1/2 ". Then for the compression fitting, use a 1/4" tube to 3/8" or 1/2" (whichever is compatible with the tee fitting). Then attach a short piece of copper tubing through the compression fitting (straight), then attach the vinyl tubing on the other side and allow that to make the bend through the tee fitting. I think it will work. If I have those parts I'll take some pictures and put something together for you guys.

kenc_zymurgy wrote:So, does the 1/2" barb stay tight in the mini-keg bung w/o any other restraint?
Absolutely! I have tested it to 80 + psi. The keg started to bow so I let off the pressure. Which brings me to a word of caution, there is no pressure relief on this system, so you CAN damage and possibly blow up your keg if enough pressure is applied, so please be careful.

kenc_zymurgy wrote:And, you might try this to reduce the length of your line to the cobra tap -

http://www.maltosefalcons.com/tech/resistivegate.php
I have actually thought about using those, however I'm not sure if it's food grade. If you can shed some light on that subject I'm all ears. I think it's a great idea overall.
"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion... Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other." John Adams
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SiouxerBrewer

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 8:58 pm

SenorPantalones wrote:That's really nice looking souixer. can you get schrader fittings at normal hardware stores? That would be nice if I could one of those a shot with the co2 charger.

And it looks like you have some used mini kegs there. Are they re-usable? I thought they weren't for some reason. Sure would be a nice excuse to pick up a keg of 2 hearted.

I found my schrader fittings at Ace hardware for about $3.00. Most other hardware stores did not have them. If you are having a hard time finding them try a plumbing store. I know that some plumbers use those things to check for leaks; I think they call them snifter valves or something like that.

And YES, that is a GREAT excuse to pick up a 5L of 2 hearted. In fact I think I might do the same! I have re-used my mini kegs up to 10 times (maybe even more). One thing you can do to make them last longer is to use some keg lube on the bung hole :lol: before you insert the seal. Also, make sure to clean them well after use. I usually fill them with warm water, add 1 Tbsp of Sun Oxygen cleaner (wal mart version of Oxyclean), and let them soak over night. The next day, dump the water, rinse, dry, then store them away.
"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion... Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other." John Adams
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SiouxerBrewer

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 9:03 pm

tbone937 wrote:Is this the smaller kegs found in the grocery stores that have heinken or whatever in them? I heard those weren't suitable for reuse due to some issues with the lining or some such?

The Heineken ones are NOT reusable because they have a Co2 canister inside the keg, and you have to destroy the keg to get it out. As far as I know, pretty much every other 5L mini keg out there is reusable; just make sure it has a bung at the top. I have found that the lining inside the keg is good for AT LEAST 10 uses. That stuff is pretty sturdy, just go easy on it if you use a brush to clean the kegs (see cleaning procedures in last post).
"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion... Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other." John Adams
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SiouxerBrewer

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 9:04 pm

Weazletoe wrote:It's geniuses like you that built this country, sir. I move for a momnet of silence for our man SiouxerBrewer.
Thank you for the very kind words; however I am no genius, just a tinkerer who likes beer. :D
"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion... Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other." John Adams
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altgeeky1

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 9:38 pm

I believe a MY HERO is in order.

You solved so many problems.

1) I used to 'keg' in these 5L cans. I have like 10 of them and almost never use em.

2) I have a corny keg, but can only fit one in my kegerator.
I'd wanted to have a 2-tap tower... but I would have to trade up to a larger fridge.

3) I know some folks who want to keg, but lack the budget. They can't fit these cans in their fridge (rented appt, lousy fridge). They recently graduated and have mini-fridges which are not big enough for 20L corny kegs. (Possibly they'd accept a 12L mini-corny but they're pricey). I can give some of my cans away, and help them begin kegging..

Thanks for the extra effort in documentation.
tapped: Smoked Cherry-Oatmeal Porter
secondary: faux altbier (using Willamette hops + US-05)
secondary: faux altbier (using Willamette hops + Wyeast 1007)[split batch]
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tbone937

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Post Sat Jul 12, 2008 11:34 pm

SiouxerBrewer wrote:
tbone937 wrote:Is this the smaller kegs found in the grocery stores that have heinken or whatever in them? I heard those weren't suitable for reuse due to some issues with the lining or some such?

The Heineken ones are NOT reusable because they have a Co2 canister inside the keg, and you have to destroy the keg to get it out. As far as I know, pretty much every other 5L mini keg out there is reusable; just make sure it has a bung at the top. I have found that the lining inside the keg is good for AT LEAST 10 uses. That stuff is pretty sturdy, just go easy on it if you use a brush to clean the kegs (see cleaning procedures in last post).


Wow... I can't believe no one is shooting this down due to the whole "evil lining thing" I had previously heard about.

I'm a big fan of "recycle reduce reuse" partly because I think we are leaning way too far towards the excessive consumption side of life and partly because I'm going to be broke for another year until I get an engineering job after graduation. This fits perfectly... I'm really thinking of taking some post-it notes and rubber bands to the grocery store and putting my contact information on the kegs so I can get them when people are through with them.

I'll also be putting a post on freecycle. Which if you guys don't know about, you should, I've scored a 1/2 hp motor for my grain mill mod, 3 cases of grolsh bottles, 2 cases of old returnable bar bottles, 2 cases of pony bottles, and countless magnum wine bottles for my wine making)... One lady who's husband died gave me a Mr. Beer, several buckets/carboys, ingredients to make 2-3 batches of 3-5 gallons of wine, capper, corker, test kits, refractometer, etc... It was all dirty as heck, but probably at least 300 bucks worth of stuff "new".

What is that lining made of anyway? Teflon or something?
"Yeah, what's wrong wit de beer we got? I mean, the beer we got drink pretty good, dont it? Now, I aint never heard nobody complain about the beer we have. It drink pretty good. Budweiser Whats the name of some of them other beers?"
-AL Rep. A. Holmes
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