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Ball Lock vs Pin Lock

Please tell me which is better and why. I’m going to go out and get some kegs as I do not want to be bothered with trying to d-lableing over 100 bottles. They have both styles used at my local home brew store.

Thanks in advanced for your input!! :cheers:

If they’re the same price and readily available, you might want to opt for ball lock. Ball locks have a pressure relief valve on the caps, whereas pinlock typically do not. Ball lock also have a smaller diameter, so you might be able to squeeze a few more into a defined footprint. Of course, pin lock kegs are shorter, which may come in handy if there are height constraints. Finally, pin locks can accidentally “twist” off, but there’s no way to accidentally put a pin lock connector on the wrong post.

I started with 5 ball lock, but when I was able to find 16 cheap pin lock kegs, I made the switch and sold my ball locks. Really no big difference, but I do miss my PRVs a bit (I use a fingernail or screwdriver on the gas poppit to achieve the same result)

That’s a good run down. I would add, purchase the threaded disconnects. That way you can easily switch between ball, pin, and commercial keg as needed.

Ball or pin? Depends on what is available.

[quote=“FriendsR2Thirsty”] Finally, pin locks can accidentally “twist” off[/quote] I don’t know if I’d say that. I use pin locks and have never had one come off once it’s locked on. Maybe others have had a different experience, but I’ve never heard that complaint.

I have some of both and I’ve never had one of my pin locks accidentally twist off either.

On the contrary, I have had some pin locks that I thought were fully locked that were not.

I have some pretty ridged gas lines on one of my setups. Combine that with the pretty tight squeeze I have fitting two kegs and a CO2 tank into a mini-fridge and all the rotating/nudging required to get a good fit – and that’s what I’m talking about when I say I’ve had some pinlock connectors accidentally come off. This might be hard to picture, but if I rotate the keg counter-clockwise (trying to gently get it into place) and the stiff gas line resists the movement, then the connector can come off. Never had that problem with a ball-lock.

The size difference can make the decision. I can fit 6 ball-locks in my converted serving fridge because they are thinner. But I use pin-locks in my little fermentation fridge because they are shorter.

since there nor major differences other then size, I’m going with pin lock because they are $10 cheaper than the ball. Thank you all for you help with this decision!!

You can find pin locks with the pull ring PRV in the lid if you look hard enough.

Yeah, there’s lots of options now. kegconnection has a nice PRV that’s easy to install with a Unibit. I can fit four ball-locks tightly in my fridge, so pin-locks wouldn’t work. If you have the room and they’re cheaper, go for it. +1 to Nighthawk, MFLs will allow you to switch between both if needed.

I have all ball locks because that was what was cheaper at the time, but I have a few pin-locks. They are all on 1/4" flare fittings for ease of swapping.

Right now Pin Lock is cheaper, so I’d go with that.

Whichever you do, try to stick with, it will make your life easier. Also, I think they sell a little plastic piece / tool here that lets you vent pressure on the pin lock kegs. Screwdriver works fine, but I keep mine in an old butter tub full of sanitizer to be double secret safe.

Height was the differentiator for me. I went with pin locks so I wouldn’t have to put a collar on my chest freezer that I use for serving.

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