Fermenting 10gal in sankey keg

Hi guys I’m sure there are a few of you out there who ferment 10gal in a regular 1/2 barrel keg.

I am wondering if there would be any problems with racking directly from the kettle into the keg and fermenting with an airlock for a 2 week primary. Then directly into the corney kegs for cold crash/secondary.

I know cleaning would be an issue, but I’m thinking if I rack w/out the hops and then soak for a couple days in PBW it would be ok.

I am looking to avoid having to split the batch into two different carboys, and I would rather not have to cut off the top of the keg and rig up some homemade airlock system.

Curious to hear your thoughts…


Here is one idea for you. Cut a hole in the top, like you would for boil kettle/mash tun. Fashion a lid form heavy plexiglass. Fasten it to the top of the keg with an air lock. Now you can see inside during fermentation. And you can get inside to clean.

I would find an o-ring 1st. Then cut a lid. Then the keg for the best fit.

Some internet searching and you should be able to find other examples.

I’ve done it several times, but I’ve since moved back to using two buckets because 10 gallons is really freaking heavy. The orange carboy cap fits perfectly. For cleaning try one of the following links, the bottom one works like a charm.


+1, an orange carboy cap and you’re good to go

here’s something i did once and it worked out just fine. when the boil was done i cooled it and pitched the yeast right into the boil kettle. my garage was at 50* and i made a lager so it worked out perfectly.then straight to the kegs.

I am open to the idea…

What did you use for a lid? I have used the loose lid technique for primary fermentations before, but always transferred after 3 days.

I had a corny without any rubber on the top and had a solid welder, weld that on the top of a sanke keg. I use that to ferment in. It’s a pain to move when it’s full, but I usually have someone with me to lift into my chest freezer to ferment. Since I have the gas in/liquid out, I can do closed transfers with no problem. Cleaning is easy as I can see into it and, if needed, a PBW soak takes care of anything else.

I did ferment a few times with just the spear removed on a sanke, but without seeing in there I just couldn’t get comfortable with the level of cleanliness.

I found my welder through a help wanted ad on Craigslist. Ended up the guy welds for a living for a dairy. He does some incredible work. I also told him I needed to pay him more for a project as I didn’t think he was charging me enough.

Get yourself a Curtec Drum . Going to be a hell of a lot easier to clean than a sankey keg.

10 gallons in a 10 gallon corny keg is a tight fit, even with foam control. Been running the shop vac on 10 gallons of hefeweizen in my 10 gallon corny for a week now. I usually use a 15 gallon corny keg for 11 gallon batches and it works like a charm. Easy to clean. Just soak in PBW. Heavy as can be though. But the 10 gallon keg is manageable as long as you aren’t trying to lift it into a chest freezer. Otherwise, I’d suggest putting casters on the chest freezer, putting the keg in the chest freezer, rolling the freezer to your brew station, filling, rolling back, and calling it a day. Transfers to the serving kegs with CO2 works like a charm.

This is exactly what I’m planning to do. I have the casters, just need my brother to weld a frame to set the chest freezer in. Didn’t want to attach them directly to the freezer as I don’t know if I’ll always use it for the current purpose.