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First kegging questions

Hello all. I am about to obtain a 5 gallon corny keg and regulator and possibly a 20lb CO2 tank, all for under $150. Anyways this is my first trip into kegging at all. For now all I want to do is hook up the keg to a simple picnic thingy and store it in my chest freezer until I get the process down. Eventually I will go to a mini fridge kegerator. But my question is what kind of readings should I be setting my CO2 gauges to and why? I am trying to learn anything I can before I get started. Also is there anything else important I should know about outside of obviously cleaning and all that crap?

Depends on what the carbonation level you are trying to achieve. The temperature and pressure determne your carb level. I set mine at 10 psi at 32 degrees to achieve a 2.7 volume. Seek out a force carbonation chart for referance. You ultimately want to serve the same pressure you carb at. So for me I force carbonate at 10 and serve at 10.

Here is a small chart. It also has a chart of the carbonation ranges for each style of beer. As you can see, most beers are in the 2.5vol ranges. So you can set your temp/pressure to that area and be “in style” for almost all your beers. If you like a little more fizz, up the pressure a notch.

You also need to have the correct size and length of line on the picnic tap. 3/16th ID and 10ft is a good start. If it pours to slow cut off 6" at a time until you get a good pour. Remember, open the tap all the way, otherwise you will have a glass of foam.

Larger chart.

Here’s a great article on setting up draft systems.

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