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Just now, Skinsfan1311 said:

Welcome to the wonderful world of draft beer!  I gutted an older, beat-up, Kenmore kegerator, rewired it, installed a fan, a blower to coil the tower, new faucet, coupler and regulator and built a new table-top, then pimped it out in Skins colors. Chris Cooley autographed the tap handle. I'll try to post a pic, later.

The name of the game, for draft beer, is having a balaced system. Once it's dialed in, then your gold. I used to buy 1/2 kegs, but now I buy sixtels..You don't save money that way, but the beer tasted great!

 

Yeah, I plan to only buy sixtels to take advantage of both taps.  The one I have can only hold either one 1/2 barrel, one 1/4 barrel or one or two 1/6 barrels.  It's not big enough to hold a 1/4 and 1/6 at the same time.  But there is enough room to hold the co2 tank inside with the kegs, so it can sit flush with the wall.  

 

Next year, I plan to convert one of the taps for Guinness.  

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7 minutes ago, Dont Taze Me Bro said:

 

Yeah, I plan to only buy sixtels to take advantage of both taps.  The one I have can only hold either one 1/2 barrel, one 1/4 barrel or one or two 1/6 barrels.  It's not big enough to hold a 1/4 and 1/6 at the same time.  But there is enough room to hold the co2 tank inside with the kegs, so it can sit flush with the wall.  

 

Next year, I plan to convert one of the taps for Guinness.  

I quit buying 1/2 kegs because, frankly, I get tired of the same beer, and 15.5 gallons is a lot.  Here's one I took, I'll get a better pic later to share 

FB_IMG_1492285354475.jpg

Edited by Skinsfan1311
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Here's a few more pics. I stripped it down, rewired and refurbished everything. When I got it, it had been out in the weather, the table was rotted, the door seal broken, and the mug rail was rusted. I plugged it in, and it got cold, so I made it a project. In addition to the other fixes, described in the earlier post, I had to replace the inside door panel and seal. It's a 1987 Sears Kenmore. Everything that comes into contact with the beer is stainless..Micromatic coupler, regulator and a Perlick stainless forward sealing tap.

 

 

20170415_182728.jpg

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20170415_182642.jpg

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1 hour ago, Skinsfan1311 said:

KBS ?

Founders Kentucky Brand Stout. Once a year beer that usually hits DMV around early mid April. 

You stand in line and hope to get 2-4 12 oz bottles at 11.99 or so a piece. 

100/100 beer advocate rating. 

28th best beer in the world. 

Not my most favorite barrel aged stout but its up there. 

 

https://www.beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/1199/19960/

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34 minutes ago, Why am I Mr. Pink? said:

Founders Kentucky Brand Stout. Once a year beer that usually hits DMV around early mid April. 

You stand in line and hope to get 2-4 12 oz bottles at 11.99 or so a piece. 

100/100 beer advocate rating. 

28th best beer in the world. 

Not my most favorite barrel aged stout but its up there. 

 

https://www.beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/1199/19960/

Thanks!  

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6 hours ago, Why am I Mr. Pink? said:

Founders Kentucky Brand Stout. Once a year beer that usually hits DMV around early mid April. 

You stand in line and hope to get 2-4 12 oz bottles at 11.99 or so a piece. 

100/100 beer advocate rating. 

28th best beer in the world. 

Not my most favorite barrel aged stout but its up there. 

 

https://www.beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/1199/19960/

 

Founders makes some good stouts, it doesn't top Ten Fidy or BBH (porter) to me though.

 

But I'm willing to try it again. :drooley:

 

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Just found my standard go to when the weather gets warm, Sam Adams Summer Ale. :)

 

Also so just saw Duclaw now has a coffee variant of Sweet Baby Jesus called Sweet Baby Java.

 

Kroger has picked up their game & started carrying a few Firestone Walker IPAs. 

 

Small Town Brewery has followed up Not Your Fathers line up with a Not Your Mothers lineup- Iced Tea, Apple Pie, & Stawberry Rhubarb Pie. The Tea, I swear it tastes just like a Lipton with lemon bottled tea. It disappeared quick. The Apple Pie is damn good too, while the Strawberry hits that tart/sour spot. 

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  • 2 months later...

Wow, been a while since we talked beer.  So, since the last time I posted, I managed to break one of my faucets.  The kegerator I got was a Danby and what appears to be standard parts for a two tap system.  So, both faucets are spring loaded and rear sealing.  One got stuck and usually I'd just wiggle it and apply some pressure to get it lose and pour beer.  Yes, I'm stupid sometimes and now know that I should have taken the faucet off, broken it down and soaked it in warm water and cleaner for a couple of hours.

 

Hind sight is 20/20 :(  Anyhow, when I pulled down it popped, beer started pouring and then wouldn't shut off and seal back.  Had to get some mixing bowls to catch the beer and being pissed off, I let the keg tap out.  It was close anyhow, so I lost about 7 pints, something like that.  Anyhow after research, I read that I should get a forward sealing faucet as the beer stays in there and doesn't become dried and sticky and cause that problem.

 

Well, I've read that I should go with a stainless steel Perlick model faucet.  I was planning on converting one of the faucets to a specialty one for Guinness and other European beers.  I figure I should just go ahead and do everything now, while I'm fixing it.  So, the company I bought the kegerator from actually assembles, delivers and sets everything up for you.  Great service.  

 

They also have an in-home service plan where you pay a set annual fee and they will come out four times per year (every 3 months roughly) and clean the beer lines, faucets, etc., free keg deliveries, and service the kegerator to make sure everything is working properly.  They also will convert a tap to be able to dispense Guinness for $200.  I've looked up all the parts I would need to do it myself and it comes right at $200, so paying them to do it makes more sense than me trying to do it myself.

 

So, before I call them to have them do the conversion on the one tap and fix the other, I've been trying to research everything so when I speak with them I know what I'm talking about and can make sure I'm getting quality parts.  So, I have some questions:

 

1.  Will I need to replace the entire tower?  And should the tower be able to have one faucet for domestic/regular imports and another for Guinness?

2.  What is the best specialty faucet for Guinness?

3.  What is the best European coupler?

4.  Are the specialty faucets forward or rear sealing?  And do they stick like a standard rear sealing one does (like the one I had)?

5.  In my current set-up, I removed the broken faucet and there is a spring sticking out from where it connects to the tower.  Do I just pull the spring out and connect the new Perlick faucet?  Is it that easy, or no?

6.  I want to clean my beer lines more than once every 3 months from their service plan, so will the standard beer line cleaning kits clean work with the European faucets?  The kit I was looking at connects to where the faucet connects, pumps water through that way and drains out of the coupler side.

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Has anyone in the DMV seen/tried Jack's Abby yet? 

 

It's a local brewery to me (in MA) and only does lagers. They have a pretty varied line-up and do lots of seasonal and limited-run beers. My favorite is their House Lager, which is like a high-brow version of PBR, right down to the pounder can. Super drinkable, not too hoppy. Just right!

 

Anyway, if you like craft brew that isn't too hop-oriented these guys might be for you.

 

Jack's Abby website

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 6/27/2017 at 0:33 PM, Dont Taze Me Bro said:

Wow, been a while since we talked beer.  So, since the last time I posted, I managed to break one of my faucets.  The kegerator I got was a Danby and what appears to be standard parts for a two tap system.  So, both faucets are spring loaded and rear sealing.  One got stuck and usually I'd just wiggle it and apply some pressure to get it lose and pour beer.  Yes, I'm stupid sometimes and now know that I should have taken the faucet off, broken it down and soaked it in warm water and cleaner for a couple of hours.

 

Hind sight is 20/20 :(  Anyhow, when I pulled down it popped, beer started pouring and then wouldn't shut off and seal back.  Had to get some mixing bowls to catch the beer and being pissed off, I let the keg tap out.  It was close anyhow, so I lost about 7 pints, something like that.  Anyhow after research, I read that I should get a forward sealing faucet as the beer stays in there and doesn't become dried and sticky and cause that problem.

 

Well, I've read that I should go with a stainless steel Perlick model faucet.  I was planning on converting one of the faucets to a specialty one for Guinness and other European beers.  I figure I should just go ahead and do everything now, while I'm fixing it.  So, the company I bought the kegerator from actually assembles, delivers and sets everything up for you.  Great service.  

 

They also have an in-home service plan where you pay a set annual fee and they will come out four times per year (every 3 months roughly) and clean the beer lines, faucets, etc., free keg deliveries, and service the kegerator to make sure everything is working properly.  They also will convert a tap to be able to dispense Guinness for $200.  I've looked up all the parts I would need to do it myself and it comes right at $200, so paying them to do it makes more sense than me trying to do it myself.

 

So, before I call them to have them do the conversion on the one tap and fix the other, I've been trying to research everything so when I speak with them I know what I'm talking about and can make sure I'm getting quality parts.  So, I have some questions:

 

1.  Will I need to replace the entire tower?  And should the tower be able to have one faucet for domestic/regular imports and another for Guinness?

2.  What is the best specialty faucet for Guinness?

3.  What is the best European coupler?

4.  Are the specialty faucets forward or rear sealing?  And do they stick like a standard rear sealing one does (like the one I had)?

5.  In my current set-up, I removed the broken faucet and there is a spring sticking out from where it connects to the tower.  Do I just pull the spring out and connect the new Perlick faucet?  Is it that easy, or no?

6.  I want to clean my beer lines more than once every 3 months from their service plan, so will the standard beer line cleaning kits clean work with the European faucets?  The kit I was looking at connects to where the faucet connects, pumps water through that way and drains out of the coupler side.

 

 

First off those spring loaded faucets are crap, and probably coated with stainless steel, and over time, that layer will wear off inside the faucet exposing the brass core its wrapped around on the plunger, which in most cases will give your beer a off taste. What ever faucets you go with, make sure they are totally stainless steel (those are always more expensive then the coated ones)

To clean the guiness line if you buy one of those bottles you have to make sure it has a hookup for the European coupler, your best bet is to just buy one of these and get two hook ups on it, one for normal couplers and one for the guiness , there is a 2.5 gallon model (pictured) and a 5 gallon model, same size as a sixtel of beer

9v892-2.jpg

 

Micromatic makes the best coupler and faucets for guinness, so goto their site to find those , perlick makes a guinness coupler but its crap in my opinion

The slow pour faucet for guinness and other nitro beers arent front or rear sealing , its totally different than normal faucets, get the micromatic one here as well.

 

Also you need a 75/25 nitrogen/c02 blend to run guinness, dont try to run it off of c02, it will taste horrible and make the keg go flat. At the same time dont run normal beers off of the 75/25 blend, your keg will go flat. So basically for guinness you need to run a separate gas source for it.

 

Ditch the spring loaded faucets all together, its a gimmick so you dont have to push the handle back when finished pouring, we call those the lazy mans faucets in my line of work (im a draft technician lol)

 

At a minimum you want to can your lines every month, the brewers association suggests every 2 weeks because yeast and bacteria start to grow in your lines at about 1.5 weeks, but on a kegerator where the lines are short once a month will suffice. Ive never used the cheap line cleaning materials and equipment so i cant comment on those, but stay away from the powder cleaners and use only approved liquid caustic and acid cleaners. Acid line cleaning is done 4 times per year(once per quarter) it removes beer stone where as caustic cleaners do not.

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37 minutes ago, DButz65 said:

 

 

First off those spring loaded faucets are crap, and probably coated with stainless steel, and over time, that layer will wear off inside the faucet exposing the brass core its wrapped around on the plunger, which in most cases will give your beer a off taste. What ever faucets you go with, make sure they are totally stainless steel (those are always more expensive then the coated ones)

To clean the guiness line if you buy one of those bottles you have to make sure it has a hookup for the European coupler, your best bet is to just buy one of these and get two hook ups on it, one for normal couplers and one for the guiness , there is a 2.5 gallon model (pictured) and a 5 gallon model, same size as a sixtel of beer

 

 

Micromatic makes the best coupler and faucets for guinness, so goto their site to find those , perlick makes a guinness coupler but its crap in my opinion

The slow pour faucet for guinness and other nitro beers arent front or rear sealing , its totally different than normal faucets, get the micromatic one here as well.

 

Also you need a 75/25 nitrogen/c02 blend to run guinness, dont try to run it off of c02, it will taste horrible and make the keg go flat. At the same time dont run normal beers off of the 75/25 blend, your keg will go flat. So basically for guinness you need to run a separate gas source for it.

 

Ditch the spring loaded faucets all together, its a gimmick so you dont have to push the handle back when finished pouring, we call those the lazy mans faucets in my line of work (im a draft technician lol)

 

At a minimum you want to can your lines every month, the brewers association suggests every 2 weeks because yeast and bacteria start to grow in your lines at about 1.5 weeks, but on a kegerator where the lines are short once a month will suffice. Ive never used the cheap line cleaning materials and equipment so i cant comment on those, but stay away from the powder cleaners and use only approved liquid caustic and acid cleaners. Acid line cleaning is done 4 times per year(once per quarter) it removes beer stone where as caustic cleaners do not.

 

Great post, thanks DButz!  Turns out they use micromatic faucets and couplers when they convert one of the lines to Guinness along with the 75/25 gas blend.  I thought they had told me $200, but it was $300 and when I priced the micromatic parts separately, it was going to be $270 ish and with a discount I get from them (5%) it turned out to only be $275.   Only bad thing is my setup won't hold both the regular CO2 tank and Nitrogen/CO2 tank in the kegerator with two sixtels.  Only one will fit in there, so I'll have to have one of the tanks attached outside on the back.  Granted that doesn't mean anything except for purely cosmetic and space reasons.

 

I also ordered a stainless steel, Perlick forward sealing faucet for the regular domestic tap.  The spring in that crappy rear sealed one was actually stuck in there due to the beer, so I was able to pull it out.  As far as the cleaning kits, they told me they use the ones that hook up to the faucet and drains out of the coupler side.  I don't want to ruin the beer taste, figured I'd clean it once a month and let them do it once a quarter since its included in the in-home service plan. 

 

They are coming to fix everything and install the Guinness tap this Friday, so it will be Snake Bites on tap this weekend (getting two sixtels delivered - Guinness and Woodchuck cider).  

 

 

Edit:  Do I need to get PH testing strips for the cleaner?  Or should I be fine without?

Edited by Dont Taze Me Bro
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No you don't need the PH testers , especially with such short lines , you will be able to see the changeover from cleaner to beer , which should only be a few seconds, just count to 3 after it turns to beer and you're fine. 

 

Yea they will have to drill a hole in your box for the other gas tank , might as well just have them run both outside as long as there is room where it won't interfere with the compressor and stuff , and they SHOULD run a braided high pressure line for the Guinness 

 

P.S. Perlick faucets are self cleaners meaning you don't have to remove them and disassemble to clean them , just check the rear washer every now and then for wear and replace if necessary, do not remove all the interior seals and crap on them , you need a special tool to get them back in 

Edited by DButz65
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On 6/27/2017 at 0:33 PM, Dont Taze Me Bro said:

Wow, been a while since we talked beer.  So, since the last time I posted, I managed to break one of my faucets.  The kegerator I got was a Danby and what appears to be standard parts for a two tap system.  So, both faucets are spring loaded and rear sealing.  One got stuck and usually I'd just wiggle it and apply some pressure to get it lose and pour beer.  Yes, I'm stupid sometimes and now know that I should have taken the faucet off, broken it down and soaked it in warm water and cleaner for a couple of hours.

 

Hind sight is 20/20 :(  Anyhow, when I pulled down it popped, beer started pouring and then wouldn't shut off and seal back.  Had to get some mixing bowls to catch the beer and being pissed off, I let the keg tap out.  It was close anyhow, so I lost about 7 pints, something like that.  Anyhow after research, I read that I should get a forward sealing faucet as the beer stays in there and doesn't become dried and sticky and cause that problem.

 

Well, I've read that I should go with a stainless steel Perlick model faucet.  I was planning on converting one of the faucets to a specialty one for Guinness and other European beers.  I figure I should just go ahead and do everything now, while I'm fixing it.  So, the company I bought the kegerator from actually assembles, delivers and sets everything up for you.  Great service.  

 

They also have an in-home service plan where you pay a set annual fee and they will come out four times per year (every 3 months roughly) and clean the beer lines, faucets, etc., free keg deliveries, and service the kegerator to make sure everything is working properly.  They also will convert a tap to be able to dispense Guinness for $200.  I've looked up all the parts I would need to do it myself and it comes right at $200, so paying them to do it makes more sense than me trying to do it myself.

 

So, before I call them to have them do the conversion on the one tap and fix the other, I've been trying to research everything so when I speak with them I know what I'm talking about and can make sure I'm getting quality parts.  So, I have some questions:

 

1.  Will I need to replace the entire tower?  And should the tower be able to have one faucet for domestic/regular imports and another for Guinness?

2.  What is the best specialty faucet for Guinness?

3.  What is the best European coupler?

4.  Are the specialty faucets forward or rear sealing?  And do they stick like a standard rear sealing one does (like the one I had)?

5.  In my current set-up, I removed the broken faucet and there is a spring sticking out from where it connects to the tower.  Do I just pull the spring out and connect the new Perlick faucet?  Is it that easy, or no?

6.  I want to clean my beer lines more than once every 3 months from their service plan, so will the standard beer line cleaning kits clean work with the European faucets?  The kit I was looking at connects to where the faucet connects, pumps water through that way and drains out of the coupler side.

I don't know squat about European faucets, or couplers,  but I do know that Guinness is a nitro-pours, so you'll need a nitrogen system.  Google it, or go to the Micromatic web site and peruse the forums.  IMHO, Micromatic makes the best couplers and regulators.

 

As far as the tower goes, if it's large enough to accommodate two faucets, it should be fine to dispense Guinness, along with whatever else you're pouring.

 

I have a SS forward-sealing Perlick faucet, and it's great.  No stickiness, and easy to clean. It's solid and a big improvement over the standard rear-sealing faucets.

 

I clean my own lines. The way it works, is that you unscrew the faucet, from the faucet base, and then hook up the cleaning line to the faucet base, and pumy the fluid through the faucet, and out through the coupler.

 

I strongly suggest the forums on the Micromatic web-site. They were an invaluable resource when I rehabbed my.kegerator.  It'll save you a lot of time and money.

 

I wish I knew more, about European faucets, but I don't.

 

Good luck!

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7 hours ago, DButz65 said:

No you don't need the PH testers , especially with such short lines , you will be able to see the changeover from cleaner to beer , which should only be a few seconds, just count to 3 after it turns to beer and you're fine. 

 

Yea they will have to drill a hole in your box for the other gas tank , might as well just have them run both outside as long as there is room where it won't interfere with the compressor and stuff , and they SHOULD run a braided high pressure line for the Guinness 

 

P.S. Perlick faucets are self cleaners meaning you don't have to remove them and disassemble to clean them , just check the rear washer every now and then for wear and replace if necessary, do not remove all the interior seals and crap on them , you need a special tool to get them back in 

What do you mean by disassembly?  

 

I clean mine when I unscrew the faucet from its base to accommodate hooking up the beer-line cleaner.  All there is to it is the one piece with the rear washer.  Admittedly,  it's always pretty clean, but I soak it with the coupler while the lines are being cleaned.  I've never messed with the rest of the faucet assy...

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Just now, Skinsfan1311 said:

I don't know squat about European faucets, or couplers,  but I do know that Guinness is a nitro-pours, so you'll need a nitrogen system.  Google it, or go to the Micromatic web site and peruse the forums.  IMHO, Micromatic makes the best couplers and regulators.

 

As far as the tower goes, if it's large enough to accommodate two faucets, it should be fine to dispense Guinness, along with whatever else you're pouring.

 

I have a SS forward-sealing Perlick faucet, and it's great.  No stickiness, and easy to clean. It's solid and a big improvement over the standard rear-sealing faucets.

 

I clean my own lines. The way it works, is that you unscrew the faucet, from the faucet base, and then hook up the cleaning line to the faucet base, and pumy the fluid through the faucet, and out through the coupler.

 

I strongly suggest the forums on the Micromatic web-site. They were an invaluable resource when I rehabbed my.kegerator.  It'll save you a lot of time and money.

 

I wish I knew more, about European faucets, but I don't.

 

Good luck!

 

Thanks man!  Great advice/insight from both you and DButz.  The company I bought the kegerator from uses micromatic parts/kits to set up the Guinness taps and they use the 25/75 co2/nitrogen gas blend.  They also have the SS Perlick forward sealing faucets so I ordered one of those too to replace the one I broke lol.  

 

They will be out tomorrow morning at 10:30 to set everything up.  I'm pretty excited, even more so than when I got the kegerator.  I've always wanted to be able to pour a draft Guinness in the comfort of my home.  I have the temp on the kegerator set perfect, so I'm hoping that by Saturday afternoon both kegs are cold and settled and I'll be enjoying some Snake Bites (ordered a 1/6 barrel of Woodchuck cider too).

 

Wife isn't happy, but I'm also thinking about putting a tap on the full size fridge in our garage so I can use that for 1/2 barrels.  The other day, I checked the internal temp and it was steady at 37 degrees and that is in a hot garage when the temp outside was 90 degrees.  

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14 minutes ago, Dont Taze Me Bro said:

 

Thanks man!  Great advice/insight from both you and DButz.  The company I bought the kegerator from uses micromatic parts/kits to set up the Guinness taps and they use the 25/75 co2/nitrogen gas blend.  They also have the SS Perlick forward sealing faucets so I ordered one of those too to replace the one I broke lol.  

 

They will be out tomorrow morning at 10:30 to set everything up.  I'm pretty excited, even more so than when I got the kegerator.  I've always wanted to be able to pour a draft Guinness in the comfort of my home.  I have the temp on the kegerator set perfect, so I'm hoping that by Saturday afternoon both kegs are cold and settled and I'll be enjoying some Snake Bites (ordered a 1/6 barrel of Woodchuck cider too).

 

Wife isn't happy, but I'm also thinking about putting a tap on the full size fridge in our garage so I can use that for 1/2 barrels.  The other day, I checked the internal temp and it was steady at 37 degrees and that is in a hot garage when the temp outside was 90 degrees.  

I learned how to pour "the perfect pint" at the Guinness  brewery in Dublin. ;)

BTW, Dave is the Man!  He's forgotten more about beer dispensing than most mortals will ever know...

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21 hours ago, LadySkinsFan said:

I like a Black and Tan, Guinness and Harp. It was fun drinking those in London when I was there on business. Both beers were on tap in the pub. Pretty yummy.

In London, I drank nothing but British ales. It's a great beer town.

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