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So the wife is buying me a nice Kegerator. This made me think......why not do 3 LBKs at once and after fermentation dump them into a 5 gal ball lock keg (bottle the remainder)? What do I do from here? Force carbonate? What if it is a beer that needs time for the flavor to even out?

So I need help. I think I understand force carbonation, but what if I want time for the favors to even out? For instance, let's say I did a recipie like Novacaine and wanted to try this?

Should I batch prime in the keg for the time it would take to condition. Then just push the beer with CO2? I'm kinda confused here.

Thanks in advance for anyone that takes the time to help me out. I know I have asked a lot.

Brew On!

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All beers benefit from conditioning (some shorter, some longer). If you want to condition your beer in the keg, you would be best to do a batch prime, cap off the keg and let it sit for the necessary time to condition. In your example, Novacaine, 6-9 months. What is nice is that if you find that your carb levels are not up to your liking, you have the option of force carbonating to adjust the carbonation profile. Don't confuse carbonation with conditioning. Both happen in either the bottle or the keg. The carbonation can be augmented, conditioning is just a matter of time.

 

Just my $0.02

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By the way, congrats on the Kegerator. You will definitely have to brew up a special batch for your wife to say thank you. :wub:

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So I need help. I think I understand force carbonation, but what if I want time for the favors to even out? For instance, let's say I did a recipie like Novacaine and wanted to try this?

 

 

That's a good question. I've brewed many batches of Novacaine and used priming sugar in bottles as they carbed and condition anywhere form 9 to 12 months before drinking them. I don't think I'd want one of my corny kegs tied up for a year so if I were to do it today I would bottle them again.

 

On the other end of the spectrum is my Orange Sunshine Belgian Witbier, that I force carbonate and condition in the keg for only a week before tapping the keg and drinking it. I guess there is really no one size fits all answer now that I think about it.

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I don't see what's the difference between tying up a keg for an extended time or storing all those bottles for an extended time.  I bet the keg take less room anyway.

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I often bulk age in kegs rather than bottles. They don't break, there's no light-strike, they're easier to handle, easier to clean, and they do take up less space than bottles. You just want to make sure you purge the oxygen out of the keg before storing for bulk aging. Even if you're naturally carbonating in the keg with a batch prime, it's still recommended that you add a blast of Co2 to seal the cap and purge the O2. I prefer to force carbonate most of my beers because I get better control over the exact carbonation levels than with batch priming. I also get less sediment, which will usually show itself in the first few pours (unless you rack from keg to keg after carbonating/aging). 

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I often bulk age in kegs rather than bottles. They don't break, there's no light-strike, they're easier to handle, easier to clean, and they do take up less space than bottles. You just want to make sure you purge the oxygen out of the keg before storing for bulk aging. Even if you're naturally carbonating in the keg with a batch prime, it's still recommended that you add a blast of Co2 to seal the cap and purge the O2. I prefer to force carbonate most of my beers because I get better control over the exact carbonation levels than with batch priming. I also get less sediment, which will usually show itself in the first few pours (unless you rack from keg to keg after carbonating/aging).

Just so I understand; you age in kegs but do not batch prime. Then you force carbonate?

Thanks Josh.

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Just so I understand; you age in kegs but do not batch prime. Then you force carbonate?

Thanks Josh.

Let me see if I get this right, I believe that is what Josh was saying. If you are batch priming in a keg, you still have a significant amount of room air with oxygen in the headspace, and it takes time for the yeast and priming sugar to produce enough CO2 to blanket the top of the beer. By purging the headspace of the keg with CO2, you prevent oxidation of the beer. If you are forced carbonating it shouldn't matter, you are purging the headspace immediately, in addition to adding enough CO2 to carbonate the entire keg. The lack of sediment would be because CO2 alone is being added to the keg, rather than sugar to feed yeast which produces trub sediment on the bottom of the keg.
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I don't see what's the difference between tying up a keg for an extended time or storing all those bottles for an extended time.  I bet the keg take less room anyway.

It's really just that I have way more bottles than kegs to spare .

 

I guess the other question is do you condition the beer at room or refrigerator temperatures or somewhere in between? I have two cases of a Wee Heavy cold conditioning at 35F now and taking up room in my refrigerator for 12 months.

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It's really just that I have way more bottles than kegs to spare .

 

I guess the other question is do you condition the beer at room or refrigerator temperatures or somewhere in between? I have two cases of a Wee Heavy cold conditioning at 35F now and taking up room in my refrigerator for 12 months.

 

Wee Heavys tend to condition better at room temps. Anything with an ale yeast conditions better at cellar temps and up (65+), and anything with a lager yeasts conditions best at below cellar temps.

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