how long does it take for beer to "get" carbonated

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how long does it take for beer to "get" carbonated

Postby seanshankus » Mon Jan 05, 2009 7:10 pm

I'm curious how long, approximately, does it take for a corny keg of beer to become carbonated. How long do people wait. I'm not worried trying to get to the exact second, just when is my brew ready to drink. For argument sake, say a 5 gallon corny keg filled to 2 atmospheres in a 55 degree 'fridge.

thanks
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Merely days

Postby shaggyt » Mon Jan 05, 2009 9:28 pm

Sean...my first go around with force carbonation took about 4-5 days to fully carbonate using the following schedule:

Day 1 - Agitate (shake it, rock it, what have you) @ 10 PSI
Day 2 - Same as Day 1
Day 3 - Check pressure
Day 4 - Check pressure, drink beer...I don't recall if it was "100%" finished at that point, but it was good enough for me and I couldn't wait any longer.

The only variable I could not account for was my fridge temp. It was somewhere between 32-50F - no reliable thermometer & an extremely old fridge.

There are some great posts elsewhere in this forum that discuss this...one under "Equipment" was a big help...some with links.

Also, what are "atmospheres?"
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atmospheres

Postby robert4136 » Mon Jan 05, 2009 9:52 pm

an atmosphere (atm) is a unit of pressure just like pounds per square inch (PSI), an atmosphere is relative to the pressure of the earth's atmosphere at sea level at a standard temperature. With that said, the standard pressure of the earth's atmosphere is 1 atm. 1 atm = about 14.7 PSI.
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Postby nocluebruer » Thu Nov 12, 2009 10:28 pm

Who has 4 or 5 days to wait? I used to rack into 1/4 barrels and cranked the CO2 to 30psi for 1-1/2 days and you're good to go. By the time the beer gets cold, you're ready to drink.

If you throw a little sugar in your keg at rack off and let it sit for a while at fermenting temp you won't need long for the natural carbonation in the keg to get a drinkable beer.

I used to force carbonate but with a little planning, priming sugar, time and a good temp, you get to save your CO2 for pushing beer out, not making it bubbly. Makes the CO2 tank last a lot longer too, more economical.
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Postby Suthrncomfrt1884 » Mon Nov 16, 2009 9:38 pm

nocluebruer wrote:Who has 4 or 5 days to wait? I used to rack into 1/4 barrels and cranked the CO2 to 30psi for 1-1/2 days and you're good to go. By the time the beer gets cold, you're ready to drink.

If you throw a little sugar in your keg at rack off and let it sit for a while at fermenting temp you won't need long for the natural carbonation in the keg to get a drinkable beer.

I used to force carbonate but with a little planning, priming sugar, time and a good temp, you get to save your CO2 for pushing beer out, not making it bubbly. Makes the CO2 tank last a lot longer too, more economical.


I think the key word here is "drinkable". Not...perfect. I wish LHBS would stop trying to sell their keg setups with the impression that you can force carbonate a beer in 2 days. This is obsurd and rarely creates a good carbonation. 90% of the time, the beer is overcarbed after this method. You may not think so yourself, but that's because you're used to it. Try waiting 3 weeks with your PSI set around 12-15 depending on your temps. This creates a much better beer.
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