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|By request, here is a posting that I made on Brewboard a long time ago that explains my carbonation process. Keep in mind that there is no reason to use priming sugar if you are kegging and have CO2 handy. The priming sugar or "natural carbonation" will not make your beer carbonate differently, have different bubbles, or taste different. It will however add a very small amount of alcohol to the beer, but again nothing noticable.
Dissolved CO2 is dissolved CO2 for our purposes, and the controlling factors are temperature, pressure, and time. You can only affect one of these, and that is time. Agitating the liquid exposes more of the liquid to the gas, thus making the CO2 mix into solution more rapidly. Shaking the beer doesn't do anything more than help speed the process along. Don't believe anyone that tells you they don't shake because it affects the beer. The important factors are temperature and pressure. Use the standard chart to find the volumes of CO2 you want, and get going! Also, all carbonation using CO2 under pressure is force carbonation, regardless of the speed you perform it at.
Use the carbonation chart at the link above, or use the same chart available in many places around the web. At the bottom of this page are more links for carbonation that might help. Don't make this tougher than it is, and don't try to re-invent the wheel, just follow the process and learn the rules to be happy!
The best way of carbonating your beer is to set the pressure and leave the beer alone in the fridge for a few weeks. That solves two issues. The first is nice even carbonation, and the more important one is proper conditioning. So many people don't let the beer condition properly and are in a hurry to carbonate and drink it. Both carbonation and conditioning can happen at the same time in the fridge ot kegerator, so patience is the best method, and it is nearly foolproof. (OK, it is only fool-resistant, they make better fools every day).
I just don't see why people have a problem with carbonating by the numbers, regardless of shaking (rapid force carb) or not (regular force carb).
It is still better than setting at a higher pressure and leaving it for hours or days and not knowing where your carbonation level is. This method is a controlled way to get close to your target carbonation, and you can then get the last few PSI done by leaving it overnight and be perfect, and accurate very quickly.
This method is nothing new, and yields very accurate and trouble-free rapid carbonation. I've never over-carbed doing this because the high-pressure segments are quite short, and you have an audible reference to let you know when the pressure is reaching equilibrium at the 20psi segment. I'll be glad to show anyone how to perform this method if you are in the
|As I don't claim to invent this stuff, but try to communicate the way I've found successful, here are some links to other source material to help you on your gas filled adventure!|
|Yeah, that's me, caught while rolling a keg to carbonate it quickly. You'll notice that the CO2 input is at the lower side, so I can hear the gas bubbling into the keg. As long as you are keeping a greater pressure going into the keg, you won't have a problem with backflow. Once the pressure starts to equalize you need to be careful.|