Ball lock or Pin lock keg?

Tue Oct 30, 2012 6:59 am

Im finally going to start kegging. Which style is better? I see deals on both. I currently have a standard kegerator with tap and CO2 that I put commercial beer in. Thx.
Jason.

tap:Alesmith IPA
carboy:Sour Blonde, Rye Saison w/Brett
bottld: Tripel A,Tripel B,Sour Blonde,Hef, Saison w/Brett
OnDeck:Brown Ale
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crashlann
 
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Re: Ball lock or Pin lock keg?

Tue Oct 30, 2012 8:22 am

It seems to be largely personal preference, though from my experience, more people have been using ball than pin.
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spiderwrangler
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Re: Ball lock or Pin lock keg?

Tue Oct 30, 2012 9:03 am

It seems that lately pin lock kegs have been cheaper and easier to find (at least here around Denver). I think this may be because more people are using ball locks and used ones are becoming harder to find. Personal preference is probably the biggest thing, I agree. Keep in mind that you will just want to stay consistent once you start.
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Re: Ball lock or Pin lock keg?

Tue Oct 30, 2012 12:06 pm

If you are part of a club or know other local brewers that keg, check to see what they use. That way if you folks ever serve beer at a public even you can keep the equipment compatible.
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Bugeater
 
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Re: Ball lock or Pin lock keg?

Tue Oct 30, 2012 1:38 pm

Bugeater wrote:If you are part of a club or know other local brewers that keg, check to see what they use. That way if you folks ever serve beer at a public even you can keep the equipment compatible.

+1. My brewing friends used ball lock before I started kegging.
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Dirk McLargeHuge
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Re: Ball lock or Pin lock keg?

Fri Nov 02, 2012 4:39 pm

Thanks for the replies. Will my current tap work with either? I have a standard kegerator that I commonly fill with Alesmith, Lagunitas, Greenflash kegs...
Jason.

tap:Alesmith IPA
carboy:Sour Blonde, Rye Saison w/Brett
bottld: Tripel A,Tripel B,Sour Blonde,Hef, Saison w/Brett
OnDeck:Brown Ale
Longtermferm:

"They think I do not know a buttload of crap about the Gospel, but I do!,"Nacho
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crashlann
 
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Re: Ball lock or Pin lock keg?

Sun Nov 04, 2012 9:02 am

Pin lock is 'better' than ball lock in one major regard. There is only one size pin lock for gas and one size for liquid. With ball locks there are several. Thus you must have gas and liquid fittings for each of the sizes you use. This becomes a real nuisance when you break a connector or lose one only to find that the spares you have are of the wrong type.

I threw up my hands and went to Sankey for everything. With the 1/4 bbl and sixtel sizes now available in Sankey these are compatible with home brewing applications. You will need a fairly hefty pump to clean them, however, unless you want to take the spear out each time and that's a bit of a PITA.

And the final question: yes, ball and pin lock kegs are compatible with Sankey draft systems. You will need to make up some 1/4" flare to draft tailpiece lines (or conjure up something with quick-disconnects) but it is definitely doable.
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Re: Ball lock or Pin lock keg?

Mon Nov 05, 2012 8:33 pm

My bet is that if homebrewing continues to gain popularity, folks are going to start kegging in Sankeys more and more. It used to be that used corny kegs could be had for less than $20 but now they are approaching the price of a 1/6 barrel Sankey keg.

Ball locks are nice because they tend to come with a lid with manual pressure relief valve, which is useful for letting off pressure. They are narrower and taller (unless you're looking at a converted pin lock) and fit more easily inside some kegerators.
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