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I own a Type S Sankey keg. How can we open it for cleaning, sanitization, and filling? In particular, is there a tool we can purchase to make opening and re-closing safe and easy?

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A bit of google-fu turned up this video:


No commentary, not exactly clear, and the thing looks almost homebrewer-proof, but it might help. Good luck!

As for re-installing the spear/closing up the keg, no doubt there's a tool available if you're willing to pay the price (and perhaps qualify to purchase one). For American & Canadian-type Sankeys, the primary sealing O-ring needs to be compressed, not far but HARD. Tools are likewise available, but I've found that a sturdy hook attached to a rigid bar of some kind (I used a hardwood 2X4 about 2' long, on edge), plus a 1 1/8" socket to bear down on the valve body, will compress it enough to slip the snap ring into place.

Hook the hook under one of the handle cutouts, and press down on the bar while fiddling in the snap ring. If necessary, use a longer bar or clamp the opposite end with a long enough clamp. Beats pounding on the socket till the snap ring comes home.

Hope this helps.

p.s. I'm sure you know this already, but don't forget to vent the pressure--not once but over and over again--before you even attempt any of this. Cheers!

[ edit/further afterthought. In case you've never done this before: lay the keg on its side when you vent the pressure or you'll get a faceful of froth, or worse, and use a chunk of dowel or some other soft blunt instrument to avoid scarring the ball valve. ]

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I've upvoted for the effort & details, but I had seen that video and regard it as difficult and unsafe for the keg; that approach looks like it carries a high risk of damaging important components. – keflavich Apr 27 '14 at 15:43
I wouldn't call my reply an answer either, and I sure as heck wouldn't be jamming Allan keys into the sensitive guts of a keg. Still, with an actual example in front of you, I thought the video might suggest a better method. Looks difficult even with the right tool, but if brewery workers can do it... – Glasseyed Apr 29 '14 at 1:53

I think this tool: http://www.candirect.de/Ein-Ausschraubadapter-fuer-Korbfitting-ohne-Knarre

is meant to open Type S kegs, but I haven't purchased it yet so I won't be accepting my own answer unless/until I do.

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