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I'm very interested in ferment in corny-kegs after reading some questions about that here on this stackexchange. I will try it next batch, but there is a question about aeration/no chilling method:

Normally I aerate my wort by splashing it when transfering from my no chill vessels to my fermentors, so I understand that I am mixing my wort to the air and all the microorganisms around when I'm doing that. Before splash I put my yeast in the bottom of the fermentor and the same movement mix them to wort to.

Now I want to No Chill and ferment in the same kegs. Is it possible? How to properly aerate the wort doing this way? I know that I can simple shake the kegs to aerate them, but these kegs don't seal if they're not pressurized. So it will be a big mess to clean if I need to do that way. And a O2 tank is not a possibility for now.

So I want to know if I can:

1) Fill the kegs and seal them with CO2 to No Chill;

2) Pitch my yeast directly in these cornys after chilled, put some CO2 to seal it, shake it to mix the yeast to the wort;

3) Remove the gas in post to hook a hose as a blowoff tube, plug a bicycle pump in my liquid-out disconnect to aerate the wort.

This protocol seems good? There is a better/safer way to do that? It will be better if I use the same HDPE vessels for no chill and splash it to the cornys? A bike pump is better/worse than a aquarium air pump or should I expect similar results? I've been reading a post about aeration and this answer caught my attention. Could I get some good If I use a kitchen mixer to mix the yeast and aerate the wort?

Thanks a lot again. Sorry if it seems to much questions inside just one.

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I think you could skip the CO2 & shaking in step 2:
The bike pump should be able to make more than enough pressure to seat the seals, especially if they are well lubricated. The only question is whether air will go in fast enough. So maybe use a mountain bike pump, not not a road bike pump.
The bubbles from the pump will do a more than adequate job of mixing the wort and yeast, so no need to shake.
When you aerate, filter the air!

  • I also think you'll need some CO2 pressure in step one - some CO2 will be absorbed, and the temperature will drop, so you could in theory drop to zero pressure and lose the seal. I haven't done anything like that, ever. – Pepi Dec 31 '14 at 2:21
  • Hi, Pepi. I made this bike-keg line to cleaning trough the diptubes, but it don't worked so well on these kegs I'm using on this plan. They don't seal just by the act of pumping. Don't know if my pump is so bad. It is suitable for mountain bikes, but is a hand pump. I think it will be better with a floor pump. But how can I filter the air? I'm afraid of contaminants inside the pump... – jards Dec 31 '14 at 12:47
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    I use this when I'm bottling: (morebeer.com/products/sanitary-filter.html). It allows me to start the siphon by pressurizing the carboy, and I've done that with a bike pump or by blowing. – Pepi Jan 1 '15 at 4:27
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I just realized that after fermentation is done, I will need at least an extra keg to transfer my beer out of the fermentors, anyway. My batches are of 3 kegs. So I will need to take an 4º keg to transfer the first. After that, I could just drain and clean the emptys one by one and do the other transfers.

So what I've done was to fill the 3 kegs with boiling wort and wait a day 'no chilling'. Clean and sanitize another keg, put the yeast in it and then transfer with a reasonable pressure. That way I could mix the yeast and aerate the wort without needing to use the HDPE vessels again, or buying anything else. Easy and safe. Thanks everyone!

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